56 Uniquely Singaporean Things
Happy 56th birthday, Singapore! Here’s 56 uniquely Singaporean things that we love about our country.
1. Chicken Rice
From Tian Tian Chicken Rice to Loy Kee and Boon Tong Kee, our national dish is the beloved Chicken Rice. If these 3 are not the best, We bet there is one on your list that tops the list. Succulent Roasted chicken on a plate of garlic rice dashed with a special garlic chili. Mmm Mmm, what’s there not to like?
2. Fish Head Curry
A whole lotta love for the fish head curry, cooked in a few styles either with or without coconut milk. It’s your choice! The aroma is definitely out of this world.
3. Singapore Style Ramen
Ever heard of The Noodle Story at Amoy Street Food Centre? This place whips up a perfect blend of Japanese Char Shu together with a nice mee kia style noodle with fried wontons and a cooking technique that makes you salivate.
The many smells of Briyani have triggered our palates. From Dum Briyani to the classic chicken, fish, mutton and whatever we can think of. Let’s not forget, there are also vegetarian options to cater to all. Fun Fact: There is no correct spelling for Briyani, come call it Biryani because of its respect to the urdu roots.
An absolute beast of 2 worlds. Murtabak and a burger. That’s right, the murtaburger has been available at The Springleaf Prata Place for quite some time now. Located at The Rail Mall, it has a wide variety of prata’s available such as the alfredo prata, eggs benedict prata and many more wacky combinations.
6. Lobster Nasi Lemak
Lobster plus Nasi Lemak. Such an interesting combination but are you willing to fork out more than $20 for this? Well some people are and that is what makes our local cuisine such a fancy little treat!
A huge craze for truffle has recently been surging everything from potato chips to pasta! There is simply no stopping Singaporeans for going on a truffle fiesta. Psst… Have you heard of the Har Cheong Gai Burger with TRUFFLE floss fries?
8. Claypot Hokkien Mee
Go down to Toa Payoh Lorong 4 and you will be faced with a giant claypot filled with hokkien mee and pork belly. Simply irresistible. Visit Kim Keat Hokkien Mee for a true feast.
9. Salted Egg Anything
Chips, Pork ribs, chicken and even Fish and Chips. The Salted egg craze hits home with all Singaporeans.
10. BBQ Stingray
Ahh a long time favourite for those of us who hit the hawker centre. Served on a hotplate, sprinkled with some raw onions and a healthy dose of sambal.
11. Kaya Toast and Eggs
One of our favourite default Singaporean breakfasts. The classic kaya toast and soft boiled eggs with some soya sauce can never go wrong with a hearty cup of kopi or tea.
Late night supper or morning breakfast. These can be the best time to eat some fluffy prata. Eat with curry or sugar? That’s your prerogative.
Katong Laksa is one of the famous hunts among Singapaorean cuisine. While we have our own favourite version of laksa, we can all agree that it packs a good punch.
14. Local Desserts
Suitable for any hot or cold day, our local dessert has come a loooooong way. Ice-cream on top of a shaved mountain of ice dressed in red, green, and yellow syrup. We are all happy to slurp down some ice-kacang on a hot day. That accompanied by a whole range of local fare desserts, there is something in store for everyone.
15. I don’t friend you already
Primary School favourites, when a friend betrays you. This line comes up. “I don’t friend you already!
16. Ordering Hot drinks using 3 or more languages
Teh C Kosong Peng, Kopi O Siew Dai- a mixture of cantonese, malay, chinese, and if you add the please, we have it in english. Just do not order Coke Gak Tai.
Also known as upperty or uppertan or someone who might live or attempt to live the High SES lifestyle.
Very common in your SAF camp. 1 person does work and everyone else looks at him/her doing work. While it was learnt inside camp, it still applies to the world today.
Can be used as jialat as well. However, sometimes Rabak gives it more oomph.
20. Yaya Papaya
Sometimes, we take a look at some people walking around Orchard Road or it could also be in our class or workplace. This person can also be classified as a showoff.
21. Ah see run some more la run some more!
Every asian child has come across this before. We start running immediately as we begin to walk and this continues for a long period of time until we all fall down and then our parents both go “Ah see run some more la, run some more!”
Same thing as FOMO (Fear of Missing Out). This is when one of us felt left out when something trendy is in place or when our friends go out without calling us.
23. Wah lau eh
Can be used for a multitude of expressions. In concern, in anger, in shock. One expression transcending many expressions
Bad luck! Wah very sway or sibei sway sia. Somewhat of a slang that can be manipulated in anger, unfortunate circumstances or when we miss that 4D prize!
25. Gennermen or Gentlemen!
Very popular amongst Enciks and Sergeants. Eh Gennermen, tomorrow we go do one time SOC, then we call it a day can onot! Gennermen I can’t hear yall!
26. Lah/ Loh
Yes we do have good english campaign’s but when we meet our friends and family, we give all that back loh.
Kaypoh or otherwise known as being nosy is one of those things that Singaporeans love. I mean c’mon if there’s a long queue, some of us will be in for sure!
Alamak! When we make a mistake, run late, drop something or when we are are pissed about something. We go Alamak!
“Eh, there’s a queue leh, must be something good right?” If there’s a queue somewhere, we always assume it’s something good – or, to be precise, worth the queue.
30. Seat ‘Chope’ Culture
If you’re a foreigner visiting Singapore for the first time, hello to you! Fret not when you see packets of tissue wipes (as well as other personal belongings such as a name card, a lanyard, an umbrella, etc) on the shared tables and chairs at our hawker centres and food courts. They are nothing but merely a passive-aggressive way to tell you that “THIS TABLE IS TAKEN”.
31. Always On The Lookout For Lottery Numbers
Some of us are always passively waiting for a windfall. For instance, we make out numbers from patterns on Luo Han fish (Flowerhorn fish) even though they are merely just coloured scales.
32. Chewing Gum Ban
If you’re an avid fan of chewing gum, you’ll find yourself writhing in your seat right now. Singapore is the ONLY country in the world that has banned chewing gum. The reason is simple: to keep our nation clean. And really, the locals and tourists do see the effect alike!
33. Calling Everyone ‘Auntie’ & ‘Uncle’
Every Singaporean greets a person significantly older than them as either ‘auntie’ or ‘uncle’, even if they are related by blood or not. This is simply local colloquialism and is seen as a polite or friendly greeting… Unless you start greeting someone that’s just 5 years older than you by that!
34. Always Keeping To The Left Of Escalators
This is an unspoken rule among the locals here. If you’re not in a rush, you will naturally keep to the left of the escalator. Stand on the right and you’ll risk turning around to see annoyed faces staring at you!
It’s either a YES or NO. No in-betweens.
36. Otterly Famous Otters
Otters have undoubtedly carved out a name for themselves for being so ridiculously cute! They can be found around our country – mainly near nature reserves, but sometimes they can even be seen within housing estates like Bishan!
37. No Winter? Snow Worries
Despite being a tropical island, we have a place for Singaporeans to keep cool – that is the Snow City. They use atomised water frozen with liquid nitrogen to simulate very fine snowflakes.
38. Fastest Walkers On Earth
We don’t know where we’re heading to, but we sure are the fastest walkers on earth according to a research done by the British Council. If you see any fast walkers outside of Singapore, they’re mostly like to be a Singaporean!
39. Complain Kings
We complain about everything.
40. Limited Consumption Of Alcohol
No consumption of alcohol between 10:30PM and 7AM is allowed in our public spaces. This is to improve our country’s safety! So why not pop a bottle of wine from Marco’s Cellar and drink responsibly at home? 😉
41. Planning Travel Routes To Avoid ERPs
The Electronic Road Pricing (ERP) is our government’s way of tolling the roads here, in efforts to manage road congestion. Drivers here will find a way to avoid going through the ERP, even if it means that their journey will take a little longer than usual!
We use acronyms for everything. Expressways, brands, whatever – you name it!
43. Food Vendors Calling Everyone Handsome/Beautiful
Don’t be overly-flattered when you get called ‘handsome’ or ‘beautiful’ by a food vendor at a food court or hawker centre… They call everyone the same thing!
44. Clean Nation
Singapore is known as the Garden City, and this vision was introduced by the late Mr. Lee Kuan Yew in 1967 to transform Singapore into a city with lush greenery and a clean environment. Bins can be seen everywhere – just look out for the iconic green bins!
45. ‘Fine’ City
There is a fine tagged to almost everything. From littering to smoking in unauthorised places and more, watch out for what you do here!
46. Our Currency Notes Are Unique
Our national anthem is written on the back of our S$1,000 note.
47. We Have The World’s Tallest Indoor Waterfall
Housed in Jewel Changi Airport, the Rain Vortex is the tallest indoor waterfall that stands at a whopping 40 metres high. It looks really magnificent, and feels super cooling too!
48. BUBBLETEA. ‘Nuff said.
We love our bubbletea and there’s no stopping us.
49. Our National Language Is Malay
You didn’t know that, right? However, the de facto national language is English.
When there’s nothing else to do in Singapore, we turn to staycations. No traveling, no problem.
51. Bipolar Weather
If it rains today, chances are it may be blazing the next.
52. Racial Harmony
Our 4 main races are: Chinese, Malays, Indians, and Eurasians. And we all live harmoniously together in Singapore!
53. National Day Parades
Our yearly National Day Parade on 9 August is always a spectacle to behold.
We live on a little island, so nowhere here is too far from us!
55. Ease Of Transportation
There are train stations and bus stops everywhere, which will get you to your destination in no time.
56. We Love Singapore Because It’s Our Home
Simple as that.