A tour of the architecture of Singapore

Singapore is one of the smallest countries in Asia but it has a lot going for it. Not least its exciting architecture.

It has many sculptures, bridges and boats so is a great place for architectural photography. I took these photos on my old digital camera so forgive the quality.

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Stamford Raffles Statue

Sir Stamford Raffles is the founder of modern day Singapore. He was the person who set it up as the trading post that it is today as well as the reason it is so multicultural.

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Man sitting in front of the Esplanade Theatre

The Esplanade Theatre has the nickname after the foul-smelling fruit ‘the durian’ due to its spiky roof.

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The Esplanade Theatre

I saw this photograph in my Lonely Planet guidebook and I copied it.

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The Singapore skyline

From the plane on the way to Australia I could see all the skyscrapers of Singapore and I was fascinated by the place. The Central Business District is full of them and you can see more being built in the background.

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The Merlion

This half-fish and half-lion has come to represent Singapore. It was possibly born of myth or folklore but the 7 Merlion figures you see today were created by the Singapore Tourist Board.

The fish represents its fishing village origins and the lion comes from the name ‘Singapura’ which is Malay for ‘lion city’.

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Not everything runs perfectly in Singapore as you can see from this boat that has sprung a leak!

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I got on a bumboat for more views of the city, you can see how green the water is in the bay.

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Empress Palace

Here is some classic colonial architecture and more bumboats. This is the Empress Palace where the Singapore Symphony Orchestra play concerts.

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Clarke Quay

Don’t be fooled by the colourful houses, Clarke Quays is where people come to party.

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A view from the junk boat

The lanterns on a bumboat swing around in the breeze as you sail around.

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Chinese guardian lion

Guardian lions are traditionally used to protect Chinese buildings. This one is even wearing an auspicious red scarf to bring luck.

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The Alkaff Bridge

The Alkaff Bridge was designed by a Filipino artist to represent the ‘tongkang’ small boats that used to use the waters. There are 52 different colours on it altogether.

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Singapore skyscraper

I have no idea what this skyscraper is, I assume its housing as they look like flats to me.

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People crossing the road outside the Capitol Building

Nobody jaywalks in Singapore as it is against the law to do so, along with non-medical chewing gum. These people are all following the rules.

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A house with rainbow-coloured shutters, I love that someone must open them all every day and close them at night.

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Construction is ongoing in Singapore so it will be interesting to see how it develops over time in such a small area. Luckily it has green spaces to keep it more liveable for people and animals, as well as provide oxygen!

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Singapore by night

I tried to be really arty by taking all these pictures at night but actually it just looks blurry. I wanted to create light streams but my camera was too terrible!

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First Generation by Chong Fah Cheong

This is one of Singapore’s most famous bronze statues and it is by Chong Fah Cheong. It represents the past of the Singapore river when migrants children would play in the polluted waters, before the country became mega-clean.

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One of the city’s busy shopping streets – can you spot the tourists?

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Homage to Newton in UOB Plaza

This ‘Homage to Newton’ bronze sculpture was made by Salvador Dali. The apple represents the discovery of gravity by Sir Isaac Newton and how you must have an open heart and mind to do such a thing.

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Bird in UOB Plaza

This bronze bird sculpture is by Colombian Fernando Botero. He makes exaggerated ‘fat’ figures and Singapore hopes this bird will bring them prosperity.

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The River Merchants by Aw Tee Hong

This sculpture is the most self-explanatory. The merchants from China and Malaysia are doing a deal, which is unsurprising given Singapore’s important history as a trade hub. The man sitting down is Alexandre Laurie Johnston, a Scottish trader who would grab hold of the boats when they entered the river for his company to sell.

I hope to revisit Singapore and see more of its green spaces and eat more of its amazing desserts! Sadly I didn’t take photos of their amazing desserts as it would have made a great post. I also didn’t feel like I really scratched the surface of what makes this place tick…I’m also desperate for a Singapore Sling! See you soon Singapore.

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