Singapore is a city-state with it all. In just half a century it's gone from a war-ravaged colony to a modernized paragon of good governance and the financial center of Asia. With 63 islands (yes, 63!) and history lurking around every corner in neighborhoods like Chinatown and Little India, there is much for its 5.4 million residents to explore.
For hundreds of years Singapore has been a heady mix of ethnicities and religions: Chinese, Malay, Indians, and Westerners; Hindus, Buddhists, Muslims, Taoists, and Christians. This multicultural background has turned the island state into a cultural powerhouse. From Chinese New Year celebrations to Ramadan to the Dragon Boat Festival to Deepavali, there is always something to celebrate. This diversity has also led to a vibrant art scene, from staid institutions like the National Gallery Singapore to funky galleries featuring up-and-coming local artists.
As you'd expect of such a mixed population, food choices here are neverending and eating has become an art form of its own. You'll find everything from hawker centers offering humble stalls selling noodles, rice, crab, dim sum, and more (among these stalls are the world's most affordable Michelin-starred eats), fine dining, and everything in between.
Singapore long had a reputation as an overly polished, boring city of malls and high-rises. You'll still find areas that fit that description, but you're never far from a hike through tropical forest, a picturesque beach, or a buzzy ethnic neighborhood.
Read on to learn about the basics (housing, transportation, internet, and more!) of moving to Singapore and to find the perfect neighborhood for you.
Singapore is considered one of the safest cities in the world.
Ample trains, buses, and cars for hire (including Uber) make owning a car unnecessary.
Singapore has an excellent public transit system. Learn how to get around the city with our guide.
"It's easy to misjudge Singapore and see it as superficial, but the shiny buildings and impressive architecture are only a small part of the country's identity. It's not hard to scratch beneath the surface to find a cultural melting pot home to many languages, traditions and customs, which gives it a unique flavour. Living there means you can be part of that rich tapestry."