Hidden Gems in Yishun Suburban

▲ Useful Tourist Information

This article was written for a contest to win a cruise trip for two. Thus, it was first published at stcommunities.sg.

I was looking forward to review this cruise trip, but the winner went to another article. I am not a sore loser, but if the winner is more worthy, I will be fine with it. I definitely put more thought and effort in crafting this post than the winning entry, that even SGHeartMap shared my ST article on their facebook. Oh well!

In any case, hope this article benefits you – regardless if you are a tourist visiting Singapore, or a Singaporean thinking of where to bring your overseas friends.

Tell us about a quirky or offbeat “Must-Visit/Must-Do/Must-Eat” place that you know of in Singapore or even your own neighbourhood that you think tourists coming to Singapore should check out. 

I always tell my friends from overseas to visit the suburbans when they are in Singapore. That’s where they can truly know more about this country. She is more than just Orchard, Sentosa and Marina Bay Sands. Suburban in Singapore is a location not within town (Orchard area), city centre (City Hall/Bugis area) or Central Business District. And now knowing Yishun a little better, I would recommend those visiting Singapore to take a few MRT stops up from the glam and glittery Orchard and walk around Yishun. Yishun, or Nee Soon as it was initially named, is a suburban town in the northern part of Singapore.

Suburban Mall and the Public Library

Located just beside the Yishun MRT station is Northpoint Shopping Centre (Northpoint), one of the many suburban malls in Singapore. Such malls are becoming a standard feature in many suburban centres, with the crowded ones in Tampines, Bishan and Yishun. So be sure to visit one when you are in Singapore!

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Walk through the underground tunnel from Yishun MRT station to Northpoint and squeeze among the crowd to enjoy the vibes and buzz. Northpoint is in the middle of the action, with the MRT station and a bus interchange to its left and right, you can find a mix of hurried people rushing for time, elderly folks walking at a leisure pace, aunties/matrons pushing grocery trolleys, and young parents pulling their children in tow.

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As you walk around the mall to explore the shops, you will notice fewer big branded shops commonly found in Singapore. This is a nice avenue if you are looking for something affordable to wear and carry. Oh! If you love books, walk to the top floor of the shopping centre and find the Public Library. Take a seat and browse a book.

Yishun 10 Cineplex (Cinema)

Cross a street from Northpoint to Yishun 10 Cineplex to catch a movie. This cinema was the largest multiplex with the most screens in Asia when it opened in 1992. Worth a quick tour just to say you’ve been there. You can also find shops on ground level. If you like fried chicken, be sure to try Arnold’s Fried Chicken there. It has been around for more than 25 years and is one of the first Singapore fast food joint to be certified Halal. This is one of the 3 outlets in Singapore. It opens from 11:30am and the last order is at 9:45 pm.

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Yishun Neighbourhood

And for the adventurous, venture a bit further into the heart of a neighbourhood and be rewarded with its sights and sounds.

Walk about 5 minutes from the Cineplex to Block 928 Yishun Central 1, passing by Northpoint, and enjoy the walk around the neighbourhood. You will come across many eating places that serve the surrounding residents. Such eateries are what the locals call “kopi-tiam”, which literally translates to “coffee-shop”.

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You can also find a collection of shophouses and small, family-run businesses here. Shop in the laid-back atmosphere and you might just find something special to bring home as a souvenir!

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And when you finally reach Block 928 Yishun Central 1, it’s time to dig into many tourists’ favourite local food, Laksa! Get a bowl of the spicy noodle dish at Yishun 928 Laksa (#01-155) for approximately S$3/pax. But be prepared to queue for a while on a busy day. After Laksa, you can pop over next door for some local desserts and a plate of “Popiah” (fresh spring roll) to end off your tour of Yishun.

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During January 2015

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