Singapore is a vibrant city-state with plenty of things to do for first-time visitors.
Here are some of the best activities to consider:
- Take a city walking tour to explore the city’s history and culture.
- Visit Gardens by the Bay, a stunning nature park with unique flora and fauna.
- Check out Marina Bay Sands, an iconic hotel and entertainment complex.
- Go shopping on Orchard Road, Singapore’s premier shopping district.
- Museum hop to learn more about Singapore’s history and art scene.
- Spend a day at Sentosa Island, a popular resort island with beaches and attractions.
- Try the iconic Singapore Sling cocktail at Raffles Hotel.
- Visit a hawker center to sample local food and eat where the locals eat.
- Explore the vibrant nightlife in Clarke Quay.
- Take a walk or bike ride through the Singapore Botanic Gardens, a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
There are many tours and activities available in Singapore, so it’s worth checking out websites like Klook and Get Your Guide for more options. Singapore is a city that can be explored in a few days, but it’s also worth taking the time to relax and enjoy the city’s unique culture and attractions.
What are some must-try local dishes in Singapore for first-timers
Singapore is known for its diverse and delicious food scene, and there are many local dishes that first-timers should try. Here are some must-try local dishes in Singapore:
- Chilli Crab – a hard-shell crab that is cooked in a sauce with a tomato chilli base.
- Hainanese Chicken Rice – a dish of poached chicken and fragrant rice cooked in chicken broth.
- Laksa – a spicy noodle soup with coconut milk and seafood or chicken.
- Fish Head Curry – a spicy curry dish made with a whole fish head and vegetables.
- Char Kway Teow – a wok-fried noodle dish with prawns, cockles, and Chinese sausage.
- Hokkien Prawn Mee – a noodle dish with prawns, squid, and pork belly in a rich broth.
- Kaya Toast – a breakfast dish of toasted bread with coconut jam and butter.
- Fried Carrot Cake – a savory dish made with radish cake, eggs, and preserved radish.
- Nasi Biryani – a fragrant rice dish with spices and meat or vegetables.
- Roti Prata – a flaky, crispy Indian flatbread served with curry.
These dishes can be found at hawker centers, local restaurants, and high-end establishments throughout Singapore. It’s worth noting that Singaporean cuisine is heavily influenced by Chinese, Malay, and Indian cultures, so there are many other dishes to try as well. To get the full experience, it’s recommended to visit a hawker center and try a variety of dishes.
How to get around Singapore as a first-timer
If you are a first-timer in Singapore, here are some tips on how to get around the city:
- Use public transportation: Singapore has an efficient public transportation system that includes buses and trains. You can get a Singapore Tourist Pass if you plan on using public transportation often. It will give you unlimited access to the MRT and public bus system, plus it will save you the hassle of having to buy tickets before each ride.
- Hop on a city sightseeing bus: This is a great way to see the city’s key attractions like the Singapore Flyer, Marina Bay Sands, the Merlion, Botanic Gardens, and Orchard Road, just to name a few. You can also explore colorful neighborhoods like Little India, Chinatown, Arab Street, and Kampong Glam.
- Take a taxi: Taxis are readily available in Singapore and are a convenient way to get around the city. You can hail a taxi on the street or use ride-hailing apps like Grab or Gojek.
- Rent a bike: Singapore has a bike-sharing system called oBike that allows you to rent a bike for a small fee. This is a great way to explore the city at your own pace.
- Walk: Singapore is a small city and many of its attractions are within walking distance of each other. Walking is a great way to explore the city and get some exercise at the same time.
Overall, Singapore is a very easy city to get around and there are many transportation options available to first-timers.
What are some free things to do in Singapore for first-timers
Singapore is a vibrant city with plenty of free things to do for first-timers. Here are some of the best free activities to enjoy in Singapore:
- Visit the Singapore Botanic Gardens, a UNESCO World Heritage Site and the country’s first and only tropical botanic garden on the UNESCO’s World Heritage list. It’s a great place to walk around, especially in the mornings and evenings when Singapore’s tropical weather cools down a little. Early in the morning, locals practice t’ai chi on the lawn, and there are often free concerts on weekends.
- Explore the ethnic neighborhoods of Chinatown and Little India. There’s a lot to see, including Hindu temples, traditional eateries, and flower garland vendors. It’s a great free activity to do in Singapore.
- Take a stroll along the Singapore River and trace the city’s history.
- Admire the Supertrees at Gardens by the Bay. While entry to the gardens is free, the walkway costs SGD 5 (which is totally worth it).
- Enjoy Sentosa’s beaches and trails.
- Watch free arts performances at the Esplanade.
- Capture Singapore’s iconic skyline at Marina Bay.
- Cool off in the underground malls.
- Visit the Singapore Zoo, River Wonders, and Night Safari.
- Attend the Singapore Really, Really Free Market, where everything is free.
- Hike Mount Faber for a scenic view of the city.
- Visit the National Museum of Singapore, which offers free admission to all visitors.
- Attend free concerts and events at the Singapore Management University.
- Take a free walking tour of the city with the Singapore Footprints Walking Tours.
- Visit the Merlion Park and take a photo with the iconic Merlion statue.
- Explore the historic Fort Canning Park and spice garden.
- Attend free exhibitions and events at the National Gallery Singapore.
- Visit the Asian Civilisations Museum, which offers free admission to all visitors.
- Attend free film screenings at the Singapore Art Museum.
- Visit the Singapore City Gallery, which offers free admission to all visitors.
- Attend free concerts and events at the Esplanade.
- Visit the Singapore Discovery Centre, which offers free admission to all visitors.
- Attend free concerts and events at the Singapore Botanic Gardens.
- Visit the Sungei Buloh Wetland Reserve, a nature reserve that offers free admission to all visitors.
- Attend free concerts and events at the Singapore Symphony Orchestra.