A blend of East and West, old and new, natural and man-made, and a food lovers' paradise
Singapore’s diversity has created a dining scene that is second to none. Demand, sophisticated tastes and high expectations mean there are myriad choices, with high standards at all levels from hawker fare to fine dining. And while exploring Singapore’s foodie trails, you’ll experience the city-state’s cultural melting pot. Combine sight-seeing trips to world-class landmarks like Gardens by the Bay, Marina Bay Sands and Resorts World Sentosa with fact-finding feasts in the ethnic precincts of Chinatown, Kampong Glam and Little India.
To enjoy the lush greenery for which the Garden City is known, head to the northern tip of the island. Explore Sungei Buloh Wetland Reserve – where you may cross paths with monitor lizards and migratory birds – and seek out farms and organic restaurants in the nearby Kranji countryside. Singapore is a well-connected city, so you can feel free to wander far and wide without worrying you’ll end up stranded.
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Cher Yam Tian is said to have created the first incarnation of the chilli crab back in 1956. Her son Roland Lim reveals more about the origins of Singapore's national dish.
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From inspired mod-Sin feasts to labour-intensive heritage dishes, private dining kitchens in Singapore are adding serious flavour to an already diverse culinary scene. And with some spots having up to six-month waiting lists, it’s clear foodies are lapping it up.
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Check out our top five brunch spots in Singapore and enjoy a unique twist to this early afternoon feast.
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Things to do
Dining at every level
For a top-class fine dining experience, Restaurant André is in the heritage district bounded by Keong Saik Rd and Bukit Pasoh Rd. For quality casual dining, try one of the Imperial Treasure opens in new window chain or the House of Robert Timms opens in new window ‘Australian café’. For local favourites, Old Airport Road Food Centre and Chomp Chomp Food Centre are the places to go.
Estate of the artJust 10 minutes by car from Orchard Road, Singapore’s oldest housing estate retains its old-school flavour and adds to the nostalgia with hip boutiques, cafés and restaurants. Follow the well-kept residential walkways and explore the area’s speciality shops. Seek out Plain Vanilla Bakery opens in new window for bespoke cupcakes and Ting Heng Seafood Restaurant opens in new window for the quintessential zi char (Singaporean stir-fry) and steamboat meal.
The 25m-high TreeTop Walk opens in new window – a free-standing suspension bridge – is the towering highlight of MacRitchie Nature Reserve. The walk, which is suitable for people of all ages, stretches for 250m and offers a panoramic view of the forest canopy.
Hit the city's impressive museum trail and make stops at the Singapore Art Museum opens in new window, the National Museum of Singapore opens in new window, the Peranakan Museum opens in new window, and the Singapore Philatelic Museum opens in new window. The 3-Day Museum Pass opens in new window grants you unlimited access to all these local landmarks.
Take a trip to the Night Safari opens in new window, the world’s first nocturnal zoo. This award-winning park encompasses seven zones that visitors can experience via a guided tram ride. Marvel at the indoor exhibits and hit the walking trails to experience the nighttime world of over 1,000 safari animals.
Distance to city centre 17km
Taxi Taxis are plentiful and use their meters; they should get you to the city in around 20 minutes and cost SGD $20-30 (50% surcharge after midnight).
Train The MRT Changi Airport Shuttle opens in new window runs every 5-10 minutes. You’ll need to change to a Green Line MRT at Tanah Merah to get to the popular accommodation areas. The journey takes around 30 minutes and costs around SGD $2.
Shuttle The Changi Airport Shuttle opens in new window runs every 15 minutes during peak hours (30 minutes off-peak) with drop-offs to most city centre hotels. Tickets are SGD $9 and the trip takes around 30 minutes.
Bus Local buses 36 or 36A travel from the airport to the city centre every 7-10 minutes, taking around 90 minutes to reach Somerset MRT station.Back to top
When to go
Singapore has a tropical rainforest climate. There’s little variation in temperature, but different levels of precipitation throughout the year. The monsoon season runs from December to March and the hottest months are from April to July.
There are many free-for-all traditional festivals on the Singapore events calendar. Admire the Chinese New Year lantern displays at the River Hongbao carnival, observe the colourful Hindu procession Thaipusam, and watch Kampong Glam come alive during Hari Raya Haji. There are a number of world-class events to choose from, including the Singapore Formula 1 Grand Prix and the dusk-to-dawn dance music festival, ZoukOut.Back to top
Singapore has high-frequency bus opens in new window and train opens in new window networks. The MRT (subway) is the easiest, quickest way to get around most of the city, while the bus covers a more comprehensive range of routes. If you’re planning to do a bit of travel on public transport, consider getting a convenient EZ-Link opens in new window pre-paid card or a Singapore Tourist Pass opens in new window, which offers unlimited travel in one-, two-, or three-day options.Back to top