As you travel lovelies probably know, I’ve lost my heart somewhere in Southeast Asia. And it all started with a research position I filled in Singapore in 2010. Wow, this has been my very first time away from Europe and my first long-haul flight ever. When I stepped out the aircraft, I immediately got hit by the famous tropical heat and a really special smell. Later, I discovered that it must have been the closed-by hawker food stalls that I smelled for the first time. So to say, the whole Singapore experience blowed my mind away, whether it was the variety of tastes, the diversity of people or the completely new perspectives in culture, religion, and life that I was pleased to uncover during the next months.
In the years after, I travelled many times back to Singapore to meet friends and visit the city. To be honest, I’ve never seen a country that reinvents, improves, and changes its face so quickly. On every visit, Singapore really made me feel exploring a brand new modern city. However, this is only one reason why Singapore is such an interesting place for you to visit. Besides, Singapore’s great geographical location and outstanding international airport Changi make Singapore a perfect stopover spot for your travels through SEA, babe. The many other reasons will follow down below when I introduce the ultimately best spots in Singapore that you definitely would want to visit on your next travels. And yes, Singapore is such a great place to travel solo to and especially as a woman! Super safe, very comfortable to get around, and so much to explore just in one big city!
Note: COVID-19 pandemic might affect the activities described below. They might get cancelled or do not take place at your time of visit. Please check the providers’ pages carefully and regularly as things might change on short notice. Check out the government’s website from your home country for the latest immigration updates that apply to you when entering Singapore.
1 Stroll along Marina Bay
You definitely heard about the magnificent Marina Bay Sands hotel and its breathtaking infinity pool. Apart from a hotel stay (which I’ve not done yet to be honest with you travel lovelies), the Marina Bay area allows for so many other amazing activities. On top of the hotel there is the SkyPark Observation Deck offering outstanding views over Singapore: You can spot the durian lookalike Esplanade – Theatres on the Bay, the Singapore Flyer if you are in for a ride with a view, and the iconic trees at Gardens by the Bay. The colorful trees are a true adventure during the days and nights when the lights start to shine. At OCBC Skywalk you can enjoy the trees from the top. At both Flower Dome and Cloud Forest impressive plants and nature will await you.
For a special panoramic view over the entire Marina Bay promenade, head over to Gardens by the Bay East on the other side of the river.
2 Meet the Merlion
The Merlion is the unbeatable landmark of Singapore and is composed by both a mermaid and a lion reflecting the closeness to the sea and the true power of the city state. The Merlion is located at Merlion Park across the Marina Bay. Taking a picture of this Merlion will have the breathtaking Marina Bay Sands architecture right in the back. I’m so sure, you will love it, sis! In the evenings they have amazing light and water shows over the river promenade. They are free and best viewed from all around the Marina Bay area.
Did you know that there is another much bigger Merlion in Singapore? Check out the description for Sentosa Island and you are supposed to meet the second Merlion on your way.
3 Discover the Colonial Era along the Singapore River
Next to Marina Bay area, you can already spot the many skyscrapers and the financial district of Singapore. Starting at Cavenagh Bridge crossing the Singapore River next to The Fullerton Hotel Singapore a nice walk awaits you in front of Singapore’s outstanding skyline and all along the river. Passing old colonial buildings, museums, and governmental places, you reach the Statue of Sir Stamford Raffles. He reached the shore in 1819 and is the founder of modern Singapore.
And all along the river you’ll find nice places to eat and drink and spend the evenings to their best. Further, you can also explore this area by boat over the Singapore River during your Singapore travel. Several stops are available and tickets can be found here.
And to complement your colonial experience, I can recommend you to join a High Tea Ceremony or Afternoon Tea Experience (e.g. at Pollen or Brasserie Les Saveurs). This is what makes your travel to Singapore so special and gives you the taste of ancient colonial times.
4 Explore China Town, Little India, and Arab Street
This is definitely the most important facet that I love about Singapore, it’s the lovely Singaporeans! So many different cultures living together and having their own district to cherish the beauty of their ethnic backgrounds. As a foreigner from Europe you might understand how colorful the streets must have appeared to me and how fascinating it always is to step from one district into the other that literally makes each unique culture coming alive. Personally, I love the great food at Chinatown Food Street and Chinese shops in Chinatown, the colorful houses and boutiques and the Sri Veeramakaliamman Temple in Little India, and the street art at Haji Ln (great instagrammable spots btw girl) and the Sultan Mosque around Arab Street.
Especially dining in these different districts allows you to dive deeper into culture and you are happy to meet locals. Besides, the unique cultures get cultivated in the Singaporeans’ daily lives, e.g. during Chinese New Year as it gets celebrated in Chinatown. Love, if you are in Singapore in February, you should not miss this festive season!
5 Walk to Sentosa Island
Sentosa Island is as close to the Singapore city as it can be. Sentosa Island is like a big amusement park and offers so many different options to get entertained: From an aquarium to beaches and golf courses and of course the Universal Studios Singapore and so so much more. What I totally recommend you is a beautiful stroll starting from HarbourFront metro station all along the harbor on the Sentosa Boardwalk. Once reached Sentosa Island you have great views over Singapore making your travel so valuable. Continue your walk over the island, enjoy the white sandy beaches, have a drink at a beach bar, and then head back from any of the cable car stations that bring you back directly to Vivo City/HarbourFront. When entering at Merlion Station you are going to meet the largest Merlion sculpture in Singapore, so be ready for this.
6 Sip the Singapore Sling
Singapore is of course infamous for its Singapore Sling cocktail! It was invented back in 1915 at the iconic Long Bar at the Raffles Hotel and once dedicated to women! Since today you can grab this amazing cocktail at exactly that bar with its dark furniture and fans teleporting you straight back into Colonial times. Be prepared for some crowds at the entrance but the extra waiting time is totally worth it. For some extra fun, they’ll bring you a pack of roasted unpeeled peanuts to your table. You crack the peanuts and simply throw the shells on the ground. This is Long Bar! Besides, you can visit the beautiful inner courtyard of the Raffles Hotel with lots of nice places and possibilities to eat and drink the very fine way.
7 Try food at Hawker Centres
Food in general and hawker centres in special form a very unique part of Singapore’s cultural lifestyle. Singapores’ hawker centres are open-air complexes housing many different food stalls with centred seating areas. The variety of food is simply incredible, extraordinarily tasty, and absolutely reasonably priced. The cultural melting pot comes truly alive at exactly those food places. So your visit during your travel to Singapore is a must, girl! There are hawker centres literally spread all over Singapore. My two favorite ones are the Maxwell Food Centre and the Food Centre in Chinatown.
Singapores’ famous national dishes are Singapore Laksa (spicy noodle soup) and Singapore-style Chicken Rice. The later one got Michelin-awarded in exactly a hawker centre! You can find the awarded food stall of chef Chan Hon Meng located in Chinatown. Further, he expanded his chicken rice business to several stalls across Singapore and even overseas.
8 Enjoy nightlife at Clarke Quay
Dear party animals, here you go with an entire district packed with restaurants, bars, clubs, and a vibrant nightlife. Around the metro station Clarke Quay you’ll find everything you need for a great night out. Truly one of the best clubs (even worldwide) is Zouk that is already cherishing the Singapore nights for the past 30 years and welcomes famous DJs from all around the world to party it all out together with you.
Sipping a drink on top of the city is also possible at several rooftop bars. They are merely located at Marina Bay area. First one is the skybar at CÉ LA VIE restaurant on top of Marina Bay Sands hotel. You enter the rooftop bar via elevator inside of the hotel. Be prepared for clothing requirements and reservations. But you are looking gorgeous, so no worries to get denied! Another great rooftop bar and definitely my favorite one is located at the Kinki Restaurant + Bar at Customs House. Grab some amazing sushi bites in the restaurant and continue with fine drinks at the rooftop bar, sounds great right? Views over the Marina Bay area are inclusive and I can totally recommend this place!
What about going out alone in Singapore, girl? It’s awesome and I can highly recommend it to you! No worries about all those potential risks, rather embrace those challenges. Everything that you need to know? I get you covered, here are my tips for you to go out alone & then throw yourself out there.
9 Go shopping at Orchard Road
Besides food, Singaporeans love to go shopping! Across the city state there are more than unbelievable 150 malls. Orchard Road marks the center of shopping indulgence, really covering one entire road with shops and malls right next to each other. From luxury brands to local providers and international budget chains, this road has them all. ION Orchard is one of the best locations there. Other great shopping malls are easily reachable with public metro, e.g. at the harbor front you’ll find Vivo City the largest mall throughout Singapore with hundreds of shops, food places, and entertainment options. Singapore travel ensures stuffed suitcases for sure.
10 Embrace Nature Life
Visiting a big city sometimes requests for relaxing time in between. These times you can perfectly spend in the amazing green areas Singapore offers. If it’s the Marina Bay area (e.g. Gardens by the Bay) or the Singapore Botanic Gardens (it includes a magical garden full of orchid flowers, don’t miss it!). You can also get yourself a picnic basket from BEE’S KNEES and relax in the gardens. I can definitely suggest you to visit both faces of Singapore on your travel: The city one and the nature one.
Besides you can take a deep breath and hike in the Bukit Timah Nature Reserve. If you’re lucky you can spot some wild monkeys. For all animal lovers, Singapore Zoo is an outstanding experience. They also offer a Night Safari to visit the species during nighttime which I can totally recommend you, babe.
11 Visit Mount Faber
Centrally located, Mount Faber offers an excellent panoramic view over Singapore’s business district and harbor front. Mount Faber Park is one of the oldest parks in Singapore and comes with interesting trails and viewpoints. It makes it also a great spot for your running or workout exercises. You can easily reach Mount Faber from HarbourFront metro station via cable car.
Further north, you’ll find Telok Blangah Hill Park that also comes with great city views and perfect trails for your physical activities. In both parks you’ll find the green oasis of Singapore. Stroll along the trails, pass little white houses, palm trees, and breath in and out the jungle vibe until you want to enjoy more of the city life again.
12 Fly out from Changi Airport
When entering and sadly leaving Singapore you will not miss the just marvelous international airport Changi. It’s a sightseeing spot itself. No wonder it was rated as the best airport in the world for many years in a row (World Airport Award). At Changi Airport you’ll find a magical butterfly garden, a movie theatre, and even a swimming pool besides the classical airport features and the outstandingly great passenger services. Additionally, I warmly recommend Singapore Airlines as your preferred way to travel Singapore: Enjoy their exceptional service while sipping a complimentary Singapore Sling cocktail on board (of course available in economy class). Cheers!
Hey! You would want to intensify your travel experiences and make memorable experiences? Here’s my ultimate how-to!
// Disclaimer // I was not paid for my reviews and recommendations mentioned in this blog post. The views and opinions expressed in this blog post are purely my own and can be considered as honest evaluations.
What is your favorite travel spot in Singapore, love? Please leave your comments and thoughts below or share them on social media @storiesoutofthesuitcase. Happy Traveling ♥