Getting to know Singapore

By: Upstream Connections Pte Ltd

Developed as a British trading post in the early nineteenth-century, and previously a Malay fishing village, the ensuing cultural diversity of Singapore is a huge draw card for today's tourist trade. There's something for everyone in Singapore, and the influence of the Chinese, Malay, Indian, and even European and Arab communities continues to fascinate guests from all around the world. With tourism being one of Singapore's largest industries, it also ensures that there is plenty for tourists to see, and visits to this destination are popular year-round. The Orchard Road shopping district and the allure of the National Orchid Garden at the Singapore Botanic Gardens (featuring over 3,000 species of orchids) are prime sites of interest – yet it's not all flowery follies when it comes to visiting Singapore!

It might seem strange to say, but let your stomach be in charge of navigating your way through the streets of Singapore, and you'll be well rewarded. From sampling the delights of Little India or Chinatown to tucking into a delicious and hearty hawker meal, you'll be bound to encounter many taste sensations!

A Singapore must-see, the Raffles Hotel is a sign of bygone times, a relic of colonial opulence. You'll need to pinch yourself so as not to be confused as to your location, as this veritable moment is quintessentially British – although the hot and humid tropical temperatures will surely convince you that you're not looking at any one of the Victorian-era hotels in London. Lazing away an afternoon at the Raffles Hotel is an experience not to be missed, especially when it involves a few Singapore Slings! This now legendary Raffles Long Bar cocktail is made up of gin, cherry brandy, and Benedictine in equal measures, and then adjusted to personal taste with club soda. This sling, served straight up, is pretty close to the ultimate in aperitif hour refreshment. It's not just the hotels in New York that have their signature drinks, as you'll find out in style in Singapore.

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