Singapore often sees most of its visitors passing through the fantastic Changi airport. It misses many people who don’t even consider stopping for a few days.
Also, if it’s just to stay local and get a view from an observation platform or ride on the Singapore Flyer, and take in a few things to see.
It is a fantastic city and one that every traveler ought to spend some time in at some stage of his or her travels.
In This Guide
10 Top Things to Do in Singapore
1. Marina Bay Waterfront
Marina Bay Waterfront Promenade stretches 3.5 kilometers by the side of the bay. As you stroll here, there are many things for families to experience by the Marina Center, the Bay Front, and Collyer Quay.
The entire area is a recreation area designed to be Eco friendly. If it gets too warm, you can stroll through the mist sprays that douse you in a fine cooling mist as you pass.
Singapore’s Marina Bay is packed with nature, while home to the most glamorous skyscrapers and unique architecture.
Many things here are free, so it makes it one of the best places to keep the budget in check. Some of the highlights include the Spectra Light and Water Show. The nightly show is full of fountains and lasers, accompanied by music.
Helix Bridge connects Marina Center and Marina South and the Bay Gardens. In addition, you have the Art Science Museum where you can explore any of the museum’s twenty-one galleries. If you have kids, then the Marina Bay Sands is a fantastic way to spend some time.
2. Gardens by the Bay
Once you visit Gardens by the Bay, you will come back time and time again to see the Super Tree Grove Light Show.
However, the 101-hectare gardens have more than this to offer. The concept is ‘City in a Garden,’ and it does this in a significant way. You have three sections comprising Bay South Garden, Bay East Garden, and Bay Central.
It blends nature with modern technology and is one of the best things to do in Singapore.
It is one of the top things to do in Singapore, as it is again free for visitors. You can marvel at the super trees, which are vertical gardens that are home to many plants.
You can see the gardens from above with the skywalk or the Garden Rhapsody that makes the botanic gardens unique. You can also get lost in the cloud forest, and see how it feels at the top of a mountain, before making your way down.
You also have the largest Greenhouse, not only in Southeast Asia but also in the world. The entire gardens are one of the top things to see in Singapore and have upward of 20 million visitors each year.
3. China Town
Chinatown is a mix of old and new in the city’s central region, much like you find in Hong Kong.
You will see plenty of Chinese heritage and culture, the old temples (tooth relic), and wet markets, among others. There are family-run teahouses and stores to get a real glimpse of the past
At the other end of the spectrum, you have boutique hotels, restaurants, and groovy bars, and more places to visit.
Besides the nightlife, you can visit the Buddha Tooth Relic Temple, which is one of the things to do in Singapore. The Tooth Relic Temple is four stories and home to more than 300 artifacts. The relic temple has on the fourth floor, a 2-meter golden stupa that houses the sacred relic.
4. Singapore Botanic Gardens
One of the best attractions in Singapore is the botanical gardens. Inside the Singapore Botanic Gardens, you will find the National Orchid Garden.
The Orchard Garden covers three hectares on the highest hill in the botanical gardens. All the landscaped slopes are filled with over 1,000 orchids and 2,000 hybrids. You will see four individual zones, which follow four seasons and have a distinct color theme for each.
It is straightforward to reach the Singapore Botanic Garden by taking a taxi, or a bus and the MRT along Cluny Road. Admittance is reasonable, although children under 12 can enter free.
Visiting the gardens can be among the most relaxing things to do
Singapore has to offer.
5. Singapore Zoo
The 28 hectares that make up the Singapore Zoo make up one of the top Singapore tourist attractions, and one of the best zoos you can visit in the world. You can see many kinds of animals and birds from many countries and can include crocs, hippos, zebra or lions and others.
Once inside, there are four distinct zones you can visit, and each offers a different experience. The Zoo itself is home to over 2,800 animals that comprise 300 mammal species, reptiles, and birds. The Zoo is a big complex with four options that you can choose:
Jurong Bird Park is full of more than 5,000 birds from over 400 different species and makes up one of the largest free-flying aviaries you can experience. Jurong Bird Park is the biggest bird park on the Asian continent. You can visit Flamingo Lake and see the colorful flamingos or Waterfall Aviary see the best and tallest artificial waterfall!
The River Safari takes you deep into one of the largest collections of freshwater fauna, and home to over 6,000 animals, some of which are threatened in their natural habitat.
Even better is the Night Safari, you can experience where you can see thousands of animals at night that is more akin to their natural habitat.
6. Sentosa Island
Sentosa Island isn’t like any other island. A day may not be long enough as there are more than enough things to please big kids and little kids. It is home to Universal Studios Singapore, and so much more.
You can get there by cable car, and even if you don’t wish to spend too long in Universal Studios, you have Resorts World Singapore, SEA Aquarium, among the top attractions. You may be tempted to skip Universal Studios Singapore and take a Zipline to Mega Adventure or climb up to Tiger Sky Tower.
7. Haw Par Villa
You may not know the owners, yet if you ever use Tiger Balm, you will know who the two brothers are. Haw Par Villa was designed to teach Chinese children the moral code through mythology.
Haw Par Villa hasn’t dated to well in some areas, yet it is worth a trip, kids in tow or not, to experience the nightmare-inducing dioramas.
If you do have children, then it may be too much in the Haw Par 10 Courts of Hell.
Sitting on one of the hills of Pasir Panjang, the park has stood since 1937. In the war, the Japanese used it as an observation point. It was following the ware when it was re-built, and even included some international corners thanks to Aw Cheng Chye who was a keen traveler.
In 1985, the Singapore Tourism Board took over control and set about revitalizing the area. Still, in a state of evolution, it does offer some unique, otherworldly experiences you may never see anywhere else.
Admission is free, and any visitor who has time should pay a visit and experience something very different.
8. Kampong Glam
Kampong Glam is colorful and is a blend of culture and history. It comes from the oldest urban quarter and was at the time a thriving port.
In 1822 it was known as Raffles Place thanks to Sir Stamford Raffles, and you can find many tributes to his presence aside from the newly refurbished Raffles Hotel.
Now, you have the Malay Heritage Center and more than a handful of places to try the local delicacies. It is also possible to find dishes from many other countries as well.
Shopaholics can take a stroll down Haji Lane, which is home to some decent stores with a selection of brand labels.
If you are in Singapore during Ramadan, you will see a very lively area of the city.
9. Mount Faber
One of the top places to visit in Singapore is Mount Faber. It is possible to take a cable car from there over to Sentosa so that you will gain some exceptional views of the area.
Dotted around are many vantage points with telescopes enabling you to zoom in to the far off distance.
Faber Park is covered in a secondary rain forest, and most of this serves more than making the park beautiful to the eye. It forms a stable base for the ground in the area.
The park is made up of other areas in the Southern Ridges such as Labrador Nature Reserve, HortPark, Telok Blangah Hill Park, and Kent Ridge Park.
While a park, many things are available during a visit. Early in the day or evenings, and you get a fantastic birdwatching experience. It also offers you a chance to try out the local restaurants, or you can use it as a good excuse to exercise.
You have 40 hectares to explore that is full of great things to see and experience.
10. National Gallery
Merlion Park used to sit close to the mouth of the river, and in 1972, they moved it to a new location. It now sits pride of place in the Downtown Core of Singapore. You can’t help but pass if you head to the Central Business District or one of the other things that are worthy of a visit in the area.
You will find two Merlion statues that tower 8.6 meters in height and both spouting water from their mouths.
Not too far away, you can find the National Gallery, which is worth more time. It comprises two older buildings, one being the former Supreme Court, and the second is the former City Hall.
Inside, you will see exhibits of modern art by many artists from all across the Southern part of Asia. You can view works by established artists, or the up and coming unknown artists who want to make their own place in the art world.
One of the newer galleries is displaying Chinese Ink Art. Many exhibitions are temporary, so it is worth checking ahead to see what arts are on show.
If museums are your thing, you can also check out the Art Science Museum that sits in the Marina Bay Integrated Resort. It offers a very different look, and if you time it right, you may be lucky enough to head up to the observation deck as one of the privileged few for the day.
The Sands Park Deck offers 360-degree views of the area and is part of a daily tour. It is a first come first serve experience, hence the reason to get your times right in the Science Museum.
Singapore sightseeing can take in many more things to see than here. For shopaholics, there is a trip down Orchard Road or a trip into Chinatown.
Here you can take a break from the commercial side and sneak inside the Sri Mariamman Temple for a break. Sri Mariamman Temple is the oldest Hindu temple in Singapore; Singapore had come a long way since 1827 when it was built
Add to this, if you are here for a while, you can take a trip to the island of Pulau Ubin, or just Ubin to the locals. It is now a popular summer camp haunt for the Singaporeans, and it does give you a chance to see what real nature has to offer without man’s intervention.