Singapore is a small island city-state that’s off the southern coast of Malaysia. Having a multicultural population, tropical weather, and a centralized hub for economic growth and development, all make Singapore a desirable destination.
Singapore is frequently visited by Australians who travel there every year. While there are endless adventurous and fun things to do during your trip, it’s hard to decide when to go, how to get there, and the best places to see while you’re there. Thus here’s this guide for Australians traveling to Singapore included with photos, tips, and everything you need to know about your upcoming trip. Here goes the best Singapore travel advice Australia!
How to get to Singapore
The best way to get to Singapore from Australia is by flying.
The most popular airline servicing flights from Australia to Singapore is of course Singapore Airlines. The average direct flight time from Australia to Singapore is 6 hours and 55 minutes. The cheapest month to fly to Singapore is March where you can find flights as low as $223.
There are lots of other airlines flying from Australia to Singapore including Jetstar Asia, Emirates, and Qantas Airways. All of these airlines are servicing flights from the major airports in Australia such as Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, and Adelaide.
It’s also important to keep in mind during your trip that Singapore is three hours behind Sydney, Australia.
If you’re planning on driving to the airport and parking your vehicle while you’re away on your vacation in Singapore, then check out Flyparks. Flyparks is an online comparison site for finding low-cost, budget airport parking at airports across Australia and New Zealand. So if you are looking for Brisbane, Sydney, Adelaide, or Melbourne Airport Parking, then Flyparks is the place to look and book!
Airports in Singapore
Singapore’s Changi Airport (SIN) is a large airport and is considered to be one of the best airports in the world. The airport has four massive terminals, in addition to a free movie theatre, swimming pool and jacuzzi, koi pond, entertainment deck, and a variety of gardens. There are also tons of options for dining and shopping so that you don’t have to be bored as you wait for your departure.
Best Time of Year to Visit Singapore
The best time of the year to visit Singapore is between February and April. Singapore gets the most rain between November and January, so it is best to avoid these months. In addition, the months of May and July are considered to be the hottest and most dry months with temperatures rising to 37 degrees celsius. So going between February-April is the best option for going to Singapore where temperatures are very moderate and pleasant. It is important to note that Singapore is always pretty hot and sticky, with average humidity above eighty percent.
Currency in Singapore
It is recommended that you bring enough money to spend about S$121 per day during your stay in Singapore. This is the average of what visitors spend on a typical vacation in Singapore.
Languages Spoken in Singapore
The national language of Singapore is Malay, but the four official languages in Singapore are English, Malay, Mandarin Chinese, and Tamil. Despite the national language being Malay, English is the most widely spoken language throughout the country.
Further, most citizens speak two languages or more because the country has a bilingual education policy. Thus, those traveling from Australia or other English-speaking countries should have no issues getting around Singapore.
How to get Around in Singapore
If you are going to be traveling through Singapore, then you are going to have to find the best way to get to all of your different sightseeing destinations! Many of you have probably heard about Singapore’s subway system, called Mass Rapid Transit (MRT). This rail line is an underground network and is connected to the entire city. Once you’re in the desired neighborhood or area, walking is your best option. MRT also has bus routes that can get you just about anywhere in Singapore. Below there are more details about the different methods of transportation that you can use to get around Singapore.
The MRT subway system is very efficient, clean, and is inexpensive, making it the best option for getting around Singapore. The price that you pay per journey is based on the distance you travel and usually ranges from S$1 to S$2.50. If you are going to be in Singapore for quite some time, it is recommended to get an EZ-Link rechargeable card for S$12 to save some extra money and avoid long lines. There is also the option to get the STP, a Singapore Tourist Pass, which is a special EZ-Link value card that allows you unlimited travel for a set fee per day.
Traveling by bus is the next best option for getting around Singapore. The bus network is very extensive and can get you anywhere you need to go through the city. There are lots of bus routes, so you will just need to figure out the main ones that you will take on your journey.
Fares are based on the distance you travel, the time of day as well as traveler type (adult, children, or senior citizen). Thus, the bus may not necessarily be any cheaper than the MRT depending on all of the above factors. The easiest way to pay for your bus ride is to tap your card on the reader located at the bus entrance. You can also pay in cash, but you must have the exact amount in change.
Singapore is a very busy city with more than 5 million people living there. Thus, driving can pose some issues such as traffic and finding parking. If you really want to travel via car, it is recommended to use taxis instead of renting a vehicle yourself. This way, you can still enjoy seeing the city and get around fast, but without having to deal with the stressful part of driving!
If you are still interested in renting a car, there are plenty of rental offices at Singapore Airport as well as throughout the city.
By Bike or Foot
If you want to get some excellent exercise on your vacation, then you can either walk or bike around Singapore as well! Walking is a great way to get a feel for the city and see all the nature spots that never seem to end!
Cycling around Singapore is relatively easy as there is a well-connected network of bike paths and lots of companies that you can rent bicycles from.
You can also bring foldable bikes to public transportation to combine different methods of transportation.
Top Things to See in Singapore
There are so many things to do in Singapore that it can be hard to decide and plan on which ones to actually add to your itinerary. Below there is a list of the top 10 things to see in Singapore with tips, information, and images for each. Hopefully, this can help you narrow down what you want to see while you are vacationing through Singapore.
1. Pulau Ubin
Pulau Ubin is one of the most famous offshore islands in Singapore. The island is just northeast of the mainland of Singapore and is just a 15-minute boat ride. This island is one of the last two remaining kampongs (a Malaysian village) in Singapore.
Full of lush greenery and lots of wildlife, you can go bird-watching, kayaking, hiking, visiting abandoned quarries, and so much more. You can visit old restored houses and also explore the Chek Jawa wetlands. In addition, there is the Ubin Fruit Orchard, with local fruit trees that are totally worth checking out.
2. National Gallery Singapore
The National Gallery in Singapore is the largest public collection of modern works in all of Southeast Asia, with over 9000+ pieces of art. The museum is held in two national monuments, City Hall and the former Supreme Court of Singapore. The majority of the art held in this museum is Singaporean and Southeast Asian from the 19th century to the present day.
Entrance to the museum costs S$20 for tourists and an all-access pass costs S$30 with access to the special exhibition included. There are free guided tours as well but if you prefer to peruse at your own pace, then you can download the gallery explorer app to learn about the paintings and art. So if you are interested in art at all, then this is the place to go!
3. Haw Par Villa
Haw Par Villa is an eight-acre outdoor art park that contains more than 1,000 sculptures and dioramas that focus on teaching traditional Chinese values. This destination has become less and less popular over the years, which makes it a perfect cultural tourist destination if you are looking to get away from the busy crowds in Singapore. This park was founded and created in the 1930s by Aw Boon Haw, who was the commissioner of the parks’ intense art collection.
Some of the art contains unfiltered displays of the different degrees of punishment and scenes of death rituals in order to vividly show children the importance of Chinese morals and culture. Thus, if you are looking for a more cultural experience instead of visiting the main tourist attractions, then Haw Par Villa is the perfect place for you to check out.
4. Thian Hock Keng Temple
Thian Hock Keng Temple, also known as Tianfu Temple, is the oldest Buddhist temple in Singapore. The building was designed in traditional southern Chinese style with beautiful architecture that was built without using a single nail. There are excellent sculptures of dragons and phoenixes that surround the exterior as well as porcelain roof ridges.
While the entrance to the temple is free, the temple never gets too crowded. Thian Hock Keng is still a working temple and you will definitely see worshippers in the designated meditation rooms as you mill about the courtyards.
Sentosa is a small 1,236-acre island resort that is located off the southern coast of Singapore. This small island is home to countless tourist attractions such as resorts, beaches, golfing, Universal Studios Singapore, shopping, the S.E.A Aquarium, and the massive adventure park where you can go zip-lining.
Spots like the Universal Studios Singapore (USS) take a complete day to tour. Here’s a guide to visiting Universal Studios in one day.
The island is connected to Singapore by cable car, boardwalk, monorail, and road and is visited by more than 20 million people per year. So, if you are looking to enjoy your time in Singapore at a waterpark, walking through nature trails, relaxing on the beach, or just enjoying a few drinks by the water, then Sentosa is the place for you.
6. The Southern Ridges
The Southern Ridge is a recreational trail that connects five parks located along the southern ridge of Singapore and is 6.2 miles in length. The five connected parks are Mount Faber Park, Telok Blangah Hill, HortPark, Kent Ridge Park, and Labrador Nature Reserve.
Be sure to check out Henderson Waves, a 256-feet-high suspended dock that is the highest pedestrian bridge in all of Singapore. This is also a beloved location for tourists and photographers since the view of the surrounding nature is spectacular. Throughout the park, you can also see excellent views of the city, harbor, and the southern islands of Singapore. This is a great option if you want to get away from the busy hustle of the city without going too far.
7. Gardens by the Bay – OCBC Skyway
Gardens by the Bay is clearly a very popular tourist destination in Singapore. The gardens were designed with the hope of improving the quality of life in the city by adding this outdoor nature space with lots of greenery and nature. The park is 250 acres and is located in the Central Region of Singapore, just next to the Marina Reservoir. The park has three waterfront gardens, Bay East Garden, Bay Central Garden, and the largest of them all, Bay South Garden.
The gardens have many attractions such as the Flower Dome, the OCBC Skyway, the Supertree Observatory, the Cloud Forest, and the Floral Fantasy. The Flower Dome is actually the largest glass greenhouse in the world, which makes it a spectacular place that you can add to your bucket list. There are also different sculptures through different parts of the park that you can see as you walk through the different outdoor sections.
The gardens aim to simultaneously entertain and educate visitors with plants seen only in this part of the world. Thus, not only is this a beautiful destination to see and take photos, but you can also learn a lot while you explore, making it the perfect place to visit in Singapore.
Another fun place to go in Singapore with a lot of nature views like the Gardens by the Bay is the infamous Jurong Bird Park.
8. Old Airport Road Food Centre
This Food Centre is over 40-years old and is home to over 150 food stalls where you can find some of the most beloved food vendors in Singapore. This location is a top destination for locals as well as tourists, but the long wait-time for the best food stands is definitely worth the wait.
It can be difficult to choose from all the delicious options, especially when there are over 168 food stalls. Some of the top dishes to try when visiting are Lor Mee, Wanton Mee, Hae Mee, Mee Pok, and Kway Teow. So, if trying new foods is something you are interested in, then this food center is a perfect place to try some authentic dishes made by locals.
9. Sungei Buloh Wetland Reserve
Sungei Buloh Wetland Reserve is a recognized ASEAN Heritage Park that is 500 acres of land with unique flora and fauna. In this diverse landscape, you can find mangroves, mudflats, ponds, and forests that are inhabited by crabs, water snakes, monitor lizards, otters, crocodiles, herons, and countless other species. This reserve is internationally known as a crucial site for migrating birds and is a part of the East Asian Australasian Shorebird Site Network.
The terrain is easy to navigate throughout the park and has lots of cool things to check out, such as the 59-foot-tall Aerie Tower from which you can birdwatch, or the Mudflat Experience, which is a raised trail that goes over the mudflats so that individuals can observe the wildlife from above without causing a disturbance.
10. Singapore Botanic Gardens – National Orchid Garden
This piece on Singapore travel advice Australia can’t be complete without the Botanical Garden. The Botanical Gardens in Singapore are a UNESCO World Heritage site and are actually the first and only tropical botanical garden on the list. The 162-year-old gardens, located in the heart of Singapore, consisting of four different areas, called ‘cores’. The first is called Tanglin, which is the cultural core with historical favorites of the gardens.
The Central core is considered to be the main tourist belt of the gardens, while Bukit Timah is the dedicated area for education and discovery. The last core is called Tyersall-Galloop which includes a Learning Forest that was added onto the gardens in hopes of creating an even greater forest habitat.
Access to the gardens is free, so you can roam about and see more than 10,000 species of flora that fill this 200-acre area. Each of the different cores has different sites, art, activities, and more to keep you busy and entertained. If you love flowers, nature, and learning, then visiting the botanical gardens should be a top priority.
Hopefully, you can see that a trip to Singapore is an excellent idea to spend your next vacation. There are endless things to do in Singapore and it’s a very easy city to get around. With direct flights and easy airport parking, there is nothing stopping you from planning your next adventure in Singapore.