What are the best attractions in Singapore?
Singapore might be small, but what this island-state lacks in size it certainly makes up with a whole lotta character. Not to mention some of the best attractions in Asia. Situated at the tip of the Malaysian Peninsula, Singapore boasts with diverse cultures, colourful architecture, skyscraper-studded skylines, culinary feasts and plenty do to and see. Whether you are in Singapore for a lengthy stopover or plan to visit the city for a couple of days, there are more than enough options to keep you busy and awestruck.
So, what are the best attractions in Singapore? We highlight ten amazing things which simply must be on your to-do list when visiting Singapore below.
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The best attractions in Singapore
Gardens by the Bay
Gardens by the Bay was one of my favourite spots to explore in Singapore. In fact, I loved it so much that I actually visited it twice on my trip. A visit here, will quickly show why GBTB is one of the best attractions in Singapore. The gardens are a key part in Singapore’s “City in a Garden” vision and moreover, stand testament to Singapore’s dedication to being one of the greenest cities in the world. And let’s face it, a trip to Singapore would simply not be complete without checking out this horticultural wonderland.
The grounds span over an impressive 101 hectares of land and is home to almost 400,000 plants. Here you will find the world’s largest Green house (Flower Dome) together with the world’s largest indoor waterfall (Cloud Forest). GBTB is also home to the awe-inspiring Supertrees – towering vertical gardens. Added to that, the 22-metre high OCBC Skyway allows you to get an amazing bird’s-eye view of the cityscape and the gardens.
Satay by the Bay, one of Singapore’s most famous hawker stands, is also on the grounds. It offers a welcome reprieve after all that exploring and is the perfect place to sample some ‘oh-so-delish’ satay.
Don’t leave Gardens by the Bay without:
- Wandering through the towering Supertrees at the Supertree Grove.
- Taking in the amazing view on top of OCBC Skyway. (If you are an avid travel photographer, I would highly recommend that you go sunset. It’s truly magic!)
- Enjoying one of the best light and sound shows in the world; the Garden Rhapsody. (Free of charge. Daily 7:45pm and 8:45pm).
- Visiting the Flower Dome and the Cloud Forest.
- Learning about reducing your footprint on the environment.
Outdoor gardens: Free
Cloud Forest & Flower Dome: SG$28
OCBC Skyway: SG$8
9:00am – 9:00pm
Singapore’s national icon and one of the best attractions to see in the Lion City is without a doubt the Merlion. This iconic ‘half lion, half fish’ symbolises Singapore’s modest beginnings as a fishing village. The Merlion statue is 8.6 metres tall and weighs a whopping 70 tons. Today, however the water spouting Merlion is more well-known for the crowds it draws. So, don’t be surprised if there are dozens of people and tour groups on your visit. Luckily, the crowds tend to move on quite quickly, especially after they’ve snapped up their selfies.
Don’t leave Merlion Park without:
- Taking a selfie with the Merlion.
- Taking in the breathtaking views of the marina, featuring the Marina Bay Sands Hotel and the flower-shaped Art Science Museum.
- Crossing the various bridges to get a gorgeous view of Singapore’s skyline.
- Renting a mini Segway mobile to easily whizz from one tourist spot to the next.
The Marina Bay Sands Skypark
If you’re looking for the best panoramic views of Singapore’s skyline, the Marina Bay Sands is the spot to be. The hotel has one of the most iconic infinity pools in the world, but with rooms starting at a whopping US$500 a night, it might not be the most budget friendly option for all. Luckily, there is the Skypark – an amazing observation deck perched 57 floors above the ground. From here, you can soak up the gorgeous cityscape, marvel at the city’s best attractions and enjoy one helluva sunset! Not only is the Skypark one of the most amazing attractions in Singapore, it’s also surprisingly affordably. (In case, you’ve started poking around or perhaps even heard that Singapore is expensive…you’ve heard right! Singapore is indeed super expensive! But, that should not stop you from visiting. Check out these handy tips that will help you save money in the city.)
Don’t forget to also watch the Spectra of Light and Water Show (8:00pm and 9:30pm) and the Garden Rhapsody at GBTB (7:45pm and 8:45pm) from the Skypark daily.
Get around the best attractions easily whilst exploring Singapore at your own pace. Get your hassle-free Hop On Hop Off Bus tickets here.
Looking for the best place to grab some chilli crab, chicken rice or even some Chinese trinkets? Then, Chinatown is most definitely your answer. Nestled among colourful buildings, lined with red Chinese lanterns you’ll find everything from tea sets, souvenirs to cool street art in hidden alleys. A stop in Chinatown would also not be complete without having your name written in calligraphy, checking out the Buddha Tooth Relic Temple and grabbing some chicken rice at Singapore’s famous Michelin Start Hawker Stand, Mr Chang.
For the history buffs, don’t forget to pop in at the Chinatown Heritage Centre for great insights on Chinese civilisation in Singapore. There’s also a great little walking tour which I highly recommend if you have a few hours to spare. The tour takes about two hours and a local expert guide will show you all the best sights around the area.
Ann Siang Hill
If you want to experience Singapore’s lively night scene, Ann Siang Hill is the place to be. The atmospheric streets are lined with colourful bars and pubs, hipster hangouts and some trendy restaurants. It’s also a great place to grab a drink after exploring Chinatown and the Buddha Tooth Relic Temple.
One of my favourite hangouts here was the Oxwell & Co. It has the most beautiful little rooftop garden offering amazing views of the lower lying Chinatown. Not to mention, a fab choice of craft beers, signature Gin cocktails and amazing takes on British classics, such as fish and chips.
Little India is home to colourful and chaotic streets accompanied by Bollywood music and the smells of spices. The area offers tons of atmosphere and is a great place to shop for souvenirs in the city. Whether you prefer exploring on your own, or joining a walking tour, Little India will not disappoint. The vibrant streets are lined with rustic conserved shop houses selling anything from spices, incense, clothes and everything in-between. While here, you’ll also get a chance to admire some beautiful flower garlands and maybe even pop in at a fortune-teller to find out your destiny.
Don’t leave Little India without:
- Taking a selfie at the most colourful house in Singapore; House of Tan Teng Niah.
- Visiting the historical Hindu temple; Sri Veeramakaliamman Temple.
- Shopping for saris and trinkets at Tekka Centre or bargaining for electronics at Mustafa Centre.
- Grabbing some teh tarik (pulled tea) and chocolate and banana roti prata (pancake).
Kampong Glam, also known as the Arab Quarter was one of my favourite areas to explore in Singapore. The area is home to the impressive Sultan Mosque and boasts with an eclectic mix of Islāmic stores, restaurants, hipster bars and young designer boutiques. Find anything from incense to silk fabrics, as well as cool clothing stores here.
If you are visiting here, don’t forget to check out Haji Lane – one of the best attractions in Singapore. Here you’ll find colourful streets lined with amazing street art, cute cafe’s and hipster hangouts.
Don’t leave Kampong Glam without:
- Visiting the Sultan Mosque.
- Grabbing some satay and chilling at the bohemian styled, BluJaz Cafe.
- Strolling through Haji Lane and snapping up pics of all the cool street art.
Stepping into Katong is like stepping into yesteryear. Once home to coconut plantations, Katong is today better known as an Instagram hotspot. And for good reason. Here, tucked away in suburbia, you’ll find the colourful two-storey Peranaken houses. With their ornate facades, detailed motifs and ceramic tiles, you’ll have no trouble getting your Instagram on.
These soft pastel coloured houses have long been one of the best attractions in Singapore and you certainly won’t regret taking the lengthy bus ride to get here.
Don’t leave Katong without:
- Taking a selfie at the pretty pastel coloured Peranaken houses on Joo Chiat Road.
- Grabbing the best laksa in town at 328 Katong Laksa.
- Enjoying some botanical gelato at Birds of Paradise.
Foodies! Get an in-depth look at Peranaken history, culture and cuisine with this exclusive Katong Food Tour.
If you’re looking for a unique (yet relaxing) way to explore Singapore’s Bays, I highly recommend taking a River Cruise. One of the best places to hop on a bumboat is at Clarke Quay – a pretty man-made bay lined with colourful shophouses, restaurants and bars. Clarke Quay does get quite busy after working hours. So, if you want to avoid the crowds, rather come in the afternoon. Do however keep in mind that Singapore’s heat is relentless, so unless you are used to high humidity, it’s best to come in the early morning or late afternoon.
The river cruise is a great way to enjoy the sights along the banks whilst leisurely making your way through Clarke Quay, Boat Quay and Robertson’s Quay. Spot iconic sights such as Raffles Landing Site, The Merlion, The Esplanade, Marina Bay Sands Park, The Fullerton Hotel and so much more.
Don’t leave the Quays without:
- Taking a 40-minute river cruise, passing some of the best riverside highlights in Singapore.
- Checking out the very colourful and historic, Old Hill Street Police Station. Although it houses the Ministry of Communications and Information today, this former police station is one of the most colourful police stations you’ll ever see!
- Enjoying a meal at one of the eateries which line the river.
Singapore Botanic Gardens
Singapore’s Botanic Gardens attracts more than 4 million visitors every year. In addition, it’s also the most visited botanic gardens in the world. Which is why, a visit to the Lion City would simply not be complete without checking out this UNESCO World Heritage Site. The grounds are home to wide open spaces, lakes and amazing fauna making it well worth a visit. Whether, you’d like to stroll around the grounds, visit the Orchard Garden or have a picnic, the Botanic Gardens will not disappoint. Depending on your time, I suggest allowing at least 2-3 hours to explore the gardens.
Don’t leave the Botanic Gardens without:
- Seeing the world’s largest permanent display of orchards at the Orchard Garden.
- Visiting the Learning Forest where efforts are being made to safeguard a number of critically endangered plant species.
- Heading to the Fragrant Garden (in the early evening) to enjoy the fragrance of the plants.
Entrance to the gardens are free, but there is a SG$5 charge if you’d like to visit the Orchard Garden. Which by the way is totally worth it.
5am – 12pm daily.
Have we missed any of your favourite Singapore attractions? If you have any suggestions to add to our list of best attractions in Singapore, we’d love to know. So, please feel free to drop us a message in the comments below. Don’t forget to subscribe to our blog to get all the good stuff delivered straight to your inbox. To see what we are up to more regularly, don’t forget to follow us on Instagram and Facebook, too.
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