Most people would equate the name Raffles with the iconic Singaporean hotel, and, by association, the famous Singapore Sling. Though to outsiders Raffles is more synonymous with cocktails and luxurious hotel accommodations, Raffles was a real person, and the founder of modern Singapore.
Sir Thomas Stamford Raffles founded Singapore on February 6, 1819. He had arrived on behalf of the British East India Company to develop the southern part of the island as a British trading post, which he did after signing a treaty with the sultan. It wasn't until 1824 that the entire island went to the British, and it wasn't until 1963 that Singapore would gain its independence.
Due to its position in Asia, Singapore is a true melting pot of cultures from Malaysia, China, India and this is reflected in the architecture, culture and cuisine of the nation, all of which are also still flecked with remnants of the Brits.
There are plenty of things to do in Singapore, like visiting the famous botanic gardens, exploring the Singapore Art Museum and shopping on Orchard Road. However, the number one activity for visitors to Singapore is certainly eating, as the country is famous for its hawker centers. Here, street food is almost an art form, and a trip is not complete without a taste of local classics like hokkien mee, chicken rice, carrot cake or chili crab.
There's lots to love about Singapore, take a peek below.