Hello, I am Andrew Phua, Chief Representative and Executive Director for Greater China at the Singapore Tourism Board. It is my honor to be here to introduce my hometown, Singapore, to all of you in China.
Singapore is a country with rich vegetation and a tropical climate all year round. The diverse landscapes of Singapore cover stunning skylines, remarkable natural scenery, and a strong showcase of cultural diversity. The founding Prime Minister of Singapore, Mr. Lee Kuan Yew, introduced the "garden city" vision, aiming to transform Singapore into a modern city with a strong economic environment and abundant lush greenery. Currently, vegetation covers up to 56% of Singapore’s total land area, making Singapore one of the greenest cities in the world.
Today, the definition of "garden city" is no longer limited to ample greenery, but also includes local residents’ attitudes towards healthy living, the harmonious coexistence between city and nature, and the concept of sustainable development. Singapore, as a “City in Nature”, invites residents to pursue their desires for nature and health through its unique urban ecology. For travelers seeking a deeper immersion with nature within city living, it is the perfect destination to start a healthy journey.
Gardens by the Bay, said to be one of the most beautiful gardens in Singapore, is home to three major cooled conservatories: Flower Dome, Floral Fantasy, and Cloud Forest. In addition to the ultra-modern design of the buildings, it also adopts energy-efficient technologies, demonstrating the concept of sustainability in all aspects.
Meanwhile, Singapore’s Southern Ridges is an ideal place for hiking enthusiasts. Among them, Henderson Waves Bridge, which connects Mount Faber Park, is famous for its wave-shaped structure. Walking on the bridge, you can enjoy the sweeping natural and urban views.
The inaugural Wellness Festival Singapore was held in June 2022, featuring over 130 unique programs and wellness-themed events. Whether it is yoga in the SkyPark at Marina Bay Sands, a jog around Merlion Park, or a healing spa treatment at Sentosa Island, you can enjoy a wide range of wellness and lifestyle activities!
Today, I would like to share more about Singapore’s culturally diverse and wide-ranging cuisines.
The Peranakan culture is one of the jewels of Singapore's multi-ethnic society. It is the result of the early settlement of indigenous Chinese in Singapore, who also adopted elements of the diverse cultures of Southeast Asia and Europe, fusing the essence of Eastern and Western cultures to become a unique culture of Singapore. One of the famous neighborhoods in Singapore with strong Peranakan influence is Joo Chiat/ Katong, located in the eastern part of Singapore. One of the most iconic sights in this neighborhood is the rows of colorful Peranakan shophouses on Koon Seng Road. Here in this neighborhood, visitors can not only learn about the history of Singapore's Peranakan culture, but also visit a wide range of shops, restaurants, and museums.
What’s more, Singapore's multiculturalism is also reflected in the harmonious coexistence of different races, religions, and cultures in many areas. Little India, with a rich history, is one such place that combines traditions with modern developments such as emerging art to form a unique community.
Singapore's cuisines are also a culmination and reflection of our country's cultural diversity. From high-end Michelin-starred restaurants to authentic street hawker food, Singapore always has countless delicacies to offer which embody the culinary cultures of the East and the West. Singapore’s hawker culture which brings together "food", "community" and "culture", was officially inscribed on the UNESCO Representative List of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity in 2020. As Singapore's "national eatery", the hawker centre is home to a wide range of local delicacies such as Satay, Chilli Crab, Laksa, and Nasi Lemak, as well as Michelin-starred and Bib Gourmand hawkers such as Hai Nan Xing Zhou Beef Noodle and Tai Wah Pork Noodle. A hawker center brimming with activity is not only a food paradise which reflects the grassroots culture of the neighborhood, but also brings together culture, business, and tourism.
Singapore has actively nurtured generations of creative and passionate people who have put their dreams into practice here. Building on the efforts of past generations, Singapore can continue to write a new chapter of development and look ahead to create endless new possibilities.
Finally, I sincerely invite you to “Reimagine Travel in Singapore” to experience Singapore's cultural diversity and delicious cuisines in person, and I look forward to seeing you all in Singapore in the near future.