25 things to do in Singapore
Singapore is an amazingly developed city-nation. Even though it’s a new country, it doesn’t just have skyscrapers and modern buildings but also a lot of temples and traditional buildings. In Singapore there are different cultures living together in the same city. Although it’s a very small country, it has a wide variety of activities. This post is a list of 25 things you can do in Singapore.
1. Admire the Marina Bay Sands
Marina Bay Sands is a hotel known worldwide for its infinity rooftop pool. In our opinion, this is one of Singapore’s icons. The hotel consists of three towers with 55 floors and a horizontal platform measuring over 300 meters that connects the towers. Marina Bay Sands is an architectural jewel that leaves everybody speechless. Even if you don’t like architecture that much, you have to take a moment to admire this modern construction.
2. Ascend to the Marina Bay Sands viewpoint
As mentioned earlier, on top of the towers of Marina Bay Sands there is a platform where you can find the infinity pool and a viewpoint with 360 degrees views of Singapore. The access to the viewpoint is located in the tower number 3 and an elevator takes you to the 57th floor. The entrance fee is 23SGD (about €15) and the opening hours are from 9:30am to 10:00pm Monday to Thursday and until 11:00pm on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays. Tickets can be purchased on Marina Bay Sands website.
3. Go for a walk in the Marina Bay shopping center
The Shoppes is a shopping centre located in front of the Marina Bay Sands Hotel. The Shoppes is a luxury shopping centre with very exclusive shops. That’s why we didn’t say to go shopping in the mall but to go for a walk. The architecture of this building is very appealing and the design is impressive. On the ground floor you can find an artificial river where you can rent a small boat to go for a walk. In the days we spent in Singapore, The Shoppes was often the place where we hid from the scorching heat.
4. See thousands of water lilies
Behind the shopping centre The Shoppes, you can find the Art Science Museum. We didn’t enter because we didn’t have enough time, but we sat down to rest 5 minutes next to it. There were lots of purple water lilies. In Singapore there are flowers and plants everywhere and many times they pass unnoticed. We thought this was an excellent place to rest and admire the purple flowers.
5. Ride one of the highest Ferris wheels in the world
Singapore Flyer is the second highest waterwheel in the world. It stands 165 meters high and was the highest waterwheel in the world until 2014. Singapore Flyer has 28 cabins from where you can enjoy the best views of the city. If you go on a clear day, from the top of the Ferris wheel you can see three countries: Singapore, Malaysia and Indonesia. Obviously it’s not high enough to see the whole countries, but you can spot small portions of each of these. The entrance fee is 33SGD ( about €21) and the opening hours are from 8:30am to 10:30pm. Tickets can be purchased at the ticket office of the site and also on the web.
6. Cross the Helix Bridge
Helix Bridge is a spiral bridge connecting Marina Center with Marina South. If you want to go to the Singapore Flyer you can access it via the Helix Bridge from Marina Bay. This bridge is one of the newest in Singapore and it was opened in 2010. Helix Bridge can be seen during the day, to appreciate better its structure or at night when it is full of light and color.
7. See more than 30,000 plants in the Flower Dome
Flower Dome and Cloud Forest are two conservatories located in Gardens by the Bay. The Flower Dome is listed as the world’s largest glass greenhouse. Below the glass dome you will find more than 30,000 plants of 150 different species. This conservatory is home to flowers and plants from all 5 continents. The colour blast is incredible and makes this place one of the must-see places in Singapore. The ticket costs 20SGD (€13) but can also be purchased combined with the Cloud Forest ticket for 28SGD (€18). You can buy the ticket at the box office or online. We visited both conservatories, but in our opinion the Flower Dome is the most interesting. The two conservatories are open from 9:00am to 9:00pm. We recommend you to go early in the morning and to reserve enough time for the visits because they are so incredible that you won’t want to leave.
8. Climb the Supertrees
Gardens by the Bay is a must-see in Singapore. In these gardens you can find, in addition to the two conservatories mentioned above, several themed flower gardens and Supertrees. In Gardens by the Bay there are 18 supertrees that besides being very interesting to see, generate electricity and collect rainwater to water the gardens. Several of these trees are connected by a 22 meter high walkway called OCBC Skywalk. You can ascend to this walkway to see the gardens from above and the supertrees from a very close distance. Viewing the trees and walking in the gardens is completely free, but if you want to climb the Skywalk you have to buy a ticket that costs 8SGD (about €5). Tickets can be purchased at the ticket office or on the website. The Skywalk is open from 9:am to 9:00pm.
9. See the light show at Gardens by the Bay
Every afternoon, the Garden Rhapsody show fills Gardens by the Bay with light and music. Twice a day at 7:45pm and 8:45pm you can enjoy a unique show in which the super trees are the stars. You don’t need a ticket to attend the show, you can enjoy it for free. This is one of the things you can’t miss on your visit to Singapore. You’ll love it!
10. Discover three cultures in three neighbourhoods
Singapore is a city where people of many cultures and nationalities live together. Singapore’s best-known neighborhoods are Little India, Chinatown and Arab Quarter. It’s interesting to walk from one neighbourhood to another and discover the culture of each one. Each neighborhood looks like a different country. The architecture, the people, the food and the language are different in each one of them. We found it incredible being in India for a moment and after a 10 minute walk finding ourselves in China.
11. Visit Hindu temples
In Little India there are several Hindu temples and each one more beautiful than the previous one. We visited Sri Veeramakaliamman and arrived just at the time when there was a celebration. It is very interesting to see the rituals of other religions and being able to witness them even if you are not a follower. Other Hindu temples in Little India are: Sri Vadapathira Kaliamman and Sri Srinivasa. They are all amazing and the details both on the outside and inside are incredible.
12. Visiting Buddhist temples
Since Singapore is a multicultural city, besides the Hindu temples, there are also some Buddhist temples. We visited several of them, but the one we liked the most for its greatness and thousands of golden details was the Buddha Tooth Relic Temple. Another temple we liked was the Leong San Temple. You can also visit Sakya Muni Buddha Gaya Temple, Lian Shan Shuang Lin Monastery and Wat Ananda Metyarama. It doesn’t matter which of them you decide to visit because any one of them will leave you speechless.
13. Search for Buddha's tooth
In Chinatown, there’s a temple where they say they keep one of Buddha’s teeth. Buddha Tooth Relic Temple is one of the most beautiful Buddhist temples in Singapore and also holds this relic that is so important to Buddhism. On the 4th floor of the temple, beneath a golden stupa, the Buddha’s tooth is kept. Only monks are allowed in the room, but twice a day they open the door for you to take a look inside. Don’t take pictures, because it’s forbidden.
14. See the most colourful house in Singapore
You’ve probably seen this building on social media more than once. This house is one of the best known buildings in Little India. We thought it would be a museum or some kind of public building, but from what we’ve heard it’s a private house. It’s worth a visit anyway, just to see it and take a couple of pictures. This is without a doubt the most colorful house in Singapore and also one of the most famous because of Instagram.
15. Buy souvenirs in Chinatown
Chinatown in one of Singapore’s most beautiful neighbourhoods. In this neighborhood you will find temples, lots of shops, restaurants serving Chinese food of all kinds and also many souvenir stands and shops. If you want to buy a souvenir from Singapore or a gift for your friends and family, Chinatown is definitely the best place to do it. In the street stalls you will find both typical Chinese decorative objects, as well as typical souvenirs with the main monuments of Singapore. The best thing about buying souvenirs in Chinatown is that this is the cheapest place to find them.
16. Walk down a street full of graffiti
In the Arab Quarter, near the Masjid Sultan mosque, there is a street full of graffiti called Haji Lane. This street is quite narrow and crowded, but it’s worth going for a walk and seeing Singapore’s urban art. On Haji Lane there are also plenty of cafes where you can relax and enjoy a drink. At the end of the street, towards Arab St. there is a dining room with a window overlooking Haji Lane selling homemade lemon tea for $1. It is very refreshing, delicious and very cheap compared to Singapore’s normal prices. If you get to the end of the street, don’t forget to search for this place.
17. Let yourself be dazzled by the jewelry in Serangoon Road
Serangoon Road is one of Singapore’s main avenues and part of it goes through Little India. In this area of the avenue you will see many jewelry stores run by Indian families. The gleaming necklaces and earrings full of precious stones amaze everyone. If you’re looking for a gift of this kind, on Serangoon Road you have plenty of choices as there are lots of jewelry stores, one next to the other.
18. Feeling small among the skyscrapers of Downtown
Downtown, Singapore’s financial district, is full of skyscrapers. For us, it was quite impressive as we had never seen so many skyscrapers together. In Downtown there are about 80 skyscrapers and the tallest of them is 290m high. That’s why you’ll feel small walking among the skyscrapers of Downtown. The contrasts in the city of Singapore are breathtaking. Just next to Downtown you will find Chinatown with its old pagodas and colorful little houses. It’s also interesting to see that in its determination to become a garden city, Singapore has skyscrapers with plants and trees even on the rooftop.
19. Take a picture with the Merlion
We know this is a touristy thing, but getting your picture taken with the Merlion is one of the musts in Singapore. The Merlion is the symbol of the city and is an “animal” with lion head and fish body. To take the typical Singapore picture you have to open your mouth and pretend you are drinking the water that comes out of the mouth of the Merlion. In addition to this you have to bring or find a good photographer who knows how to capture the moment in a way that seems credible. It’s silly, but anyone who visits Singapore does it and laughter is guaranteed.
20. Tasting food from several countries
As a multicultural country, Singapore has a wide variety of food from different countries. You can try Chinese, Malay, Indian, Lebanese and much more. In Hawker Centres there is usually a lot of variety, but it’s also a good idea to go on a gastronomic route around Singapore’s neighborhoods.
21. Eating at a Hawker Center
If you want to taste the traditional food of Singapore, China, Malaysia, Indonesia and other countries, all in one place, there is nothing better than eating in a Hawker Centre. In these centres you will find a great variety of food at very good prices. We wrote a post about what Hawker Centres are and we invite you to read more about them.
22. Eat free Chinese soup
When you go to a Hawker Centre, if you order food from Chinese stalls, they will ask you if you want soup. Don’t say no because they won’t charge you and it’s delicious. The soups are a watery broth, but very tasty. They have leftover soup from cooking chicken and vegetables and they ask everybody if they want some. It’s not a big deal, because there is no chicken or veggies inside, but you will like it. Other than that, who gives you something for free nowadays?
23. Eating an ice cream sandwich
When we say ice cream sandwich we mean exactly a sandwich, with bread. This sandwich is nothing more than a piece of ice cream of the flavor you choose between two slices of bread. We found it quite odd but we tried it and we loved it. There are several places in Singapore where street vendors offer ice cream sandwiches. We found one on the Anderson Bridge, right in front of the luxurious Fullerton Hotel.
24. Walk on the Formula 1 track
Singapore’s Formula 1 circuit is one of the world’s best known. Singapore Grand Prix is held there every year. On a day-to-day basis, the circuit is a street where you can walk and admire the Gardens by the Bay from across the river. The Formula 1 circuit is located right next to the Singapore Flyer and you can also see it from above, from one of the Ferris wheel capsules. If you’re a Formula 1 lover you’ll surely go for a walk there and if not, you’ll see it from the Flyer anyway.
25. Get impressed by the luxury at Changi Airport
Singapore’s airport is without a doubt the most luxurious airport we’ve ever been to. Changi is considered the best airport in the world thanks to all the activities that can be done inside. In the interior it has gardens with plants and cactus, a cinema, a spa, a video game room and lots of shops and restaurants. In 2019, The Jewel, an extension of Changi Airport, was inaugurated. It is a multipurpose space that connects with the 4 terminals of the airport. Inside this modern building you can see the highest interior waterfall in the world and a lot of plants. When we visited Singapore, in 2018 it was not finished, but we will surely go back someday to see it.
There is a lot to do in Singapore if you have enough time. We only stayed three days in the city and we didn’t have time to see everything. In addition to the 25 things we’ve already mentioned, you can spend a day on Sentosa Island, see the Universal Studios, visit the Chinese Gardens, hike and much more. Whether you are going to spend just a few days in Singapore or you are going to spend more time there, this list of 25 things to do in Singapore is going to help you discover this country.
If you spend more days in Singapore, these are some more activities you can do in the city:
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