A groovy place once you’ve got in, everything from the incredible Bugis Street transvestites to cut-price cameras, crazy Tiger Balm gardens to those wham bang Chinese movies. Singapore, the name means lion city, started its modern period in 1819 when Sir Stamford Raffles, who was quite a cat, concluded a treaty to establish a trading post there. Today it’s per capita income is second only to Japan amongst the Asian countries. A lot of this income comes from the very same purpose Raffles saw – trading. Singapore is a buying and selling center and just about everything can be bought here – and at a discount. Tourism is also a big deal, annual arrivals of overseas tourists by air and sea alone is now over half a million.