A walk down Little India during the Deepavali light up

Bustling markets, bazaars and street concerts return to Little India’s ‘festival of lights’.

Liam Willett

Aspiring cat dad.

Published: 23 September 2022, 7:24 PM

The decorations for the annual Deepavali celebrations are lighting up Serangoon Road and Race Course Road at Little India from Sep 16 to Nov 13. 

Known as the ‘festival of lights’, Deepavali is the most important Hindu festival and is celebrated around the world. According to the Hindu lunar calendar, Deepavali falls on Oct 24 this year.


The light-up starts from the junction of Serangoon Road, Bukit Timah Road and Sungei Road with brightly coloured archways strung across the road. PHOTO CREDIT: YOUTHOPIA/LIAM WILLETT


The arches feature motifs of musical instruments such as the tabla and sitar. PHOTO CREDIT:YOUTHOPIA/ LIAM WILLETT


A key installation of the Deepavali lights this year is a peacock sculpture located at Kinta Road, which members of the public enjoying the festivities of Little India can use as a photo backdrop for selfies.


The peacock is an important symbol in Hinduism and peacocks at Deepavali signify good luck and prosperity. PHOTO CREDIT: YOUTHOPIA/LIAM WILLETT


This year’s Deepavali will see the full-scale return of bazaars and open-air concerts, after two years COVID-19 restrictions. 

During this year’s light-up ceremony on Sep 16, Deputy Prime Minister Heng Swee Keat said that this Deepavali is a chance to reflect on the end of muted celebrations of the last two years. 

He said: “COVID-19 has been a dark and difficult two years. But we have finally emerged into the light.”


Bustling bazaars and markets are set to return this Deepavali for the first time in two years. PHOTO CREDIT: YOUTHOPIA/LIAM WILLETT


The Indian Heritage Centre will also hold a variety of activities during their annual Open House which runs from Oct 1 to 23. These include trishaw rides, open-top bus tours and cooking demonstrations of festive Deepavali dishes by celebrity chefs. 


The entrance of the Indian Heritage Centre will feature a miniature of the arch of the light-up in conjunction with the Indian Heritage Centre’s Deepavali Open House. PHOTO CREDIT: YOUTHOPIA/LIAM WILLETT


The Sri Srinivasa Perumal and Sri Vadapathira Kaliamman temples were also bustling with activity in the evenings.


For the first time since the pandemic began, people can congregate and celebrate Deepavali with little COVID-19 restrictions. PHOTO CREDIT: YOUTHOPIA/LIAM WILLETT


Many practising the Hindu faith, including migrant workers, offered their prayers in the historic temples at Little India during the evenings leading up to Deepavali. PHOTO CREDIT: YOUTHOPIA/LIAM WILLETT


More details of this year’s Deepavali at Little India and the activities are available on Little India Shopkeepers & Heritage Association (LiSHA) website.

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