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“Unique insights into local history and culture”
Review of NUS Baba House

NUS Baba House
Ranked #79 of 867 things to do in Singapore
Certificate of Excellence
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Attraction details
Recommended length of visit: 1-2 hours
Owner description: NUS Baba House is a heritage house which exhibits the Straits Chinese material culture in a domestic context, providing the unique experience of visiting a Straits Chinese family home dating back to the early 20th century. It facilitates research and learning about the history, culture and evolution of the Peranakan community, as well as architectural traditions, urban changes and conservation efforts in Singapore. The gallery on the third floor hosts temporary exhibitions encouraging discourses on cultural encounters, hybridity and their contemporary implications in Singapore and beyond. - English Heritage Tours Tuesday – Friday, 10am - Mandarin Heritage Tour : First Monday of each month, 10am Self-guided Visit: Saturday, 1.30pm / 2.15pm / 3.15pm / 4pm
Reviewed 3 June 2017 via mobile

This place can only be visited in connection with a free tour of approx. 1.5 hours which requires prior registration. I waited a couple of weeks for a free seat on a Saturday but it was worth waiting. You will get insights into an original shop house that belonged to a peranakan family, its lifestyle and the architecture of these traditional houses. On the way there you may explore the area which offers many more preserved shop houses and is close to the central business district and Chinatown.

1  Thank celge
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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"free tour"
in 10 reviews
"peranakan family"
in 6 reviews
"peranakan culture"
in 10 reviews
"informative tour"
in 3 reviews
"straits chinese"
in 2 reviews
"ancestral home"
in 2 reviews
"national university of singapore"
in 2 reviews
"fascinating insight"
in 2 reviews
"hour tour"
in 3 reviews
"shop houses"
in 2 reviews
in 7 reviews
in 14 reviews
in 6 reviews
in 10 reviews
in 11 reviews
in 4 reviews
in 2 reviews

14 - 18 of 83 reviews

Reviewed 11 April 2017 via mobile

I'm sure the success of this must rest in large part on the volunteer guides, but the combination of architectural and historical gems mean that this is one of the best things I have done in Singapore.
The NUS admin person is a little officious, but don't be put out by that as the volunteer guide was incredibly knowledgeable and engaging: he did a wonderful job of bringing the house to life, and with a healthy dollop of gentle humour.
It's a beautiful property and the renovation seems very well executed.

3  Thank Michael D
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 14 March 2017 via mobile

I really recommend the tour of this wonderfully restored Peranakan family home - managed by the University of Singapore. Our guide today - Janice- brought the house to life. She explained all the carvings and symbols, how life would have been lead and the house used, lots of practical details like the house was deliberately open to the elements so that rain water could be caught but because of the structure the house never got wet (amazing in Singapore!), the marriage system, how the house was restored, the fascinating family who lived here and so much more. You have to book online in advance as tours are only on specific days with a maximum of 15 people. It's free!! Try and travel light as you can't take bags into the house (they are locked up safely while the tour takes place). When you reach upstairs you have to take your shoes off to preserve the flooring. No photos inside. It is very efficiently administered so you get sent a clear map and joining details. Very easy to get to by bus - 61, 166 etc. Lots of gorgeous old Singapore houses nearby. This is an absolute treat. One of the most interesting things I've done in the 6 weeks I have spent in this wonderful city.

5  Thank Beverley73
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 12 January 2017 via mobile

Really interesting to l ran a bit of baba culture from an enthusiastic guide. Had a lovely one and a half hour visit.
Facing the house the side road to the right has a good tea shop just round the corner.

1  Thank Paul B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Reviewed 8 January 2017 via mobile

Step inside the blue house for a little time travelling ! Well worth taking the time. A real insight into Peranaken culture and the history of the families who lived in Singapore.

1  Thank GapYear4grownups
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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