Singapore’s wet markets are both a cultural adventure and opportunity to select and purchase the freshest produce, seafood, poultry, and flowers, along with myriad spices and herbs, often at the best prices available. Neighborhood wet markets are typically open in the early mornings, with most activity occurring before midday, and some are open Tuesday through Sunday only. Prices are somewhat negotiable, though buyers may find resistance to bargaining, as prices are already set fairly low. All purchases are cash.
While food safety is typically very good, one should certainly take care when purchasing poultry and other meats. Also, do not expect air conditioning or be surprised by early-morning crowds, unusual smells, or dirty floors strewn with bits of produce. Despite the apparent mess, Singapore markets are actually quite clean and are washed daily and inspected regularly. Shoppers should wear sturdy shoes that can be easily cleaned and bring along shopping bags or small grocery carts of their own.
- Tekka Centre / KK Market: This large market located at Serangoon and Rochor Roads in Little India offers fresh meat, fish, vegetables, fruit, dry foods, spices, and flowers, and is also known for its Indian and Thai offerings. Open mornings for foodstuffs, there is also a well-known adjoining food court and shopping centre offering Indian clothing and fabrics that stays open later through the day. Location: Block 665, Buffalo Road, open daily from 6:30-9:30 am.
- Empress Market (Farrer Market): This market, just off Farrer Road between Holland Road and Bukit Timah, offers fresh vegetables, fruit and meats as well as dry food stuffs. It is very popular with the expatriate community because of its prime location, and smaller shops around the market’s perimeter also sell grocery and household items. Location: Block 7, Farrer Road, open daily until noon.
- Holland Village Market: Situated between the upscale shops and restaurants of Lorong Mambong (just behind the Holland Village Shopping Center) and the HDB parking lot, this smaller daily market sells fresh fruit, vegetables and meat. Renovated in 2006, it now has a small food court, as well, that stays open late into the night. Open daily until noon.
- Chinatown Market: This busy market offers the usual fresh foods as well as typically Chinese ingredients, and market stalls selling household goods. Location: Block 336, Smith Street, open daily until noon.
- Marine Parade Market: This East Coast wet market offers fresh vegetables and fruits, poultry, and seafood. Location: opposite Parkway Parade Shopping Centre on the East Coast, open daily until noon.
- Senoko Fishing Port: This market sells fish and seafood only, and is open very early (as early at 1 am), as it mostly supplies other wet markets and traders. Location: Admiralty Road West, off Woodlands Ave 2, in Sembawang. Open Tuesday to Sunday from 01:00 until mid-morning.
- Toa Payoh Central Market: Neighborhood market selling usual produce, seafood, and poultry. Location: next to the Toa Payoh MRT station, open daily until noon.
- Tiong Bahru Market: Located close to the city centre, this market also boasts some of Singapore’s best hawker stalls and is also know for its bird-singing aviaries. The market offers meats, produce, Chinese groceries, flowers, cooked food, household goods, and clothing. Location: 5- minute walk from Tiong Bahru MRT station.