Five Footway Festival Returns for its Third Edition from 9 to 17 March 2024 to Bring the Storied Past of Chinatown to Life with Fun for All Ages

  • Gain a deeper understanding of Singapore’s largest conservation district, life along the Five Footway, clans and associations, as well as the traditional trades of Chinatown
  • Relive the sights and sounds of Chinatown in the 1900s through traditional childhood games, street snacks, opera performances, movies and theatrical tours along Smith Street, Pagoda Street and Sago Street
  • Register for culinary classes and learn to make traditional dishes at the Chinatown Visitor Centre

Five Foot Way Festival 2024

The eagerly awaited Five Footway Festival is returning to Chinatown Singapore from 9 to 17 March 2024, featuring many enjoyable and engaging activities suitable for visitors of all ages. Presented by the Chinatown Business Association in collaboration with various program partners, the festival will unfold at diverse locations in Chinatown, recreating the vibrant atmosphere reminiscent of Chinatown in the 1900s.

Five Footway Festival Lion Dance PerformanceSingapore Hok San Association – Southern Lion Dance Performance. Credit: Chinatown Business Association

The Five Footways, an integral part of Singapore’s daily life, will be explored in-depth in partnership with Sun Yat-Sen Nanyang Memorial Hall and students from Hwa Chong Institution. This collaboration delves into the history of the Five Footway, clans, associations, and related stories of Chinatown Singapore, creating a distinctive exhibition for the festival. Gain profound insights into the way of life, values, and traditions of Singapore’s Chinatown forefathers, exploring the centrality of the Five Footway in trade, clan activities, cultural pursuits, arts, entertainment, and beyond.

MMI Jan 2024

Festival-goers can also participate in the “Conserved Buildings in Chinatown” walking trail by Do It SG, offering insights into the conservation of heritage buildings, the history of Chinatown’s oldest structures, and the activities that once adorned the Five Footways. Delight in folktales at Joss Stick Storytelling and don’t miss “Tan Ah Huat in Chinatown,” a theatrical walking tour by Let’s Go Tour, transporting you to the early days of Singapore through the eyes of a Chinese immigrant from the 1920s.

Five Footway Festival Hokkien Puppet ShowHokkien Puppet Show. Credit: Chinatown Business Association

In homage to its previous name, Theatre Street or Hei Yuen Kai, Smith Street is poised to captivate festival visitors with culturally rich theatre acts, including Cantonese opera, Teochew opera, Peking opera, and the Hokkien puppet show. The festival offers opportunities to learn traditional skills through various workshops and classes. Engage in the creation of a personalized idiom and slang coloring book in the “Colourful Dialects” workshop, or delve into the world of Peking Opera with Ping Sheh’s class and Yan Wong Cultural Troupe’s Kirin Workshop, providing a fun and inclusive experience with music, movements, and more.

Amidst the flourishing diversity and passion for food in Singapore, the festival invites attendees to explore traditional dishes in Chinatown. Uncover the rich heritage of Hakka culture with Hakka Imperial Kitchen, offering insights into the making of Hakka rice wine and its exquisite flavors. Attend a traditional omelette toast session, join the Traditional Wedding Talk with AMD Wedding, or enhance your culinary skills in Auntie Helen’s class, where she teaches Hainanese-style pineapple stir-fry pork rind and fried preserved beans with chicken. Chef Colin from Let’s Go Tour will host Put Chai Ko Making Classes, an educational journey teaching patience and precision in mastering traditional techniques for red bean sweet rice pudding.

Five Footway Festival Old School GamesOld School Games. Credit: Chinatown Business Association

Festival visitors, especially families with children, can indulge in nostalgic childhood games on Pagoda Street, including can and ring toss, hoop wheeling, chapteh, zero point, and snakes and ladders. Traditional Singaporean snacks and biscuits, including Kacang Putih, will be available from stall vendors. Stilt-walking Samsui women and khaki shorts policemen will be present for photo opportunities. Other highlights include movie screenings, dragon dances, wushu performances, and more.

five footway festival

📅 9 to 17 Mar 2024
⏰ 10am – 8pm
📍 Chinatown Singapore

Admission to the Five Footway Festival is free. Tickets for selected workshops can be purchased from here. To find out more, visit the website for more information.


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