The city-state of the Republic of Singapore lies of the southern tip of the Malay Peninsula. This is a seriously wealthy state, housing the 4th largest financial centre and the busiest port on the planet. Its residents enjoy the third best spending power on earth, but also one of the third highest income inequalities. Historically it was founded by Sir Stanford Raffles, for the United Kingdom as a trading post in 1819. It gained independence in 1955. It was the scene of what Winston Churchill described as the “the worst disaster and largest capitulation in British history” when the country was taken by the invading Japanese army.
The country oozes affluence and it is impossible not to be impressed with the astonishing skyline. Most of the population is Chinese, though some 2 million are in fact foreign born. Holidays here are highbrow and expensive, but ultimately rewarding. There can be not many better bar experiences than drinking a Singapore Sling at the Raffles Hotel. The newly built Marina Bay Sands complex is a jaw dropping extravaganza of design and build. The most expensive building in the world, it dominates the skyline, its three towers joined at the 55th floor by a single flat holiday park. It has shops, restaurants and an enormous infinity pool.
Mainly a Buddhist country it also has significant numbers of Atheists, Christians and Muslims. Although the majority of the buildings. The country has marketed itself well and is home to some very large festivals and events. It once again started hosting the Singapore F1 Grand Prix in 2008, and this new race on a night track at Marina Bay has become one of the best races in the calendar. It also hosts many music and arts festivals and generally each one becomes highly successful. Taking a vacation in Singapore is a truly memorable experience.