While still centred on Christmas Day itself, the occasion practically extends throughout the December school holidays. Locals have embraced the holiday enthusiastically with predictable consumerism, and the occasion now sets the scene for merry-making and the exchanging of presents among family and friends. Besides Midnight Mass and Christmas services throughout churches in Singapore, parties and celebrations fill the air with an undeniable festive cheer in restaurants, nightspots, malls, and home sweet home.
The highlight of this holiday season in Singapore is the breathtaking light-up that spans the entire length of Orchard Road, which commences with a ceremony in mid-November. Watch as Singapore's main shopping belt, running through Orchard Road and the City Hall area, is transformed into Santa's backyard, with highly elaborate decorations lining up the streets. The Orchard Road light-up is a spectacular that cannot be missed.
Be mesmerised by the twinkling lights that mark the festive spirit in the air. Be enchanted by the sight of Santa Claus, elves, reindeers and angels with harps that fill up every imaginable space and on the walls of shopping malls. Grab your camera early for that picture-perfect moment, as the shopping strips get swallowed up by the exceptional crowds at this time. The light-up is best enjoyed cruising along Orchard Road at night, with open-top bus rides plying this iconic shopping strip. A Christmas Light-Up Open Top Bus sends tourists on a journey through the dazzling display along Orchard Road.
A month-long festival takes the carnival to the streets, themed 'Christmas in the Tropics'. Be entertained by the street performers coming out in full force, busking to earn money for different charities as you shop for last-minute Christmas presents, or head on to the best Christmas shopping deals and spills starting from mid-November onwards. Fashionistas will be thrilled by the makeshift stages set up around Orchard Road, primed and ready for local and foreign models to take to the stage and showcase the latest fashion trends.
Churches and various organisations around Singapore also join in the fun at Orchard Road with 'Celebrate Christmas in Singapore'. Choirs, dancers, orchestras and international performers take to the street. They are accompanied by colourful Christmas floats, activity booths, as well as nativity scenes that bring back the true meaning of Christmas.
The majestic Marina Bay is also set to join in the Christmas cheer, which will have a Christmas Splendour light-up. The iconic Marina Bay Sands integrated resort will be the centrepiece of this event, with dazzling decorations and offers at its Shoppes, which are expected to become a mainstay on Singapore's Christmas calendar.
Enjoy the Christmas season, set in unique tropical weather, for a uniquely Singaporean holiday season.
Christmas is celebrated on 25 December every year.