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  • Singapore's Chinatown is the traditional Chinese quarters of town, and while the entire city

  • is largely Chinese these days the area does retain some of its own charm.

  • Chinatown's primary attraction is the town itself, composed as it is of restored shophouses

  • full of strange little shops selling everything from plastic Buddhas to dried seahorses. Wander

  • at random and see what you can find!

  • The central streets of Chinatown around the pagoda are packed with near-identical stalls

  • selling all sorts of Chinese trinkets aimed squarely at tourists. There is also a cluster

  • of (expensive) antique shops on South Bridge Rd. For Chinese handicrafts, antiques, fashion

  • items, home accessories and Chinese medicine aimed more at the locals, poke into any of

  • the numerous shopping malls.

  • The area between Pagoda Street and Smith Street has been tarted up considerably for tourists,

  • but workaday Chinatown continues south and east, merging seamlessly into the Central

  • Business District. Tanjong Pagar is the unofficial home of Singapore's gay community, with many

  • watering holes in restored shophouses, while Club Street and Ann Siang Hill caters more

  • to the expat, yuppie and hipster crowd with small, intimate eateries offering excellent

  • (if pricey) Western and modern Singaporean fare. Hence Chinatown is quite the paradox

  • - simultaneously the gaudiest and trendiest district in Singapore.

  • Chinatown is at its busiest and most colorful in the month preceding the Chinese New Year,

  • when the streets are decked with festive decorations. Street markets are thronged with people, shows

  • entertain the crowds and the drums of lion dances echo into the night. The festivities

  • in a midnight countdown and a roar of firecrackers atop People's Park Complex, showering flaming

  • confetti down below; and for the two following days virtually everything is closed.

Singapore's Chinatown is the traditional Chinese quarters of town, and while the entire city

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