Southeast Asia has risen into a tourist hotspot in recent years. Its rapid development coexists with beautiful scenery. This is why it's easy to understand why its many island countries continue to captivate tourists from all over the world.
One of the countries perpetually in any traveler’s bucket list is Singapore. It’s well-developed, beautiful, and tourist-friendly. It is truly cosmopolitan, perfect for tourists who want to see racial and cultural diversity in action.
For those of you who are planning to go to Singapore, or still haven’t decided where to go in your Southeast Asia trip, here are some Singapore tourist spots you surely wouldn’t want to miss.
For such a small country, Singapore sure speaks of modernity, development, and luxury. Case in point is one of its two enormous resorts – Marina Bay Sands. This resort complex costs a whopping US$ 5.7 billion to build. It is actually the most expensive building in the world when it opened in 2010.
The Marina Bay Sands resort complex houses a number of establishments. These establishments include a hotel, high-end luxury brands, and a mall with a canal running through it. The complex also houses a casino, an indoor skating rink, a theater, a convention center, and a variety of restaurants and cafes.
For the artsy, one can visit the ArtScience Museum inside the resort complex. One may also visit the Marina Bay Sands Skypark, a great vantage point for taking in the sights of the entire city. From the Skypark, you can get a good view of the double helix bridge, the port, and the Gardens by the Bay.
If you’ve never been to China but want to visit it one day, then Singapore’s Chinatown will surely be a treat. And with Singapore’s diverse demographic, it is not surprising to find a hint of authentic Chinese culture in the country.
The Chinatown is as authentic as it gets. It has numerous mom-and-pop stores at every corner. It also has restaurants serving authentic Chinese cuisine and bright red lanterns adorning every street. The district is kept alive by the excitement and the hustle of the vendors, visitors, and residents.
While in Chinatown, you might want to check out the Chinese Heritage Centre where you will find the famous Sri Mariamman Hindu temple. And if you really enjoy visiting temples, then you might also want to drop by the Buddha Tooth Relic Temple. A drum ceremony is performed there at around 4 AM.
But while heritage markers are installed all over the district, don’t mistake Chinatown for a very old-school area. In fact, the district is quite modern and is home to the uber-trendy Ann Siang Hill area.
Singapore is not a famous beach destination like its neighboring countries. Even so, it surely has something to offer to all the beach lovers out there. Located on an island off Singapore’s southern coast, Sentosa features a beach, an aquarium, a fort, and a host of other hotels and establishments.
For those of you who can’t resist having some fun in the sun, then Siloso Beach is the perfect destination for you. Here, you can enjoy swimming along with other water sports such as kayaking and skim-boarding.
If you want a unique experience, then you might want to drop by the Underwater World aquarium. On top of seeing a variety of sea creatures, you can also go swimming with dolphins there. Another must-see in the island is the famous statue Merlion, atop of which provides a panoramic view of the city.
Another attractive feature of Sentosa Island is Fort Siloso. In addition to its beauty, this fort is also the only preserved fort in Singapore, making it an extremely significant landmark.
Singapore doesn’t have many natural resources, but it more than makes up for it by building a lot of green spaces. The latest addition is Gardens by the Bay, which has been open for less than a decade. It is built in Central Singapore, on reclaimed land, and can be seen from atop Marina Bay Sands.
Gardens by the Bay consists of three different but equally picturesque gardens: Bay Central, Bay East, and Bay South. Bay Central is a garden with a waterfront walk connecting the two other gardens. Bay South, the largest garden, showcases tropical horticulture. Bay East is still being constructed.
While in the Gardens by the Bay, you would also want to see the iconic Supertree Grove. This grove features clusters of futuristic tree-like structures reaching 50 meters. These are designed to perform environmentally sustainable functions.
You should also check out the Cloud Forest Dome, which houses the world’s tallest indoor waterfall. The Dome also provides visitors with a brief overview of biodiversity.
As I’ve pointed out several times in this article, Singapore is very diverse and cosmopolitan. In addition to its immense Chinese influence, the country also has a rich Indian heritage. A testament to this is Little India, which is located near the equally beautiful and famous Arab Quarter.
The enclave that houses Little India dates back to over 200 years. Note that the Indian community has a rich history in Singapore. In fact, the name of the country itself is derived from two Sanskrit words which translate to “Lion City”.
At present, Little India is a thriving, colorful scene where one can get a glimpse of authentic Indian culture. The place is filled with restaurants and food stalls where you can try out Indian cuisine. It also has temples, most famous of which is Sri Veeramakaliamman Temple where you can observe worship.
Traditional holidays are also celebrated in Little India and visitors are very much welcome to take part in the festivities.
If you are not afraid of heights and want to see all the best sights in Singapore, then the Singapore Flyer is the perfect tourist spot for you. This landmark is a giant Ferris wheel, which is currently the largest in the world. It is 165 meters high and provides a breathtaking 360 degrees panoramic view of Singapore.
Singapore Flyer is located in Marina Bay, right next to the Retail Terminal. It has three levels, all of which have a wide selection of shops and food outlets. The Flyer also features a central atrium which leads to a lush tropical forest, as well as an outdoor theater with different stage shows.
There are several different packages you can choose from. Each of the packages allows you to be pampered while enjoying the Singapore skyline. All of the packages include access to the multimedia Journey of Dreams exhibit. Flights last 30 minutes each and run from dawn to dusk.
Another thing Singapore is well known for is shopping. Its shopping districts are truly world class, enticing consumers from all over the globe to drop by and go on a shopping spree. If you’re planning to go to Singapore to shop, then Orchard Road is a great place to start.
This neighborhood boasts a stunning 22 malls and six department stores. That said, you surely wouldn’t have any trouble looking for designer brands. For those looking for some entertainment in the middle of their shopping spree, don’t worry, because there are four movie theaters in the area.
Foodies will surely enjoy visiting Orchard Road as well. This is especially true considering the numerous restaurants serving international cuisine in his posh shopping district.
Singapore may not be a tropical paradise as the rest of Southeast Asia, but it doesn’t mean that the country has no tourist spots to boast about. On the contrary, the country offers quite a lot of attractions and destinations.
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