Destination Discovered: Singapore, Singapore
Coming at you with my monthly installment of ‘Destination Discovered’! This time I will take you to a place where East meets West, at one of Asia’s top metropolis’s; Singapore.
Singapore is a city-state, an island city-state that is. If you aren’t quite sure what a “city-state” is, it’s basically a country that is also a city. It’s boarders are the end of the country and the city. Singapore is a dominate city that thrives of tourism and it’s major import-export system. It’s is home to the second busiest port in the world, next to Shanghai. If you are in a hotel that faces the ocean, you’ll see how this is one of the busiest ports.
How to get there
For foreigners, Singapore is relatively easy to visit. Most visitors only need to provide information about where you’re staying, for how long you’re staying, and when you’re leaving the country upon entry. However, it is best to always check your local embassy’s requirements before visiting any country.
Most foreginers will arrive via the Changi Airport located on the eastern coast of Singapore. Is it also possible to enter through the Malaysian territory, though, most will find it easiest to fly to Singapore. PonP Tip: If you have to time to spare when arriving or leaving, check this airport out! It’s considered one of the best airports in the world featuring an ice rink and a movie theater!
Singapore is a very modern city in comparison to most cities in Southeast Asia. You’ll find that getting around Singapore is much like using transportation in most major cities. In fact, Singapore even has Uber!!! How cool right??
If you don’t have access to internet when arriving to the airport (i.e. cannot bring up your Uber app) hailing a taxi is simple and safe. Did I mention Singapore is safe?? Very safe! Most taxi fares getting to your hotel from the airport will be about $20 USD.
Once in the city you can take advantage of their hop on- hop off tour buses. (I know tour buses sometimes suck! This did have it’s moments! Photo Below!) However, this was a fast, and economical way to see and learn about Singapore, especially if you’re short on time.
The MTR is also a safe, quick, and reliable way to get to and from major areas of the city. Most locals use this form of transportation.
Okay, so maybe it wasn’t the best of photo ops, and not the nicest way of getting around, but no lack of fun here!
Be prepared to spend a lot on accommodations here! Singapore, is not cheap compared to its’ other Asian counter parts. A nights stay is anywhere from $100-$300 USD a night! If you want to stay at one of the best hotels in the world (Maria Bay Sands) then be prepared to spend $400+/ per night!
I would like to say I was savvy and I didn’t want to stay at Marina Bay Sands, because it wasn’t that great, it’s not THAT beautiful, the scenery is quite terrible….. but those would all be LIES. Furthermore, it was incredible and worth EVERY penny. The infinity pool speaks for itself, probably one of the most iconic infinity pools in the world, if you ask me. Here is a link on how I stayed at this hotel for just over $200/ night! 🙂
Hotel: Marina Bay Sands
This hotel is a 5 star hotel located right on the bay, with views of either the bay, or the city. We choose to have the bay views, because the sunrises are breathtaking! Also, you get a great glimpse of the light show that happens at the Gardens By The Bay at night. This hotel also features an infinity pool, and a casino at the bottom floor.
Hotel: Raffels Hotel
If you want to be taken back in time when traveling to Singapore. The famous Raffles Hotel is also an option. The hotel started out as a beach house in 1887 and named after the founder of Singapore. It is also said that the infamous ‘Singapore Sling’ was once created here…. but as one traveler has stated; “Tip to travelers: Skip that. No one in Singapore drinks Singapore slings”- Anthony Bourdain.
If you want old school charm and beauty you should a least pay a visit to this hotel and see how things once were.
Things to do/see
Singapore is a busy cit where things can get confusing, quick! Hopefully, this guide can help clear things up on what not to miss.
- Skypark at Marina Bay Sands; <1 hour. Cost $42 USD
- If you can’t afford the room rates, but still want the great views from the top. You can go to the observatory deck at Marina Bay Sands.. but that will cost you too. PonP TIP: I’ve heard of visitors saying they’d like to eat at cafe located by the pool on the top, and wearing their swim clothes under regular clothes in order to sneak into the pool.
- Gardens by the Bay; 1-2 hours. Cost Free- $36 USD
- Located just behind Marina Bay Sands. The entry is free just to walk around, but certain areas cost money, pick and choose what areas you’d like to enter. PonP Tip: The aerial walkway only costs $6 USD!
- Hawker Centres; 1-2 hours. $3+ USD
- Maxwell Food Centre is one of the most popular food centers in Singapore.
- Waterfront Promenade; 2 hours. Cost free
- Hop on Hop Off Bus Tour; 2-8 hours. Buy one day get second day free $32 USD
- If you’re on a time crunch this is actually perfect. You can see all “must see” spots in a few hours stretch. The hot spots are Little India, Chinatown, Holland Village, Korea Town, Raffles Hotel and the River front. PonP Tip: Go early in the morning before it gets too hot. TRUST ME!
Singapore is for SERIOUS eaters. Come in with an appetite, and with the mind set of “if it looks good, eat it”.
- Hawker Centers (Maxwell Food Center)- Come for the Chicken and Rice dish.
- Curry Culture- Major indian culture in Singapore..you don’t want to miss these curries!
- Rabbit Stash- Come here for the food.. get a view. Singapore is not shy on rooftops.
- Komala Villas Restaurant- Cheap eats, local delights, Indian cuisine.