Singapore is situated in South East Asia, just off the southern tip of Malaysia.
One of the smallest and most densely populatedcountries in the world, Singapore is a breeze to explore- nothing is more than an hour away from thecentral business district.
Built at the crossroads of maritime tradingroutes, for well over a century Singapore was thejewel in Britain's Empire.
When the city became a republic in 1965, few thought a country with so few resources and of vastly different ethnic groups couldsucceed.
But succeed it has, on an unimaginable scale! Singapore today is one of the Four Asian economicTigers, a futuristic bridge between East and West.
Yet despite blossoming into one of the greatglobal cities, Singapore is a nation that still cherishesits Asian traditions.
Once filled with trading houses and opiumdens, Chinatown's historic shophouses have beentransformed into restaurants, boutique hotels and gift shops.
Pick up a good luck charm in the Pagoda StreetMarket, or find a few moments of quiet reflectionat the Buddha Tooth Relic Temple.
Across town, Little India crams all the colors,scents, and gods of the Indian Subcontinent into a just a fewcity blocks.
While nearby in the Malay and Muslim quarterof Kampong Glam, the streets are a treasure trove of handicraftsfrom the Arabian world.
One thing unites all Singaporeans- food- it'sthe national obsession! For an authentic Singaporean 'Makan' experience, follow the satay smoke to the nearest hawkerscenter.
For more upscale dinning, head to the brightlights of Boat and Clarke Quays.
Despite Singapore's high urban density, the island is incredibly fertile.
They say, if you stick a broom handle intothe soil, it will flower overnight! Escape the heat and enter a world of color at the Singapore Botanic Gardens and NationalOrchid Garden.
For a slightly wilder experience explore the jungle paths of the Bukit TimahNature Reserve.
Singapore's animal residents are a prettydiverse bunch too! Famed for its forest setting, The SingaporeZoo is home to over 300 species, including the world's largest captive colonyof Orangutans, while the Jurong Bird Park has been bringinghuman beings and birdlife closer together for over 40 years.
Singapore enjoys a hot tropical climate.
When the cooling afternoon rains come, indulge in that other Singaporean obsession,shopping! Orchard Road offers miles of retail indulgence.
For a change of pace, head to the Bugis Markets to really rub shoulders with bargain-huntinglocals.
When it's time to unwind, climb aboard a cable-carto Sentosa, an island playground filled with resorts,theme parks, beaches and bars.
At Sentosa's western tip is Fort Siloso, a vivid reminder of Singapore's darkest daysduring World War Two.
Closer to town is Singapore's big backyard,East Coast Park.
This 10-mile recreational park is lined withbike paths and beaches, and is proof that busy Singaporeans do knowhow to kick back and relax.
A little further east is Changi Beach.
From here, catch a 'bumboat' to the islandof Pulau Ubin for a taste of 'Kampong Life' that has allbut vanished on the mainland.
Pulau Ubin's quiet beaches, mangroves andwetlands are a world away from the buzz of modern Singapore.
But you don't need to ride a 'bumboat' tohead back in time, simply step through the doors of Raffles Hoteland order a Singapore Sling.
Many of history's greatest adventurers andwriters have cooled off in Raffles' legendary bars.
In the 21st Century, Singapore is attracting the world's most adventurousarchitectural minds.
Marina Bay shines like something from a sciencefiction blockbuster, while Gardens by the Bay shows the endlesspossibilities of mankind's flowering imagination.
Welcome to Singapore, where the future is only ever a few stepsfrom the past.
A destination that proves that with unity,diversity and daring, even the smallest of places, can grow intoa giant!.