Singapore is a country that contains a substantial number of museums and because the categories of museums are highly varied, there is a museum that will suit any type of visitor, whether you like history, art or culture. We have compiled a list of museums that we think that may be of interest to you. a lot of museums are located close to each other so fewer trips are needed if you are tight on schedule or time.
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Asian Civilisations Museum
First on our list is the Asian Civilisations Museum, the museum features 2000 artefacts from the civilisations all across Asia, the first floor tells a story about trader between Asian countries, the second floor delves into their faiths, beliefs and superstitions and the third floor presents a series of Chinese ceramics dating back to the Han and Qin dynasty. New galleries have sprung up as of recent, the third floor now hosts a section on jewellery, textiles and fashion. The museum has the intention to refresh their exhibits by adding decorative arts sections complete with a materials and design theme.
The fashion and textile gallery places focus on the Indian textile trade. Chinese embroideries and Southeast Asian Batiks. The first exhibition was on the Fashion Revolution which showcased classic Qing Qipaos and Zhongshan Zhuang suits. The new jewellery gallery highlights South Asian jewellery most notably the Peacock Belt which is made from gold panels and 75 carat cut diamonds and commissioned by a Peranakan woman.
National Museum of Singapore
Formally known as the Singapore history museum, the national museum of Singapore holds the title of being the largest museum on the island. There are two galleries located inside, the Singapore History Gallery which explores the early history of Singapore from the 14th century to the present day and the Singapore Living Gallery which showcases the lifestyle of Singapore from food, film, fashion and photography.
National Gallery Singapore
The National Gallery of Singapore houses more than 8000 modern Southeast Asian art pieces, which pushes the gallery to the top of the world’s largest public collections. Notable works here include the works of Cheong Soo Pieng, Liu Kang and Georgette Chen, who are all precursors to the Nanyang art style which blends western styles of oil painting with Chinese materials. The Building is located in the former City Hall and Supreme Court, it is an architectural marvel.
Lee Kong Chian
Lee Kong Chian is South East Asia’s first natural history museum to ever open. Sporting 2 floors, and 15 zones there are plenty of things to see here. The gallery has over 2000 specimens for visitors to view splitting off into plants, fungi, mammals, dinosaur fossils and did I mention that they have dinosaur fossils here. Noteworthy exhibits include a sperm whale skeleton, and the largest turtle ever recorded in history.
Art and science museum in Singapore fuses art, science, technology and culture and the museum contains 21 galleries and has opened some very big exhibitions consisting of works from Van Gogh, M.C. Escher, Salvador Dali and Leonardo da Vinci. For the science part of the museum, many exhibitions on space exploration, big data, particle physics, palaeontology, marine biology and cosmology have been displayed here.
The ArtScience museum has a great international presence as it has formed partnerships with the British Museum and Science Museum in London as well as the American Museum of Natural History in New York and many other museums.
National Design Centre
The National Design Centre is located in the Bras Basah Bugis culture district, with an art deco style architecture, it is very fitting for the design scene of Singapore. The exhibit here highlights 50 years of Singaporean design and how it has been shaped throughout the years. The museum store Kapok is a perfect place to find fashion, accessories and household items created by local and international designers.
Singapore Science Centre
The Singapore Science Centre is purely a Science museum, the space is popular with families and school groups as they get to play with over 1000 interactive exhibits situated in the 14 galleries the museum holds. A special feature of the science centre is Singapore’s only domed IMAX theatre and for those who want to cool down, check out the Snow City, the only place in Singapore where you get to play with snow in a cold environment.
The Peranakan Museum illustrates the hybrid culture which exists in Singapore and Malaysia. Peranakan culture originates from the intermarriages between Malay communities with Chinese traders in the past. The museum hosts many artefacts and you’ll get to learn more about the history and practices of Peranakans within Singapore’s culture through the use of interactive displays.
National Library of Singapore
The national library of Singapore is a prime heritage site and is the home of the historical archives of Singapore. This is the perfect place for history lovers to go to and with over 600,000 items available to the public there is always plenty to see here. Upon the 10th floor is where you can find an open-air garden known as the retreat where you can see a wonderful view of downtown Singapore.
Mint Museum of Toys
The Mint Museum is a toy museum with artefacts to be numbering to over 50,000, collected from over 50 countries and some toys are as old as from the 1840s. The other part of the museum is the home to vintage enamel signs.
Singapore Musical Box Museum
Another unique museum on our list is the Singapore Musical Box Museum, where you’ll find old musical boxes dating back to the 1800s and 1900s. From its history, you’ll learn about its rise in popularity. You will even get to see Edison’s Opera Phonograph here which was constructed by the inventor himself.