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A view of the shophouses along Bussorah Street from Sultan Mosque  <img src='http://www.guidegecko.com/images/spyglass1.png' align='texttop' /> Click for full image
Travel Guide > Asia > Singapore > Walks, Tours & Itineraries

Kampong Glam Walking-Shopping Tour

  
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While our Kampong Glam Mosques Tours focuses on the architecture and culture of this Malay district, this Walking-Shopping Tour brings you through Kampong Glam's small lanes filled with boutique stores. Kampong Glam offers a completely different experience to the big malls of Orchard Road.

The Start: Sultan Mosque

We begin the tour with a little history and culture at Sultan Mosque. Sultan Mosque is the oldest mosque in Singapore, built in 1820 and gazetted as a national monument in 1975. Walk around before entering to admire its impressive Indo-Gothic style architecture. Note the ring below the golden onion dome, which is a distinctive feature of the mosque and completely made with bases of dark soya sauce bottles contributed by the Malay community in Singapore. Don't forget to check out the grand prayer hall where guides are on stand-by to dish out a detailed history of the mosque.

From Sultan Mosque to Arab Street

After a quick tour of Sultan Mosque, backtrack to its visitors' entrance. You will be faced with a pedestrian street lined with two rows of colourful shophouses. This is Bussorah Street, a popular tourist destination at the heart of Kampong Glam. Take a stroll and admire the architecture of these shophouses, which display either First Generation Shophouse or Late Shophouse style designs.

You can easily spend a couple of hours here, as Bussorah Street is a pedestrian mall housing numerous eateries and small intriguing retail stores. Take at least 30 minutes to walk around and check out Little Shophouse, Trippies and Melor's Curios.

As you walk down Bussorah Street, you will arrive on Baghdad Street. Turn right and walk down. You will find two remaining cane ware shops: Gim Joo Trading Co. located on your left and Rishi Handicrafts located at the corner of Baghdad Street and Arab Street on your right. Take some time to explore the variety of woven caneware products sold in these stores. You can get lovely woven baskets as souvenirs and gifts. The vintage leather bags at Rishi Handicrafts are also worth checking out.

From Rishi Handicrafts, you have already arrived on Arab Street, another popular tourist destination in Kampong Glam. You can spend hours shopping at the numerous textile, carpet, fragrance, and Islamic religious stores found here but take at least 30 minutes to check out stores such as Sutra @ Poppy Fabric, Sarvan's Carpets, and Toko Aljunied. Be sure to walk along Aik Bee Textile Co., the only store left on Arab Street that has retained its original setting and wooden cabinets. Cafe Lé Caire @ Al Majlis is a good place to recharge on Middle-Eastern cuisine and rest those tired feet.

From Arab Street to Haji Lane

After a satisfying round on Arab Street, head up in the direction of North Bridge Road, which is a short walk to the right when you come out of Baghdad Street. Turn left on North Bridge Road, and you will find the Landmark Village Hotel with the Golden Landmark Shopping Complex located across the street on your right. A view of its exterior is enough unless you are looking for traditional Malay costumes such as Baju Kurung and Kebayas or daily wear worn by Muslim folks.

As you walk down North Bridge Road, you will quickly arrive at a small back alley located on your left. This is Haji Lane. Turn left and stroll down for an indie shopping experience. You will find a mixture of original, locally designed products and unique vintage pieces retailed in home-grown fashion and lifestyle boutiques such as Soon Lee, Dulcetfig, Victoria Jomo, Pluck, and Know It Nothing. At least an hour is needed to explore some of the stores on Haji Lane.

From Haji Lane to Bali Lane

Once you have reached the junction of Haji Lane and Beach Road, turn right, and then right again into Bali Lane. The shophouses along Haji Lane and Bali Lane are painted with interesting arty designs and graffiti, which are uncommon in Singapore. There is a crazy costume rental store Masquerade and Japanese cosplay and fashion boutique Alice 88th. End your tour with dinner, drinks, and live music entertainment at the highly popular Blu Jaz Café.

Type of tour/trip: Walking Tour
Difficulty/exertion: Easy
Location: Kampong Glam, Singapore
Starting point: Sultan Mosque
Nearest public transport: Bugis
Finishing point: Blu Jaz Café
Distance & duration: 3km, 4-5 hours
Food/drink stops: Bussorah Street, Arab Street, Blu Jaz Café





Kampong Glam Walking-Shopping Tour Reviews

grace
Posted on
31-05-2010
by grace
An extensive collection of textile, carpet, and Islamic Religious stores.
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grace
Posted on
31-05-2010
by grace
Be treated to an indie shopping experience on Haji and Bali Lane.
+1   Do you agree? Yes No     [Report Abuse]  
grace
Posted on
31-05-2010
by grace
Find a variety of Batik products on this tour.
0   Do you agree? Yes No     [Report Abuse]  
grace
Posted on
31-05-2010
by grace
Find original locally designed products and distinctive vintage pieces on Haji Lane.
0   Do you agree? Yes No     [Report Abuse]  
grace
Posted on
31-05-2010
by grace
- Store assistants on Bussorah and Arab Street have quite aggressive sales tactics.
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