• Find your center in Chinatown at this picturesque Buddhist temple
• Learn the rituals, explore the museum and get good karma from a giant prayer wheel
• For a uniquely Singaporean experience, drink microbrews in a hawker center
Singapore’s temples buzz with activity and noise, and the imposing Buddha Tooth Relic Temple and Museum is no exception. Set in the heart of Chinatown, this is an active spot full of chanting monks and everyday Singaporeans waving incense. Outside it looks like a mini Potala Palace, while the glowing red interior is lined with thousands of tiny Buddha statues. Spread across four stories with multiple altars and a series of swooping Tang-style roofs, it only looks ancient. The construction actually began in 2005; it houses a museum and cultural space, and it’s very welcoming to tourists, with eager guides on hand to explain the rituals and offer free shawls to visitors with bare shoulders. While the eponymous relic is housed on the top floor inside a 3.5-ton solid gold stupa, we think the real attraction is the peacefulness of the contemplative rooftop garden, planted with an impressive display of orchids. Don’t miss turning the giant prayer wheel and accumulating some good karma. After, head to the Good Beer Company, tucked away in a far corner of the second floor of the nearby Chinatown Complex, and meditate on a uniquely Singaporean experience: a microbrew in a hawker center.
You can find the Buddhist temple in the Chinatown district, off of South Bridge Road. Right where Sago Street and South Bridge intersect, you can’t miss this red, multi-level temple. Afterwards, you can just head west on Smith Street and you’ll be at the Good Beer Company. Go up to the second floor and enjoy a cold one.
BUDDHA TOOTH RELIC TEMPLE AND MUSEUM: 288 South Bridge Rd.; +65-6220-0220; btrts.org.sg/english-home
GOOD BEER COMPANY: 335 Smith St., #02-58; twitter.com/goodbeersg