Orchard Road in Singapore, a 2.2km shopping belt, is the place for retail therapy.

Whether you’re a first-time visitor or a seasoned shopper, Orchard Road, a 2.2km shopping belt, is the place for retail therapy.

Who'd have thought that over 150 years ago, Orchard Road was just a small lane lined with fruit orchards, nutmeg plantations and pepper farms.

A look back
Find everything from designer threads, fast fashion, upscale restaurants, ethnic wares, art galleries to relaxed hangouts on Orchard Road, Singapore.

By the 1850s, these humble origins had changed. People moved in, along with outdoor hawker centres, wet markets, cemeteries, temples, and even an open-air laundry basin.

It was only in 1903 that Orchard Road’s shops sprung up, with Singapore's first supermarket, where The Centrepoint now stands.

The first department store was opened by local merchant C.K Tang in 1958 on a plot of land facing a cemetery. When it was demolished in 1982, it was replaced by the landmark Tang Plaza, which houses a local department store and hotel.

In the 1970s, cinemas, a bowling alley and ever larger malls followed, and Orchard Road’s reputation as an entertainment hub grew.

Spoilt for choice

Today, Orchard Road is flanked by iconic shopping malls, restaurants and hotels, choc-a-bloc with retail, dining and entertainment choice for every taste and budget.

Designer threads, fast fashion, upscale restaurants, ethnic wares, art galleries and relaxed hangouts – you name it, Orchard Road has it.

Here’s a tip: while the almond and jambu trees are no more, huge angsana trees lining the large pedestrian mall give ample shade from the blazing sun – making this still a nice place to stroll.