Chinatown Heritage Wall Murals (2 hour Walking Tour)
SingapoRediscovers Vouchers to be applied at checkout page. Please note that bookings involving the use of SingapoRediscovers Vouchers are non-refundable and non-resellable.
Please note that bookings involving the use of SingapoRediscovers Vouchers are non-refundable and non-resellable.
The Thian Hock Keng mural, which was painted by heritage muralist Yip Yew Chong is found on the back walls of the Thian Hock Keng temple. This 44m long mural has scenes of what the area used to look like, as well as the lives of early Hokkien immigrants from Southern China.
Discover four different scenes in one mural
These are 4 different works that represent scenes or trades that were once commonly found in Singapore’s Chinatown area.
On top you have ‘The Window’ with a Chinese and Malay families hanging clothes and sundry out the traditional way – love the cat and pigeon! Below is ‘Lion Dance Head Maker’, featuring a man who makes the giant puppet heads used in Lion Dance – the 2 boys are banging on little versions of the drums used in Lion Dance. On the right is ‘Mamak Shop’, usually run by an Indian man or mamak and selling all sorts of random sundry.
Yip YC’s ‘Paper Mask and Puppet Seller’ shows a man selling these items on a tricycle –He is being watched by 2 Samsui women, or women labourers in their classic headgear.
Watch Cantonese Opera along Temple Street
Chinese opera was once a popular form of street entertainment. Performers with painted faces and elaborate costumes used to mesmerise the crowds. The spirit of these performers lives on at Temple Street in a mural by Yip Yew Chong.
Eager kids and adults watch the performers on stage. There are also glimpses of the backstage action while street vendors flank the Chinese Opera stage, adding liveliness to the scene.
Visit a Chinatown Shophouse
Found in an alleyway between Smith Street and Temple Street, Yip Yew Chong’s My Chinatown Home depicts scenes from inside a Chinatown shophouse.
There are so many details to admire – from the simple wooden platform furniture to the kids playing with a paper sword to the spread of food on the dining table.
Learn how the early Chinese immigrants send letters Home
The third Yip Yew Chong mural along Smith Street is located at the other end of the street. Painted on the wall of New Bridge Centre, the Letter Writer depicts a letter writer plying his trade.
Letter writers played an essential role when the population was illiterate. They enabled those who had come to Singapore to work to maintain links with relatives back home.