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for those who are in town for the first time, where do u begin ? Hope this will help u decide on what to do in the short time u r in town :
Day 1 - Getting to know the city's history
Tour the historic district of Singapore with its many charms. The Colonial/Civic District is a good place to start and many of the structures e.g. St Andrew's Cathedral and Parliament House are easily viewed from a good walk that leads you all the way to the water where you have a lot of choices for a good lunch.
After lunch, visit the National Museum of Singapore (don't miss their store for really cool handicrafts and unique souvenirs). Nearby is Fort Canning, a nice quiet park for a stroll. From here, you can easily make your way to Clark Quay.
Take a break at any of the fine establishment in Clark Quay, after which I suggest that u take a river cruise to enjoy the sights of the entire river before alighting at Boat Quay. From here, you can enjoy Boat Quay or check out Lau Pa Sat or Newton, or make your way back to the hotel to rest your tired body and be prepared for the next day.
Day 2 - Heritage districts and the famous SIN zoo
Little India and Arab District are right next to each other and are best viewed in the mornings. These two neighborhoods are good for shopping and sight seeing as well as a good lunch.
After lunch, return to the hotel and relax, drop your shopping bags and make your way to the Zoological Gardens, one of the top (if not the top) attractions of Singapore.
U can visit the Night safari after the zoo visit which is right next door.
The rest of the night is yours to enjoy.
Day 3 - Chinatown and Sentosa
Chinatown is one of my favorite place to explore in SIN. The area is not big, it is rather dense and there are endless diversions for food, shopping and sight seeing. There is also a night market here but the day time activities are not to be missed esp. for the temples operational hours so I suggest an early morning trip here.
After lunch, Sentosa is next. U can easily spend a whole day here and that can get expensive as u have to pay for each attraction (they dont have a all in one pass). So choose the attractions u want to see and spend the afternoon walking around. Highly recommended attractions are the aquarium and the musical fountain (this is only available in the evening after sun sets). Please note : I wouldnt advise those who are used to Disney's or Universal Studio's standard to compare this theme park with coz there is definitely no comparison. So if u r expecting top quality attractions, I would advise against visiting this island esp. if u r not going there with kids.
The rest of the night is yours ! But if u catch the first show for the musical fountain that begins at 7 pm, u can make your way to Mt. Faber by cable car and enjoy the rest of the night dining there overlooking the beautiful view.
Day 4 - Shopping belt of SIN
When u r in SIN, u cant but go to Orchard to see what it is all about. This famous stretch is full of dining and shopping and goes all the way towards the Suntec and Marina neighborhoods. You can easily spend all day shopping and dining along the way.
When night falls, enjoy the night market and area of Bugis or just enjoy a nice cool evening at Chimjes or a simple short walk around Raffles hotel arcade and a drink at Long Bar.
Day 5 - SIN's wild side
Enjoy a natural side of SIN, explore Sungei Buloh, Pulau Ubin or Bukit Timah Reserve (as early as you can make it to avoid the hot mid day sun). For the rest who doesnt want too much of a long walk, a nice stroll at Botanic Gardens is a good alternative.
In the afternoon, chill and relax at your hotel pool after all the past few days' activities. Or visit a spa (very reasonable in prices compare to Europe and America) or enjoy a high tea (esp. the Raffles one).
Your last night in town, just relax and take in the evening breeze while enjoy what local food has to offer at its best - East Coast Seafood Center. U really cant leave town without trying Chili or pepper crab (try both !!!).
Day 1 - Colonial district, Chinatown and riverside area
Walk along the colonial district early in the morning, head out to Chinatown in the afternoon and enjoy the rest of the evening at any of the riverside areas of Boat or Clark Quay or Esplanade. U can also opt for an easy and relaxing way to enjoy all the 3 areas by taking a river cruise.
Day 2 - Orchard Road and Zoo/Night Safari
Begin your early morning at Botanic Gardens and make your way down Orchard Road. By late afternoon (3pm), head towards the zoo and when that attraction closes for the day, walk next door to the Night Safari.
Day 3 - LIttle India
Explore Little India and Arab street early in the morning, make your way to Raffles Hotel for a refreshment at the famous Long Bar or the Billiard Rom, or high tea.
To walk off the Raffles high tea when the evening arrives, make your way to the Bugis area for a night market.
At dinner time, make your way to East Coast Seafood center coz u just cant visit SIN and have not eaten the fabulous seafood.
well if u have only one day in town, take an early Chinatown trip, make your way to Orchard in the afternoon and go to the riverside areas in the evening. For the night, enjoy the Night Safari.
If u really have no idea where to begin, u can always go for the organized tours :
1) Duck Tours
2) Hippo Tour (also contact DuckTour)
3) City Tours - many choices of half or full day with tour east
4) Walking tours
Contact singapore walks or www singapore history museum
5) Trishaw tours at the junction of Sago and Terrenganu streets or u can make advance reservations with singapore explorer
6) River Cruises
Contact singapore explorer or watertours
Or go to any one of these at your own leisure (all these r from some elevation and is a great opportunity for some nice photo though u must have an amazing camera and reflexes for the GMax !) :
1) DHL Balloon
2) GMax Reverse Bungy (good view of Clark Quay area, right by the water)
3) Singapore Flyer (similar to London Eye)
here are some places of interest for those traveling with kids :
1) Zoo - dont forget to bring a change of clothes and swimwear as there are two areas that the kids can play in that are great fun. One is located at the playground area (KFC is located here too if u need some refreshment or a snack) and the other is at the petting zoo zone.
2) Jurong Bird Park - great park and had very recently been updated, highlight is the aviary and the waterful, dont forget your camera ! After the renovation, there is a new area where there is a nice playground as well as a misting wet play area so do bring along a change of clothes or swim wear for the kids. U can pack a picnic to enjoy here as there are many tables and chairs around and this is right next to the falconry show location.
Tip : if u r unable to stand heat and humidity, do not go all the way to the bottom of the shows where u r closer to the stage. U will be much cooler at the top or close to the top and sides as there is much more air circulating around with the fans. If u need a soda but dont wish to pay S$3.50 for one, u can go to the washrooms and buy from the vending machines there for S$1.60, u can also save 20% on the tickets (and ride) if u had flown Singapore Air (must be within 7 days of the flight)
3) Night Safari - due to the opening hours at night, younger travelers might not make it there or enjoy it as they might be too sleepy. For older kids, this is fun and exciting esp. when u take them on the tram ride and the animals come close
4) Science Center - great place for all ages, lots of visual and sound stimulation for the kids (also bring along some swimwear and clothes as there is an outdoor area for water related fun)
5) Discovery Center - a bit more learning here (as compare to Science center which is more fun) for the older kids but they will love the paintball shooting
6) wildwildwet - water theme park
7) escape theme park - right next to wildwildwet
8) snow city - is within walking distance to science center as well as the IMAX theater
9) Singapore Art Museum - they have programs for kids age 5 and up (8 and below need an adult for supervision)
10) Philatelic Museum - the heritage exhibition allows u to put on some costumes and play with the instruments as part of getting to know Singapore heritage
11) Sentosa - gear towards kids 5 and up, younger ones and those who are in strollers will find it tough with lots of hills and steps. Main highlights are the musical fountain (only in the evenings), aquarium and the luge. the cable car ride is the beginning of the exciting journey.
12) singapore river boat cruises - u can catch any of them from clark quay, boat quay, grand copthorne waterfront hotel or esplanade
13) hippo or duck tours - kids love the ride
14) Resort World (Universal Studios Singapore aka USS) - this whole area known as resort world is a mixture of resorts and theme park located on Sentosa Island. It is definitely the place to be for kids 5 & up.
15) MINT - Singapore museum of Toys (a great place to get souvenirs for nieces, nephews, grandkids, etc.)
1) Haw Par Villa - great attraction but a bit graphic and gory so if u r traveling with young ones, prepare them for it. It reflects the Asian's believes for crime and punishment
2) Chinese Garden - a beautiful park with beautiful chinese bridges and pagodas.
3) Japanese Garden - right next to Chinese garden, wonderful koi ponds with a great bonsai garden
4) Little India - besides trying the famous SIN fish head curries or banana leaf restaurants, u have to walk along Serangoon and breathe in the spice scented air and browse around the goldsmith shops etc Dont miss a trip to the famous Tekka aka Zhu Jiao Market
5) Chinatown - Heritage Center is a good introduction to a part of SIN's immigrant history, great place for souvenir shopping and dont miss the few famous temples !
6) Kampong Glam - In this malay village, dont miss a trip some great tasting Halal food as well as some nice crafts. Arab Street is part of this area which is a great place to visit if u r looking for fabric (esp. silk)
7) Emerald Hill - beautiful homes from the old colonial days and a bit of Peranakan history
8) Joo Chiat and Katong - residential neighborhoods but a great place to explore and discover Peranakan food (and souvenirs)
9) Toa Payoh - SIN's 2nd oldest satellite town, take the MRT there and experience the life of a local ! See how they go about their grocery shopping, lunching out at the kopitiam (local term for coffee shop)
10) Fuk Tak Chi Temple - now converted into a museum
There are many souvenirs but most are the usual Tees, keychains that can be found easily at Chinatown, Little India, Suntec, Geylang Serai, etc. For something really unique, try :
1) Singapore Museum Shop - my favorite choice esp. the Peranakan items/products.
2) Food Item - Singapore being a Food Paradise, u can bring home some truly delicious products eg. Prima (available at Centerpoint Shopping Mall)
3) Map or painting of Old Singapore - available at Antiques of the Orient (in the Tanglin Shopping Center), I never fail to visit this shop/store in all these years that I had lived, worked and visited Singapore.
4) Orchids - the National flower, fresh orchids can be shipped to any destination, surprised your loved ones with some amazing varieties that are either not available at home or too costly
If you prefer to walk all over town, just print the above link and follow each step. A good way to get to know SIN.