Who are not familiar with Singapore? Indonesians must have been very familiar with this tiny neighbor country. It is one of the three City-States in the world after Monaco and Vatican City, which acts as a city, a capital, and a states all at once. Though known as one of the most expensive city in terms of living cost, it doesn’t stop many Indonesians to visit Singapore for works or vacation. I guess it because Singapore is very neat, clean, and well-regulated which is (honestly) quite lacking in Indonesia, especially Jakarta. One of the biggest factor is its transportation system! I think Singapore still has one of the best transportation system (and airport) in the world. Another thing, Singapore also has a very strong character when it comes to its dialect, walking pace, and workaholic people.
I have visited Singapore for quite many times. I’ve ever spent around 1 month there for an internship too. So, I’m pretty much getting used to this city already. However, on my last visit, I was accompanying my cousin who’s never been to Singapore before. So, I brought her to visit several places as if it was my first time going to Singapore. Yes, being a tourist in Singapore, where do you usually go? What do you usually do?
1. Enjoy the ‘Nature’ at Gardens by the Bay
One of the ‘must-visit’ place as a tourist in Singapore is this huge garden area which contains thousands of plants, called as Gardens by the Bay. Located very close to Marina Bay Sands, Gardens by the Bay is also very iconic with its Super Tree Groove. It has three main waterfront gardens area with two conservatories, Flowers Dome and Cloud Forest Dome. It’s indeed Singapore when everything is tidily set up and very well-maintained. The best thing about this place is that it’s actually free of charge to walk around the 110 hectares gardens and enjoy the ‘nature’ there with your family and friends, or to simply grab your sports gear and exercise. You just need to pay (around SGD 28) when you want to visit the Flowers Dome, Cloud Forest Dome, or OCBC Skywalk. My favorite is Cloud Forest Dome!
Cloud Forest Dome
2. A Museum Junkie? National Gallery of Singapore is What You Need!
I’ve always been into a museum. I love visiting places where I can wander into the arts and history, giving me a new perspective on how the other part (places, time, and era) of the world live their life. National Gallery of Singapore is such an uproar, especially when there was Yayoi Kusama exhibition several months back. It is the newly transformed Supreme Court and the City Hall of Singapore which is now becoming a huge museum space.
3. Pub-Crawling at Clarke Quay
Either you are in Singapore for business or vacation, as soon as the working (or vacation day) is over – you might want to explore Clarke Quay and the Riverside area which become such a buzz for its nightlife. Containing hundreds of bars, pubs, or restaurant, you have many options to grab dinner, chill out by the river, then continued by some drinks with friends. Located very close by the business district, this location never dull a moment. Be it in the weekdays, weekend, or any day in the night – it’s always been full of people. I personally really love this area. But, don’t forget to grab your sweater since it can be quite chilly in the evening.
4. Beach Walk in Singapore? Why Not?!
Singapore has its own beaches too! Though it’s not 100% natural beach (since most of it is using imported sands from the surrounding countries), it’s nice to have a walk in the beach once in a while when you are in Singapore. The easiest access is to some beaches located in Sentosa Island. I’m sure many people in Singapore still prefer to visit Sentosa as the center of tourist attraction, such as theme parks, aquarium, and beaches! It’s a pretty decent place to spend the time with family. You can go there by taking a sky-train from Vivo City and stop at the Beach Station. There are several beaches around the area, such as Siloso Beach, Palawan Beach, and Sentosa Beach.
5. Explore Underwater World at S.E.A Aquarium
Also located in Sentosa Island, S.E.A Aquarium can be one of the option of tourist attraction you might want to visit, compared to the very ‘mainstream’ Universal Studio, which is quite expensive and always full of people. S.E.A Aquarium is one of the biggest aquarium in South East Asia with more than hundred of thousands underwater animals from the huge sharks to the tiny jelly fishes. It’s also very cold and chill inside! A nice escape from the freakin’ hot Sentosa weather.
6. Shopping Craze from Orchard to Chinatown
What is Singapore without shopping? This city is very well-known to be the destination for people who like to shop. From the fancy branded stuffs, to the cheap and affordable ones. You have many options of places you’d like to visit for shopping depends on what you want to buy, such as Orchard (of course, it’s malls heaven!), Mustafa, Bugis, and Chinatown. I know I’m not supposed to mention it anymore, yet since I always go to those places when visiting Singapore, so yeah, here I mentioned it again.
7. Play with Your Furry Friends at Dogs Café
Animals café is such a hit these days. Maybe because people start to get bored with the ‘common’ café. Be it dogs, cats, bunnies (there are even reptile and owl café!) animal café has always had its own charm where people can chill out and play with their furry friends at the same time. One of my favorite animal café in Singapore is a dogs café, named ‘WTF’ or ‘We’re the Furrballs’ located in Bugis Junction. I visited this café for the first-time last year and I always went there ever since. I love all the dogs and puppies there, especially this one named Slinky! Oh, I just can’t get enough of them! You need to pay SGD 12.5 (it was SGD10 last year) to enter the café with one complementary drink that you can choose).
8. Eat, eat, eat!
You think that eating in Singapore is expensive? You might want to check and research more on the more affordable restaurants which offers delicious delicacies! There is a plenty of it, such as Chinatown, Makansutra at the Gluttons Bay, Lao Pa Sat, and some other places. The latest trend in Singapore was the ‘salted-egg’ everything! Yes, I mean, everything! From the salted-egg chicken rice to the salted-egg potato chips or fish skins. People went crazy for that (I mean, of course, because salted-egg everything is always good!) and I think one of the most delicious salted-egg chicken rice Singapore has was nothing fancy, but in a small restaurant on the 2nd floor of Sim Lim Square called Taste Good. The place is far from fancy, yet it’s always been crowded.
That was my very own version of being a tourist in Singapore. How about you? What do you like to do in Singapore?