5 funniest Singapore street names that will catch your attention

Updated: 5 min read

In today’s society, it pays to stand out from the crowd. Just scroll through social media, and you will find celebrities choosing to up the ante by giving their children ridiculous monikers.

Frighteningly, this trend has also started to catch on locally. Some even take it as far as making these self-christened names permanent by registering them with ICA and etched forever on their ICs.

Make no mistake, an unusual name can, and will, leave a lasting impression. In the same way, these peculiar street names add flavour to otherwise bland-sounding ones (eg. Ang Mo Kio Ave 2, or anything else with an “Ave” or “Street” followed by a number) and capture the attention of the common pedestrian or motorist.

1. Rotan Lane

The stuff of nightmares for naughty children, and possibly Michael Fay! Rotan is the Malay word for rattan. It also refers to rattan canes, the instrument of choice for instilling discipline.

An imaginative few might think that this was where the notorious practice of caning was frequently carried out but in actual fact, the lane was so named because there used to be a cane-producing factory along Chander Road adjacent to it.

Rotan Lane is situated along the historic Serangoon Road area, which means it sees a fair share of tourists and Nasi Briyani restaurants around it.

Being a five- to 10-minute walk away from both Little India MRT and Farrer Park MRT stations and located near town means that the properties around it remain attractive for prospective buyers.

2. Jalan Malu-Malu

Jalan Malu-Malu
Source: Google Street View

Those living along this secondary road must have been at the receiving end of a number of jokes from their friends and family. Malu in Bahasa Melayu means “to be ashamed or shy”, which would inadvertently suggest that residents staying in the properties surrounding it are, to some degree, in a perpetual state of embarrassment.

There is no need for them to be red-faced though, given the number of developments happening in the area.

A closer look reveals that the area has seen a great deal of activity with the recent launches of The Watergardens at Canberra and The Commodore.

Being situated next to Sembawang Shopping Centre, as well as being close to Canberra MRT and Canberra Plaza, are plus points for upgraders with families.

3. Kay Poh Road

If you think a road named Jalan Malu-Malu is mildly amusing, then you would probably think living on Kay Poh Road is downright hilarious.

Singlish for “being a busybody”, you would think that no secrets can be kept hidden from the prying eyes of residents in this area.

In reality, the road was named after Wee Kay Poh, a Hokkien businessman, who amongst other things, was a managing partner of the Singapore Opium and Liquors Farm from 1907 to 1909. How apt given that it’s situated just a few roads away from the old Zouk at Jiak Kim Street.

Kay Poh Road is near Orchard Road and Robertson Quay, making it an excellent place for expats to stay or rent. Kasturina Lodge and The Aston are two condos located along it which can potentially offer good options to choose from.

4. Opera Estate

Tucked away in the Siglap area is an enclave called Opera Estate, characterised by numerous landed homes (many of which are up for rent and sale) and hipster cafes offering over-priced gourmet coffee.

While the name of the estate doesn’t immediately pop out as something out of the ordinary, driving along the smaller streets lining it reveals a dramatic twist. That is because these streets are named after several notable western and Malay operas. Streets that were inspired by western operas include Carmen Street, Tosca Street, Aida Street, Dido Street, Figaro Street, Fidelio Street, Ernani Street – and one famous ballet (Swan Lake Ave). Those that were inspired by Malay operas, or bangsawan, include Jalan Bintang Tiga, Jalan Terang Bulan and Jalan Khairuddin.

5. Cheow Keng Road

Cheow Keng Road
Cheow Keng Road should make any national serviceman snigger.

National Servicemen will chuckle at the mere mention of this road name. Cheow Keng sounds similar to chow keng, a Hokkien term used to describe feigning an illness or injury to escape one’s duties. It is most frequently used in the army for that one particular bunkmate who, without fail, will have the flu/diarrhoea/some mysterious ailment right before a major field exercise.

The road is actually named after Wee Cheow Keng, a prominent leader amongst the Hainanese community and director of the Sze Hai Tong Bank (which became a subsidiary of OCBC) back when Singapore was still under British rule.

Today, the road continues to witness bustling human traffic because of its proximity to East Coast Road and Joo Chiat Road, a popular haunt for food-lovers and bar-hoppers. In turn, this has led to the market for condos around the area, such as The Modules, Studios@Tembeling and Tembeling Residence, to flourish.

Which funny road names did we miss out? Let us know in the comments section below.

If you found this article helpful, 99.co recommends 6 unique SG condos with gorgeously conserved buildings and 4 nostalgia-inducing en bloc exercises.

Grand Dunman Registration


Select an Option
Country Code and Mobile Number

About Adam R.

Looking to sell your property?

Whether your HDB apartment is reaching the end of its Minimum Occupation Period (MOP) or your condo has crossed its Seller Stamp Duty (SSD) window, it is always good to know how much you can potentially gain if you were to list and sell your property. Not only that, you’ll also need to know whether your gains would allow you to right-size to the dream home in the neighbourhood you and your family have been eyeing.

One easy way is to send us a request for a credible and trusted property consultant to reach out to you.

Alternatively, you can jump onto 99.co’s Property Value Tool to get an estimate for free.

If you’re looking for your dream home, be it as a first-time or seasoned homebuyer or seller – say, to upgrade or right-size – you will find it on Singapore’s fastest-growing property portal 99.co.

Meanwhile, if you have an interesting property-related story to share with us, drop us a message here — and we’ll review it and get back to you.

Join our social media communities!

Facebook | Instagram | TikTok | TelegramYouTube | Twitter

Reader Interactions


    • Ricky Tan

      There us one name at Tampines road.
      Its called Jalan Songsong. Dunno its still around.

      • Adam R.

        Hi Ricky,

        There was indeed at Jalan Song Song in Tampines, but it has sadly been removed.

        Thanks for the feedback though!

        Adam R.

        • Yvonne Lim

          My family and I lived there till early 1984!!!
          Borned and brought up there, great place

    • Aminah Rahmat

      Hi there

      Jalan Malu-Malu could be named after a plant “touch-me-not” or in Malay daun malu-malu so named because it would close up whenever it gets in contact like it is shy!!!

      • Adam R.

        Hi Aminah,

        Hadn’t thought of that! Thanks for the feedback.

        Adam R.

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Get the latest news in your inbox

  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.