Celebrate arts and cultural festivals like a Singaporean

A lively global city that continually attracts people from around the world, Singapore hosts countless modern and traditional festivals all year round. Invite your guests to take part in cultural festivities held in historic enclaves, enjoy an array of fringe activities at vibrant events, and discover how inspiring art and intelligent design have been woven into the fabric of our society.

Singapore Art Week and ARTWALK Little India

Exhibits at the Singapore Art Week exhibition

Singapore’s calendar year is chock full of events dedicated to art, which is headlined by Singapore Art Week. Every January, the public is invited to explore different genres of art. Your guests can stroll through indoor and outdoor exhibitions, shop at eclectic art fairs, participate in discussions and workshops, and even enjoy live music and interactive art at art-themed parties. Encourage your guests to attend this eye-opening festival’s many exciting events, which include exhibitions that offer sneak peeks into priceless private art collections. 

Tan Teng Niah House in Little India

Another engaging component of Singapore Art Week is ARTWALK Little India. Themed on the “Image and Sound of Fragrance” this year, this public project invites one and all to discover art across the heritage district of Little India. On this invigorating trail, your clients can admire Little India’s colourful murals, enjoy vivacious performances and catch film screenings, which pay tribute to both the history and modern-day activities of this cultural district.

Singapore Art Week

Duration: 19-27 Jan
Location: Various venues

ARTWALK Little India

Duration: 18 Jan-2 Feb
Location: Little India
Website: artwalklittleindia.sg

i Light Singapore - Bicentennial Edition

Light installation at i Light Singapore

The anchor event that will kick-start festivities commemorating Singapore’s Bicentennial, i Light Singapore - Bicentennial Edition will showcase 33 sustainable light art installations centred on the theme “Bridges of Time”. This festival seeks to inspire festival-goers to reflect on Singapore’s history and development over the years. Visitors can look forward to an enhanced experience this year with five new festival hubs, as this kaleidoscopic fiesta extends beyond Marina Bay to include the Civic District, Singapore River and Raffles Terrace at Fort Canning Park.

Duration: 28 Jan-24 Feb

Location: Marina Bay, Civic District, Singapore River and Raffles Terrace at Fort Canning Park

Website: ilightsingapore.sg

Pongal Festival (Harvest)

Pongal Festival

Pongal is a traditional Indian festival that fetes the arrival of spring and the harvest. This auspicious event is celebrated in honour of the Hindu sun god, Surya, and the cattle that plough the paddy fields and produce milk for Man. Little India is where your clients can discover the traditional practices and handicrafts of the local community. The Pongal Light-Up Ceremony, which happened at Campbell Lane on 11 Jan, kicked off the whole celebration with dazzling street decorations and performances by local and international performers. Your guests can enjoy a month’s worth of Pongal-themed workshops, demonstrations and activities across various locations in Little India. Those who wish to purchase souvenirs should head down to Little India to take their pick from traditional Indian outfits, delicious sweet treats and festive décor, amongst many other items.

Duration: 11 Jan-10 Feb

Location: Various venues including Campbell Lane, Hastings Road, Indian Heritage Centre, Serangoon Road

Website: littleindia.com.sg/pongal

Chinese New Year celebrations

Chingay Festival celebrations

Also known as the Spring Festival, the Lunar New Year is one of the most important and exuberant festivals in the Chinese calendar. Your clients can join locals and take in the festive atmosphere when they check out Chinatown and its annual street light-up (20 Jan-6 Mar), which will abound with mesmerising decorations and boisterous revelry. Visitors will love the many souvenirs and festive treats that can be found at the Festive Street Bazaar (18 Jan-4 Feb), and be wowed by exciting performances at the annual Lion Dance Competition happening on 26 Jan. Apart from the celebrations happening in Chinatown, visitors can check out the annual River HongBao (3-10 Feb), which lights up the night sky with the works of award-winning international artists, during the Fireworks Spectacular happening on four special nights (3, 4, 9 and 10 Feb). Something unique to Singaporean tradition, Chingay 2019 (15 & 16 Feb)—one of the largest street performances and float parades in Asia—invites all to witness the dynamism of Singapore’s vibrant and multicultural society through large scale performances and a 270-metre-long painting by famous local artists Ng Yak Whee, Rosihan Dahim and Madam Vijaya Mohan.

Duration: 18 Jan-6 Mar

Location: Various locations in Chinatown; The Float @ Marina Bay (River HongBao); F1 Pit Building (Chingay)

Website: chinatownfestivals.sg (Chinatown Chinese New Year celebrations); riverhongbao.sg (River HongBao); chingay.org.sg (Chingay)

Singapore Design Week

Visitors at Singapore Design Week

Onto its sixth edition, the Singapore Design Week (SDW) 2019 will bring together a collection of local and international design activities in Singapore. Organised by DesignSingapore (Dsg), the SDW is open to the design community, businesses, design students, public sector officers and general public.

As one of Asia’s premier design festivals, SDW champions design thought leadership by bringing together the design, business and public policy worlds. It aims to bring about innovation and solutions to build businesses, engage communities and enrich people’s lives. Visitors should check out this festival to witness the best design talents and businesses from Singapore and Asia; and experience the value of design through a range delightful activities.

Some activities that visitors can look forward to include:

Street of Clans – a three-day local creative festival along Bukit Pasoh Road that offers exclusive access to the stories of its clan associations and businesses, told through a showcase of homegrown design installations, talks and workshops.

Singapore Urban Design Festival – an experiential festival village held in an underutilised part of a multi-storey carpark in Jalan Besar. Visitors can expect inspiring talks, immersive live entertainment and displays of innovative urban solutions.

International Furniture Fair Singapore – SDW’s homegrown trade show and multi-sensorial platform where signature showcases in partnership with renowned designers will incorporate virtual reality and augmented reality.

For the full line-up of activities, visit www.designsingapore.org/sdw/events/2019. Most activities are free but travel agents who wish to bulk purchase tickets to selected ticketed activities, kindly email robin_kong@mci.gov.sg (Trade contact: Robin).

Duration: 4-17 Mar

Location: National Design Centre and various venues

Website: designsingapore.org/en/sdw