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At number six in our top cities for bleisure travel in 2019 is Singapore
Both a country and a city, Singapore is a major financial hub in the Asia Pacific region and has long been regarded as one of the world’s most advanced economies. Main industries include manufacturing, financial services, medical technology, aerospace engineering, clean energy, healthcare, and content development. Known for its urban planning and futuristic architecture, Singapore serves a model for developing nations. It was the 5th most-visited city in the world in 2018, beating the ‘Big Apple’ by 1 place. So if you’re planning on travelling to Singapore on business in 2019, and have some time on the side for a bit of leisure, let Selective Travel Management guide you on this innovative business city…
Top 10 Things to See and Do
1. Visit the Gardens by the Bay
Easily recognisable as one of Singapore’s most iconic landmarks, the Gardens by the Bay are a ‘city in a garden’ spanning a total of 101 hectares of land in the heart of the city. As one of the most popular tourist attractions in Singapore, visitors can view the Marina Bay skyline from the giant Supertree Groves or stroll along the 22-metre-high skyway. Other attractions include the Flower Dome, the largest greenhouse in the world which houses exotic plants from five different continents, and the Cloud Forest, which has the world’s tallest indoor waterfall and allows visitors to descend through the mist-filled Cloud and Treetop Walks.
2. Views from the Marina Bay Sands Skypark
Another of Singapore’s most iconic landmarks, the Marina Bay Sands Hotel features three towers connected by a rooftop skypark. Visitors to the Skypark can observe panoramic views from 57 levels above the city or dine in one of the five bars and restaurants on top of the majestic hotel. If you would like to take a dip in the world’s largest infinity pool based within the Skypark, then you will have to stay at the world-famous hotel as it is reserved for hotel guests only. Not to be missed, both the Marina Bay Sands and Gardens by the Bay put on an illuminations show at night.
3. Ride the Singapore Flyer
The Singapore Flyer is the world’s 2nd largest observation wheel at 165m tall and offers 360° views over the cosmopolitan cityscape of Singapore as well as the surrounding islands of Indonesia and parts of Malaysia. Passengers can indulge in a flute of champagne or taste the Singapore Sling, a gin-based cocktail, with optional extras that include a private four-course meal with an in-flight host.
4. Singapore Zoo
The Singapore Zoo is another of Singapore’s most popular attractions and houses around 315 species, around 16% of which are endangered. Visitors to the zoo can buy an access all areas pass that also allows entry into the neighbouring parks: River Safari, Night Safari and Jurong Bird Park. The Night Safari is the world’s first nocturnal zoo and the River Safari is the first of its kind in Asia.
5. Explore Chinatown
No visit to an Asian city is complete without a trip to Chinatown. Visitors can explore Singapore’s culture and history through the traditional architecture that sharply contrasts with the rest of the city. Also on offer are a vast number of museums and temples, including the popular Buddha Tooth Relic Temple and the Thian Hock Keng Temple, the oldest in Singapore. Indulge yourself in some authentic local cuisine such as chili crab, the national dish of Singapore, or Hainanese chicken.
6. Visit Sentosa Island
Located around a 30 minute drive away from the city, Sentosa Island is Singapore’s island resort getaway with everything from theme attractions, award-winning spa retreats, lush rainforests and golden sandy beaches. Top attractions include Universal Studios, S.E.A Aquarium, Adventure Cove Waterpark, Madame Tussauds and one of Singapore’s two casinos. Visitors to the island can marvel at the Merlion statue, the official mascot of Singapore, or ride on the Singapore cable car, the nation’s first and only cableway.
Just like any other major city, Singapore has shopping opportunities available for those on all types of budgets. Orchard Road is highly regarded as the best shopping area in Singapore and has a number of local and international department stores with both budget and high-end labels on offer. For those with a bit more money to spend, Marina Bay has a number of famous shopping malls which lean more toward the high-end price range. For those on a budget, Chinatown is a great place to buy spices, souvenirs and clothes and is good for those who like to bargain down the price. Finally, Little India is the most vibrant of the shopping areas and also offers spices, fabrics, jewellery and more!
8. Explore the National Orchid Garden
Housed within Singapore’s Botanic Gardens on the outskirts of the Orchard Road shopping district, the National Orchid Garden showcases 60,000 orchid plants displayed within 4 different colour zones based around the 4 seasons. This is must for those who want to escape the city life and get back to nature.
9. Singapore Mass Rapid Transit (MRT)
The MRT is one of the best and easiest ways to get around Singapore and spans most of the city-state. It is an inexpensive, efficient and clean transport system that allows you to travel around the city like a local. Most of the key attractions are within walking distance from an MRT station and maps of the lines can be found at most stations.
10. Visit a Museum
Singapore has an abundance of museums to choose from, the most popular of which is the National Museum of Singapore. Opened in 1887, it is the oldest museum in Singapore and is a cultural and architectural landmark. Another popular museum is the ArtScience Musuem, located in the Marina Bay Sands resort. This is another iconic building, shaped like a lotus flower.