Eat, See, Do Singapore
Once a stronghold in the British Empire and now an independent city-state, Singapore is a dynamic, diverse mélange of history, culture and modernity. Inventive street food, a vibrant arts scene, unrivaled green spaces and a stunning skyline have made it a hotspot travel destination, and for good reason. Check out our favourite things to eat, see and do in this energetic and spirited metropolis.
Singapore offers a rich melting pot of cultures within its 276 square miles, and touring by taste is a great way to get acquainted. Whether seated at one of its fine-dining restaurants or clustered around a bustling street food cart, Singapore is bursting at the seams for the culinary adventurous.
The most affordable and authentic way to dine is at one of the many hawker street stalls throughout the city. Start at Maxwell Food Centre, a favourite hub for locals and tourists alike. Here, you’ll be greeted by seemingly endless choices of a wide diversity of dishes at very reasonable prices. For a classic favourite, try Tian Tian Hainanese Chicken Rice at Stalls 10 & 11. If the queue’s too long or you’ve arrived too late, go for another favourite, Zhen Zhen Porridge at Stall 54. And if you’re not sure what to try next, following the crowds is always good advice.
Up-and-coming chefs have planted their flagpoles in Singapore, and bistros such as Whitegrass, Char and JAAN will whet your palate for innovative cuisine. For those who value the tried-and-true superstars, you can’t go wrong with Mario Batali’s Osteria Mozza, Wolfgang Puck’s CUT or Gordon Ramsey’s Bread Street Kitchen. Skip the restaurant’s dessert menu and head to a specialty shop for your sweet tooth; favourites include Icebox Cafe, Dessert Project, or Cake Spade. Chic nightspots Hi-So, 1-Altitude, or Level 33 will keep your evening hot and happening.
Ready for a culture lesson? Singapore’s diversity is showcased in the various ethnic precincts, each shaped by its inhabitants’ historical and cultural uniqueness. The modern Buddha Tooth Relic Temple and Museum in Chinatown is an interesting mix of old and new. Built in 2007, the building’s design is based on the Tang dynasty architectural style. The inside of the temple is decked out in extraordinarily stunning gold and crowned with a serene rooftop garden.
Singapore’s colourful Little India showcases the rich culture of Singapore’s Indian community. At the centre stands Sri Veeramakaliamman Temple, one of Singapore’s oldest Hindu temples. Intricate, colourful statues adorn the outside of the temple. Go inside to see tourists and locals co-existing in this beautiful example of an active place of worship.
To immerse yourself in the Malay culture, head to Kampong Glam, Singapore’s Malay precinct. Start at the Malay Heritage Centre to learn all about Malay culture. This summer’s exhibition focuses on Malay merchants and philanthropists who settled in Singapore and helped develop the Malay Singaporean community.
When you’re ready to move from history to the present, the Singapore Art Museum will bring you home. Galleries like Taksu and Mizuma keep Singapore on the cutting edge of contemporary artistic dialogue. A can’t-miss destination is Haji Lane, a diverse and architecturally historic corner of the Kampong Glam neighbourhood, which features unique street art and quirky shops.
Experience breathtaking views from atop the Singapore Flyer, a giant Ferris wheel with panoramic city views. For an unforgettable experience, premium sky dining includes a four-course menu enjoyed aboard one of the Flyer’s capsules.
For a totally out of this world modern garden experience, head to Gardens by the Bay, envisioned as a city in a garden. The amazing Supertree Grove is studded with tree-like vertical gardens, which smartly provide shade during the day and a light and sound show at night. The OCBC Skyway, an aerial walkway, allows visitors to see the magnificent supertrees up close and to experience stunning views of the Marina Bay skyline.
Shopping is a sport in Singapore, and Orchard Road is an Olympic event. Find every kind of luxury boutique, restaurant, mall and entertainment within its 2.2 km block. Scale things down at colourful shops in Little India, found on Serangoon Road, or stroll around Chinatown for an eclectic mix of wares. When you’re not quite sure what you’re up for but know it has to be fun, head to Clark Quay for a happy mix of shopping, food, and nightlife on the river. Rest your legs with a Bumboat ride to enjoy unparalleled views of the city from the water, and finally call it a day in one of Fairmont Singapore’s luxury beds.
No matter your tastes, Singapore is ready to serve it up on a platter. Book a ticket immediately to start soaking up this rich Asian jewel.
Photo Credits: Kelly in Singapore for Flytographer
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