Singapore travel guide: 3-day itinerary + best things to do

by suitcasestoriesbe
Singapore travel guide things to do

Singapore may be the smallest country in Southeast Asia, it’s a destination unlike anywhere else in the world. It’s a colorful blend of cultures, has a great vibe, and there are lots of incredible places to visit. From wandering around the Gardens by the Bay, exploring the street art in colorful Haji Lane, to spending a night in the iconic Marina Bay Sands. We love Singapore! And while many people are visiting Singapore during a short stopover on their way to another destination in Asia or Australia, we highly recommend staying a couple of days. We created the ultimate guide for Singapore including tips on how to get to around, where to stay, a suggested 3-day itinerary, the best things to do, and recommendations on where to eat.

How to travel to Singapore

By airplane
Singapore Changi Airport is the main airport in Singapore and awarded as the best airport in the world. It’s also one of the largest transportation hubs in Asia, which means you can take frequent flights to and from Singapore from all over the world. We personally love to book our flights with Qatar Airways (check for flights here) or use the website of Skyscanner.com, where you can easily search and compare tickets from all different airlines in the world.

Book your flights to Singapore here

By bus
Instead of flying you can also consider taking a comfortable bus from Malaysia to Singapore. There are daily and direct buses from Kuala Lumpur or either Melaka to Singapore, and the price for the bus tickets is between S$17 ($12) and S$25 ($18) per person. We went to Kuala Lumpur after our trip to Singapore and the journey took us around 6,5 hours. Super comfortable, huge (they call it VIP) seats and with the airconditioning on board.

Book your bus tickets to Singapore here

From Singapore airport to the city center

Once you arrive at Singapore Changi airport, there are different ways of transport to go to the city center. You can either taxi a taxi (around S$25 or $18, takes 25-30 minutes), the public bus (around S$2.50 or $1.80, takes about 1,5 hours) or the MRT train where we opted for. (around S$2 or $1.50, takes about 30 minutes) To take the MRT train, you just need to follow the signs “train to the city” at the arrival hall to reach the station. Every 2-5 minutes there is a new train departing, you buy your tickets at one of the ticketing machines and you need to change one time the train. Super easy and quick!

Visa requirements

Most people don’t need to apply for a visa to enter Singapore and you can stay from 30 to 90 days, depending on the country of origin. You can use the iVisa checker below to see if you need a visa or not, and if needed, it will show you all the options.

Please note: visa requirements keep changing for every country. Please make sure you check all visa and passport requirements in your own country before booking your tickets.

Where to stay in Singapore

Let’s start by saying that staying in Singapore can be very expensive, but depending on when you start planning your trip, it can be still possible to enjoy this amazing city on a budget. Like in every major city, there are so many different neighborhoods in Singapore which can make it hard to choose where to stay. That’s why we have collected all our favorite places to stay in the best neighborhoods to make it easy for you to decide where to stay in Singapore.

Read it here: Where to stay in Singapore

We stayed at Tiong Bahru, a more residential neighborhood close to Chinatown, where we booked a shared dorm room in Thad’s Boutique Hostel. We paid $27 per person/night incl breakfast and can highly recommend this place if you’re looking for an affordable and still trendy place to stay. You get your own bed, power socket, locker, privacy curtain, it’s super clean and located in a lovely area.

Tiong Bahru neighborhood in Singapore

Best time to visit Singapore

Short and powerful answer: any time of the year! Singapore has a warm, tropical climate all year round with day temperatures averaging around 31°C and it can rain anytime. There are no real dry and wet seasons, although there are two different monsoons.

The Northeast monsoon: December – March
During these months you can expect more rainfall than other months in the year, with December as the wettest month. (if you’re not a fan of rain, better to avoid this month) January is the coolest month with an average temperature between 24-29°C. (pleasant to visit)

The Southwest monsoon: June – September
During these months rain usually falls in the morning and lasts about 30 minutes. (we visited Singapore in August and had no rain at all)

In a nutshell: no matter when you visit Singapore, bringing an umbrella is recommended and overall the best time to visit Singapore is between February and April.

Singapore best time to visit

Useful apps to download

  • Booking.com – our most favorite app to find accommodations worldwide
  • Maps.me – the best offline mapping app on the planet. Download the map, choose your route, save favorite places and explore the country without using the internet. (money saver!)
  • Currency XE – calculates currencies on-the-go. With the app, you can access live exchange rates and calculate prices on your smartphone super easily.
  • HappyCow – our favorite app to find the best vegan & vegetarian food around you.
  • Hotels.com – the app we use often besides booking.com. If you book 10 nights on Hotels.com you’ll get one night for free, which is awesome
  • ChangiRecommends – the Singapore tourist app for finding the best information about attractions, deals, sightseeing and more.
  • Popcorn – an amazing app to find the best movies and cinema theatres in case of rainy days.
  • Not really an app, but the ebooks of Lonely Planet needs to be highlighted too. The ebooks are an easy, quick and cheap way to carry almost every Lonely Planet guidebook in your pocket. From destination tips, beautiful images to road trip routes, you’ll find everything to get the most out of your trip.

Read also: The 11 best and free travel apps every traveler needs

Jewel Changi Airport Singapore

Electricity in Singapore

In Singapore, the power plugs and sockets are of type G with a standard voltage of 230 V and a frequency of 50 Hz. During our stay in Singapore, we used the Skross Pro World Adaptor which was perfect to charge all our gear.

electricity in Singapore

SINGAPORE 3-DAY ITINERARY: DAY 1

Depending on when you arrive in Singapore, we consider day 1 as your first full day in Singapore. For us, it’s always the day where we love to visit already some of the biggest highlights and wander around the different neighborhoods to get a good impression of the city. And that’s exactly what the planning below looks like.

Tip: get the Singapore City Pass here which gives you unlimited hop on hop off transportation and 2 attraction tickets so you can see as much as possible in a short time. 

Visit Cloud Forest and Flower Dome early in the morning

If there’s one place you can’t miss when visiting Singapore, it’s Garden by the Bay, a magical and futuristic world of greenery located by the Marina Bay Waterfront. Go first and early to Cloud Forest which opens at 9 am, so you will have the world’s largest indoor waterfall to yourself. Head afterward to Flower Dome to learn more about the exotic plants from five different continents and have a pleasant stroll in the climate-controlled indoor garden. And ow yeah, make sure to watch the super inspiring +5 Degrees movie in the Cloud Forest theatre near the exit gates. Eye-opening!

COST
Entrance is free for the Supertree Grove and the surrounding gardens, but you must pay for the two conservatories:
S$ 28 per person ($21) for Cloud Forest & Flower Dome
And if you like to walk the OCBC Skyway at Supertree Grove there is an additional S$ 8 per person ($6)

LOCATION
Gardens by the Bay, Singapore

BOOK
Your tickets in advance via this website and save money on the entrance fees (cheaper than paying on the spot, only S$ 32 per person including Cloud Forest, Flower Dome + OCBC Skyway)

EXTRA TIPS
Don’t miss the misting time in Cloud Forest at 10 am! (every 2 hours) + ask for a re-entry stamp when you exit Cloud Forest, so you can go back later on the day if you want to.

Visit ArtScience Museum

The ArtScience Museum is a very iconic building in Singapore and with its location close to Gardens by the Bay, ideal to combine afterward. It’s a great place that brings art, science, culture, and technology together in a way that’s engaging and fun for visitors of all ages. There are 4 exhibitions in the ArtScience Museum to choose from, but our all-time favorite was Future World where you find a stunning artwork giving you the illusion of stars moving in space.

COST
$19 per person for a single exhibition ticket
$32 per person for a double exhibition ticket

LOCATION
ArtScience Museum, Singapore

BOOK
Your exhibition tickets in advance here and save up to 20% discount

Walk into The Shoppes, Singapore’s most luxury mall

The Shoppes is Singapore’s most iconic luxury shopping mall and located in the Marina Bay Sands Hotel with high-end boutique stores and international designer brands such as Louis Vuitton, Hugo Boss, and Chanel. With its futuristic design and architecture, it’s a lovely place to walk around and do some window shopping. Next to the beautiful stores, there is also a big food court, a casino, theatre, and people can take a Venetian gondola boat through the mall. So funny!

LOCATION
The Shoppes, Marina Bay Sands, Singapore

EXTRA TIP
Take the escalator up to the top floor for a rooftop view of the gardens by the bay and the city skyline

Explore the colorful area around Haji Lane, Arab Street, and Muscat Street

Take the Downtown Line from Bayfront MRT to Bugis MRT Station and explore the colorful area around Haji Lane, Arab Street, and Muscat Street. You’ll find plenty of cute boutique shops, hipster cafes, beautiful street art and lovely mosques like the Sultan Mosque. Besides if you’re hungry, this area is great to grab a yummy lunch or enjoy a coffee.

COST
Between $ 1-3 per person for a single-way MRT ticket (4-minute ride)

LOCATION
Haji Lane, Singapore
Arab Street, Singapore
Muscat Street, Singapore

FAVORITE PLACE TO GO
Limaa (small, cozy spot located in Haji Lane, vegetarian/vegan-friendly food, healthy juices, and yummy smoothie bowls)

EXTRA TIP
Be sure to avoid the area on Sundays as most places are closed

Visit Little India

After Haji Lane, you walk in 15 minutes to Little India, which is a vibrant neighborhood filled with colorful houses, traditional eateries, and small jewelry shops. Be sure to visit the Sri Veeramakaliamman Temple, one of the oldest Hindu temples in Singapore, and located right in the heart of Little India.

LOCATION
Little India, Singapore

Wander around Clarke Quay with sunset and have a lovely dinner

Take the North East Line from Little India MRT to Clarke Quay MRT Station and wander around Clarke Quay, a lively neighborhood along the River and the perfect place to end your first day in Singapore. From here you have stunning sunset views and countless restaurants, bars, and clubs to stick around for dinner.

COST
Between $ 1-3 per person for a single-way MRT ticket (4-minute ride)

LOCATION
Clarke Quay, Singapore

SINGAPORE 3-DAY ITINERARY: DAY 2

Day 2 is all about exploring Chinatown, going shopping and watching the beautiful light show at Gardens by the Bay.

Tip: get the Singapore City Pass here which gives you unlimited hop on hop off transportation and 2 attraction tickets so you can see as much as possible in a short time.

Visit Chinatown

A trip to Singapore isn’t complete without visiting Chinatown. Spend some time wandering around the markets, visit the Buddha’s Tooth Relic Temple or catch some super cheap souvenirs.  With a nice atmosphere and lots of history, you could easily stay here for a couple of hours.

LOCATION
China Town, Singapore

BOOK
A 2-hour walking tour and explore Chinatown with an experienced local guide

Shop till you drop

Singapore has a reputation to be one of the best shopping destinations in the world, and it’s easy to see why… There are so many great shopping malls with the most luxurious shops to small vintage boutiques and colorful markets. Our favorite malls were located at Orchard Street where you can walk around for hours from one shopping mall to another + where you have the best Cold Storage Supermarket. (our go-to lunch spot to create our own healthy and cheap salad bowl) On Orchard Street, you find also the biggest Apple Store in whole Southeast Asia. Worth a visit!

LOCATION
Orchard Street, Singapore

FAVORITE PLACES TO GO
ION Orchard (H&M, Zara,…)
Mandarin Gallery (Victoria Secret)
313@Somerset (best SONY store ever)
Ngee Ann City Mall (best Cold Storage Supermarket)

Go in the late afternoon to Merlion Park, the Esplanade and cross Helix Bridge

After a couple of hours, we loved to stroll around Merlion Park and the Esplanade where you have stunning views of the waterfront and the iconic Marina Bay Sands. Stick around until sunset, have a nice dinner and cross the Helix Bridge to end your day with a lovely light show at Gardens of the Bay.

LOCATION
Merlion Statue, Singapore
The Esplanade, Singapore
Helix Bridge, Singapore

OPTIONAL
Head over to Marina Bay Sands and get a ticket for the Skypark Observation Deck for the most incredible sunset views over Singapore.

Watch the light show at Supertree Grove in Gardens By The Bay

The Gardens by the Bay are not only beautiful during the day, every night the supertrees come alive and you’re able to see a stunning light show, enjoy the magical setting and have incredible views on Marina Bay Sands. The light show at Supertree Grove is free (no tickets are required) and there are 2 time slots, one at 7.45 pm and the second one at 8.45 pm. A real must when you’re in Singapore!

LOCATION
Supertree Grove, Gardens by The Bay

SINGAPORE IN 3 DAYS: DAY 3

Depending on whether day 3 is the day you’re leaving for a next destination or it’s your last full day, we have listed some great optional things to do. This way you can create your own day planning and choose the things you absolutely want to see!

Tip: get the Singapore City Pass here which gives you unlimited hop on hop off transportation and 2 attraction tickets so you can see as much as possible in a short time.  

Join a hop on hop off bus tour 

COST
Prices start from $30

BOOK
We recommend booking a 2-day pass with hop on hop off bus which includes free walking tours and is value for money

Hang out in Singapore’s food heaven: Keong Saik Road

Once a red-light district with brothels in 1960, now one of the most trendy places to go to for a lovely night out between the locals. Keong Saik Road is located near Chinatown and the perfect place to hang out around evening time in one of the coolest bars and restaurants. From super cozy Italian restaurants to trendy rooftop bars and local eateries. If you still have a night left, be sure to visit this place.

FAVORITE PLACES TO GO
Potato Head (nice rooftop garden, great cocktails, and lovely signature burgers)
Afterglow by Anglow (a vegan/vegetarian-friendly spot with healthy juices and a small but delicious menu)
Pasta Bar (beautiful open kitchen concept with vegan pasta options)

Take a trip to Sentosa Islands and visit Universal Studios

Sentosa Island or also known as Singapore’s playground is a beautiful island connected by bridge to Singapore city and home to a lot of beaches and theme parks like Universal Studios. Especially when you’re with kids or you just wanna have a fun, relaxing day, this is the place to go to.

BOOK
Your Universal Studios 1-day pass in advance so you don’t need to queue to get the ticket (also cheaper compared to booking directly on the official website)

Watch a movie in one of the big cinemas

In case of a rainy day, go to one of the big impressive cinemas and watch a good movie. Download the app Popcorn Singapore to check the different locations, the movie times and buy your ticket straight from your phone.

EXTRA TIP
The cinemas in Singapore are very cold, so be sure to bring a sweater to keep you warm

Explore Singapore with the Hop-on Hop-off bus tour

A classic one… But a Hop-on Hop-off bus tour is a great way to explore all the different neighborhoods in Singapore in a short amount of time and skip the stress of finding your way. Hop-on, hop-off means literally you can jump on and off the bus as many times as you want and on each bus, there are English-speaking guides available + audio headsets with commentary in multiple languages. The Hop-on Hop-off bus tours of Big Bus (which are our favorites) have 4 different tours to choose from, and you can hop off and explore from over 40 stops.

BOOK
Tickets for the Hop-on Hop-off Big Bus tours here. (available for 1 day or 2 days)

Stay a night at the iconic Marina Bay Sands hotel

If you are looking for pictures of Singapore, you will definitely have come across the beautiful 5* Marina Bay Sands hotel. And if your budget allows or you want to pamper yourself to something unique, be sure to stay a night and relax all day at the world’s largest infinity pool. A real bucket list thing! Marina Bay Sands is not only a stunning architectural icon in Singapore offering the best skyline views, but it’s also one of the most famous hotels in Asia, if not in the world.

BOOK
A luxury stay in Marina Bay Sands and enjoy access to the infinity pool (deluxe, premium, family rooms or suites available)

EXTRA TIP
Book as early as possible! There are cheaper rooms but are most of the time sold out months in advance. If you book via booking.com, you can often cancel your reservation without any cost a few days before your check-in.

Save money and get the Singapore Pass

The Singapore Pass is a great deal for everyone that wants to make the most out of their trip and visit several popular attractions. There are more than 38 classic and premium experiences to choose from even including entrance tickets to Universal Studios or a unique dining experience on the GOURMETbus. Whatever you choose, the Singapore Pass can save you up to 57% discount on admission fees. Moneysaver!

And how does it works? You get the Singapore Pass that’s right for you, you receive a confirmation email and voucher instantly after booking. And at the moment you’re in Singapore, you choose the attraction you want to visit, show either a printed or a mobile voucher and your pass will be activated. (valid for 5 days after activation)

COST
There are 4 options to choose from passes with 3 top picks to passes with 5 top picks + 1 premium experience and starts from $78.49 per person (valid for 5 days)

BOOK
Check all the different options and Sightseeing Passes here

Watch the tallest indoor waterfall at the Jewel

Before you depart, plan a few hours to walk around the Jewel, the latest opening in Singapore’s Changi Airport based in Terminal 1. This beautiful includes stunning gardens and attractions like the largest indoor waterfall (40m), Forest Valley, different canopy bridges and plenty of shops and dining facilities. It’s a real Instagrammers dream and the perfect place for some cool pictures.

LOCATION
Jewel Changi Airport, Terminal 1 (located in the public area of the airport which makes it easily accessible to all terminals, open 24 hours)

BOOK
The Jewel itself is free to public, but there are some attractions for walking the Canopy Bridge, Singapore’s Hedge Maze & the Manulife Sky Nets where you can buy tickets for here

Now you have read all our travel guide for Singapore with all the best things to do and tips, you might be ready to go. Following websites we highly recommend, can help you plan your trip:

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3 comments

Sam - Reisbeesten.be January 22, 2020 - 3:49 pm

Komt zeker van pas! Wij hopen er dit jaar eens naartoe te gaan 😀

Reply
suitcasestoriesbe January 22, 2020 - 7:13 pm

Wat een leuke vooruitzichten! Singapore is ook echt een fantastische stad waar je veel kan beleven en doen.

Reply
Sam - Reisbeesten.be January 22, 2020 - 3:28 pm

Komt zeker van pas! Wij willen er al lang graag eens naartoe 😀

Reply

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