Things to do in Singapore

Cheat sheet for Singapore if you’re attending Taylor Swift’s Eras Tour

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Hello, Swifties! If you're among the fortunate few who snagged tickets to Taylor Swift's eagerly anticipated 2024 Singapore concerts (at the Singapore National Stadium), good for you! Dealing with those sweaty palms and all that stress has finally borne fruit, and now, you’re all set for an unforgettable adventure in Singapore (Okay, we won’t sulk.)

The Eras Tour, which kicked off with a bang in Arizona, USA, is making its way to Singapore soon enough, and fans all around can look forward to an impressive six-night engagement from March 2 to 4 and March 7 to 9, before the tour heads off to enchant audiences in Australia.

Alright, so now you’re about to set foot in the wonderful modern city of Singapore. Let’s talk a little bit about it. If you haven't been here yet, it’s a whole new modern world waiting for you to be explored. Known for being exceptionally clean, excellently planned, and likely one of the most enjoyable places to visit. This metropolis hosts the world's largest infinity pool on a rooftop, the first-ever night safari, ancient temples, and undeniably, some of the finest global culinary delights.

The city is also home to so much flora and fauna with its stunning gardens, remarkable architectural feats, top-tier venues for performing arts, and some really cool shopping districts.

Now that you know what you’re in for, let’s jump straight into some of the really cool things you can do in this wonderful city.

1. We’ll start with the major attractions

View Of Marina Bay At Night

The Marina Bay Sands, with its unique ship-like structure atop three towering skyscrapers, has an observation deck with stunning views of the city. Don't miss the nightly light show at the Marina Bay area, where the water dances with lights and music. The nearby Merlion Park, home to Singapore's mythical Merlion statue, is something for your IG feed + the perfect tickmark to your list of things to do here!

Next, the stunning Singapore Flyer, one of the world's largest observation wheels, will give you a bird's eye view of the entire island. For those interested in architecture and history, the Raffles Hotel will transport you back to the colonial era right in the heart of the city, with its famous Long Bar where the Singapore Sling was invented. Another architectural marvel is the Esplanade – Theatres on the Bay, known for its distinctive durian-like appearance, which has a host of really cool artistic performances.

If you’re here with family, or just want to explore the inner child in you, check out S.E.A Aquarium or Universal Studios. It’s candyland, and you’re the little one on a sugar rush!

Okay, how can we not add this in - The Singapore National Stadium is a state-of-the-art, multi-purpose facility known for its retractable roof and the world's largest free-spanning dome, hosting a diverse range of major sporting and entertainment events.

2. Plan a visit to the local hawker centers

Lau Pa Sat Festival Market in Singapore at night

Maxwell Food Centre, famous for its Tian Tian Hainanese Chicken Rice, is a rite of passage for anyone craving authentic Singaporean flavors. Lau Pa Sat, set within a historic Victorian structure, offers a satay street in the evenings, where skewers of grilled meat are served amidst a lively atmosphere under open skies.

The Old Airport Road Food Centre is a treasure trove for local favorites, from Char Kway Teow to Rojak, a traditional fruit and vegetable salad tossed in a prawn paste. The Tiong Bahru Market and Hawker Centre is another hotspot, where traditional dishes meet contemporary tastes. For seafood lovers, the East Coast Lagoon Food Village offers a beachside dining experience, complete with iconic Singaporean chili crab.

In these hawker centres, you’ll also find Michelin-starred stalls like Hawker Chan, known for its soy sauce chicken rice and noodle dishes. Chomp Chomp Food Centre in Serangoon Gardens is famous for its BBQ stingray and Hokkien Mee, a must-try for those who love bold, spicy flavors.

3. Historic neighborhoods you just cannot miss

Night View of a Chinese Temple in Singapore Chinatown

In Chinatown, the streets are lined with traditional medicinal halls, teahouses, and bustling markets selling everything from silk robes to handcrafted souvenirs. The neighborhood is also home to significant cultural sites like the Buddha Tooth Relic Temple and Museum, housing what is reputedly the left canine tooth of Buddha. Another not-to-miss is the Chinatown Heritage Centre, where you’ll get an immersive look into the lives of early Chinese immigrants in Singapore.

Little India, on the other hand, is an explosion of colors, sounds, and scents. Walking through its streets is like stepping into a different world, with the air filled with the aroma of spices and jasmine garlands. The 24-hour shopping mall, Mustafa Centre, is a local institution, offering everything from electronics to exotic spices. The neighborhood's heartbeat is best felt at the Tekka Centre, a bustling hub where locals shop for fresh produce and Indian delicacies. The Sri Veeramakaliamman Temple, with its intricate and colorful façade, is one of the oldest Hindu temples in Singapore here.

Local Tip: In Chinatown, apart from the Thian Hock Keng Temple, take a stroll down Pagoda Street for some of the best street shopping. For a quieter experience, visit Ann Siang Hill and Club Street, which are filled with quaint boutiques and cafes, perfect for a leisurely afternoon. In Little India, go beyond the main streets and explore the alleyways where hidden gems like the House of Tan Teng Niah, a brightly painted Chinese villa, are waiting to be discovered. Also, try to time your visit with a festival like Deepavali or Chinese New Year to see these neighborhoods burst into even more vibrant life.

4. Singapore’s skyline has so much to offer!

Singapore flyer with Singapore's Skyline

Beyond the iconic Marina Bay Sands, the Singapore Flyer stands tall as one of the world’s largest observation wheels, offering a 360-degree view of the city's glittering expanse, including glimpses of neighboring countries on a clear day! Another vantage point is the Pinnacle@Duxton's 50th-story skybridge. This hidden spot has breathtaking views and is less known among tourists, so thank me later. The OCBC Skyway at Gardens by the Bay, suspended 22 meters above ground, gives you another unique perspective, surrounded by the towering Supertrees.

For a blend of the modern and the historical, the rooftop bar at 1-Altitude gives an unparalleled panoramic view of the city from the highest alfresco bar in the world. Alternatively, the lesser-known rooftop garden at the Esplanade offers a quiet spot to enjoy the city's skyline, especially stunning during sunset.

Local Tip: For a unique experience, visit the SkyPark at Marina Bay Sands during the day, and the Singapore Flyer at dusk to witness a transformation of the skyline as day turns to night.

5. Singapore has some truly amazing gardens

Gardens by the Bay

The Gardens by the Bay is truly a landmark you shouldn’t miss in the city. The futuristic Supertree Grove, with its towering tree-like structures, is a sight to behold, especially during the nightly Garden Rhapsody light and sound show. The two conservatories, the Flower Dome and the Cloud Forest, will show you a whole new world - exotic, different climates and a range of unseen flora and fauna.

The Singapore Botanic Gardens is a UNESCO World Heritage site that houses the National Orchid Garden, which boasts the world's largest orchid display. The lesser-known Healing Garden, focusing on medicinal plants, and the Fragrant Garden, which engages the sense of smell, are must-visits within the Botanic Gardens.

Local Tip: In addition to the Healing Garden, seek out the Rainforest Walk in the Singapore Botanic Gardens for a quick escape into a dense, tropical setting. Early mornings are ideal for birdwatching and a peaceful stroll, away from the usual crowds.

6. While you’re there, see all its wildlife

Singapore zoo

Singapore Zoo, set in a rainforest environment, is a pioneer in the concept of 'open' captivity, providing animals with spacious, landscaped enclosures. This approach not only enhances the welfare of the animals but also offers visitors a more natural and engaging wildlife experience.

The Night Safari, a unique concept globally, gives you an extraordinary opportunity to observe nocturnal animals in their naturalistic nighttime habitat. The tram ride through different geographical zones is an experience in itself, as you witness animals like the Malayan tiger and Asian elephants in a different light, quite literally.

For bird enthusiasts, the Jurong Bird Park is a paradise, featuring the world's largest walk-in aviary, the Waterfall Aviary, and the impressive Kings of the Skies show, where birds of prey demonstrate their hunting prowess.

7. Yes, Singapore has a bustling nightlife!

Clarke Quay, Singapore

Clarke Quay and Boat Quay, along the Singapore River, are the epicenters of this vibrancy, teeming with so many cool bars, clubs, and eateries, each with its unique ambiance. Clarke Quay, in particular, is famous for its stunning waterfront restaurants and high-energy nightclubs. The area comes alive as the sun sets, with live bands and DJs setting the mood. Boat Quay offers a more laid-back vibe, perfect for those who prefer to enjoy a drink while soaking in the picturesque views of the river and city skyline.

For a more upscale and relaxed evening, Dempsey Hill is the go-to spot. Once a British army barracks, the area has transformed into a chic lifestyle destination, with a collection of high-end bars, restaurants, and art galleries, amidst lush greenery.

8. Museums that should be on your bucket list

Skyline of Singapore with ArtScience museum in the foreground

The ArtScience Museum, with its iconic lotus-inspired design, has exhibitions here that range from exploring the depths of the ocean to the far reaches of outer space. Another must-visit is the National Museum of Singapore, the city's oldest museum, showing Singapore's history in an interactive and engaging manner.

The Singapore Art Museum focuses on contemporary art practices, particularly from Singapore and the Southeast Asian region.

9. Singapore’s got another side to it…

Pulau Ubin

Pulau Ubin gives you a glimpse into Singapore's past with its traditional kampong (village) lifestyle, untouched by city development. The island is perfect for nature lovers and adventurers alike, with its abundant wildlife, mangroves, and quarries. Chek Jawa Wetlands is a particular highlight, showcasing a rich ecosystem where six major habitats meet and thrive.

The Southern Ridges, a 10-km stretch connecting parks along the southern ridge of Singapore, is an architectural and natural marvel. It includes the Henderson Waves, a wave-like structure 36 meters above the ground, linking Mount Faber Park to Telok Blangah Hill Park. The walkways have some of the best views of the city, harbor, and the Southern Islands. conservation.

Local Tip: When visiting Pulau Ubin, rent a bicycle to explore the island at your own pace. It's the best way to discover hidden corners of the island, including the less-traveled paths leading to the Chek Jawa Wetlands.

10. Why just stop here? Look at what’s around the city!

Resorts World Sentosa - Sentosa Island

For a break from Singapore's towering skyscrapers, take a boat trip to Sentosa, the accessible resort island to the south, that has attractions such as pristine sandy beaches, the excitement of Universal Studios, and even a lavish casino!

Just a short ferry ride away are the Indonesian islands of Batam and Bintan, with beautiful beaches, water sports, golf courses, and a laid-back island atmosphere. It’s just perfect! Another option is Johor Bahru in Malaysia, accessible via a causeway. Johor Bahru has many attractions, from shopping malls and theme parks to traditional Malay culture and cuisine.

Things To Do