|Facts About Singapore|
|Latitude and Longitude||1°17′N103°50′E|
|Area||274 sq mi (710 sq km)|
|Time Zone||SST (UTC+8)|
|International Airport||Changi International Airport|
|Points of Interest||Universal Studios, Singapore Zoo, Singapore Flyer, Singapore Botanic Gardens, Jurong Bird Park, Escape Theme Park,Telok Ayer Market,Sri Mariamman Temple|
Next in our series, with 9.2 million international tourists, is Singapore. Located in the southern tip of the Malay Peninsula in Southeast Asia, Singapore is one of the leading tourist destinations of the world.
The 'Singapore experience' can never be complete without shopping. The city, often referred to as the "little red dot", is home to a large number of shopping malls, centers, and outlet stores selling some of the biggest brands. And with a sale going on practically round the year, Singapore is a shoppers' paradise.
History of Singapore
Although the history of Singapore dates back to as early as the 14th century, the Singapore that we know today starting taking shape after Sir Stamford Raffles landed here on January 29, 1819. On behalf of the East India Company, Sir Raffles signed a treaty with Sultan Hussein Shah to develop the southern part of Singapore. Subsequently Singapore came under the British dominion in 1926 when another treaty was signed with the Sultan. By 1869, the year the Suez Canal was opened, Singapore became a major port of call for ships traveling between Europe and East Asia leading to great prosperity.
As a fallout of the World War II, Singapore fell into the hands of the Japanese Imperial Army in 1942. The Japanese occupation lasted till 1945, when they surrendered to the Allies. Following their surrender, the British once again took control of Singapore. In 1959, Singapore held its first general election. In 1963, Singapore merged with the Federation of Malaya, Sarawak, and North Borneo to form Malaysia. However, this merger was short-lived and Singapore became an independent and sovereign democratic nation on August 9, 1965. On December 22, 1965, Singapore became an independent republic.
When to a Visit Singapore?
As Singapore is located almost on the Equator, the weather in Singapore remains quite sultry throughout the year. The climate is hot and humid with round-the-year rainfall.
November through January is considered to be the wettest period, while May through July the driest. However, there is not much difference in temperature. So you can plan a visit to the city all through the year. While planning a trip to Singapore, make sure to carry lightweight cottons and linens and an umbrella. You may want to plan your Singapore travel based on the festival season, with the highlights being the Chinese New Year, the Lantern Festival, and the Art Festival.
Getting To Singapore
Singapore can be reached by all air, land, and sea. Air: Singapore is served by two airports the Changi Airport and the Seleter Airport. The Changi Airport has been regularly voted among the best in the world. All the major airlines operate out of the Changi Airport. The Seleter Airport is small modern airport and mainly used by corporate flyers and visiting dignitaries.
Boat: The Tanah Merah ferry terminal and Changi ferry terminal have boat services to Indonesia and Malaysia respectively. In addition, you can charter boats or avail ferries to visit the neighboring islands.
Land: There are buses that ply from Thailand and Malaysia to Singapore. The Lavender St Bus Terminal (corner of Lavender St & Kallang Bahru), Queen St Bus Terminal (Queen St), and Golden Mile Complex (Beach Rd) are the main bus terminuses. Singapore is also connected to Kuala Lumpur and Bangkok via rail.
Within the city: While roaming around Singapore, you can avail the bus, tram, tourist buses, cars, motorcycles, taxis, and bicycles. You can also avail the Mass Rapid Transit (MRT) rail system and its road network. It is the fastest way to get around the city.
The Many Splendors Of Singapore
The beautiful city of Singapore is one big wonder in itself. Add to this its multi-cultural roots and latest state-of-the-art technology, and Singapore quite rightly boasts of being one of the most exciting places in the world.
Singapore Zoo: The Singapore Zoo is home to more than 3.200 mammals, birds, reptiles, and fishes. Spread over 28 hectares, the zoo offers you an once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to have breakfast with orangutans and lunch with the lions. You can also feed the animals under the watchful eyes of the guards who also provide live commentary. Ticket prices start at as low as S$ 20 for an adult and S$ 13 for children.
Night Safari Singapore : For all those who love to see the animals of the nocturnal world, the Singapore Night Safari opens up a whole new world. You can catch the wonders of the wild impossible to spot during the day – like a leopard feasting atop a tree or a fishing cat catching its prey. And then there is the Night Safari Tram Ride. It brings you in close contact with the animals from the Himalayan region, Nepalese River Valley, Indian Subcontinent, Equatorial Africa and a host of other places. Ticket prices start at as low as S$ 32 for an adult and S$ 21 for children. You can also avail combo offers for both Singapore Zoo and Singapore Night Safari.
JurongBird Park: The Jurong Bird Park is home to more than 5,000 birds of 380 different species from around the world. It is spread over an area of more than 20 hectares. The bird park organizes a host of shows throughout the day with the most popular being the Kings of the Skies, Birds n Buddies and Lunch With the Parrots. You can also get a ringside view of the life cycle of birds at the Breeding and Research Center. Ticket prices start at as low as S$ 18 for an adult and S$ 12 for children.
Underwater World Singapore: Another hugely popular attraction of Singapore is the Underwater World. Watching coral reefs, octopuses, sharks, moray eels, stingrays, turtles, and hundreds of marine animals swim over your head as you move along the 83-metre long travelator through a submerged 6-millimetre thick acrylic-windowed tunnel. And for all those daring ones, the Underwater World Singapore has got programs like Dive with the Sharks and Swim with the Dolphins. Feeding the sharks, gentle rays, dolphins, is a unique experience, which you will get to enjoy at the Underwater World Singapore. Ticket prices start at as low as S$ 25.9 for an adult and S$ 17.6 for children.
Singapore Flyer: At a staggering height of 165 meters, the Singapore Flyer is the tallest Ferris wheel in the world. To be treated with a magnificent panoramic view of the Singapore skyline just take a ride. You will get a bird's eye view of the Marina Bay, Merlion Park, Raffles Place, Empress Place, Padang, and Singapore River. Ticket prices start at as low as S$ 29.5 for an adult and S$ 20.65 for children.
Singapore River Festival: The Singapore River Festival is another popular event among tourists. Every year more than 250,000 people gather in Singapore for this festival only. It is held every year in the months of June and July. It takes place in the four famous quays of Singapore-Boat Quay, Clark Quay, Empress Place, and Robertson Quay. The Singapore River Festival is one long party with magic shows, great music, sensational performances, and elegant fashion shows amongst a host of other revelries.
Activities to do in Singapore
Nightlife: Singapore offers you a wide range of choices and options - bars, clubs, discos, karaoke pubs, street opera, night markets, river cruises, and international stage shows, to name a few. The nightspots are located close to each other-perfect for bar-hopping, shopping, feasting, and an endless night of partying.
The Boat Quay and Clarke Quay areas are the two most popular places. These areas boast of a series of nightclubs where you can let your hair down and dance your heart out. As the demand is increasing by the day, newer and trendier nightclubs are opening up. Some of the popular ones are The Arena, The Bellini Grande, and Zirca in the Clarke Quay.
If you are connoisseur of food, the Singaporean restaurants offer you a wide choice of cuisines from round the world.
Shopping: If you love shopping, then Singapore is the place to be. With shopping malls, stores and shops located throughout the city you will not have any dearth of options. The Orchard Road is famous for the high-end boutiques featuring the big names in the fashion world. Chinatown, Holland Village, and Little India offer you a wide range of Asian-themed antiques, curios, paintings, and souvenirs.
Between May 27 and June 24 each year, the Great Singapore Sale is held. That is the best time for you to visit Singapore if shopping ranks high on your only agenda.
Day Trips: The hundreds of islands scattered around Singapore provide you an opportunity to leave on day trips and explore them. You can avail charter boats and ferries and head off for a day of adventure. You can even visit parts of Malaysia and come back the same day. Do spend a day at Sentosa Island
Last Updated : September 05, 2014
|Singapore Travel Guide|