Friday, February 21, 2020

Kampong Glam in Singapore

Kampong Glam is the principally Malay and Muslim district of Singapore, known for its great shops, cafes, bars, and restaurants, blending in with traditional businesses such as textile and carpet shops, blacksmiths, and Muslim religious shops.  Our first stop is the Malay Heritage Centre, showcasing the culture, heritage, and history of Malay Singaporeans.  One of the displays features clothing of colonial Singapore and prayer rugs used in the Hajj pilgrimage to Makkah by residents of Singapore, Malaysia, and Indonesia.

 Singaporean dress

The exhibit also explores the tradition of the Hajj as a social and economic phenomenon that spurs developments in international trade, travel, technology, politics, and literary culture.

 Prayer rugs of the Hajj

Back outside the streets and shops of Kampong Glam are calling, with tempting food and merchandise for sale.  It's lunchtime and we pop into a restaurant for a plate of hummus, lavach bread, and a lamb kebob.


Fortified, we continue our exploration of the colorful and inviting streets of Kampong Glam.

 Streets and shops of Kampong Glam

We notice a lot of murals on the buildings and the bright, vibrant colors with which they are painted.

 Art on the walls

Soon, the Masjid Sultan Mosque is open to the public and we enter the mosque that was originally built by Sultan Hussain in 1824-1826 and was replaced with a larger building in the early 1900s as Singapore became a center for Islamic commerce, culture, and art.

 Masjid Sultan Mosque

 Visiting the mosque

Winding up our exploration of Kampong Glam, we continue on toward Chinatown, the district predominantly occupied by the largest ethnic group in Singapore.

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