WHAT ARE THE BEST THINGS TO DO AND SEE IN SINGAPORE?
Singapore, a very prosperous city-state in Southeast Asia, is a modern and particularly dynamic city, with a multicultural society influenced by China, India and the United Kingdom. There is a delicious and varied cuisine, and an effervescent nightlife. Despite a strict cleanliness policy and some very strict laws, it is also one of the safest cities in the world. The cost of living is also high, but it is possible to explore the city without necessarily going broke. The vegetation is lush and the climate tropical, hot and humid, with temperatures around 30°C all year round.
Singapore is an exciting place to visit, and this selection of the 10 best things to do and see can help you plan your itinerary.
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Here are 10 must-see things to do and see on a trip to Singapore:
1. Walking around Marina Bay
Don’t pass through Singapore without taking a tour of the city’s historic district. This impressive bay is home to a large number of the city’s luxury hotels, casinos and entertainment venues. The view it offers of the Singapore River and the rest of the city is unique and will give you the opportunity to take some beautiful pictures. At nightfall, cross the Helix bridge, a famous helix-shaped pedestrian bridge, to enjoy its modern architecture, views and colourful lights.
2. Orchard Road
What could be better for shopping enthusiasts than a 2 km long street entirely made up of shopping centres? Orchard Road is one of Singapore’s most important shopping centres, with more than 22 shopping centres almost all located side by side. It’s the ideal place to buy your souvenirs. You can discover the unusual and modern architecture of the ION Orchard or the Tangs, one of Singapore’s oldest Chinese shops.
3. Little India district
Little India is the most colourful place in Singapore. You will find typical Indian facades, rainbow shops and stalls offering spices, jewellery and incense. Your walk through the neighbourhood will immerse you in the Indian atmosphere. Remember to schedule your visit on a Sunday evening to enjoy the lively streets and the music that resonates there. Visiting Hindu temples, tasting Indian dishes, shopping at the Mustafa Centre, these are some of the activities you can plan during your visit to Little India.
4. The Museum of Asian Civilizations
Opened in 1997, this museum traces the history of the four main cultures that are at the origin of Singapore’s current face. You will be able to observe unique archaeological finds discovered during the construction of the city as well as exhibitions of works, objects and books that bear witness to more than 2500 years of history. A fee is charged for a visit to the museum.
5. Walking along the Singapore River
Your evening getaway along the Singapore River will give you the opportunity to discover the festive atmosphere of Clarke Quay and Boat Quay. The many restaurants and bars along the river will allow you to enjoy a drink while admiring the view or to enjoy a delicious pepper crab. For a faster and more typical overview of this part of the city, take a bumboat. These taxi boats will show you the most beautiful buildings in the Singapore River such as the Merlion, the Marina Bay Sands or the statue of Sir Stamford Raffles.
6. Gardens by the Bay
The famous Gardens by the bay is considered a model for green spaces through its modern facilities and biodiversity conservation techniques. This giant 101-hectare park is home to more than 250,000 species of rare or endangered plants, the world’s highest indoor waterfall and futuristic tree-shaped buildings used for bird breeding. The entrance ticket is not free. By staying there at nightfall, you will see this magnificent park change and light up completely during the daily sound and light show. Visit the glass domes, strolls in the trees and photos of the bay are on the agenda for your day at Gardens by the bay.
7. The National Museum of Singapore
Built in 1849, Singapore’s National Museum is the oldest in the city-state. It offers an exciting discovery of the historical events that have marked the city, from the 14th century to today. Thanks to your paid ticket you can also discover local fashion, food, filmography and photography. Throughout the year, many temporary exhibitions, artistic performances and festivals are held there.
8. Pulau Ubin Island (Granite Island)
Your walk on Pulau Ubin Island will show you what the Singapore region looked like before its rapid urbanization. This wild island offers a distant view of the city and allows you to enjoy a moment of tranquility in a protected green setting. If it’s possible to visit the island on foot, renting a bike or tandem will allow you to discover Pulau Ubin’s nature more quickly. Jungles, villages, lakes, rivers and beaches, by bike, it’s possible to get a good overview of the whole island in 2h30. There is a charge for bike rental and ferry to the island.
Spending a day in Chinatown is the perfect way to immerse yourself in the Chinese atmosphere and discover one of the four cultures that gave rise to the city-state. Take advantage of your visit to enjoy tasty Chinese dishes made with fish or black chicken. On the visit side, the Buddha Tooth Relic Temple is worth a visit for its unique architecture and the relic of the historic Buddha’s tooth that it houses. In the heart of the district, the Chinatown Heritage Center is the ideal place to discover the lives of Chinese migrants who arrived at the end of the 19th century. The Taoist temple Thian Hock Keng is also interesting to visit. Built in 1842 by Chinese immigrants to give glory to the sea goddess Ma Zhu Po, it has a magnificent glazed tile roof and a pagoda guarded by a pair of dragons.
10. The Botanical Gardens
Singapore’s Botanical Gardens are a UNESCO World Heritage Site. They cover more than 63 hectares and their visit is free of charge. These gardens are divided into 6 parts that offer lush lawns, waterfalls, streams, a lake and several portions of the jungle. You can meet one of the many squirrels that inhabit the park and discover the splendid rubber forests, the rubber tree. The Orchid National Garden is the only paid part of the gardens. It has many enchanting orchid species, some of which are endemic to Singapore.