The best places to visit in Singapore

An exotic melting pot of cultures, this city of skyscrapers and forests, Singapore is perhaps one of the highest-ranking tourist destinations in the entire world, popular not just with tourists but also locals. It is perhaps one of the few places in the world where ‘East Meets West’ and has also been considered as a ‘City of the Future’ thanks to its large and busy city and versatile buildings as well as its famous Airways, Singapore Airlines which is ranked at the top airline in the world due to its service and flight entertainment known as ‘KrisWorld’. As a destination, a popular activity in Singapore is shopping and people seem to do it more for work than for a general basis which makes it all the more part of the Singaporean feeling. Despite being one of the most expensive places in the world, people from all over the world come to Singapore to make a living as well as a life/home, a way to enjoy the many attractions it bears and to be part of its world.
  1. Singapore River
    The river of Singapore is not just an estuary that flows into the ocean between the Indian Ocean and the South China sea, it is where Singapore’s history began in the late 13thCentury when the island was discovered by Sumatran Prince Sang Nila Utama. Upon coming up the river and entering the surrounding forests, he saw what he thought to be a Lion and since then, the Lion has become synonymous with Singapore. It is also the very river from where British Statesman (Sir) Stamford Raffles came up and made the island part of the British Empire and establish modern Singapore both through the British Empire’s rule of the island and through trading ports that even drew people from China and India, both of which make up the leading populations of Singapore. The statues of both Utama and Raffles are present near the river.
    A representation of Singapore’s history as a fishing village and the animal seen by Sang Nila Utama that was thought to have inspired Singapore’s name, this giant half-Lion half-fish animal which pours water from his mouth into the sea is a guardian of the Singapore River and one of the most recognizable icons throughout Singapore. In addition, there is also a smaller Merlion behind.
    Cavenagh Bridge
    One of the oldest bridges in Singapore, this is also the country’s only suspension bridge that is present in its original form. Originally known as the Edinburgh Bridge for the Duke of Edinburgh during British rule in Singapore, its name was changed to Cavenagh Bridge in honour of Major General Orefeur Cavenagh the last India-appointed Governor of the Straits Stettlements (British Terretories of which Singapore was among) who governed from 1859 to 1867. A notable symbol of the bridge is a Lion icon

    Bumboat Ride
    More of an activity, a boat ride on the river is both a cruise and a way to think back to Singapore’s history, particularly that of statesman and governor Stamford Raffles who was part of the East India Company and discovered the island in 1819 making it part of the British Empire. His post in the nation established it as modern Singapore and it attracted trading ports from all around the world, particularly from China and India, both of whose people have made up the majority of the population today
    Dragonboat Race
    This event takes place in June each year on the neighbouring Marina Bay. Participants from all over Asia compete with Singapore in a boat race involving boats which are designed like dragons. After the winning celebrations, more are followed with dragon and Lion dancing and a band playing their music.
  2. Singapore City
    Where once ginger and nutmeg grew, today thanks to British influence which is still present, Singapore thrives as a modern metropolis that develops at a rapid pace from jungle to world city in only 200 years. British rule in Singapore lasted between 1819 and 1959 although despite the nation being independent from then, that has not changed the fact that people from the United Kingdom are the leading western population of Singapore. Other westerners in Singapore include Americans and New Zealanders.

    Cricket Club
    This is one of the premier sports and social clubs in Singapore which was established in 1837. Over years the club has had three clubhouse buildings on the Padang. Today the SCC has over 3, 000 members. Cricket, rugby, football and field hockey are played on the Padang and the club also has facilities for squash, tennis, lawn bowls, billiards and snooker

    Parliament House
    Built between 1995 and 1999, the Parliament House is instantly recognizable for representing and housing the Parliament of Singapore One way to note what it stands for is the appearance of the Coat of Arms which was unveiled in 1959 and is a shield containing the flag of Singapore which is adorned by a Lion and a Tiger

    Orchard Road

    Located in the city’s Central Area, this is the most elegant and important shopping street, an upscale shopping centre where department stores and boutiques mingle with street vendors and flower sellers even malls. Notable shops include the Palais Renaissance, Ngee Ann City, Plaza Singapura Far East Plaza and Orchard Point
    SGNgee Ann CityOpened in 1993 and managed by the Ngee Ann Kongsi Charitable Foundation, this is one of the top shopping centres in the nation. Recognized by the Chinese Lions that are present in many areas here as well as its two 26-storey high towers, the highlights here apart from shopping are the largest Best Denki Japanese Electronics Store out of Japan as well as the High Commission of New Zealand

    Botanic Gardens

    Established in 1859, 100 years before Singapore gained independence from Britain, this is the only garden to be designated a World Heritage Site

    Raffles Hotel

    Named after Sir Stamford Raffles and is regarded as ‘The grand old lady of the East’. It was reopened in the early 1990s after extensive renovation. Exquisite jewellery shops and bars as well as a large peaceful inner courtyard enrich the old yet noble hotel décor that treated dukes, kings and presidents to its hospitality. The Ashanti bar is where for years it has been customary to throw peanut shells onto the floor and it is also popular for the Singapore Sling

    Orchid Garden

    A large number of blossoms make up this garden which is located within the Botanic Gardens and as its name suggests, it is well-known for its orchids. An air humidity of 80% is ideal for these plants Japanese koi a kind of fish are found in the gardens’ pond and can be watched and fed in addition to observing the flowers

  3. Singapore Zoo
    Probably the best zoo in the world with a successful breeding and conservation programme, this zoo is the first ‘open zoo’ in that animals such as Orangutans, Tigers and Lions do not feel confined or caged yet are meant to feel like they are in their natural environment because their environment is surrounded by a landscaped ditch thanks to cleverly designed viewing and living areas that blend in perfectly with the tropical vegetation. Popular ways to get around the zoo are by both foot and tram although it is the latter that is the most preferred here since tourists can almost feel as if they are on safari in the wild. Gift shops and fast food stores in addition to a small waterpark make the zoo an all-too exciting experience and a favourite pastime for many families

    Wild Africa

    Designed to look like a cross between Kenya and Southern Africa, this part of the zoo pays tribute to popular animals such as  White Rhinos, zebras, eland, nyala and (on every person’s Wishlist) the king of beasts

    – Cat Country
    Picking up from where Wild Africa ends, Cat Country as its name suggests is the way to the feline world and interestingly it starts from where the Lion enclosure in Wild Africa ends. The stars by far here are the leopards

    Tiger Trek
    The eponymous stars of this part of the zoo are White Tigers, a colour mutation of the Tiger we all know but no less magnificent than their familiar cousins. In the wild, thanks to their colour, White Tigers are inefficient hunters but at the zoo, they do not need to worry thanks to the meat they get. Being a rare sight in the wild, White Tigers normally occur not only due to a pigmentation that relegates their orange fur to complete white at birth but also in a few litters of proper Tigers, there is bound to be a white one. Here however there is a complete reversal as most of the Tigers here are White and only one orange-coloured Tiger is present here

    Elephants of Asia
    Here one can get up close to Asian Elephants all of which are female, some of whom come from Sri Lanka and Sumatra. It is possible to feed them and interact with them while observing their traits that they exhibit in the wild
    Fragile Forest
    This tropical part of the zoo is devoted to wildlife from all corners of the world in terms of equatorial rainforest

  4. Chinatown
    Representative of those Chinese who emigrated here in 1819 and those who have remained here have made Singapore their home, making Singapore the only place in the world out of China where ethnic Chinese constitute a majority of the population. Even before Singapore began to establish foreign relations, China was the first country that the nation ever had contact with, something that represents how everywhere in Singapore, even out of Chinatown, there is always a feeling or sense of China not just in people but also in customs, religion, food and so much more. Other Asian nations such as Indonesia, Japan and Korea (all of which are major countries when it comes to Singapore’s foreign relations) have integrated so much into Singapore through the above, that it is almost difficult to tell who is from which Asian country in Singapore
    Sri Mariamman Temple
    This is the oldest Hindu Temple in Singapore devoted to the Goddess Mariamman as well as the Hindu God Vishnu. For something that comes from the Indian Subcontinent, it is interesting to note that it is located in a Chinese enclave Weddings and religious processions are popular here and one can get an experience of Indian culture. Other popular Hindu Temples in Singapore include the Sri Thendayuthapani Temple, the Sri Krishnan Temple and the Sri Srinivasa Perumal Temple. Perhaps one thing that sets Hindu Temples in Singapore apart from those in India is that they are cleaner as compared to their contemporaries in the country of their origin


  5. Little India
    Indians are Singapore’s largest ethnic group next to Chinese, the first Indians coming to the nation during British rule, either as traders or being brought by the British to work. Everything here brings to mind the sight, sound and sense of the Indian Subcontinent thanks to its Hindu Temples, its sweet shops and jewellery shops
    Mustafa Centre
    Built in the early 1970s by Mustaq Ahmad, his father Haji (Mohammed) Mustafa and his uncle Samsudin, what started out as a retail store went on to become a versatile provider of all kinds of elements not only such as clothes but also music, movies, television, watches, electronics, footwear, toys and grocery. The biggest shopping highlight of Little India, its various products and services are a drawcard for both locals and tourists


  6. Jurong Bird Park
    Showcasing the world of birds, the avian residents here, much like the residents of the Singapore Zoo are made to feel at home in the wild. Unlike trams however that are an alternative apart from going on foot, trains carry people around the zoo if they do not feel like walking. Some of the popular birds here include parrots, flamingos and storks just to name a few


  7. Chinese Gardens
    An insight into Chinese and Japanese culture such as the star signs of the Zodiac and legendary Chinese figures such as Confucius


  8. Sentosa
    The first theme park in Singapore, Sentosa has been likened to Disneyland in Los Angeles in the United States. Much like the Singapore River, the history of Singapore as well as its connection to the ocean is a recurring theme here
    Merlion (no longer active as of 2019)
    The half-Lion half-fish icon of Singapore that once proudly stood to guard Sentosa
    Images of Singapore
    Showcases the history and culture of Singapore
    Secret Scented Garden
    Exotic smells in an wonderful garden


  9. Ngee Ann City
    A shopping and commercial centre that houses the High Commission of New Zealand
    The End

    1. Insight Guides Singapore

    2. DK Eyewitness Travel Guide Singapore Top 10

    3. Lonely Planet Pocketbook Singapore

    4. Lonely Planet Six Degrees Singapore

    5. Expoza Travel – Singapore

2 thoughts on “The best places to visit in Singapore”

  1. I truly appreciate this post. I have been looking everywhere for this! Thank goodness I found it on Google. You have made my day! Thank you again. Glori Lazare Wilhide

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