• Choose from over 200 different food stalls at this giant open air complex
• Locals love the fish ball noodle soup and wok-fried oyster omelets, to name a few
• Swing by anytime of day for an authentic dinner, lunch, or even breakfast
One of the unique pleasures of dining in Singapore? The hawker centers. Every neighborhood has one, and it’s where the majority of Singaporeans eat at least one meal a day. Most are small in scale, with only a few dozen stalls, which is why the Old Airport Road Food Center, with nearly 200, stands out. Ask any cab driver, and they’ll tell you it also has the best of many things: porridge, avocado smoothies, chicken rice, and on and on. Few tourists make the trip given that it’s away from the city center and removed from other attractions, but that shouldn’t stop you. Grab a cab and this giant open-air buffet is just a 12-minute cab ride away. We’re partial to the exemplary fish ball noodle soup at Ru Ji Kitchen, where the fish paste is pounded by hand and formed into springy balls every morning; try it with their homemade sambal chili. Or line up for noodles with tender slices of barbecued pork and wontons at Hua Kee Hougang Famous Wanton Mee followed by eggy wok-fried oyster omelets topped with fresh spring onions at Katong Ah Soon Fried Oyster. The stalls are open for breakfast, lunch, and dinner, but they keep unpredictable hours; if the one you’re looking for is closed, just find a long queue and join it. Remember, there’s no air conditioning, so it’s sometimes sweltering, and you’ll have to bring your own napkins—small trade-offs when you consider that most dishes cost between $2 and $6.
We suggest you take a cab over to this hawker center, which will only take about 12 minutes from Conrad. Just head down Old Airport Road, and where it intersects with Cassia Link, you’ll see Broadrick Secondary School. Directly across the street from the school is this massive complex, with all its 200 eateries.
OLD AIRPORT ROAD FOOD CENTRE: 51 Old Airport Rd.
RU JI KITCHEN: 51 Old Airport Rd., stall #01-37
HUA KEE HOUGANG FAMOUS WANTON MEE: 51 Old Airport Rd., stall #01-10/11/12
KATONG AH SOON FRIED OYSTER: 51 Old Airport Rd., stall #01-07