The city-state of Singapore, is a small island country off of the Malay Peninsula. Founded by the British in 1819, Singapore has become a major cultural center in SE Asia. While the island may be small in size, it offers an experience unlike any other country. While Singapore may be small in size, there is a lot to see and experience for visitors of all ages!
From the moment you arrive at Changi Airport, you are surrounded by entertainment, shopping, and cultural flair unlike any in the world! Experience the history of Singapore with a visit to Chinatown, enjoy the local cuisine at one of the city’s many hawker centers, or take in the country’s modern design at Gardens by the Bay. Singapore has a little something to offer for everyone!
12 Top Things to Do and See in Singapore
Since it’s opening in YEAR, Changi Airport has been voted the World’s Best Airport more than thirty times! With four terminals filled with shopping, dining, and entertainment, Changi Airport is a destination in itself for visitors to Singapore.
Terminal 1’s unique features a cactus garden, a children’s playground, clinics and pharmacies, free rest areas, interactive art areas, and a kinetic rain art installation. Head to Terminal 2 to catch a city sightseeing hop-on hop-off bus to explore the major tourist attractions or check out the free Singapore Tour. No time to leave the airport? No problem, Terminal 2 also houses the enchanted garden and an entertainment deck!
Terminal 3 houses several unique features. The eco-friendly ‘green terminal’ is home to the first butterfly garden in an airport. The terminal also houses the world’s tallest slide. At 12 meters high, you’ll reach speed of up to 6 meters per second on your way down! Coming in 2017, Terminal 4 will feature unique designs and the latest innovations to enhance your travel experience!
Rent A Local House
If you’re going to be staying in town for a while, move out of the hotel for a house for rent in Singapore for a truly authentic experience. Hotels often come equipped with the basic amenities, but if you’re going to be in town for longer than a few days, the room can often begin to feel cramped. Renting a local house not only affords you more space, but can save you money, as the monthly rental fees are often cheaper than hotels and you can cook your own food! Short-term rentals are often equipped with everything you will need to live comfortably during your stay in Singapore!
The historic shop houses of Chinatown-Singapore, once filled with trading houses and opium dens, are now occupied by restaurants, hotels, and gift shops. The narrow streets embrace the history of Chinatown while still embracing the modern feel of Singapore. A unique feature of Chinatown is the placement of temples and mosques alongside Chinese temples. Some to check out on your visit are Sri Mariamman Temple, Jamae Mosque, and the Buddha Tooth Relic Temple. After sightseeing, head to Chinatown Food Street to enjoy some of the local cuisine. The best part? Chinatown offers free Wi-Fi so you can stay connected with you explore!
While the once famous racecourse and herded cattle may be a thing of the past, Little India still embraces the ethnic traditions that give the neighborhood its name. While exploring this vibrant district, be sure to visit Sri Veeramakaliamman Temple, one of the oldest Hindu temples in Singapore. If you’re into shopping, the Mustafa Centre is for you. Open 24 hours, the mall offers everything from electronics stores to goldsmith shops. When you need a break from shopping, find a restaurant and try some of the delicious food. Be sure to wash it down with some “pulled” milk tea.
When visiting Singapore, explore the city’s cuisine at one of the open-air food markets known as hawker centers! Created as a more sanitary option for street food, hawker centers have replaced street hawkers while embracing the street food culture of SE Asia. The largest of Singapore’s hawker centres, Chinatown Complex Food Centre is home to more than 250 food vendors offering local foods at competitive prices. The oldest and largest of Singapore’s hawker centres, Old Airport Road food Center is popular among locals for their variety of Singaporean dishes. If you’re searching for some good food during the late hours, head on over to Chomp chomp Food Centre. This place is popular for its late hours and vast array of satay (meat skewers).
Singapore Botanic Gardens and National Orchid Garden
The Singapore Botanic Gardens, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, is the only garden in the world open from 5 am to 12 am every day of the year. Visitors are free to explore many areas of the garden without an entry fee, including a tropical rainforest, the Ginger Garden, the Botany Centre, and Tanglin Gate. For a fee, visitors can visit the National Orchid Garden, home to more than 1,000 species and 2,000 hybrids of orchids. Music lovers can find free entertainment at the Shaw Foundation Symphony Stage on Symphony Lake.
MacRitchie Reservoir Park
The MacRitchie Reservoir, constructed in 1867, is the oldest park in Singapore. Nature lovers will enjoy the 11km nature trail loop located in the Central Catchment Nature Reserve. The tropical rainforest is home to monkeys, flying lemurs, and owls. The TreeTop walk is a must-do for visitors. A 250-meter suspension bridge spanning the two highest points within MacRitchie allows visitors to walk among the treetops!
Jurong Bird Park
Home to over 5,000 birds from 400 species, Asia’s largest park is a must-see for bird lovers of all kinds! Guests to the park can explore the Waterfall Aviary, the Penguin Coast, Flamingo Lake, and Pelican Cove. Visitors can watch the birds perform in shows or dine with them in one of the park’s restaurants. Visit the Breeding & Research Centre for a glimpse at the park’s youngest inhabitants, or feed the birds at one of the exhibits.
Whether you’re looking to escape the afternoon rains or you simply want to do some shopping, Orchard Road is for you. Spanning two MRT stations, Orchard Road is host to the best shopping in Singapore. Featuring iconic brands such as Hermes, Sephora, and Gucci alongside local brands like Biro, and MAX. Tan, Orchard Road will satisfy even the most discerning shopper.
Just a short cable car ride away from Singapore is Sentosa Island. This island houses a plethora of resorts, theme parks, aquariums, and a beach. Visitors can take in a panoramic view of the island’s offerings from the Tiger Sky tower, enjoy a skydiving experience at iFly Singapore, and learn about the island’s habitat at Sentosa Nature Discovery. This beautiful island is a popular destination for locals and guests. With a vast array of entertainment and relaxation options, it is the perfect addition to any visit.
Pulau Ubin Island
For visitors seeking an authentic Singapore experience, Pulau Ubin Island is a must see. Located off the northeast corner of mainland Singapore, the island features gravel roads, lush forests, and abundant wildlife. With less than a hundred villagers, the island may be the last real village in Singapore. The island’s main feature is the Chek Jawa Wetlands, however the island also plays host to a vibrant ecosystem of flora and fauna.
Gardens by the Bay
The most iconic place in Singapore, Gardens by the Bay is home to world famous Supertree Grove. Located in Bay South Garden, the tree-like structures serve as vertical gardens filled with environmental technology that mimics the function of trees. Spend the afternoon exploring the gardens of East Bay Garden and the various synthetic climates located at Bay South Garden. Then enjoy a view of the Singapore Skyline at sunset before enjoying the light show by the Supertrees after dark.
Whether you’re a nature enthusiast, an avid shopper, or a city lover, Singapore has something for you! With the convenient public transportation system, including the MRT and bus system, all of the city’s major tourist attractions are easily accessible. If you’re not into public transit, the city’s cabs will get you where you need to go quickly and affordably.
Grab your passport, book your ticket, and head to Singapore for the experience of a lifetime!