Long story short – this city filled our proverbial cups to the brim and we drank everything it had on offer. Four night and five days showed us how quickly mother nature can turn in a matter of seconds, how delicious chicken with 18 herbs and spices can be (yes – 18 of them) and why magic is found in the morning no matter where you live.
Our time in Singapore may have been brief – but boy did we jam pack our days and make the most of our time there. Honestly, if its adventure and thrills you are seeking – Singapore wont float your boat.
But if you can see yourself enjoying a city break infused with cultural influences of all kinds, then Singapore might just be for you.
We will spare you the play by play of our time away together and cut straight to the recommendations we have for time spent in Singapore.
DO NOT MISS OUT on experiencing a morning walk through Merlion Park across from Marina Bay Sands. You can walk a loop around the entire bay in about an hour (far less if you jog) and the sights will have you grinning. As far as cityscapes go – Singapore really shines. If you do intend to exercise outdoors you will want to be done before 10am as the heat and humidity really picks up after mid morning.
Take the opportunity to visit Asia’s Number 1 Mixed Martial Arts Gym Evolve MMA. “Headquartered in Singapore, Evolve Mixed Martial Arts is Asia’s premier championship brand for martial arts. It has the most number of World Champions on the planet. Named as the #1 ranked martial arts organization in Asia by CNN, Yahoo! Sports, FOX Sports, ESPN StarSports, Tokyo Times, MMA Mania, The Fight Nation, Asian MMA, Combat Asia, Middleeasy, and many other leading authorities, Evolve MMA aims to deliver the best martial arts instruction available anywhere in the world.”
Just keep in mind a casual visit will take a chunk of change. Its approx $60 Australian Dollars to participate in a group session. Drop Ins are welcome, simply arrive 15 mins before the session begins. The timetable is extensive and offers sessions throughout the day.
Eat like a local at Maxwell Hawker Centre. Anything you eat here will be delicious. We went for the reknowned Ah Tian Hainanese Chicken and Rice but stayed for pretty much anything and everything else on offer! Hawker Centres in Singapore maintain high standards in food handling hygiene so you can order and eat confidently and with curiosity. Stall holders were friendly and more than happy to answer questions about menu items and make suggestions. Expect to pay between $3.50-$12.00 per dish.
If you want to eat like a local but are desperate for air conditioning to beat the humidity we recommend you get to Bugis Street Mall and try the food junction found inside (there are many, many levels to explore). We simply looked for stalls with long lines and joined in on the action.
For a more upmarket experience, you will be spoiled for choice in Singapore. There are a multitude of beautiful restaurants to choose from, many international chefs have come to Singapore to open eateries and fine dining establishments.
Our favourites included:
Cocktails: Lantern Bar at The Fullerton Bay Hotel for an incredible view
For shared plates: Spago at Marina Bay Sands
Funky Dinner in an Iconic Location: Burger and Lobster at Raffles Hotel
We stayed in two different hotels and had excellent experiences in both! We highly recommend each of them – the choice will come down to budget.
Luxury: The Fullerton Bay Hotel
Impeccable service and a beautiful experience. We could not fault this hotel.
Boutique: Naumi Hotel
We really believe we found a hidden gem. The rooftop pool is incredible and the rooms were clean, comfortable and quirky. A great offering by Small Luxury Hotels.
Other things to do:
Walk everywhere! The streets are safe, clean and signage is highly visible making it easy to navigate.
Sentosa Island is just a short trip from the Mainland. We had a fun day at Universal Studios – to be honest we knocked it on its head in a few hours! You can zip through without the endless lines youd expect in the USA. Dont miss Haji Lane for great shopping and a bright, bold, visual experience as well as Chinatown and Little India and the Gardens By The Bay.
You might want to think twice about visiting Central Perk. This is a cafe themed around the tv series friends. Its fun to take a look around and snap a photo on the couch but be prepared for very average coffee at a very steep price! If you are a diehard fan – go head and soak up the cliche fun of it all. If not, your time and money will be better spent elsewhere.
For inspiration and top travel tips we followed @singaporeinsiders on Instagram and relied on Daniels’ Food Diary blog for honest reviews and recommendations for eateries that took us off the touristy path and into more authentic experiences.