Singapore - The Lion City


Singapore Map

Singapore officially the Republic of Singapore, and often referred to as the Lion City, the Garden City, and the Red Dot, is a global city in Southeast Asia and the world's only island city-state. It lies one degree (137 km) north of the equator, at the southernmost tip of continental Asia and peninsular Malaysia, with Indonesia's Riau Islands to the south. Singapore's territory consists of the diamond-shaped main island and 62 islets. Since independence, extensive land reclamation has increased its total size by 23% (130 km2), and its greening policy has covered the densely populated island with tropical flora, parks and gardens.

The islands were settled from the second century AD by a series of local empires. In 1819, Sir Stamford Raffles founded modern Singapore as a trading post of the East India Company; after the company collapsed, the islands were ceded to Britain and became part of its Straits Settlements in 1826. During World War II, Singapore was occupied by Japan. It gained independence from Britain in 1963, by uniting with other former British territories to form Malaysia, but was expelled two years later over ideological differences. After early years of turbulence, and despite lacking natural resources and a hinterland, the nation developed rapidly as an Asian tiger economy, based on external trade and its human capital.

Singapore is a global commerce, financial and transportation hub. Its standings include: "Easiest place to do business" (World Bank) for ten consecutive years, most "Technology-ready" nation (EIU), top "International meetings city" (UIA), city with "Best investment potential" (BERI), 2nd-most competitive country (WEF), 3rd-largest foreign exchange centre, 4th-largest financial centre, 3rd-largest oil refining and trading centre and one of the top two busiest container ports since the 1990s. Singapore's best known global brands include Singapore Airlines and Changi Airport, both amongst the most-awarded in their industry; SIA is also rated by Fortune surveys as Asia's "most admired company". For the past decade, it is the only Asian country with the top AAA sovereign rating from all major credit rating agencies, including S&P, Moody's and Fitch.

Singapore ranks high on its national social policies, leading Asia and 11th globally, on the Human Development Index (UN), notably on key measures of education, healthcare, life expectancy, quality of life, personal safety, housing. Although income inequality is high, 90% of citizens own their homes, and the country has one of the highest per capita incomes, with low taxes. The cosmopolitan nation is home to 5.5 million residents, 38% of whom are permanent residents and other foreign nationals. Singaporeans are mostly bilingual, with English as their common language and a second mother-tongue language. Its cultural diversity is reflected in its extensive "hawker" cuisine and major ethnic festivals - Chinese, Malay, Indian, Western which are all national holidays. In 2015, Lonely Planet and The New York Times listed Singapore as their top and 6th best world destination to visit respectively.

The nation's core principles are meritocracy, multiculturalism and secularism. It is noted for its effective, pragmatic and incorrupt governance and civil service, which together with its rapid development policies, is widely cited as the "Singapore model". Gallup polls shows 84% of its residents expressed confidence in the national government, one of the highest ratings recorded. Singapore has significant influence on global affairs relative to its size, leading some analysts to classify it as a middle power. It is ranked as Asia's most influential city and 4th in the world by Forbes.

Singapore is a unitary multiparty parliamentary republic, with a Westminster system of unicameral parliamentary government. The People's Action Party has won every election since self-government in 1959. One of the five founding members of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN), Singapore is also the host of the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) Secretariat, and a member of the East Asia Summit, the Non-Aligned Movement, and the Commonwealth of Nations.

History
Temasek ('Sea Town' in the Malay language), a second century outpost of the Sumatran Srivijaya empire, is the earliest known settlement on Singapore. The island was part of the Srivijaya Empire until it was invaded by the South Indian Emperor Rajendra Chola I, of the Chola Empire, in the 11th century. [citation needed] In the 13th century, the Kingdom of Singapura was established on the island and it became a trading port city. It was, however, invaded by two major foreign invasions before being destroyed by the Majapahit in 1398. In 1613, Portuguese raiders burned down the settlement, which was part of the Johor Sultanate and the island sank into obscurity for the next two centuries. Nominally, it belonged to the Johor Sultanate during this period, while the maritime region and trade was under Dutch control.

British colonisation 1819 - 1942
In 1819, Thomas Stamford Raffles arrived and signed a treaty with Sultan Hussein Shah of Johor, on behalf of the British East India Company, to develop the southern part of Singapore as a British trading post. In 1824, the entire island became a British possession under a further treaty with the Sultan, as well as the Temenggong. In 1826, Singapore became part of the Straits Settlements, under the jurisdiction of British India, becoming the regional capital in 1836.
Prior to Raffles' arrival, there were approximately 1,000 people living on the island, mostly indigenous Malays along with a handful of Chinese. By 1860, the population exceeded 80,000 and more than half were Chinese. Many immigrants came to work at rubber plantations and, after the 1870s, the island became a global centre for rubber exports.
After the First World War, the British built the large Singapore Naval Base. Lieutenant General Sir William George Shedden Dobbie was appointed General Officer Commanding of the Malaya Command on 8 November 1935, holding the post until 1939 in May 1938, he warned how Singapore could be conquered by the Japanese via an attack from northern Malaya, but his warnings were not heeded, resulting in the fall of Singapore nearly four years later in early 1942 during World War II.

Click here for more details

singapore city tour

Splendour Singapore tour
Welcome to the Heart of Asia!! A vibrant city which is a pot pourrie of cultures...
Click for details

Exclusive Singapore Tour

Exclusive Singapore Tour
you get a chance to explore every prime attraction of Sentosa Island and Singapore...
Click for details

Classic Singapore Holidays

Classic Singapore Holidays
Arrive in the vibrant, modern city-state of Singapore, and check in to your luxury hotel...
Click for details

Singapore with Malaysia holidays

Singapore with Malaysia
It is the place to have fun at any time of the year. Bursting at the seams with vibrancy...
Click for details