The Spectacular city of Singapore
The Southeast Asian Island city-state of Singapore is one of my all-time favourite places to go on holiday! It’s renowned for its never-ending shopping malls, its year-round summers and for being one of the greenest cities in the world. Singapore is home to many astonishing architectural landmarks including the Merlion. This multi-cultural city has respect for every religion and personal beliefs. Everyone speaks English in Singapore as the culture is so diverse, while the locals like to speak in Singlish (a colloquial language influenced by English, Malay, Mandarin and Tamil). It is also extremely clean and safe in Singapore and just to let you know you should avoid chewing gum here as it is illegal!
Sights to see…
Marina Bay Sands is a super stylish and modern hotel, with three 55 storey towers connected at the top with a sky park in the shape of a boat. Built in 2010 in Marina Bay, this iconic structure has transformed Singapore’s skyline. This is a destination for those who appreciate luxury, costing around £295 per night depending on the season. Amenities of the hotel include high end restaurants, bars, and lounges as well as a casino, museum, gym and a spa. There is also an observation deck which provides panoramic views across the bay, along with a rooftop infinity pool. The views are especially amazing at night; holding the best spectra show in the world where lasers beam out of the boat creating magic in the sky.
While rooms can be pricey, you can alternatively just take a day trip to this remarkable building. Entrance to Marina Bay Sands starts at approximately £12.50 for adults and £9 for children. You can relax and have a cocktail on the Ce La Vie rooftop bar and I would also recommend ordering some food whilst you’re up there as it is divine. In addition, the resort has a huge shopping mall with over 300 stores. Incredibly, you can take a dreamy boat ride as there is a canal running through the shopping mall; the boats resemble the Gondolas in Venice. This prominent landmark is my favourite architectural building and once you’ve visited you’ll know why it’s one of the most photographed places in Singapore.
Singapore’s Night Safari is the world’s first nocturnal zoo and is one of the city’s most popular tourist attractions. It is home to around 900 animals and 100 species, where almost 41% of the animals are endangered. Over the years it has bred Malay Tigers, Asian Elephants, Lions and more. To enter it costs around £20 for adults and £13 for children. Explore the wilderness on a 30-minute tram ride where you will pass through six geological regions, from the Himalayan foothills to the jungles of Southeast Asia. On the tram you’re presented with engaging live commentary to help you grasp a deeper understanding of the habitats of these nocturnal animals. Additionally, the Night Safari has four walking trails where you’ll see even more animals. There are other things to do, such as the interactive Creatures of The Night Show, where you will be amazed as Otters, Civets and other animals display their natural talents. There is also a Safari Adventure Tour which consists of a buggy ride with a tour guide on the Leopard trail. Experiential dining is also available, where you can have your meal metres away from fire eating tribal dancers or you can dine at a secret campsite by the reservoir. This after dark adventure was one of my best experiences in Singapore and I’m sure you’ll love it too!
Sentosa is a beautiful island off Singapore’s southern coast, connected to the city by road, monorail, boardwalk and cable car. This island is full of fun things to do! It’s home to Universal Studios, a huge complex of themed rides, rollercoasters, live shows and Hollywood movie sets. My favourite things at Universal were the Steven Spielberg special effects movie set and the life size Far Far Away Castle from Shrek! Sentosa is well known for its manmade white sand beaches. I would recommend heading over to Palawan, Tanjong or Siloso beach to lounge out at the bars or to take a dip in the shallow warm waters. Other exciting activities which I loved was the Skyline Luge and IFLY Singapore. The Luge consists of a skyride to the top of a steep hill and then you race your friends back down the hill to Siloso beach on a three-wheel racing cart – the best time to do this is in the evening!
Sentosa is Southeast Asia’s most expensive island and I feel privileged to have spent so much time on the island when my family lived here. You should definitely try and take a wonder around some of the houses in Sentosa as they are UNREAL. Some of the houses are themed so don’t be shocked when you see a pirate ship as a house. There’s no shortage of hotels on Sentosa island, if you’re looking for somewhere entertaining I would recommend staying at The W Hotel, as it has mesmerising views of the South China Sea.
Since opening in 2012, this urban nature park has had 50 million visitors and is a showpiece of horticulture and garden artistry that presents the plant kingdom in a whole new way! The park consists of three mystical waterfront gardens: Bay Central, East and South Garden. It’s free to visit Gardens by the Bay and watch the light show at night. However, to access the Cloud Forest, Flower Dome and Super Tree Observatory OCBC Sky Way you will need to buy tickets. The Cloud Forest is a mysterious world covered in mist with an awesome indoor waterfall and mountain. You can journey through the realm on a cloud and tree top walk. The Flower Dome is a great place for flower lovers, as it’s home to the largest glass greenhouse in the world, filled with exotic plants and flowers. You’ll be able to get up close with the African Baobab, the biggest tree in the dome and watch it flower at night. Measuring between 25 and 50m tall, the Super Trees are large canopies that provide shade in the day and come alive with lights at night. The Super Trees are covered in 16,300 plants of more than 200 species, including Bromeliads and Orchids. The OCBC Sky Way enables you to stroll along in the air amongst these giants – this activity is 100% worth doing as you can fully take in the striking scenery of Singapore.
If you’re a shopaholic like me, Orchard road is a place you need to visit whilst in Singapore. It’s Asia’s 9th most expensive shopping location, filled with upscale boutiques, outlet and department stores, alongside luxury hotels. Orchard is a major 2.5km long road in the central area of Singapore and is always jam packed with tourists and shoppers. It really is Singapore’s retail heart. You can also take in the view of the busy city from the 55th floor of ION Orchard.
Airports are nothing special usually, but when you land in Singapore, Changi airport is glamorous and exciting. It’s bursting with luxury shops, places to eat, spas and stunning artwork such as the kinetic rain. Connected to terminal one, Jewel is a nature themed entertainment and retail complex, home to the world’s tallest indoor waterfall. Who would have thought you could have such a wonderful experience at an airport!
In Singapore, Hawker centres are extremely popular. They are open air complexes that house many stalls selling a wide variety of affordably priced food and are a unique aspect of Singapore lifestyle. Hawker Centre food is delicious, made with passion and tastes as if it were from an expensive restaurant! Located east from the Singapore River, Little India is an ethnic region known for its traditional Indian restaurants. Its crowded streets are filled with tourists embracing the culture and flavoursome food. Another food hotspot is Chinatown – a maze of narrow roads leading to Chinatown Food Street, with its restaurants serving Hainanese chicken rice, noodles and satay.
Created by a bartender in 1915 who worked at the famous Raffles hotel, the Singapore Sling is an iconic gin-based sling cocktail. To try the legend at Raffles itself, would cost you around £16 but it’s money well spent and experiencing such nostalgia is great fun!
If you want to find out even more about the luxurious Singapore, I recommend watching the film ‘Crazy Rich Asians’ and trying out GG Treasure Hunts online Singapore Wanderlust Treasure Hunt, which is coming out TODAY!!