Singapore is amazing. Such a cool, unique city with weird laws (which I'll get to below). It's a city that also makes up the entirety of the small country. Imagine a tropical garden meets very modern city where the average building is 50 floors high. The city's trees, bushes, grass, and parks are made up of vibrant green colors. Everything seems like it fits right into its perfect little place in Singapore, like a finished puzzle.
Whenever I'm traveling to new cities, I like to contemplate the hypothetical question of "could I see myself living here?" And in Singapore I truly could. It's such a melting pot of cultures, mostly made up of Chinese, Indian, British, and American people, as the country is just a baby - celebrating it's 50th birthday this year. Everyone speaks English, as it's one of the 4 official languages of the country, and everyone is overwhelmingly nice and generous. Various times on our trip, locals would go out of their way to say hello for no reason, to help us figure out where we were going or recommend places.
One thing to keep in mind is that it not a cheap city. Probably one of the most expensive in the world. To give you a example, the average beer was probably $15!
Sentosa Island (the southern most point of continental Asia)
Potato Head Folk rooftop restaurant and bar
I mentioned Singapore is known for its bizarre laws with aggressive consequences... Here are some notable ones:
1. feeding pigeons = $500 fine
2. spitting in public = up to a $1000 fine
3. same sex relationships = up to 2 years in prison
4. littering = $300 - public service
5. walking around in a house naked = $1000 fine
6. smoking in pubic = up to a $760 fine
7. failing to flush a public toilet = $150 fine
8. connecting to another person's wifi = up to 3 years in prison or up to a $10,000 fine
9. singing in public = up to 3 months in prison
10. PDA in public = up to 1 year in prison
The different neighborhood districts are full of their own unique charm. The most notable ones were Chinatown and Little India. We stayed in both areas and loved them! Chinatown was my favorite area, full of trendy cafes, restaurants, bars, and bright charming buildings!
Burnt Ends (you'll need a reservation)
Singapore reminds me a lot of San Francisco in the sense that it has a really trendy, hipster restaurant scene. The food, decor, cocktails lists (and unfortunately the prices) reminded me of home. I always rave about how San Francisco has the world's best foodie scene, but Singapore is definitely rivaling my city by the bay. There are a lot of amazing rooftop bars as well. Beaches, cool restaurants, rooftop bars, pools on top of 50+ floor skyscrapers, nature... what else could a city need?! Hope you get a chance to visit Singapore soon!
My Singapore To-Do List
download it here!
New Majestic Hotel ($$): This funky, boutique hotel is located very centrally - right in the heart of Chinatown, which is their fun, hipster district with lots of restaurants, bars, and charm! Each room is uniquely designed by a different local artist. Includes a free local cell phone with unlimited data during your stay - this is CLUTCH!
Wanderlust Hotel ($$): A sister-hotel of the New Majestic that sits in Little India, right next to the main strip of restaurants and bars. Very conveniently located, each room in this boutique hotel is themed with a different color. The restaurant and bar downstairs are amazing! Also includes a free local cell phone with unlimited data during your stay to bring out and about with you for research on-the-go!
Marina Bay Sands ($$$): Staying here is the only way to get into their amazing 57 story high infinity pool overlooking the city's skyline. Worth the night if you can afford it (even if just for one night)!
Bird Bird (Chinatown) - get the unicorn jizz fried chicken sandwich | great lunch spot
Char (Kallang) - Thai-Chinese fusion - dinner
Boom Tat Street (Chinatown) - restaurants/wine bars / cute street
The LOKAL (Chinatown) - Cute breakfast cafe | get the kaya toast (a local Singapore dish)
Burnt Ends (Chinatown) - high end, super cool restaurant with an open kitchen design. Save money by going here for lunch, but make sure to snag a reservation online!
Kampong Glam Cafe (Little India) - Divey cafe in a popular area within Little India. Grab a teh tarik ais here... it's a popular Singapore iced tea thats so yummy!!
Morsels (Little India) - high end dinner restaurant. Ordering 4 tapas is plenty for 2 people. Great music!
Chinatown Food Street - hawker food (which is local food stands that are cheap and delicious!)
Afterglow (Chinatown) - vegetarian restaurant with amazing food, music/cute decor & great desserts... try the churro. Maybe the best churro I've ever had! I'm not normally a fan of veggie spots, but this one is definitely worth it!
Humpback (Chinatown) - cute dinner restaurant too with awesome 90s Rock
Chimichanga (Little India) - cool Mexican restaurant, super hipster, good place to get drinks at night too
Oxwell and Co - the cutest rooftop bar in Chinatown!
Potato Head Folk - Cute rooftop bar with string lights and funky decor. It also looked like they had awesome burgers if you're looking to grab a bite!
Kyo - nightclub
Cloud Forest at Gardens by the Bay (one of my favorite things from thew hole trip... do not miss this!)
Get lost wandering around this cute neighborhood
View at the top of Pinnacle @ Duxton - a cheap alternative to the high end bars for the same 360 degree skyline view!
Walk around China town
Take MRT to HarbourFront station and you can take the Sentosa Monorail ($4 RT) straight to the beaches. Skip the resorts and attractions because they are super touristy.
There are 3 beaches you can go to. Palawan Beach is where we spent our time because you can walk on a wooden bridge across to Palawan Island and step foot on the southernmost point of continental Asia
Walk down Arab Street
No need to tip for taxis, restaurants (typically 10% is included, if it's not then you should), bars. Round up to the nearest s dollar or add 5 if the service is extra good.
Getting around is super easy on the MRT (their metro), but they also have Ubers
Next, check out Phuket, Thailand!