Museums in Singapore: Celebrating Singapore's Cultural Diversity

Singapore is one of the most culturally diverse countries in the world. The moment you step within its borders, you can see, smell, hear, taste and feel the variety of cultures molded into one harmonised nation. The country boasts of a diverse range of attractions from places of worship to retail paradises that attract millions of tourists from around the world. Traditional merriments are also celebrated throughout the year from Hindu festivals to the island-wide celebration of Chinese New Year.

What better way to experience Singapore than to explore its rich history with these must-visit museums?

National Museum of Singapore

The National Museum of Singapore is the country’s oldest museum and dates back to 1849 – starting off as the Singapore Library-Museum located at Bras Basah Road. The National Museum of Singapore has since become a well-known cultural and architectural landmark in Singapore. The museum hosts exhibitions relating to Singapore’s history all year round. Inside the museum, you will also find amenities such as F&B outlets, a gift store with uniquely Singaporean goods, and a Resource Centre.


Opening Hours:

The National Museum of Singapore is open daily from 10am to 6pm. Last admission is at 5:30pm.


How to Get There:

The National Museum of Singapore is located at 93 Stamford Road, Singapore 178897 and can be contacted at +65 6332 3659 or +65 6332 5642.


By Bus:

YMCA Bus-stop (08041):

SBS: 7, 14, 14e, 16, 36, 64, 65, 111, 124, 128, 139, 162, 162M, 174, 174e, 175

SMRT: 77, 106,167, 171, 190, 700, 700A, NR6, NR7


SMU Bus-stop (04121):

SBS: 7, 14, 14e, 16, 36, 111, 124, 128, 131, 162, 162M, 166, 174, 174e, 175

SMRT: 77, 106,167, 171, 190, 700, 700A, NR6, NR7



Bras Basah MRT Station (CC2), approximately a 5-minute walk

Dhoby Ghaut MRT Station (NS24/NE6/CC1), approximately a 5-minute walk

City Hall MRT Station (NS25/EW13), approximately a 10-minute walk


By Taxi:

There are pick-up and drop-off areas at the Fort Canning entrance or the Stamford entrance.


Ticket Prices:

Admission to the building is free but there are charges applicable to the galleries and some exhibitions and programmes. Singaporean Citizens and Permanent Residents have free admission to Exhibitions and Stamford Galleries. Meanwhile,  adult tourists need to pay S$6.00, while tourists with a valid student pass and senior citizens pay at a discounted rate of S$3.00. Do note that special exhibitions may have separate entry charges.


Important Things to Note:

Currently there are restorations being done on the Singapore History Gallery and Singapore Living Galleries, so they are temporarily closed. However, exhibitions are still ongoing at the Stamford and Exhibition Galleries, as well as the dining and retail areas. (Information as of May 2015)


Specific Dates for Gallery Closures:

Fashion Gallery:

11 Aug 2014 to 15 Aug 2015 and 01 Sept 2014 to Sept 2015


Film and Wayang Gallery:

18 Aug 2014 to Sept 2015


Food Gallery, Photography Gallery, & Goh Seng Choo Gallery:

29 Sept 2014 to Sept 2015


Singapore History Gallery:

03 Nov 2014 to Sept 2015


Asian Civilisations Museum

The Asian Civilisations Museum (ACM) opened on 21 April 1997 at its first premises at Armenian Street. ACM later moved to its current location at Empress Place and opened on 2 March 2003. The ACM houses a “broad yet integrated perspective of pan-Asian cultures and civilisations”. It celebrates the cultures brought by Singapore’s early settlers originating from China, Southeast Asia, South Asia and West Asia. There are 11 galleries with more than 1,300 artefacts. The galleries are divided into four geographical sectors – China, Southeast Asia, the Indian Subcontinent, and the Islamic world. ACM also has a restaurant, café and souvenir shop.


Opening Hours:

ACM opens daily from 10am to 7pm and closes late on Fridays at 9pm.


How to Get There:

ACM is located at 1 Empress Place, Singapore (178897) and can be contacted at +65 6332 7798.



Raffles Place MRT station (NS26/ EW14), approximately a 5-minute walk


Ticket Pricing:

Admission is free for all visitors. However, there may be admission charges for special exhibitions. Special offers, promotions and concessions are available; simply make an enquiry at their ticketing counters.


Peranakan Museum

The Peranakan Museum holds a collection of Peranakan artefacts. The museum keeps the historical records of the rich culture and lineage of Singapore and Southeast Asia with the fusion of traditional Chinese, Malay and Indian qualities. The incorporation of modern restoration and representation is utilised to educate and trace the Straits Chinese legacy and heritage for its visitors. Interactive technology and exploration games are used to captivate both adults and children. The museum building has been gazetted a National Monument as this was the former Tao Nan School campus, the first modern Chinese school in Singapore. The building was completed in 1912.


Opening Hours:

The Peranakan Museum is open daily from 10am to 7pm and closes late on Fridays at 9pm.


How to Get There:

The museum is located at 39 Armenian Street, Singapore 179941 and can be contacted at +65 6332 7591.


By Bus:

7, 14, 16, 36, 77, 106, 111, 124, 128, 131, 147, 162, 162M, 166, 167, 171, 174, 175, 190, 700, 700A and 857



City Hall MRT station (NS25/EW13), approximately a 10-minute walk

Bras Basah MRT station (CC2), approximately a 10-minute walk


Ticket Pricing:

Singaporean Citizens and Permanent Residents are admitted for free by just providing their NRIC for verification. Adult tourists will need to pay S$6. If you go with a group of 20 or more, you will only need to pay S$4.80 per person. Families (maximum of 5 persons) will be charged collectively at S$18. Children aged 6 years and below can enter for free. In addition, Friday night (7pm to 9pm) tickets are charged at just S$3.


Singapore Philatelic Museum

Located in a 19th century building that was previously part of the Anglo-Chinese School is the Singapore Philatelic Museum. The museum houses a wide collection of stamps and imprints from the Universal Postal Union, and records of philatelic materials of Singapore dating back to the 1830s. Throughout its existence, the museum has been presenting and sharing the importance of stamps and the history of the postal system with visitors.


Opening Hours:

On Mondays, the museum is open from 1pm to 7pm. From Tuesdays until Sundays, it is open from 9:30am to 7pm.


How to Get There:

Singapore Philatelic Museum is located at 23-B Coleman Street, Singapore 179807 and can be contacted at +65 6337 3888.


By Bus:

SBS: 2, 12, 32, 33, 51, 62, 63, 80, 197

SMRT: 61



Bras Basah MRT station (CC2), approximately a 5-minute walk

City Hall MRT station (NS25/EW13), approximately a 10-minute walk

Clarke Quay MRT station (NE5), approximately a 10-minute walk


Ticket Pricing:

Singaporean Citizens and Permanent Residents can go in free of charge. Tourists and foreign citizen adults are charged S$6.00 for admission while children from 3 years old to 12 years old will be charged S$4.00.


Reflections at Bukit Chandu

This little known gem will be of special interest to World War II historical enthusiasts. This black and white colonial lodge, known as Reflections at Bukit Chandu, is close to the former battle site of the Battle of Pasir Panjang. History tells us that 1,400 soldiers from the Malay Regiment died at this battle site as they fought against a 13,000-strong Japanese army. Set amidst lush greenery, this centre uses artefacts, exhibitions and a multi-media technological showcase of history to tell the tale of the Malay Regiment’s heroic last stand against invading forces.


Opening Hours:

9am until 5:30pm from Tuesdays to Sundays. Closed on Mondays (except public holidays).


How to Get There:

Reflections at Bukit Chandu is located at 31-K Pepys Road, Singapore 118458 and can be contacted at +65 6375 2510.


By Bus:

From HarbourFront Centre – SBS 10, 30, 143 and SMRT 188

From Raffles Place MRT station (NS26/EW14) – SBS 10

From City Hall MRT station (NS25/EW13) – SBS 51

From Bukit Merah Interchange – SMRT 176



Pasir Panjang MRT (CC26)

HarbourFront MRT (NE1/CC29)


Ticket Pricing

Singaporean Citizens and Permanent Residents can go in free of charge while tourists and foreign citizens must pay S$2 (adults) or S$1.00 (for students and seniors aged 60 and above with a valid ID).


Our Museum @ Taman Jurong

Our Museum @ Taman Jurong (OM@TJ) is a product of the collaborative efforts of the National Heritage Board, Taman Jurong Citizens’ Consultative Committee, Taman Jurong Community Arts and Culture Club and People’s Association. Singapore’s first community museum, OM@TJ opened in 2013 and showcases materials, historical accounts and memoirs of the residents of Taman Jurong.


Opening Hours:

OM@TJ is open from Mondays to Fridays, 3pm to 9pm. On Saturdays they are open from 10am to 9pm, and on Sundays from 10am to 6pm. The museum is closed during public holidays.


How to Get There:

OM@TJ is located at 1 Yung Sheng Road, Singapore 618495 which is next to the Taman Jurong Community Centre, and can be contacted at +65 6265 1711 via the Taman Jurong Community Centre and via NHB at +65 6332 7819 or 6332 5483.


By Bus:

30, 49, 79, 98, 154, 178, 240, 246



Lakeside MRT station (EW26)


Ticket Pricing:

Admission is free.



When in museums, remember to:

  1. Read museum guidelines.
  2. Refrain from touching the art pieces, artefacts and displays.
  3. Avoid running around and rushing to places.
  4. Avoid talking loudly on cellphones or with someone. Neither is shouting acceptable; please keep your voices low-key to avoid disturbing other guests.
  5. Mind your phones, keep them on silent mode.
  6. Refrain from littering, smoking, and being a nuisance.
  7. Be mindful of your bags, as you might unintentionally back into displays.
  8. Avoid using the flash functions of your cameras or phones and mind the museum’s rules on photography.
  9. Observe queueing and don’t push and shove while in a queue.
  10. Do not be too hard on the guards, they’re there to ensure your visit goes smoothly.


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