Singapore is an incredible island country located in Southeast Asia. This was the first stop on our honeymoon and as we were sitting in the airport about to leave we reflected on what the heck we just experienced because Singapore is one of the most unique places we have ever been! If we could sum it up in one word, we’d say “futuristic”. We had a blast exploring everything we could and feel like 3 days was the perfect amount of time to experience the true essence of Singapore. I broke down some top things to see and do below and write an entire food blog for those looking for the best places to eat & drink!
Where to stay
Before talking about where to stay in Singapore it’s helpful to note that just like the drinks and food- hotels can be super pricy. I put the most iconic below but you can also search in the Kampong Glam area which is popular with young expats, Clarke Quay area which has a ton of nightlife, or anywhere near Marina Bay sands and Chinatown the be in the center of it all!
- Pan Pacific- This gorgeous hotel is where we chose today! It is located centrally in Marina Bay and was the perfect distance from the super tree grove and chinatown! Not to mention the lobby is super futuristic and the floating pods are a fun place to grab a drink!
- Marina Bay Sands- This futuristic hotel has the world’s largest rooftop infinity pool. It also features a massive mall, delicious restaurants, and some of the best views of Singapore!
- Raffles Hotel Singapore- This iconic hotel is a colonial-style luxury hotel that was just remodeled and reopened! Every room has marble bathrooms and gorgeous decorations with butler and room service available every day. The hotel is super famous, absolutely stunning and is home to Long Bar: the birthplace of the Singapore Sling!
What to do
- Chinatown- this area of the city is such a contrast to the large futuristic buildings. There are gorgeous murals all over chinatown and food stalls littering the streets. Make a point to grab a meal, explore the temples, and take in the street art!
- Singapore Zoo- we were blown away by the Singapore zoo! It’s massive and so well taken care of. The OJ machines offer a nice refreshing option on hot days and student volunteers are everywhere to educate guests on the animals!
- Aquarium- Known as one of the best aquariums in the world- the Singapore aquarium is in Sentosa where Universal Studios and tons of other attractions are.
- Haji lane and Arab street + selfie coffee- The Kampong Glam neighborhood is where you can find Haji lane. It’s bustling with restaurants, bars, and amazing colorful shops and ends at a gorgeous temple. It’s always busy and filled with young people. Stop by for a photo op or to go into the famous selfie coffee and drink a coffee with your face on it! The street art alone is worth the visit!
- Universal Studios- I LOVE rollercoasters, so naturally I dragged my hubby here. We had such a blast! It was the beginning of Lunar New Year and the park was decked out with decor. It’s crowded, and a little expensive so if you go make sure to commit to a whole day, but for theme parks around the world this one is definitely fun to visit.
- Gardens by the bay + floral fantasy- Gardens by the bay and the super tree grove are unreal in person. The super trees are massive and feel like you just stepped into the set of avatar. There are a few different attractions throughout the gardens and by far my favorite was floral fantasy. Their website has the perfect description “Flowers, artistry and technology come together to create a dream-like, fantastical experience for visitors.” You walk in and are immediately hit with the gorgeous scent of fresh flowers and walk through a maze of beautiful plants. The exhibit even ends with a 4D ride!
- Casino- The casino in Marina Bay Sands is a top spot to visit but don’t forget your passport to get in!
What not to miss
- Super tree grove’s Garden Rhapsody- talk about futuristic! the forest of giant metal trees light up every night with choreographed lights to classical music. It’s spectacular and lasts almost 15 minutes for each show! This goes daily at 745pm and 845pm and the music is changed every few weeks.
- Spectra at Marina Bay Sands- this light show is on the water and is an amazing show with two unique backdrops! From the city side you see the ArtScience Museum and an awesome view of Marina Bay Sands. From Marina Bay Sands you have the perfect city backdrop and stadium seating! This show goes every day at 8 and 9pm with an additional show at 10pm on Fridays and Saturdays!
How to get around
- Walking- the city is deceptively large but we found the best way to explore was through walking. Especially if you stay in a centralized location you can find it’s pretty easy to get around. We basically walked through malls in the center as crossing the street was complicated but this gave us some AC relief and a fun way to navigate the city!
- Grab- this is basically uber but in Asia! We love using grab. The rate does not change (ie. if it says $15 it really will be $15 with no added fees). One of our favorite parts about grab is that you can pay with cash and not connect a credit card. It’s relatively cheap and an easy way to get around. We got a grab from the airport to our hotel and had no problem using grab for the rest of our longer trips throughout Singapore.
- Public transit- bus, taxi and MRT are all great ways to zip around the city. We opted for walking and grab as we were right in the center and everything far was too complicated via MRT but if you are adventurous or there for an extended period of time this is your way to go! I’ve linked the Visit Singapore website above with all the tips & tricks to navigating public transit!
Now that you have our pro tips to navigating this amazing country, I wanted to share what we noticed about Singapore. When you visit- let me know if you had the same thoughts!
What makes Singapore unique
- SUPER clean and super safe vibes- seriously, no trash anywhere. Maybe because gum & spitting are illegal it kind of helps deter this?
- Weekends are deserted- during the week the city is packed with people, but on the weekends the city empties out. Bars and restaurants are closed or have abbreviated hours and if you wake up before 9 and walk through the city it might feel like a ghost town. It did make for awesome photos and great happy hours!
- Expensive to drink- we heard it was pricy but didn’t realize just how much until we got there. All cocktails range from 15-35 Singapore $ and even on happy hour beers are 5-9 SD. If you feel like partying- might want to grab a small bottle in duty free and bring it with you!
- Dogs- my hubby loves dogs, so much so that we could be in the middle of a deep conversation and he will drift off and point at the fluffy poodle approaching. This left him puzzled in Singapore as we were there for 4 days and saw only ONE dog the entire time! Seems like it helps alleviate a “dirty” feel?
- OJ machines & Champagne brunches- Singapore food scene is definitely quirky. Yes- the noodles are amazing, but also almost all the restaurants seem to be fancy! Finding an a la carte Sunday brunch can be hard but finding a 50-150 SD champagne brunch is easier than finding a McDonald’s! One of our favorite things were the OJ machines. These fresh squeezed OJ machines were everywhere in the city and for only 2-3 SD we had refreshing, ice cold orange juice. I still crave them today!
- Malls everywhere- we were shocked at how many malls there were. You could spend your entire life savings on every block in Singapore. Even the airport is essentially a mall. Looking for a Gucci? You’ll find 10!
- Robot cops- last but not least are the robot cops. Just as much as my hubby looks at dogs he always notices the police. We got off the plane and went to wait for our Grab when he walked away to take his first photo of the trip- a picture of the police robot sliding around giving warnings to cars. Pretty futuristic if you ask me!