A major port in a major shipping route, Singapore has seen a great deal of history over the centuries as it has changed hands from local inhabitants, Srivijayan Princes, the East India Trading company, British colonial rule and Japanese occupation. The small city state was the location of a major Allied defeat during World War II and still has remnants of military battles and occupation. A visit to one of Singapore’s many museums can take you on a path down the many different pasts this country has seen. Choose between military history, the progress of Asian civilisation, or delve into the many different cultures that have made Singapore home over the centuries.
The diversity of Singapore’s cultural history has also led to the development of a wonderfully eclectic collection of art. Visit a range of different culture’s museums and art galleries and experience the uniqueness of what has come out of this mix. There are many museums with free entry, but those with admission prices are very affordable and worth checking out.
Book Museum Passes Online
National Museum of Singapore
Opening hours: 10am - 6pm Daily
Address: 93 Stamford Road
The National Museum of Singapore dates back to 1887 and was designed to be "the people's museum." It showcases exhibitions, artefacts and innovative ways to represent history.
Art Retreat Museum
Opening hours: 11am - 6pm Tuesdays to Saturdays
Address: 10 Ubi Crescent, Ubi Techpark
In 2003, Indonesian art collector Kwee Swie Teng founded the Art Retreat. With a vast collection of modern Asian and European art it is Singapore's first private art museum.
Changi Chapel & Museum
Opening hours: 9.30am - 5pm Daily
Address: 1000 Upper Changi Road North
Built by the Changi Prison inmates, the Chapel is housed within the open air courtyard of the Museum. It stands as a monument to the 50,000 civilians and soldiers imprisoned and the agony caused by the Japanese Occupation from 1942 to 1945.
Civil Defence Heritage Gallery
Opening hours: 10am - 5pm Tuesday to Sunday
Address: 62 Hill Street
Located inside the Central Fire Station, the gallery was built in 1909 to teach Singapore's visitors about its civil defence devleopments and colonial past.
Opening hours: 10am - 7.30pm Tuesday to Saturday, 10am - 6pm Sunday
Address: University Cultural Centre, 50 Kent Ridge Crescent
The National University of Singapore - "NUS" - is a treasure chest full of artworks and cultural artifacts.
Republic of Singapore Air Force Museum
Opening hours: 8.30am - 5pm Tuesday to Sunday
Address: 400 Airport Road
Web: view site
Military and aviation buffs will love the Air Force Museum - explore the past to the future in this 10,600 square metre space.
Republic of Singapore Navy Museum
Opening hours: 8.30am - 5pm Monday to Friday
Address: 32 Admiralty Road West, Endurance Block
With historic photographs, antique marine equipment and high tech missiles on show, the Navy Museum will interest every sea lover.
Opening hours: 10am - 8pm Tuesday to Sunday
Address: The Bowyer Block at Singapore General Hospital
Explore the rich and varied history of Singapore's medical past and the history of the Singapore General Hospital.
Singapore Mint Coin Gallery
Opening hours: 8.30am - 4.30pm Monday to Friday
Address: 20 Teban Gardens Crescent
Visit The Singapore Mint Coin Gallery, home to an extensive collection of coins, medals and medallions from around the world.
Army Museum of Singapore
Admission: Adult $5, Child $3
Opening hours: 10am - 6pm Tuesdays to Sundays
Address: 520 Upper Jurong Road
From pre-independnce to Singapore's current day Army, journey through Singapore's turbulent history and celebrate those who have helped defend this beautiful city.
Asian Civilisation Museum
Admission: Adult $5, Child $2.50
Opening hours: Monday 1pm - 7pm, Tuesday to Sunday 9am - 7pm, Friday 9am - 9pm
Address: Peranakan Museum 39 Armenian Street
The first wing of the Asian Civilisations Museum focuses on the rich heritage of the Peranakans. The second wing of the museum focuses on the heritage of the following Asian cultures - Indian, Chinese, Southeast Asian and the Islamic World.
Chinatown Heritage Centre
Admission: Adult $9.80, Child $6.30
Opening hours: 9am - 8pm Daily
Address: 48 Paoda Street
Trace the lives of Chinatown's early occupants within this three level shophouse.
Hua Song Museum
Admission: Adult $8.40, Child $5.25
Opening hours: 12 midday - 7pm Tuesday to Sunday
Address: 262 Pasir Panjang Road (inside Haw Par Villa)
The name Hua Song means "In praise of the Chinese Community." The museum was built for that reason, so that Singaporean Chinese and visitors could learn more about the rich Chinese heritage.
Images of Singapore
Admission: Adult $10, Child $7
Opening hours: 9am - 7pm Daily
Address: 40 Cable Car Road, Sentosa
Web: view site
The 21st century meets the 14th century when state of the art technology brings the sights, sounds and smells of Singapore's bygone to life.
Malay Heritage Centre
Admission: Adult $3. Child $2
Opening hours: 1pm - 6pm Monday, 10am - 6pm Tuesday to Sunday
Address: 85 Sultan Gate
Trace the history of Singapore's Malay people from original living conditions to modern film making and everything inbetween.
MINT Museum of Toys
Admission: Adult $15, Child $7.50
Opening hours: 9.30am - 10.30pm Daily
Address: 26 Seah Street
Moment of Imagination and Nostalgia with Toys "MINT" is the world's first museum designed to celebrate toys.
Nei Xue Tang
Admission: Adult $5, Child $3
Opening hours: 10am - 5pm Daily
Address: 235 Cantonment Road
Nei Xue Tang is a private museum containing Chinese, Thai and Cambodian Buddhist artifacts, relics, anitiquities and art works. You will also find Buddhist pieces from Japan, Gandhara, China and Indonesia.
Admission: Adult $6, Child $3
Opening hours: 1pm - 7pm Monday, 9.30am - 7pm Tuesday to Sunday
Address: 39 Armenian Street
The Peranakan Museum is home to the most extensive collection of Peranakan artifacts in the world.
red dot design museum
Admission: Adult $8, Child $4
Opening hours: 11am - 6pm Mon, Tues & Friday, 11am - 8pm Saturday to Sunday
Address: 28 Maxwell Road
Web: view site
The Asian art scene is growing and achieving greatness. The red dot design museum embodies the ideals of the red dot design awards as it looks towards the future for the next great idea or trend.
Royal Selangor Pewter Museum
Admission: Adult, Child $2
Opening hours: 9am - 9pm Daily
Address: 3A River Valley Road #01-01 Clarke Quay
The Royal Selangor Pewter Museum is a private museum devoted to decorative and functional objects made from Pewter - a Southeast Asian speciality. With over 75 items ranging from 100 year old tools, to lanterns and tobacco boxes. The museum also offers daily demonstrations of the traditional alloy process.
Singapore Art Museum
Admission: Adult $8, Student $4
Opening hours: 10am - 7pm Monday to Sunday, 10am - 9pm Friday
Address: 71 Bras Basah Road
The Singapore Art Museum is home to the largest public collection of 20th century Singapore and Southeast Asian art in the world.
Singapore Philatelic Museum
Admission: Adult $5, Child $4
Opening hours: 1pm - 7pm Monday, 9am - 7pm Tuesday to Sunday
Address: 23B Coleman Street
This historic building is home to an extensive collection of local and international stamps.