Little India, Singapore

See & Do

 
 
The most extreme thing to see and do in Singapore's Little India is to join the festival of Thaipusam, held yearly during the full moon in the lunar month of Thai (usually January or February). Male devotees attach ornate shrines to their flesh with piercing hooks known as kavadi and walk across town in a day-long procession. Female devotees would usually just carry a pot of milk on their head and join the procession. The procession starts from Sri Srinivasa Perumal Temple in Serangoon Road and proceeds to the Sri Thandayuthapani Temple at Tank Road.
 
 
 
 
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Around Deepavali (the Hindu festival of light and also known as Diwali or Devali in India), Serangoon Road is festively decorated with lights and open-air markets are set up selling Deepavali goodies. Like Thaipusam, the exact date is set by the lunar calendar, but it takes place in October or November and is a public holiday in Singapore. Near the beginning of Deepavali, the fire walking festival of Thimithi is held, where many male devotees will walk across a platform of burning coal. Though the actual fire walking takes place at the Sri Mariammam temple in Chinatown, the procession starts at the Sri Srinivasa Perumal Temple in Serangoon Road and makes its way to Chinatown early in the morning where the fire walking commences.

Deepavali festivity in Little India, Singapore

Deepavali festivity in Little India

The Sri Veeramakaliamman Temple, at 141 Serangoon Road, is Little India's busiest and oldest Hindu temple. It dates back to 1881 but the present structure was completed in 1986. The temple is dedicated to the Hindu goddess Kali and its architecture is typical of South Indian Tamil temples found in Tamil Nadu. The temple is particularly busy on Tuesdays, Fridays and Sundays. Admission is free and be sure to take your shoes off before venturing inside.

Hindu temple in Little India, Singapore

Sri Veeramakaliamman Temple in Little India

A more low-key event happens every Sunday evening when thousands and thousands of Singapore's workers from the Indian subcontinent turn up in Little India to hang out on their day off. Most of the crowd is friendly enough and well-behaved, but inevitably a few get drunk and there are the isolated drunken fights. However, there's a heavy police presence keeping an eye on things.

 
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Little India

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