6 Things You Should Know as a First-Time Visitor to Singapore

With a land area of a little over 700 square kilometres, Singapore is the smallest country in Southeast Asia and one of the tiniest in the world. But don’t let its size fool you into thinking that there’s nothing much to see and do here, as it’s one of the top destinations to visit in Asia. Whether you’re travelling
alone or with loved ones, Singapore has something remarkable to offer, from architectural gems and world-class attractions to stunning gardens and culinary delights. That’s why it isn’t surprising that the city-state welcomes millions of visitors each year from various parts of the globe.

Perhaps you’ve been planning your first visit to Singapore, so you’re searching for more information about this vibrant city to make your trip even more exciting and memorable. If so, read on. From important facts and dos and don’ts to must-visit places and crucial travel tips, this piece will discuss six things you should know to make the most out of your trip to Singapore for the first time.

Spend Time at Changi Airport

A recent global airport customer satisfaction survey conducted by a UK-based consultancy firm ranked Singapore Changi Airport as the world’s best—and rightly so. After all, this airport and its latest extension, the Jewel, is a top-notch tourism destination in itself. At its heart, you’ll find the world’s tallest indoor waterfall, breathtaking gardens, enchanting attractions, entertainment venues, and countless restaurants and eateries that can satisfy even the most iscriminating palates.

Besides offering opportunities to indulge in unique activities and visit fantastic sites, this world-class aviation hub is also a shopper’s paradise. As such, you may want to explore the Jewel to purchase locally themed souvenirs, electronic devices, fashion pieces from your favourite brands, chocolates, and many other hard-to-find luxury and practical items. If you’re planning to be a repeat visitor to the country, also make sure to check out the rewards you can earn by using ChangiPay.

Because of Changi’s numerous one-of-a-kind charms, you may want to plan your arrival and departure schedule meticulously. That way, you’ll have enough time to experience and enjoy Changi’s remarkable offerings.

Keep the Rules in Mind

The Lion City is one of the world’s safest, cleanest, and finest cities primarily because the city-state has strict rules about how people should act in public spaces. If you want a pleasant trip, make sure that you learn and follow these rules to avoid legal troubles and paying hefty fines. Below are a few examples of
things you should never do when visiting Singapore:

● Jaywalking
● Feeding pigeons and other wild animals
● Smoking in public places
● Littering and spitting in public
● Drinking and eating while riding public transportation
● Not flushing after using a public toilet
● Playing musical instruments in public

Use Public Transportation

Singapore’s public transportation system is affordable, convenient, efficient, and highly accessible — a true traveller’s dream. So, instead of renting a car or riding taxis, your best bet is to use public buses and trains to get around the city. Consider purchasing a Singapore Tourist Pass to get unlimited rides on the
city-state’sintercity bus and train services to save time and money.

Make Time to Explore Various Neighbourhoods

One of the best things about visiting Singapore is you can get to know and experience various cultures. As such, you may want to make time to explore different neighbourhoods that can help you immerse into an array of heritages and cultures.

Take a trip to Chinatown, where you can enjoy your favourite Chinese menu items, experience exotic therapies, visit museums and temples, and shop at traditional and modern Chinese shops and boutiques. You can also drop by Little India, a charming and colourful district where you can soak in the rich Indian culture, marvel at the remarkable architecture, and savour traditional Indian cuisine. Perhaps you can also take a leisurely walk in the streets of Kampong Glam and Bugis to see some of Singapore’s oldest buildings, museums, and religious places. Arab Street, Holland Village, and Katong are other
places worth exploring.

Skip Fancy Restaurants and Dine at Hawker Centres

If you want to experience Singapore’s famed culinary scene, the best way is to go straight to one of the many bustling hawker centres in the city. Hawker centres are like food courts with numerous food stalls offering a wide array of delicious and high-quality local dishes, fusion meals, and other popular
international food items.

Hainanese chicken rice, chilli crab, laksa (a spicy hot noodle soup), char kway teow (stir-fried rice noodles), and Hokkien mee (stir-fried prawn noodles) are some dishes you don’t want to miss. If you’re unsure which stalls to order from, take your cue from the locals and look for stalls with the longest queue. Don’t forget to bring cash because many stalls might not accept credit cards, as hawker dishes are relatively inexpensive.

Bring a Refillable Water Bottle

Because it’s hot and humid in Singapore, you need to keep yourself hydrated as you tour different places and enjoy various activities. Drink plenty of water to replenish fluid loss. But instead of buying bottled water from convenience stores or supermarkets, you can simply fill your refillable water bottle with tap water from your hotel or public drinking fountains to save money. Singapore’s tap water is suitable for drinking, as its quality is well within World Health Organisation (WHO) Guidelines for Drinking-Water Quality.

The list above may not be exhaustive, but it’s probably enough to give you an idea of what you should do to make your first Singapore trip smooth and pleasant. Remember what you read here and continue searching for more travel tips related to the kind of vacation you’re eyeing to make the most of your stay. Who knows? Maybe your upcoming trip will be the first of many as you discover Singapore’s unique charm and vibrant spirit.

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