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A day in SG 03: Temple hopping in Little India

Serangoon Road in LIttle India

After my walk in China Town, I took an MRT to Singapore’s Little India. Immediately after stepping out of the MRT station up in the streets, I was greeted by a faint scent of incense and unknown spices in the air. I walked towards the Serangoon Road, the main road which intersects the community, is also one of Singapore’s oldest roads.

Serangoon Road in LIttle India

Serangoon Road in LIttle India

After my walk in China Town, I took an MRT to Singapore’s Little India. Immediately after stepping out of the MRT station up in the streets, I was greeted by a faint scent of incense and unknown spices in the air. I walked towards the Serangoon Road, the main road which intersects the community, is also one of Singapore’s oldest roads.

Sri Veeramakaliamman Temple Gopuram

Sri Veeramakaliamman Temple’s elaborate gopuram

As I walk headed straight up the road, I passed by some other tourist touting their SLR cameras opposite my direction. Shortly I found myself staring at another impressive gopuram of a Hindu temple. It was the Sri Veeramakaliamman Temple, built in 1855 dedicated to the Goddess of Power, Kali, also known as the ferocious wife of Lord Siva. During WWII, many seek refuged to this temple.

Shophouses

Shophouses along Rae Course road

Walking further, and then taking a right to Perumal Road I walked more at Race Course Road to find a Buddhist Temple this time. I saw some old and ruined shophouses along this street. Shophouses are 2 or 3 storey houses where first floor is used for business purposes.

Buddhist Temple

Sakya Muni Buddha Gaya Temple and Leong San Buddhist Temple

I finally found these Buddhist Temple, Leong San Buddhist Tempe and Sakya Muni Buddha Gaya Temple. The former temple (Leong) is also known as Dragon Mountain Temple due to the dragon on its roof. This used to be lodging for the sick but was made into a temple by a generous philanthropist. The later (Sakya), has a 300 ton, 15-meter tall statue of Buddha in the main hall surrounded by hundreds of lights, which you could also see from the street. For that it was named the “Temple of 1000 lights“.

Sri Srinivasa Perumal Temple

Sri Srinivasa Perumal Temple

I crossed back to Serangoon road and headed back to Mustafa Center, but before that I passed by another Hindu Temple, Sri Srinivasa Perumal Temple. The temple is dedicated to Lord Perumal, the Preserver of the Universe as well as God of Mercy and Goodness.

Crossing on the other side of the road will bring you to Mustafa. A famed shopping center where you could buy cheap pasalubongs (goodies) back home. I checked out the stuff and decided to buy some cookies and treats home. I didn’t buy that much since I don’t want to be lugging a couple of plastic bags while I walk around. Besides, I can’t go back to the apartment and leave my things.

Masala Dosa Onion Rama

Masala Dosa Onion Rama

It was a little past noon and I decided to try some authentic Indian food. While walking back on the other side of the road, I passed by some shops selling, cheap RTW clothes, spices, some Bollywood CDs and DVDs. Shortly I found the Indian Restaurant I was looking for Komala Villa. I went inside the resto which looked more like a carinderia equivalent in the Phil. Anyways I stayed at a table and an Indian waiter approached and asked for my order. There were menu choices on the wall and most of the meals are around $2-3 SGD only! It’s very cheap for Singapore standards. I looked around and saw some other foreigners some in groups but others in their lonesome as well. I saw this Australian looking lady eating something and thought it was delicious so I asked for the same.

It only took 5 minutes until a large 12 inch silver plate arrived, with a huge Dosa (South Indian version of Crepe) with 3 choices of dipped/ spices along with it. It was called Masala Dosa Onion Rama, worth $2.80 SGD. At first I asked for a spoon and fork but then I decided I’m gonna eat Indian Style – with my bare hands! I started experimenting with the dips and dosa. One taste like salsa, the other similar to a chili and the other white one taste more of a slight mint. I’m not really sure what they add here but I enjoyed the salsa type and the white sauce. Inside the folded dosa are stuffed potatoes, onions and some spices. I really enjoyed eating them with my hands, but it seems, as I noticed earlier that the smell of spice of the red sauce is kinda hard to wash off even with soap. Ok, now I may have found one reason why some Indians smell the way the do.

After that satisfying lunch, I walked back to the Little India MRT station and took a ride to Orchard Road, Singapore’s premiere shopping district.

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