In one sentence: Singapore fascinated me! You want to know why? Well, grab a coffee, relax and continue reading. The Southeast-Asian city-state is very unique compared to other Southeast Asian metropolises. If you have been to other big cities in Southeast Asia you know the chaotic streets. Singapore is the exact opposite. The traffic is smooth and you can’t even hear a single honking. Maybe you’ve already heard about the fact that it is not allowed in Singapore to sell or chew chewing gum? It’s true. I think I’m not wrong in saying that Singapore is the most modern, organized, structured and cleanest city in Southeast Asia. What I really liked about Singapore is the mix of modernity and culture. You can find the glitziest skyscrapers as well as small, cute shophouses there. Not only the mix of architecture but also the mix of cultures is interesting to see in Singapore. You can make a short journey to India, China and Arabia…possible in one city! But before I start raving about this city too much, let’s continue with the best places in Singapore.
My Favorite Spots AND Best places in Singapore
Whether you are looking for modern city life or traditional and historical buildings, you’ll find it all in Singapore. I’ve listed the best places in Singapore for you. Happy exploring!
Explore murals and cool shops in haji lane
Haji Lane is the so-called hipster street in Singapore. A cute shophouse lane with lots of boutique shops, fancy eateries and street art. You can find handcrafted goods, nice souvenirs and delicious food and drinks in Haji Lane. Make sure that you don’t miss the most colorful house in Singapore, the “Juice Clinic“.
I loved to stroll around this street and enjoy the young and entrepreneurial atmosphere. If you are in Haji Lane, don’t miss the following spot which is just around the corner:
EXPERIENCE THE ORIENTAL VIBES IN ARAB STREET
Only a short hop from Haji Lane is Arab Street. The neighborhood called Arab Quarter around those both streets is characterized by arabic influences. Whether you are looking for delicious oriental food (I highly recommend to try the green Pandan cake from one of the street vendors!) or just want to step in an atmosphere of 1001 nights, you will find it in this area. Textile stores, tailors and Persian carpet sellers are everywhere, but you’ll also see leather, sarongs, perfumes and jewelry for sale. The vendors are very polite and friendly and I even had some chats with them without buying anything. They won’t follow you or try to force you to buy something you don’t want.
Also make sure you don’t miss the beautiful Masjid Sultan mosque. With its golden dome it became a majestic icon of the Arab Quarter and is definitely worth a visit. The Arab Quarter was one of my highlights of Singapore and in my eyes one of the best places in Singapore.
GET A BIT OF BOLLYWOOD FEELING IN LITTLE INDIA
Another one of Singapore’s lively and vibrant quarters is Little India. I didn’t expect the neighborhood as huge as it actually is. You can easily spend a few hours by getting lost in the streets of Little India. I started my walk at MRT station ‘Little India’ which is the perfect starting point to explore Little India. From here you can just walk around the neighborhood and enjoy Bollywood feeling in the middle of Singapore. Little India is where you can hear Indian pop music at every corner, find bright saris and smell thousand different spices. Don’t forget to try some local Indian food in one of the restaurants.
CATCH THE SUPERTREE GROVE LIGHT SHOW AT GARDENS BY THE BAY
One thing you should definitely not miss on your Singapore trip is the light show at Gardens by the Bay. The show takes place every day at 7:45 p.m. and 8:45 p.m. at the Supertree Grove and is free of admission.
I felt like being transported to the magnificent Avatar world. Where else can you see glowing trees in every color you can imagine? The trees change their colors and light effects according to the music. What an amazing and futuristic spectacle! By the way, there are 18 man-made supertrees in Gardens by the Bay which range between 25 metres and 50 metres height. To make the light show happen, 11 of the supertrees are fitted with solar photovoltaic systems that convert sunlight into energy.
HEAD TO AN OPEN-AIR CARPARK FOR THE COOLEST SHOTS AND BEST VIEWS IN TOWN
The first time I’ve heard about the carpark of People’s Park Complex in Singapore was while I scrolled down my Instagram feed. I saw this cool picture with the yellow facade and delightfully retro touch. So I did my homework and quickly found all the information I needed. If you’re interested in architecture or urban photography, People’s Park Complex is one of the best places in Singapore. But not only that, the view from the carpark at the top of the building is also breathtaking. Take the lift up to the 5th floor, take the stairs to your right and you’ll find Lepark as you exit. A quick walk around the carpark reveals a beautiful contrast between the parking spaces and the 25 storeys of green and yellow apartments which were inspired by Fumihiko Maki’s post-war ideology of developing a collective social space. In fact People’s Park Complex was built in 1973 and happens to be the first multi-use building with residential, offices, shopping and car parking facilities all in one structure. There is also a hidden bar at the carpark, called Lepark. Cheers!
TAKE A WALK AROUND MARINA BAY SANDS AND VISIT THE ARTSCIENCE MUSEUM
You haven’t been to Singapore if you haven’t seen Marina Bay Sands. Marina Bay Sands and its surroundings are considered as one of the best places in Singapore. But not only the hotel itself is worth a visit, also the waterfront promenade invites you to take a walk and enjoy the views at this modern quarter of Singapore. My personal highlight was the ArtScience Museum which is located within the integrated resort of Marina Bay Sands. They have changing exhibitions there but worth a visit. Another highlight and THE symbol of Singapore is for sure the infinity pool of Marina Bay Sands hotel. Bad news though: The infinity pool is only open for hotel guests. If you can afford to spend US$350 for one night, you should spoil yourself with this once-in-a-lifetime-experience. The pool is worth it even though it was quite crowded with selfie-taking people – including me, haha. In my opinion the rooms and the hotel service is definitely NOT worth the price you pay. The double room is a standard 4-star room but nothing special at all. The price mentioned above doesn’t include breakfast. The only reason why I still recommend in night in Marina Bay Sands is their infinity pool.
THE 5 BEST HAWKER CENTRES IN SINGAPORE
A very local kind of having food is to eat in a so-called Hawker Centre. A Hawker Centre is a market at which individual vendors sell local food from small booths. You find those open-air food markets allover Southeast Asia. The first time I went to such an Hawker Centre was in Penang. I was more than thrilled from all the delicacies and so my mission in Singapore was clear. 😉
Find the best places in Singapore for having local food below:
- Old Airport Road – Dakota MRT
- Maxwell Food Centre
- Chinatown Food Street – Smith Street
- Golden Mile Food Centre – Beach Road
- Tiong Bahru Food Centre
And here are my top 10 dishes to try at a Hawker Centre:
- Bak Kut The (Pork Robs Soup)
- Chicken Rice
- Hokkien Prawn Mee
- Bak Chor Mee (Minced Meat Noodles)
- Carrot Cake (which is actually make out of radish and not carrots)
- Oyster Omelette (Orh Iua)
- Popiah (Fried Spring Roll)
- Chilli Crab
- Kaya Bread with Eggs
WHERE TO STAY IN SINGAPORE
During my visit in Singapore I only spent one night in Marina Bay Sands. The rest of the days I stayed in the awesome Dream Lodge Hostel which I can highly recommend to you! Located centrally just outside Central Business District of Singapore along Lavender Street, Dream Lodge Hostel is housed in a 1950’s era shop house surrounded by 3 MRT stations. The location offers quick access to the heart of everything which Singapore have to offer.
Just outside the door step, you will find hip cafes, local delights, cultural & historical places, shopping centres all within 10mins walk. The hostel offers spacious pods and is very clean and friendly. You pay around US$26 per night including breakfast.