May 24, 2014

Bugis - Into The Cultural Melting Pot of Singapore

The Morning Sun over some of the oldest HDB (public housing) in Singapore @ Bugis
Today, the gang gathered at Plaza Sing again. For some reasons, we kept coming back here week after week. In any case, it's time to be creative on where to run!

That is one stretch which I have not attempted before. It is the direction towards Selegie, Little India and Bugis. That should be one interesting run!

I headed south and turned into Selegie Road after the School of The Arts (SOTA). There, I encountered the part of town which I have never explored before. I spotted a run down mall by the name of Selegie Centre and a Cinema that shows nothing but Bollywood flicks. This is one of the reason why I love street running. You always discover new things and location just when you think that you know every nook and cranny of the city area. 

I turned right upon hitting Rocher River towards Bugis. There, in the distance, I saw Lasalle College of the Arts glowing in the morning sun. This Art college is perhaps, the finest Art college in Singapore and has produced several award winning Artists. 

Selegie Centre - I wonder what's inside!
In case you are looking for Bollywood shows in Singapore
The Lasalle building literally glowed in the morning sun
I turned into a nice broad pedestrian path between the OG Complex and Fu Lu Shou Complex and headed towards one of the most famous Chinese temple in Singapore. The Kwan Im Thong Hood Cho Temple, or more famously known as 四马路观音堂 by the older folks. Legend had it that when the Japanese carpet bombed the Singapore City during WWII, the temple was miraculously spared, when all the buildings around the temple were flatten into rubble. Since than, millions of worshipers have descended on the temple asking for blessings and a peek into the future. The divination from this temple is reputed to be very accurate and many Singaporeans visit the temple, hoping that the Gods will shed some light on their career, love life and even the hint of the next winning lottery number.

Kwan Im Thong Hood Cho Temple. If you need luck, this
is the place to go.
Sri Krishnann Temple beside the
Kwan Im Thong Hood Cho Temple
This area is a good representation of the diversity of the religions and culture of Singapore. Within the few hundred meters, we have a Church (Christianity), a Synagogue(Judaism), a Mosque (Islam) and a Hindu temple (Hinduism). The Bugis area is one of my favorite area in Singapore, thanks to its unique identity, the strange mesh of old and new. The cultural area is often occupied by senior citizens who hangs around the coffeeshops and food centers watching the crowd goes by. Bugis is also well known for its hip and youth culture, thanks to the number of private universities and Art schools around the area and a walk around Bugis Street and the ultramodern Bugis Junction and Bugis+ will provide you with a glimpse of what Singaporean Youth does, in their everyday lives.

This is not an ideal route to run, given the number of traffic junctions you will have to cross. However, if you are looking to inject some Art and Culture into your run, this is one of the finest area to try out and you will always find something new, around the area.


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