Under the British administration, Sir Stamford Raffles, to keep racial tensions minimized, divided Singapore city into districts based on ethnic groups. Chinatown was allotted the area south of the Singapore River. Chinatown can be divided into four main districts - Kreta Ayer, Telok Ayer, Tanjong Pagar and Bukit Pasoh - each with its own distinctive flavour. The heart of activity is in the Trengganu/Smith Streets area.
The racial and religious atmosphere in Chinatown is harmonious. The Wak Hai Cheng Bio Temple, the Thian Hock Keng Temple, The Al Abrar Mosque along Telok Ayer Street, and the Jamae Mosque and Sri Mariamman Temple along South Bridge Road are located in Chinatown.
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