Are you planning to visit Singapore this year? Maybe you’ve already booked your ticket to the Lion City.
Either way, you’re looking for a Singapore travel guide that will help make your holiday more enjoyable and convenient.
Luckily, you’ve found the most useful Singapore travel guide for 2017!
We’ve put together everything you need to know, including how to get around Singapore, must visit attractions, hotels, restaurants, and shopping destinations.
Getting Around Singapore
Singapore’s finely constructed transportation systems make traveling and commuting within the city-state incredibly fast and efficient.
Not only is it easy to get around the city, but it’s also very affordable.
Singapore’s MRT (mass rapid transit) system is probably the fastest way to zip around the city.
The extensive rail network means that most of Singapore’s key attractions are within walking distance from an MRT station.
The MRT also operates to and from Changi International Airport for added convenience. Train fares are inexpensive, ranging from $0.78 – $2.28, depending on the length of the journey.
Here is a look at the MRT Train System Map.
Taxis are comfortable and especially handy if you want to go to places not accessible by the bus or MRT.
Cabs in Singapore are metered, but there may be surcharges depending on when, where, and which company’s taxi you board.
To get a rough idea of the final fare, check with the driver on the surcharges and ask for a receipt at the end of the trip.
Singapore’s bus system has an extensive network of routes covering most places in Singapore and is the most economical way to get around, as well as being one of the most scenic.
Most buses in Singapore have air-conditioning, a great comfort in a tropical city. Fares range from $0.77 – $2.62 with card fare and $1.40 – $3.00 with cash fare, depending on the distance of travel.
Here you can find out which buses you need to take and from which stations with the Journey Planner.
For more convenience you can purchase a Singapore Tourist Pass, which is a special EZ-Link stored-value card that allows you unlimited travel via public buses, MRT, and LRT.
The price for an EZ-Link card for one day is (S$10), two days (S$16) or three days (S$20).
The cards can be bought at the TransitLink Ticket Office at the following MRT stations: Changi Airport, Orchard, Chinatown, City Hall, Raffles Place, Ang Mo Kio, HarbourFront, Bugis, Lavender and Bayfront.
Must Visit Attractions In Singapore
Now that you’ve flagged down a taxi or just purchased your EZ-Link card, it’s time to figure out where in the city you’d like to go.
Singapore offers a wide range of attractions to visit that will make your vacation worth while.
These destinations are not only must-see attractions but they are sure to take your Instagram photos to the next level.
Marina Bay Sands
Surely you’ve seen photos of this famous building with the ship in the sky, or probably even snapshots of the world famous infinity swimming pool looking over Singapore.
Marina Bay Sands is one of the top destinations that AIP suggests to visit. Travel blogger Wandering Wolf Child says, “You can’t go to Singapore without a trip to Marina Bay Sands Hotel.
Whether it’s a drink at the sky-bar or a hotel room for the night, the views are spectacular and so is the atmosphere.
Giving off a different vibe from the business district in the city of Singapore, Sentosa Island is an entertainment and leisure destination to bring all kinds of fun to your travels.
Whether you’re in search of thrills and spills or a relaxed beachside afternoon, a visit to Sentosa Island is sure to spoil you in countless ways. Nicola Quinn, from Go4TravelBlog.com, suggests some must-do things to do while in Sentosa Island.
“This action-packed theme park is just as good as it’s Orlando sibling and offers an intoxicating mix of high-octane rides and family-friendly live shows.”
Adventure Cove Waterpark
“Not only is this park modern and stunning, just like the rest of Singapore, but it’s also home to Southeast Asia’s first hydro-magnetic coaster.”
“At Siloso Beach you can do nothing more than lie your towel down on the soft white sand, and work on your tan before cooling off with a dip in the shimmering aquamarine water.”
Checkout Nicola’s full article on the “6 Must-Do Things on Sentosa Island, Singapore.”
Wondering where to drink and paint the town red in Singapore? You’ll be hard-pressed to find a place better to go than Clarke Quay, one of the most lively and vibrant nightlife spots this city-state has to offer.
From iconic dance clubs, to live music venues, and rooftop bars, everyone is sure to find a spot for an electrifyingly great night.
Popular venues in Clarke Quay to not miss are:
Attica: a popular and stylish nightclub for lovers of R&B and chart toppers.
Crazy Elephant: an excellent spot for listening to Rock and Roll cover bands.
Cuba Libre: a favorite locale for Latin music lovers to dance the night away.
A buzzing and ethnic district, Little India is a historic area that shows off the best of Singapore’s Indian community from it’s vibrant culture, astonishing cuisine, and incredible shopping areas.
Now Boarding by Changi Airport, suggests travelers to explore the sari shops and spice stalls in the local markets, and visit the thriving Sri Veeramakaliamman Hindu temple.
Then when you’re hungry, they recommend to head to the Tekka Centre on Serangoon Road for some delicious biryani.
Singapore’s historic Chinatown is a bustling mix of old and new, filled with traditional shops and markets, as well as cool stores and cafes.
The cramped five-foot walkways, dingy alleys, and raucous street hawkers are relics of Chinatown’s old past.
This district of Singapore has a lot to offer from shopping at Pagoda Street, visiting the temples and mosques on South Bridge Road, and eating the famous “char kay teow” (stir-fried noodles) at Chinatown Food Street.
Singapore Zoo & Night Safari
For a family friendly activity, head over to the Singapore Zoo to see a beautiful award-winning wildlife park, where animals can roam freely in their natural habitat.
This 26-hectare park, home to over 300 species of mammals, birds, and reptiles, has provided exciting wildlife experiences to visitors for over 40 years.
Ticket prices for Singapore Zoo are as follows. Adults: $33, Children (3-12 years old): $22.
If you purchase your tickets online, you can save up to 25%. More information can be found here.
Instead of going to a nightclub when the sun goes down, you can pop into another popular nightspot, the Night Safari.
As dusk falls, you’re welcomed into a world of nocturnal creatures and their dimly-lit homes. Opened in 1994 and located next to the Singapore Zoo, the Night Safari is the world’s first safari park for nocturnal animals.
Sally from our3kidsVtheworld highly suggests visiting the parks. She says “If I were to do it again I would visit Singapore Zoo on one day and spend all day there, then the next day I would visit the River Safari and the Night Safari starting at 2pm.”
Ticket prices for Night Safari are as follows. Adults: $45, Children (3-12 years old): $30.
If you purchase your tickets online, you can save up to 25%. More information can be found here.
Gardens By The Bay
Located next to the Marina Reservoir and spanning over 101 hectares of reclaimed land, Gardens By The Bay provides mesmerizing waterfront views.
The park consists of two main areas, Bay South Garden and Bay East Garden, and Bay Central Garden acts as a link between the two.
Attractions to experience while visiting are the Flower Dome, Cloud Forest, Supertree Grove, and OCBC Skyway.
The standard ticket prices which includes access to the Flower Dome & Cloud Forest are as follows. Adults: $28, Children (3-12 years old): $15.
Bay East Garden, Supertree Grove, and Children’s Garden have free admission. Access to other attractions require additional fees.
More information can be found here.
Established in 1859 and covering 60 acres of land, the Botanic Gardens is Singapore’s first UNESCO Heritage site, joining the ranks of iconic landmarks such as The Great Wall of China and Cambodia’s Angkor Wat.
Ryanne from Herz’s Travels says that “If you are a plant lover, you will definitely like the Botanical Gardens. It is a beautiful park with wonderful gardens.” There are also a host of restaurants and cafes for visitors to enjoy during their tour of the Botanic Gardens.
The Botanic Gardens offers free admission for both children and adults.
The National Orchid Garden ticket prices are as follows. Adults: $5, Students: $1, Senior Citizens (60 years and older): $1, Children (below 12 years old): Free.
More information can be found here.
Hotels To Stay In Singapore
Don’t worry, we didn’t forget to talk about hotel accommodations during your stay in Singapore.
In Asia, there are many different kinds of travelers including business people, families, backpackers, solo travelers, and of course everyone has different preferences and budgets when it comes to hotels.
So, we’ve suggested a range of accommodations from luxury (5-Star), mid-range (3-4 Star), and budget (1-2 Star) hotels in Singapore for your convenience.
Located in the Colonial/Civic district, the Raffles Hotel is arguably the most iconic hotel in Singapore.
As James Clark from Nomadic Notes said, “There are mainly high-end hotels around here with the most famous being the Raffles Hotel.” You can also swing by and enjoy a Singapore Sling which was created at the Raffle Hotel.
The daily rate at the Raffles Hotel starts from $835.
Marina Bay Sands Hotel
As discussed before, Marina Bay Sands is a must-see destination in Singapore to experience.
James Clark also had to say, “Marina Bay Sands is the most recognizable hotel in Singapore with it’s giant swimming pool straddled across it’s three towers overlooking the bay. If you want to splurge on a memorable stay then this is the place to do it.”
The daily rate at Marina Bay Sands Hotel starts from $529.
Situated right beside the Bugis Junction, the InterContinental Singapore is another hotel that we suggest travelers to visit.
Cheryl Tiu, an international journalist and multimedia personality, says, “It might seem like a bold statement, but InterContinental Singapore is currently my favorite hotel in the Lion City.”
The daily rate at InterContinental Singapore Hotel starts from $344.
Studio M Hotel
For a more affordable accommodation option, but yet still has a stylish setting, Studio M Hotel is a great option.
Food and travel blogger, Seth Lui says, “Studio M provides innovative accommodation with modern living spaces to appeal to a new generation of travelers.” Studio M is also the first fully loft-inspired hotel in Singapore.
The daily rate at Studio M Hotel starts from $120.
Oasis Hotel Novena
Receiving a Certificate of Excellence for 2016 from TripAdvisor, Oasis Hotel Novena is another inexpensive accommodation choice while still receiving top quality service.
Seth Lui also goes on to talk about Oasis Novena saying, “located just two stops from Orchard connected via Novena MRT station, as well as having a couple of malls walking distance away, convenience is at your finger tips.
The daily rate at Oasis Hotel Novena starts from $175.
This 4 storey 29 room boutique hotel, which was designed by award winning agencies, is also an affordable accommodation option.
“It’s whimsical and quirky rooms are one of the most interesting boutique hotel concepts in Singapore for a staycation,” says Seth Lui.
The daily rate at Wanderlust starts from $129.
A chain of budget hotels with 6 different locations throughout Singapore that caters to both leisure and business travelers.
Maryann Taylor from MakeMyTrip.com calls Hotel 81, “One of Singapore’s top budget hotels.”
The daily rate at Hotel 81 starts from $63.
This 5 floor 84 room hotel is a great option for budget travelers. Located in the Bugis district of Singapore, Fragrance Hotel offers a cosy, affordable, and modern accommodation.
The daily rate at Fragrance Hotel starts from $82.
Located in the heart of Chinatown, Wink Hostel is a charming 3-storey accommodation for travelers looking for an inexpensive option. Both sleeping pods and dormitories are available for guests.
The daily rate at Wink Hostel starts from $76.
Places To Eat In Singapore
You’ve decided on your accommodation, but you still need to figure out where to eat so you can keep your energy up for exploring Singapore.
We’ve got you covered by providing you with different dining options including upscale restaurants, midrange eats, hawker food centres, and the best cafes.
A One Michelin Star restaurant located at The Ritz-Carlton, Millenia, providing exquisite and contemporary Cantonese cuisine. The lunch menu costs ($88++ per person) and dinner menu costs ($118++ per person).
CUT By Wolfgang Puck
Found at The Shoppes at Marina Bay Sands, CUT Singapore is the third location for celebrity chef Wolfgang Puck’s award winning steakhouse. Average prices for dinner at Cut are around $228.
Also located at The Ritz-Carlton, Millenia, Colony is an international buffet restaurant providing “live kitchen showcases.”
From Sunday – Thursday dinner prices are $78 for adults and $39 for children (6-12 years old). On Friday and Saturday dinner prices are $88 for adults and $44 for children.
Located on the west side of Singapore, a Japanese sushi restaurant destination. Kinsa Sushi presents a new concept, offering healthier menu options. Average prices for a meal at Kinsa Sushi are around $33.
Offering old style American food, Little Diner can be found on Bukit Timah road on the west side of Singapore.
The Ranting Panda says, “this is a good spot for a good gathering without breaking the bank and best of all, you get to enjoy your food in hearty options.” Average prices at Little Diner are around $32.
Found at the Marina Bay Financial Centre, NUDE Seafood is another affordable restaurant option. Average prices for a meal at NUDE Seafood are around $30.
Maxwell Food Centre
Conveniently located in the Central Business District, Maxwell Food Centre is one of Singapore’s most famous local hawker centres, with over 100 stalls to choose from.
Popular dishes to try here are Tian Tian Chicken Rice and Jin Hua Fish Head Bee Hoon. Prices for meals here average from $3-$8.
Morgan’s Go Traveling love the food at hawker centre saying, “We were lucky that the closest bus to our hotel stopped directly outside our favorite hawker centre in Singapore called Maxwells.”
Chinatown Complex Food Centre
Another famous hawker centre worth visiting is Chinatown Complex Food Centre, found right where you guessed it, Chinatown. Popular dishes to feast on here are barbecue stingray, char kway teow, and chili crab. Prices for meals here also range from $2-$8.
Where To Get Your Coffee Fix
Located on Sultan Gate Road, you can find A.R.C. Coffee, who roast their own coffee beans in a mini roasting room on site. Not only do they take pride from their coffee but they also sell food including a pulled-pork burger, pasta, truffle fries, and delicious sweets.
Old Hen Coffee Bar
Found on Rangoon Road, Old Hen Coffee Bar is a favorite amongst Singaporean locals. Food and travel blogger Nikki Chua says to not miss out on their homemade waffles, which she ate twice and doesn’t disappoint.
Conveniently situated in Clarke Quay on Hong Kong Street, Ronin Cafe is another popular cafe destination. Food and travel blogger Jacqueline Ong says, “A visit to Ronin isn’t complete without trying their signature minted mocha.”
Where To Go Shopping
Now that you’ve found your accommodation, gone sight-seeing, and grabbed a bite to eat, it’s time to go shopping for souvenirs.
Yes, of course we’ve got suggestions for places that you can shop till you drop! Here are some upscale malls, shopping complexes, and market style centres.
Located on Orchard Road, one of Asia’s most famous shopping streets, ION Orchard is an upscale mall and the jewel of this shopping district. ION Orchard is located directly beside Orchard MRT Station.
Other upscale malls worth visiting are: Paragon, VivoCity, Knightsbridge Mall, Ngee Ann City, The Shoppes at Marina Bay Sands.
Quickly becoming one of Singapore’s must visit retail destinations, providing various shopping, dining, and entertainment experiences. You can get to Suntec City from both Esplanade MRT and Promenade MRT Stations.
Other shopping complexes worth visiting are: Far East Plaza, Anchorpoint Shopping Centre, and Simlim Square.
One of the most famous shopping markets in Singapore is Mustafa Centre, which is located in Little India.
Travel blogger Thei Zervaki says, “it is a shopping heaven for locals and travelers alike, as you will find pretty much everything at cheap prices.” The nearest MRT Station to Mustafa Centre is Farrer Park.
Other markets worth visiting are: Bugis Junction, Chinatown, Lucky Plaza, Tekka Centre, and Little India Arcade.