Guide to Tiong Bahru Singapore

A must-visit in Singapore, the time-washed heritage neighbourhood of Tiong Bahru is where you’ll witness firsthand, the juxtaposition of old and new Singapore coexisting together.

A perennial favourite among local pioneers and third culture kids, Tiong Bahru is a quaint little enclave that’s widely known for its trendy cafes, cool boutiques, modern street art and wide repertoire of hawkers, all harmoniously intertwined.

Tiong Bahru Singapore

Tiong Bahru exists as one of Singapore’s oldest housing estates but not even time can wash away its allure. The best part: Things within the neighbourhood are always changing with new restaurants, cafes and boutiques sprouting up every now and then. Think you’ve seen all there is to Tiong Bahru? Let us refresh your memory with our list of must-dos and must-visit locales for a memorable day trip.


Tiong Bahru’s Street Art: Bird Singing Corner Mural


tiong bahru mural bird singing corner

In Singapore where street art is illegal, Tiong Bahru’s murals are truly a breath of fresh air! But this did not come easily. Singaporean artist Yip Yew Chong, a maverick in his own right, boldly approached the Resident Committee of Tiong Bahru, requesting permission to allow him to paint on their buildings.

Yip did not only seek to transform the neighbourhood —injecting new life into an otherwise charmless and dull enclave —but also highlighted the area’s heritage and almost-forgotten traditions.

Among the many street art, the one that attracts the most buzz is the Bird Singing Corner Mural at 61 Seng Poh Lane. Back in the day, older residents would gather at the aviary to meet friends with their pet birds. The mural depicts exactly that — a crowd of men sitting around one another and admiring their pet birds above.

Address: 61 Seng Poh Ln, Singapore 160061


Tiong Bahru Market & Food Centre


Tiong Bahru Market

The ideal place to experience a proper Singaporean hawker breakfast is at none other than Tiong Bahru Market & Food Centre. This double-storey complex boasts a wet market on the first level and a hawker centre on the second.

In the early morning and especially during weekends is when the market is buzzing with life. You’ll see families hanging out to get their breakfast fix at their favourite hawker stalls and shopping for groceries.

Among the wide array of stalls there, many are notable, specialising in all sorts of local delicacies such as prawn noodles, char kway teow, chwee kueh, lor mee and many, many more!

Address: 30 Seng Poh Rd, Singapore 168898


Merci Marcel Tiong Bahru


Merci Marcel Tiong Bahru

Designed by Hui Designs to showcase the confluence between local and foreign cultures, Merci Marcel Tiong Bahru is located in an old heritage shop within the neighbourhood. With its minimal touches and chic-hued overtones, the French café stands out with its contemporary interpretation of France in the tropics.

On the menu, you will find an assortment of artisanal baked breads, pastries, breakfast dishes and various coffee and tea beverages fit for any mood and fancy. As dusk descends upon Tiong Bahru, the cafe follows suit, morphing into a Parisian wine bar serving up a separate dinner menu with wines and handcrafted cocktails.

Artisanal French cheeses and bottles of wine are also sold here for customers to take home. Don’t forget to check out their lifestyle section, an extension of sister-outlet, Maison Marcel, on your way out. Products sold include French chocolates, enamelware, organic juices and more.

Click here to make a reservation. Walk-ins are also welcome!

Address: 56 Eng Hoon St, #01-68, Singapore 160056


Qi Tian Gong Temple


Qi Tian Gong Temple

Tiong Bahru’s Qi Tian Gong Temple is also known as the Monkey God Temple. It was established in 1920, but eventually moved from its former premise to its current location. The Monkey God Temple was one of the first temples in Singapore dedicated to worship Sun Wu Kong.

Visitors can marvel at statues of the Monkey God, some of which have stood for over a century! On the day of the Monkey God’s birthday (16th day of the 8th lunar month), believers would be at the temple to assist a ritual, where temple mediums assume the identity and spirit of the Monkey God by means of entering a trance.

During the ritual, these mediums would often perform all kinds of dangerous tasks such as climbing a ladder constructed out of knives and even go as far as acting like a monkey to prove that he has indeed been possessed by the great Sun Wu Kong. Believers claim that this ritual would bring good luck.

Address: 44 Eng Hoon St, Singapore 169786


Nimble/Knead


Nimble:Knead Source: Nimble/Knead

A super-cool lifestyle concept located along Eng Watt Street, Nimble/Knead offers spa treatments within a space constructed from shipping containers. The heat on the outside can be menacing for the skin and the walk can be tough on your feet. So don’t be shy! Head inside and pamper yourself with a massage, a facial, a scrub or all of the above.

Address: 66 Eng Watt St, #01-28, Estate 160066


Nana & Bird


Nana and Bird Tiong Bahru ShopsSource: Nana & Bird

If you thought that Tiong Bahru neighbourhood was just a place for people to eat, you’re mistaken. Scattered in and around the district, you will discover fashion boutiques such as Nana & Bird.

The multi-label boutique offers curated womenswear, children’s wear and accessories from independent designers from around the world. Shedding light on specific designers and artisans, the owners often feature a “Designer of the Month”.

Address: 1 Yong Siak St, Singapore 168641