Take a glimpse into the history, lifestyle and unique character of the Peranakan of Singapore — people of mixed ethnic origins — on this 3.5-hour coach tour with a knowledgeable guide. Follow a walking trail through the Spice Garden at Fort Canning Park, and see an exhibition of clothing, jewelry, furniture, customs and festivals at the Peranakan Museum. You’ll view traditional Peranakan shophouses dating back to the 1920s and end with a food tasting of local Peranakan (also called Nyonya) cuisine, a combination of Chinese, Malay and other influences.
After pickup at your Singapore city or Sentosa Island hotel, you’re driven by comfortable coach to Fort Canning Park, a hilltop landmark of lush greenery. Venture along a walking path into the Spice Garden, which dates back to the origins of Singapore’s first botanical garden in 1822 and boasts more than 100 varieties of plants and trees. Follow your knowledgeable guide, who points out various herbs and spices, such as chili, galangal, lemongrass, turmeric, curry leaves and ginger, used in cooking tangy Peranakan dishes.The next stop on your coach tour is the Peranakan Museum, where you’ll learn more about the customs of the Peranakan people in permanent exhibits on their origins, language, fashions and religion. See displays about food and feasting traditions, including a video demonstration on Peranakan cuisine — a blend of Chinese, Malay, Indian and European ingredients and cooking methods.Next, you’re off to Katong and Joo Chiat, bustling enclaves well known for their rich cultural mix, with residents from various communities adding to the cultural fabric of Singapore. See rows of colorful, traditional Peranakan shophouses dating back to the 1920s and 1930s in an area that draws people from around the island for delicious local food.Finally, stop in Kim Choo for a Peranakan beading demonstration followed by tea and food sampling. Try several Nonya specialties, such as dumplings, otak otak (grilled fish cake mixed spices) and layered cake before you're taken back to your hotel.