Singapore Main

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The City Island That Gives You the World The Singapore of the past would have made a good Humphrey Bogart film, set against the real backdrop of a seedy colonial back- water, tropical intrigue and opium dens. Today the island city-state just off the tip of the Malaysian peninsula is a shining metropolis of concrete and glass, the most modern city in Southeast Asia. Ah, progress...

Some things haven't changed. Singapore is still a city to be best explored on foot. The cultural windows of Chinatown, Little India and Arab Street have blurred a bit with time and redevelopment, but it's still fun to share the sidewalks with fortune tellers and spice sellers as you shop and snack the day away. Not surprisingly, the attractions of this relatively small island of about 230 square miles are sophisticated pleasures: fine dining; endless shopping on Orchard Road; polo matches; and a quartet of 18-hole golf links, including the Bukit Course, often rated among the world's best. And for a touch of that Bogart atmosphere, saddle up to the bar in venerable Raffles Hotel and order a Singapore Sling. The cocktail was invented here, long before Singapore reinvented itself.

Singapore is on our list of the Best Islands to Live On