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Singapore Travel Guide | What to See Eat and Do

Singapore Travel Guide | What to See Eat and Do
Reading Time: 9 minutes

Updated: 3/15/2024 | Singapore Travel Guide

Singapore City skyline view from ParkRoyal Collection Pickering Singapore

About Singapore

Singapore is a small but very developed country located just south of Malaysia in Asia.

Singapore is extremely safe. There are CCTV cameras everywhere that are often monitored by authorities. There are also very harsh punishments for crimes. 

How to Get to Singapore

Most visitors traveling to Singapore will fly through Changi Airport (Airport Code: SIN).

From the airport, it’s very easy to get to Singapore’s city center. You can opt for a taxi, Grab (Uber equivalent), or City Shuttle. We took a Grab into town and it cost us $20-22 USD. The City Shuttle will cost you $10 per person one way ($7 for children).

The Jewel Changi is no ordinary airport. The airport is also a nature-themed shopping, dining, and entertainment destination designed by architect Moshe Safdie. The project’s highlights include the Rain Vortex, a seven-story-tall indoor waterfall; an indoor forest with suspended walkways; and nearly 300 stores.

This is very exciting for travelers on layovers becuase there is so much to do in an airport! It’s so popular that 20 airlines will let you check in a full 24 hours in advance just to maximize your time inside.

By Bus (from Malaysia) – If you are traveling to Singapore from Malaysia you can get a bus between the two countries. Many companies run regular buses between the two countries for as little as $16 per person. The border crossing is very easy if you have the right documents. 

Changi Airport the Jewel Water Fountain Singapore

The Jewel at Changi Airport

How to Get Around Singapore

Singapore is surprisingly very walkable!

We were able to walk to most destinations on foot within an hour or less. Just make sure to bring an umbrella, hat, sunblock, and water as it is mostly hot and sunny year-round.

You can also use Singapore’s MRT (Mass Rapid Transit) system to get around via train. 

And lastly, you can always hail a taxi or Uber to get to your destination. We found that Uber was a pretty affordable and reliable way to get around the city. 

Where to Stay in Singapore

There are plenty of lodging options in Singapore. You can opt for a full-service hotel to a convenient AirBnB. 

We highly recommend the following hotels in Singapore:

  • PARKROYAL COLLECTION Pickering – This is one of the MOST impressive hotels we’ve ever stayed in. The 
  • Duxton Reserve Singapore Collection
  • Westin Singapore 
  • Marina Bay Sands
pool cabana parkroyal collection pickering hotel singapore

Colorful gazebos at the PARKROYAL Collection Hotel in Pickering

ParkRoyal Collection Pickering window bathtub Singapore

PARKROYAL Collection Pickering Hotel in Pickering

What to Do and See in Singapore

#1 Gardens by the Bay

Supertree Grove Gardens by the Bay Singapore

Supretree Grove in the Gardens by the Bay

The Gardens by the Bay is a nature park spanning 101 hectares in the Central Region of Singapore, adjacent to the Marina Reservoir.

The park is made up of three waterfront gardens: Bay South Garden, Bay East Garden, and Bay Central Garden.

The attractions that you should see here include the following:

  • Flower Dome
  • Cloud Forest
  • Floral Fantasy
  • OCBC Skyway
  • Supertree Observatory

Singapore residents get a special rate on all attractions.

#2 Clarke Quay

In the 1800s, this quay, or wharf, near Fort Canning Park, was one of the centers of trade. Barges would transport goods upstream for storage in the warehouses. Today, the warehouses have been restored and painted in rainbow hues, making this a great photo spot.

Clarke Quay has also become one of Singapore’s food, drink, and entertainment hubs. The whole area has been converted into an open-air pedestrian precinct filled with businesses and attractions.

#3 Singapore Art Museum

SAM specializes in contemporary art from Singapore and Southeast Asia.

When it opened in 1996 in a restored 19th-century Catholic boys school, it was the first art museum in the country. It’s a must-see for anyone interested in works by contemporary Asian artists.

The collection covers multiple mediums including painting, photography, video, and sculpture.

#4 Fort Canning Park

Fort Canning Tree Tunnel Singapore

Tree Tunnel in Fort Canning Park

Fort Canning Hill, formerly known as Government Hill, Singapore Hill, and Bukit Larangan is a verdant landscape for visitors to enjoy. On the grounds are gateways and landmarks that are great for relaxing. 

Attractions that you’ll want to see at Fort Canning Hill include:

  • Tree Tunnel – It’s best to get here early in the AM so that you don’t have to wait in line to take a photo.
  • Sang Nila Utama Garden – I love this garden. It has a pathway with repeating gateways that remind me of the gateway at Bali’s Temple Of Penataran Agung Lempuyang.
  • Spice Garden – Here you can learn about all the spices and herbs that grow in Singapore.
  • Fort Canning Centre – This is a central meeting location in the park.
  • Keramat Gazebo – A place to seek refuge from the hot Singaporean sun.
Fort Canning Park Sang Nila Utama Garden

Sang Nila Utama Garden in Fort Canning Park

#5 Buddha Tooth Relic Museum

Buddha Tooth Relic Temple Singapore

The Buddha Tooth Relic Temple and Museum is a Buddhist temple and museum complex located in the Chinatown district of Singapore.

It is claimed that the relic of Buddha from which it gained its name was found in a collapsed stupa (dirt burial ground). The size of the tooth, measuring 7.5 cm, is also far too long for a human tooth.

The relic can be viewed by the public at the 4th floor of the temple accessible by elevator or stairs.

buddha tooth relic temple singapore

Buddha Tooth Relic Museum

#6 Merlion Park

singapore merlion statue bridge

Merlion Park

#7 Kampong Glam & The Arab District

Yip Yew Chong baskets Street Art in Kampong Glam

Baskets in Kampong Glam by Yip Yew Chong

This historic district has religious importance. Singapore’s Muslim quarter dates back to the 1800s, but the area has grown and changed, blending the religious and historical with a modern take on the city-state.

Kampong Glam or Kampong Gelam is known as the heritage Arab/Muslim quarter in Singapore and one of the best places to find street art in Singapore.

It’s home to the beautiful gold-domed Sultan Mosque and has quite an unusual mishmash of cloth merchants, Middle Eastern restaurants, and hipster shops all rolled into one heritage district, it’s also one of the few places in Singapore where you can find more graffiti styles of street art instead of just murals.

#8 National Gallery Singapore

national gallery singapore

#9 Singapore Zoo

Alex and Larry at the Singapore Zoo 2017

Hanging with the monkeys at Singapore Zoo

The Singapore Zoo is one of the coolest exhibits I’ve been to. Some of the animals can traverse throughout the zoo, jumping from exhibit to exhibit.

#10 Sultan Mosque

Singapore sultan mosque gold dome building

This gold-domed Sultan Mosque is a place of worship but also a popular landmark for visitors. It’s a designated national monument.

The best photo spots for this monument are on Pinang Street, Muscat Street gateway, and down Bussorah Street.

Golden domed Sultan Mosque Singapore American Hat Makers

Sultan Mosque

Sultan Mosque Singapore Bussorah Street

What I’m Wearing

Ona by Yoon Ruffle Crop Top (similar here and here) | Zesica Pleated Asymmetrical skirt (similar styles here) | Oka-B Loren Sandals | American Hat Makers Barcelona Straw Hat

#11 Helix Bridge + ArtScience Museum + Marina Bay Sands

Helix Bridge Marina Bay Sands hotel and casino Singapore

Helix Bridge and the Marina Bay Sands Hotel

The Helix Bridge (previously known as the Double Helix Bridge) is a pedestrian bridge linking Marina Center with Marina South in the Marina Bay area in Singapore. It was officially opened on 24 April 2010.

It’s a great destination for photographers! You can shoot the Helix Bridge, ArtScience Museum, and Marina Bay Sands from various angles.

ArtScience Museum Singapore Ona by Yoon American Hat Makers Zesica pleated skirt Oka-b sandals

ArtScience Museum in Singapore

#12 Singapore Botanic Gardens

singapore orchid garden botanic gardens

Come to the Singapore Botanic Gardens to check out the gorgeous national orchid gardens.

#13  Old Hill Street Police Station

Colorful rainbow Old Hill Street Police Station Singapore

Old Hill Street Police Station

The Old Hill Street Police Station is a historic building and former police station of the Singapore Police Force. It’s located on Hill Street within the Downtown Core in the Central Area of Singapore.

It’s next to Fort Canning and is a popular destination for photographers.

#14 Bugis Street

Bugis street colorful spiral staircases Singapore

Colorful spiral staircases on Bugis Street

Bugis Street Market is one of the biggest and cheapest places to go shopping in Singapore.

Just half a century ago, this area was known for being a center of seedy nightlife and prostitution mainly to entertain visiting military men.

Now, Bugis is a lively hub of shopping, fine dining, and trendy cafés and bars that stay open long into the night.

Street art on Bugis Street Singapore

What to Eat in Singapore

Singapore is known for its hawker stand food culture. Here you can find budget food options that are often huge portions!

Prices will range anywhere between $5-$12 USD per dish.

They often take cash only and are open until late night. There are 117 hawker stations in Singapore, but not all of them need to be visited. 

Below are some of the hawker stands we highly recommend:

  • Old Airport Road Food Centre
  • People’s Park
  • Maxwell Centre
  • Tekka Centre
  • Tiong Bahru
  • Hong Lim Market and Food Centre
  • Lau Pa Sat

Here are our favorite sit-down restaurants in Singapore.

  • 328 Katong Laksa – Considered the best Laksa in the city! You have to try Laksa noodle soup if you’re ever in Singapore. It’s a creamy spicy rice noodle soup that is topped with onions, veggies, fish cakes, and shrimp. 
  • Legendary Bak Kuh Teh – If you’re not keen on waiting 40+ minutes for Song Fa’s Bak Kuh Teh, consider heading over to Legendary Bak Kuh Teh. This simple bone soup is eaten with rice or alone. They also offer free broth refills, which is what we’re definitely about. 
  • Lime Restaurant – I had one of the top 10 cheeseburgers in my life at the ParkRoyal Collection in Pickering. The meat is ground daily in-house and served on a super soft brioche bun. While Lime is known for its extravagant buffets, they also have an a la carte menu with plenty to choose from.
delicious cheeseburger from ParkRoyal Collection Pickering Singapore

Delicious cheeseburger from Lime at ParkRoyal Collection at Pickering in Singapore

Singapore Hawker Stand Chan Hainanese Chicken

Chan Hainanese Chicken Hawker Stand

Where to Drink in Singapore

Singapore is filled with drinking destinations. Drinking here will cost you a pretty penny. A beer can be anywhere from $10-16 SGD. And cocktails will run you about $22-$26 SGD.

Here are our picks for the best spots to drink in Singapore:

  • 28 Hongkong Club
  • Atlas
  • Cat Bite Club
  • CHIJMES – This repurposed abbey was turned into a commercial center filled with shops, restaurants, and bars. It’s a great spot for groups because there are so many choices. 
  • Employees Only
  • Here Kitty Kitty Speakeasy
  • Jigger and Pony
  • Level 33
  • Live Twice
  • Long Bar
  • Mr Stork
  • Native
  • No Sleep Club
  • Nutmeg and Clove
  • Origin Bar
  • Sago House & Low Tide – Cool speakeasy-style bar serving inventive cocktails with a weekly rotating menu. Reservations are required.
  • Smoke & Mirrors
  • Stay Gold Flamingo
  • The Other Room
  • Tippling Club

Singapore archway

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