Arab Street

Ten minutes southeast from Little India, Singapore's traditional Arab Quarter squats at the intersection of North Bridge Road and Arab Street. Nothing in Singapore beats Arab Street for bazaar-style shopping with true ethnic character.

The street itself is a riot of colorful textiles from all over Asia at very low prices. Here you can browse in hole-in-the-wall shops, haggle to your heart's content and come away with the most delightful purchases at bargain prices. Many shops still reflect the Muslim influence, selling prayer rugs, skull caps and anything needed by the faithful making the Islamic pilgrimage to Mecca.

The most visible items for sale are the baskets and other cane, straw, rattan and pandan leaf goods spilling out onto the pavements; everything from baby cradles to floor mats, hanging chairs to serving trays. These shops also stock interesting camel skin bags, pith helmets, tiny cloisonné boxes and miniature sewing kits. Visit the shops along Jalan Pisang / Arab Street vicinity and learn more about your birthstone and other gemstones. Be overwhelmed by the stunning variety of glorious fabrics in every imaginable texture and color.

While you're in the vicinity, pass the Sultan Mosque, impressive with its golden dome and minarets, a center of the Islamic community in Singapore. Another attraction here is the Istana Kampong Glam which has now become a Malay heritage park.

Stop by at one of its many excellent Malay restaurants and experience its authentic Malay cuisine. Moreover there's fine Indian food along nearby North Bridge Rd and the food stalls on Bussorah St are especially atmospheric at dusk during Ramadan.