Get the freshest fruits, vegetables, meat and fish possible with our guide to wet markets in Singapore in 2024
In Singapore we really are spoilt for choice when it comes to fresh produce – so many different types of Asian greens, fruits and vegetables not to mention meats and seafood! We love us some online grocery shopping for the pure convenience and browsing supermarkets and butchers in person is always fun when you have time, but doing your ‘marketing’ (that’s Singlish for grocery shopping) at a wet market is a great way to get your daily needs affordably. The most common goods you’ll find at the wet market are fresh produce like fruits and vegetables (including Asian herbs and ingredients that are harder to find in the supermarket, like torch ginger flower and kaffir lime leaves) poultry and seafood, and dried goods such as fresh spices. Some wet markets may also have stalls offering home essentials such as pails, buckets, other bathroom accessories and hardware. That said, you’ll have better luck at a nearby supermarket or minimart for other household needs such as cleaning liquids, toilet paper and diapers.
Wet markets have been part of the Singapore culture since pre-independence, growing in prominence thanks to the introduction of public housing in the 1950s (which is why so many wet markets are located in the heartlands!). There are now over 100 wet markets in Singapore, some of them more notable than others. Once you’ve found your go-to stalls, you’ll quickly make friends with the shopkeepers, and nothing beats the relationships built over time!
Find it daunting? The first step is finding a wet market near you, then checking it out for yourself! Scroll to the end for our top tips for visiting the wet market.
Guide to Wet Markets in Singapore
Chinatown Wet Market
Located in the basement of the iconic Chinatown Complex along Smith Street, this wet market shares the space with the Chinatown Complex Food Centre – one of the tastiest hawker centres in Singapore. Here you’ll find tons of fresh produce, including live seafood, fresh vegetables, seasonal and exotic fruit, fresh meat, tofu, noodles, spices and dried goods and eggs. The focus here is mainly on Asian vegetables, with the odd eel, frog and even turtle available.
Tekka Wet Market
Part wet market, part food centre and part shopping mall, The Tekka Centre has it all (and is conveniently located just a few streets from Mustafa Centre, where you are sure to find whatever you couldn’t get your hands on at Tekka!). Located in the vibrant Little India district, it’s the largest indoor wet market in Singapore. There’s a massive selection of fresh produce, including live seafood, fresh vegetables, seasonal and exotic fruit, fresh meat, tofu, noodles, spices and dried goods and eggs. This is where you’ll find one of the largest selections of fresh spices, especially those used in Indian cooking. You can also get freshly grated coconut, coconut milk and coconut water at amazing prices. You’ll also find places to eat at a separate section of Tekka Market and upstairs there’s lots of shopping (it’s a popular place to get Indian fashion for Deepavali too).
Read our full guide to Tekka Market here.
Tiong Bahru Wet Market
Located in this hipster ‘hood this popular wet market is a little less intense than the bigger markets listed above. Produce is packaged similarly to a supermarket and they market more to the international crowd, with a huge array of western fresh produce available, including some really fantastic cheeses! At Tiong Bahru Wet Market you’ll find fresh produce, including live seafood, fresh vegetables, seasonal and exotic fruit, fresh meat, tofu, noodles, spices and dried goods and eggs. And cheese! It’s in very close proximity to some of the island’s best coffee making spots — perfect for a Saturday morning post-market caffeine stop. Don’t miss the flower section too!
Geylang Serai Wet Market
Geylang Serai Wet Market is located in the heart of Geylang, right next to Wisma Geylang Serai. This market also shares the space with a food centre that serves some of the best Malay food on the island. Here you’ll find a lot of fresh produce, including live seafood, fresh vegetables, seasonal and exotic fruit, fresh meat, tofu, noodles, spices and dried goods and eggs. If you engage some of the spice stall owners they will tell you their secrets, especially which spices to use to make an incredible curry. Geylang Serai Wet Market is also perfect for having brunch after marketing thanks to all the Malay food stalls available.
Senoko Fishery Port
The Senoko Fishery Port is one of two fishery ports in Singapore operated by the AVA and is actually where many fishmongers purchase their fish to sell at the wet markets, but it’s also open to the public. You can find all manner of plump, fresh seafood at wholesale prices! Just don’t forget the gumboots and be prepared to get there super early – the fish start to arrive around 3am and sales are wrapped up as early as 4am.
Admiralty Wet Market
Right next to Kampung Admiralty (where you’ll find a great open-air food court, FairPrice supermarket, Starbucks and Tasty Farm) there’s Admiralty Wet Market, a modest wet market with all the usual veggies, fruits, meat and fish. There’s a stall here selling freshly made soya bean drink and beancurd if you’ve got a hankering for a warm cuppa of the non-caffeinated variety!
Marsiling Lane Wet Market
This is one of the main wet markets in the north, thanks to the variety of produce you can find here along with the rows of shops selling many other miscellaneous essentials. During durian season you’ll find the spiky fruit at every corner from various fruit stalls! It’s buzzing on weekends so get here early. If you’ve got the kids with you, pop over to Admiralty Park playground just down the road afterwards (if you’re not too laden with goods!)
Bukit Panjang Wet Market
This humble wet market serves the community in Bukit Panjang. It’s one of the newer wet markets around (having opened in 2015) so it’s a lot cleaner and drier than most! You can still find all the usual essentials here, from fruits and vegetables to meats.
Chong Pang Market & Food Centre
Chong Pang Market & Food Centre is located in Yishun, with many fruit shops in particular alongside the usual veggies, meat and fish.
As with most wet markets in Singapore, the shoppers here are those who live in the neighbourhood but this wet market is particularly popular with parents and helpers with kids thanks to the awesome playground right near the hawker stalls. Let the kids run around before you do your shopping if you are buying lots of fresh meat and fish! Head to the fresh produce section for chicken, eggs and other fresh meat. There’s a seafood area with fish, prawns and very good fishballs too. You’ll find fruits, veggies, fresh noodles, tofu and more at this wet market. Prices are usually listed, or you can ask the shopkeeper. You’ll also find freshly squeezed sugarcane juice (kids love to have this in a bag and slurp it with some ice) as well as flowers and there’s even an aquarium shop selling pet fish here too!
Ghim Moh Road Market
This large wet market is well known for its variety of seafood, and high quality beef (try Dinos Butchery for premium beef from New Zealand!). The nearby hawker centre is popular for appams (lightly-fermented rice flour pancakes) and chwee kueh. There’s a small playground nearby if you’d like to let the kids burn some energy after some shopping!
Kovan 209 Wet Market
If you’re in the Kovan and Hougang area, Kovan 209 Market & Food Centre is the nearest spot for all your marketing needs.
Sengkang New Market
This Sengkang wet market in Rivervale Plaza is convenient for locals and sells a variety of produce.
Tampines Round Market
Tampines Round Market and Food Centre has been around since 1983, so it’s one of the oldest wet markets still standing! This is a big wet market in Tampines with plenty of stalls for all your produce – including halal butchers, several fishmongers and fresh fruits and vegetables.
Whampoa Wet Market
Whampoa Wet Market is well known for being well-maintained and clean, located alongside a popular hawker centre that draws foodie fans from all over Singapore.
Top tips for visiting wet markets in Singapore
We’ve consulted cookbook author and former Masterchef Singapore contestant Shamsydar Ani on her top tips for visiting the wet market!
- Most wet markets are closed on Mondays
- Early bird gets the best produce! Go between 7am and 10am to snag the best stuff. Produce typically starts to run out from 11am.
- Some stalls now accept cashless payments like PayNow and PayLah!, but it’s still best to have cash on hand to be safe. Many wet markets now accept CDC Vouchers too!
- Buy veggies and dry goods first because they’re easier to carry around while shopping.
- Prep everything immediately once reaching home. This makes things easier once it comes time to cook (or just tell the shopkeeper what you need, eg. fish to be cut in fillets, meats to be chopped up into suitable sizes depending on the dish).
- Go the low-waste route and bring your own containers and carriers! Label your containers beforehand so you can easily plan which meats to put in, and bring along a few of your own reusable grocery bags for fruits and veggies. This way, all that’s left to do when you get home is to place everything in the fridge and freezer.
Happy marketing mamas!