Singapore HeritageFest 2024 Celebrates Singapore's Buildings and Sites, and the People and Stories that Bring Them to Life



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Singapore HeritageFest (SHF) returns in 2024 with over 120 programmes that celebrate the stories and living heritage behind Singapore’s buildings, sites, and structures.

Venue: Multiple venues
Dates: 1 - 26 May 2024
Admission: Free and paid programmes

The 21st edition of Singapore HeritageFest (SHF) focuses on our nation‚Äôs built¬†heritage¬†and coincides with the 35th year of Singapore‚Äôs conservation programme. Get ready for offshore tours to¬†kelongs¬†and¬†kampongs, ghostly encounters with the spookier parts of our¬†heritage, explorations of old schools and¬†heritage¬†hotels, a secret ‚Äúundisclosed‚ÄĚ experience, and more!

Through workshops, tours, trails, exhibitions and other activities across (and beyond!) the island, festival-goers will get to experience the history behind these buildings, sites and structures, which are imbued with the unique culture and heritage of the communities who live, work and play in and around them.

SHF 2024 programmes are now open for registration. Visit www.sgheritagefest.gov.sg for more information on the programmes, and how to register or read on to see what to expect! 

Homeground at the National Museum of Singapore

This year’s Homeground installation, a signature SHF offering, is laid out on the lawn of a National Monument, the National Museum of Singapore, and pays homage to Singapore’s rich built heritage.

Covering the themes of Nature, Commerce, Community, Residential and Governance, HOMEGROUND: We Built This City will highlight the intricate connections that have moulded Singapore’s architectural identity over the decades. 

SHF 2024 Highlights

Come on board the Hop-On, Hop-Off (HOHO) Bus Experience and embark on a journey of Singapore's buildings and landmarks through historical precincts such as Little India and Bras Basah.Bugis, and discover the history and beauty of our built heritage at every stop.

Cruise the northeastern waters of Singapore, learn about the history of its surrounding islands, and visit one of Singapore’s last remaining kelongs in Island Boat Tour + Kelong Visit by Let’s Go Tour.

Paddle through Singapore’s urban reservoir and get exclusive access to hidden corners of the Marina Basin on a kayak tour as part of My Bay Experience History Wanderers.

Embark on a photo walk at Kampong Gelam and capture the allure of the traditional precinct on film on Kampong Gelam Photo Walk: Architecture on Film by Syahmi Hashim & Julina Khusaini.

Discover stories of the Straits Chinese communities on 37 Emerald Hill Site Tours, which are the first-ever public tours of the former home of Singapore Chinese Girls’ School, led by former teachers and students familiar with the premises; and Living Architecture: Conservation Tours at NUS Baba House, where participants will visit a 19th-century Straits Chinese home and learn about the conservation efforts that went behind the restoration of the NUS Baba House in 2007.

Led by the Maritime and Port Authority of Singapore, experience Singapore’s maritime past, present and future at the Singapore Maritime Gallery Tour, which will highlight the industry’s rich heritage, its impact on daily life, and how Singapore continues to thrive as a global hub port and international maritime centre. And go on the Maritime Heritage Trail to discover Singapore’s early maritime history and learn about the progress of our modern maritime industry on the Maritime Evolution Trail.

You will even get to set sail on a journey of discovery through the Singapore Strait and visit the Raffles Lighthouse, a historic beacon which has over 168 years of maritime history.

SHF also celebrates 40 years of Total Defence with programmes looking at Singapore's military past. Kick off by uncovering fascinating stories behind the architectural gems at South Beach, from their days as part of a military stronghold to their transformation into a vibrant, modern hub in Unveiling South Beach Singapore: From Military Might to Modern Marvel. Participants will gain exclusive, behind-the-scenes access to level 11 of South Beach Tower for breathtaking views, and enjoy a refreshing, specially crafted mocktail as part of the programme!

You will also get to celebrate 40 Years of Total Defence with the Navy with special edition guided tours of the Changi Naval Base and Navy Museum. Get a taste of Singapore Navy life and learn about Singapore Navy traditions with sailors past and present.

Daddy's can bring little ones to sample an outfield camp experience and prepare for a ‚Äėroute march‚Äô to SAFTI Military Institute all in one day at A Taste of Outfield Camp: Heritage in a Mess Tin.

There's also a series of heritage events unfolding across CapitaLand malls as part of the festivities from now to 26 May 2024, promising a vibrant celebration of Singapore’s Teochew and Hainanese heritage roots.

Embark on an enchanting journey around CQ @ Clarke Quay with Project Godown - Secrets of Clarke Quay, an immersive time travel adventure that invites participants to unlock the forgotten stories of the iconic godowns and shophouses lining the Singapore River. From unearthing the precinct’s Teochew heritage to admiring the architectural marvels of godowns and warehouses preserved from our maritime beginnings, participants will journey through the five distinct blocks of CQ @ Clarke Quay to uncover hidden clues, puzzles, and food challenges with vintage photographs acting as a window to the past. 

Some of the hidden gems you’ll learn more about include:

  • CQ @ Clarke Quay's Teochew roots ‚Äď once called¬†"Cha Jung Tau"¬†(firewood)
  • Read Bridge ‚Äď the coolies' ultimate entertainment hub
  • The fascinating story of the Riverhouse and the secret society
  • Admire modern architectural masterpieces ‚Äď including a 110-metre long mural by Yip Yew Chong and tobyato!

Click here to register for the event.

Chicken Rice Diaries: The Hainan Story in Bugis invites participants to embark on a two-hour adventure through Singapore's vibrant Bugis district with a true-blooded Hainanese guide! Throughout the tour, you'll participate in a fun bingo game with clues hidden within the fascinating history of the Hainanese people in Singapore.

Key highlights of the tour include: 

  • The origins of the Hainanese community in the bustling Bugis precinct
  • Discover the story of Ngiam Tong Boon, the Hainanese bartender who invented the world-famous Singapore Sling at the iconic Raffles Hotel
  • A tour around the hidden Hylam Street within the modern Bugis Junction
  • A sweet finale with¬†Yi Bua, a traditional Hainanese snack

Click here to register for the event.

In closing, let the good times roll at SHF’s Closing Weekend Block Party with food, craft, and music performances on the lawn of the National Museum of Singapore, replicating the communal experience of celebrations and festivities at shared residential spaces.

Admission

Singapore HeritageFest 2024 includes a mixed of free and paid programmes. The programmes are now open for registration and you can visit www.sgheritagefest.gov.sg to find out more and to register for them too.



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This article is prepared by

Jiarong Yu
Daddy to 2 adorable little ones. Misses them the moment they are not around, regrets missing them the moment they are around.

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