Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Top 10 Things to Do in Singapore

My friend Dilek recently visited Singapore before flying to Thailand for a Bangkok and Phuket trip. I requested her to compile a to-do-list in Singapore and here is what she has written:

Singapore attracts many visitors, travelers and tourists into the region combining the skyscrapers and subways of a modern, affluent city with a tropical climate, with tasty food, and good shopping malls. The culture of Singapore is composed of mainly Chinese, Indian, British, and Malay cultures. There are many things you can do in Singapore. During your first visit, you can start with these top 10 things to do in Singapore.

1. Going to Marina Bay Sands

Marina Bay Sands is an integrated resort fronting Marina Bay in Singapore. It is located along Marina Bay waterfront with 3 cascading hotel towers, 2,560 rooms, Sands SkyPark, floating crystal pavilions, lotus-inspired ArtScience Museum, shops, restaurants, theaters and nightclubs. Sands SkyPark offers 360-degree views of Singapore’s skyline. You may buy tickets for Sands SkyPark Observation Deck online http://www.marinabaysands.com/Sands-SkyPark/Tickets/ Observation Desk is open 7 days a week (Mon-Thurs:09:30 am-10:00pm/ Fri-Sun: 09:30 am-11:00pm).
Marina Bay Sands Singapore.

Marina Bay Sands Singapore. Sands SkyPark is on the deck hovering at the top of 3 hotel towers

2. Riding The Singapore Flyer

Standing at 165 meters above the city, The Singapore Flyer is a giant Ferris wheel in Singapore that was constructed between 2005 and 2008. It is located near the shore of Singapore’s Marina Bay. The Flyer’s height is of a 42-storey building  and it is taller than famous London Eye. If you ride on  the world’s tallest observation wheel, you will have chance to catch the magnificent view of Singapore’s iconic and historical landmarks as well as views from the Marina Bay to the Singapore River, Raffles Place, Merlion Park, Empress Place and the Padang.

3. Going to Night Safari

The Night Safari is one of the most popular tourist attractions in Singapore. Actually it is the world’s first nocturnal zoo.(Nocturnality is an animal behavior characterized by activity during the night and sleeping during the day.) The 40-hectare park houses 1,040 animals representing 120 species, of which 29% are threatened species. The length of visit recommended is 2-3 hours. You may explore the park either walking on foot or riding on the tram. You can purchase your night safari tickets online http://www.nightsafari.com.sg/ Indeed by buying online tickets, you can save around 5%. Just visit Night Safari Park, catch the animals of the Night Safari before they go to sleep.
View from Night Safari Photo by Dileka

4. Visiting Singapore Botanic Gardens

The 150-year old Singapore Botanic Gardens attracts many visitors as well as the local residents. This Gardens has an array of botanical and horticultural attractions with a rich history and a wonderful plant collection of worldwide significance. The Singapore Botanic Gardens is the only botanic garden in the world that opens from 5 am to 12 midnight every single day of the year. Admission to the Gardens is free except for the National Orchid Garden. There are different sections at the garden. These are National Orchid Garden, Rainforest, Evolution Garden, Ginger Garden, Healing Garden, Botany Center and Tanglin Gate and Jacob Ballas Children’s Garden. You can find more than 10,000 types of plants, many heritage trees, and three lakes, namely Symphony Lake, Eco-Lake and Swan Lake. Since there are many sections, you may spend 2-3 or more hours at Singapore Botanic Gardens.

5. Visiting Jurong Bird Park

Another tourist attraction in Singapore is Jurong Bird Park managed by Wildlife Reserves Singapore. Like its motto, it is Where Colour Lives. Jurong Bird Park has an area of 202,000 square meters and it is currently the world’s largest bird park in terms of number of birds, and second largest both in number of bird species and land area. There are 5,000 birds of 380 species in Jurong Bird Park. The park is separated for different exhibitions. These are Waterfall Aviary, Dinosaur Descendants, Birds of Prey, Southeast Asian Birds Aviary, Jungle Jewels, Lory Loft, Hornbills & Toucans, Royal Ramble, Scarlet Ibis, Spoonbills, Penguin Coast,  World of Darkness, Pelican Cove and Parrot Paradise. Don’t be surprised, if you encounter magnificent birds in front of you while you are walking.

6. Going to Sentosa Island

You should visit Sentosa Island definitely. Sentosa is a popular island resort in Singapore and it is visited by some five million people every year. Sentosa offers a variety of attractions, museums and other facilities to provide a variety of experiences, recreation and entertainment to visitors.

7. Being at the Southern Most Point of Continental Asia

While you are in Sentosa Island, do not forget to visit The Southern Most Point of Asia. It stands at the edge of continental Asia right on Palawan Beach at Sentosa Island. It is accessible via a suspension bridge. Actually the bridge has very nice view. After you reach at the Southern Most Point of Continental Asia, you can spend some time for viewing the island.

8. Spending time at the Orchard Road

Visiting and going around Orchard Road is another suggestion. Spanning almost 2.2 kilometer-long, Orchard Road is the retail and entertainment hub of Singapore. Orchard Road is a one-way boulevard including distinctive and iconic shopping malls, restaurants and hotels. It attracts many tourists.

9. Visiting Little India

As its name promises Little India is the center for the large Indian community in Singapore. It is shopping destination for many travelers visiting Singapore. Since in Little India, Singapore, you may have chance to see many spice stores, restaurants, backpacker hostels, art galleries, sari shops and Bollywood record shops. It is known for many festivals and it is one of the most colorful and attractive places to visit in Singapore.

10. Going to Chinatown

Singapore’s Chinatown is an ethnic neighborhood featuring distinctly Chinese cultural elements and a historically concentrated ethnic Chinese population. I’m sure you will enjoy your experience in Chinatown since it is full of many little shops selling everything from plastic Buddhas to the products you name it.  Furthermore, you can purchase souvenirs from Chinatown because it is where the cheapest souvenirs are. Chinatown Heritage Centre is located in Pagoda Street and all buildings are so colorful which provides you with some great photographing opportunities.

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