Singapore is a destination that belies both its small geographical size and it’s location in South-East Asia. Singapore is a mass of ethic influences – Chinese, Malay, Indonesian and Indian. Once part of the British Empire, and now the British Commonwealth, this small island nation is found at the very tip of the Malay Peninsula. English is widely spoken along with other dialect’s. Singapore is often used as a ‘transit’ stop for travellers who often break the arduous journey from Europe to Australia and New Zealand. As Singapore is such a compact nation it is one of the easiest destinations to visit “fully” on a short trip. Within 24 hours you could quite literally see the whole world on the streets.
Guest post by Keith Evans
WHAT’S THE BEST TIME TO VISIT SINGAPORE?
Singapore does not have a Season, as such. You will find Singapore weather hot and humid whatever time of year. Nonetheless, some months may be marginally cooler than others, but in general, they are all pretty humid – around 30 C in daytime. The best time to visit Singapore may be during what is called the ‘Northeast monsoon’ that runs from November to early March when the temperatures cool a little in comparison to the rest of the year.
WHAT’S GOOD TO KNOW ABOUT SINGAPORE?
Singapore is a city-state country and is one of the world’s most prosperous countries. Singapore is a modern city of the 21st Century that embraces economic progress against the old traditions. Although most of the old Singapore has been reconstructed, many significant landmarks within the ‘Colonial district’ have been preserved. Singapore is an excellent place where you can take pleasure with your food and shopping with lively hawker centres and 24-hour coffee shops offering cheap food from all over Asia. Singapore offers shopping meccas like Orchard Road and Suntec City. There is continuous development around Sentosa and Marina Bay as part of Singapore’s new direction towards Fun and Entertainment.
ONE DAY IN SINGAPORE ITINERARY:
Top things to do in Singapore
Visit Merlion statue on Sentosa island
Start your day by catching the cable car to Sentosa Island. Sentosa is home to several lush hotels, Universal Studios and the infamous ‘Merlion’ statue – the symbol of Singapore. Wherever possible aim to get to the Merlion early to avoid the crowds or if really organised, purchase pre-advanced tickets before you arrive. Take a ride to the Mouth of the Merlion for stunning views across the Strait of Singapore.
Go shopping and grab a lunch at suntec city
Suntec City is located near the Central Business District and is a vast complex offering a shopping mall, an exhibition centre and office tower blocks. You know when you’re at the right place as the venue boasts the ‘Worlds Largest Fountain of Wealth‘ . There are plenty of shopping options here, whether you’re after clothes, souvenirs, books or electrical goods you’ll find everything you need within this mall. The complex is divided into Four zones to help shoppers navigate with ease; these zones are based on the Feng Shui design. The Fountain Terrace is where the majority of restaurants are found, and the Entertainment Centre, is located in the Fourth zone devoted to a whole host of pleasure and leisure pursuits.
Explore colonial grandeur
The Colonial District forms the very heart of Singapore with elegant Georgian and Victorian buildings lining the banks of the Singapore River. The Colonial District is one of the best areas in Singapore for a self-walking tour. The area is brimming with impressive buildings and famous landmarks such as Old Parliament House, the Old Supreme Court and City Hall.
Cocktails and afternoon tea
‘The jewel in the crown’ of the Colonial District is the infamous Raffles Hotel, developed from a beachfront bungalow built in the 1880s into a model of heritage luxury. The whole building is elegant. Explore a warren of courtyards and verandas on your way to the ‘Long Bar’ to the birthplace of the Singapore Sling Cocktail.
Located the other side of the Colonial District (if lunch at Suntec City wasn’t enough) allow room for Afternoon Tea at ‘The Courtyard’ at The Fullerton Hotel. Found in the atrium lobby of the hotel, this is where guests can enjoy a leisurely late afternoon while sitting on plush sofas eating a delectable selection of scones, finger sandwiches, cheeses, breads, sliced meats etc. with tasty desserts to suit: Chocolate Eclair, Salted Caramel Chocolate Tart, Flavoured Macaroon, English Fruit Cake etc.
Marina bay area
Spend the remaining hours exploring the Marina Bay area that is home to several iconic landmarks. Here you will discover the most iconic of all ‘the Marina Bay Sands hotel’ that looks like a ship placed on top of three towers. It is the ultimate of luxury hotel-ing boasting elegant rooms, an infinity pool and bar/restaurant at the top.
After wandering the hotels’ lobby navigate the pathways to the ‘Gardens by the Bay’ . You can’t miss the massive Super-trees here. These tree-shaped gardens are between nine and sixteen stories tall. Walk on the suspended walkway between two Super-trees to capture a bird’s eye view of the gardens. In the evening, catch the Sky Show: a ballet of lights and sounds at the Garden Rhapsody amidst the Super-trees.
Finally Boat Quay and Clarke Quay
After all the wandering around, make some time to finish off your day in the area of Boat Quay and Clarke Quay. This section along the Singapore River is busy with restaurants, coffee shops and eateries that start springing to life towards the late evening and night. Boat Quay is cheaper on the wallet than Clarke Quay. It’s a place for soaking up the atmosphere by the river and also for photographs. Time permitting, take a boat trip that lasts approximately 45 minutes: Best done at night when all the lights of the Quays, Downtown, The Colonial District and Marina Bay boastfully display their night grandeur.
Some extra tips for visiting Singapore?
Singapore is easy-going for dress standards in most cases. Nonetheless, if you’re going somewhere decent such as the Raffles Hotel or Afternoon Tea at the Fullerton Hotel, dress appropriately. Women should show some sort of modesty in public. Also remember to take a thin sweater or cardigan while going to the restaurants and the malls as most of them are kept air-conditioned and can be quite cold.
Pay attention to their rules. Singapore has some ‘odd’ rules but abide by them and you’ll be fine. No chewing gum, no jaywalking, No smoking in public, no littering.
Use the MRT underground as much as possible. Its is clean, frequent, cheap and punctual.
Guest post by Keith Evans
In case you have more than just One Day in Singapore check out Tripadvisor for detailed list of all the sights and activities in Singapore
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