As a melting pot of Asian culture, Singapore has a mix of Indian, Chinese, and Malaysian food, which can be found in a variety of neighborhoods around the city. There is some seriously delicious food here, and the variety of cuisines keeps things fresh and exciting.
Out of all the neighborhoods I visited in Singapore, Geylang felt the most authentically cultural to me. The streets feel a bit rougher and busier than the rest of Singapore, and the area is also known as Singapore's red light district, because prostitutes can be seen marketing their services at night. But most importantly, the streets are lined with outdoor restaurants known as "hawker food", and the food at these restaurants is outrageously delicious!
The first time I was in the neighborhood was during my overnight layover. I tried a claypot stingray curry. This is still the best curry I've had! The next time I was there I got a pork soup. The broth was delicious, and I think it was made with cilantro. Both these dishes were about $4 USD.
Katong is a neighborhood in the central east area of Singapore that was home to wealthy elite in the 19th and 20th centuries. Many of these elite were Peranakan, a term for the descendants of Chinese men who immigrated to Malaya (peninsular Malaysia) for trading, married a local woman, and integrated into the culture. Katong is known for Katong Laksa, a spicy Chinese Peranakan noodle soup with prawn that is flavored with coconut milk. WOW! I love this soup! I got this dish in other areas of Malaysia as well, such as Kuching. It is one of my favorite dishes in the area.
There are a number of Indians in Singapore, who immigrated to the country over the years for the trading industry. Little India is the hub for Indian culture and cuisine in Singapore. I had lunch at a hole-in-the-wall restaurat in the neighborhood. It was tasty.
For the uninitiated, "quay" is pronounced "key", and is a term for areas that are an access point to a harbor. Boat Quay in Singapore is an area that used to be the busiest part of the Port of Singapore during the 1860s. Many shophouses were built along the edges of the harbor to accommodate the traders. While the area is no longer used as a port, the shophouses have been conserved and it is now a lively dining and bar area with picturesque views over the harbor. The restaurants here are not inexpensive, but the food is delicious. You can find cuisine representing all of Singapore's ethnicities - Chinese, Indian, Malay - among others.
I got a spicy seafood noodle soup. By the end of the meal, my face was red and sweat was dripping off my forehead, but boy did that soup deliver!