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Singapore - The Dynamo of Southeast Asia

Known as the Lion City, Singapore is modern high-tech city that successfully blends this with it's ancient traditions giving the tourist a fascinating playground to explore and discover.

The city skyscrapers stretch up and over the old British colonial architecture, Muslim mosques and Hindu temples with neither seeming out of place.

Singapore is a truly multi-cultural city home to an ethnic mix of Chinese, Malays and Indians, as well as expats from all over the world, in a predominantly English-speaking society.

www.visitsingapore.com

Top 10 things to do in Singapore

Esplanade and Merlion

The Esplanade (Theatres by the bay) is a performance arts building situated at Marina Bay. The building is officially shaped as the national fruit (durian) , however, many also seems to think it represents a microphone

A very unique building offering dining, shopping, and the performing arts that is hard to miss when walking around the bay.

The Merlion Statue in Merlion Park, located near Esplanade Drive; near Fullerton Road, is a symbol of Singapore guarding the entrance to the Singapore River. The merlion is a mythological creature with the head of a lion and the body of a fish (mermaid).

www.esplanade.com/

Raffles Hotel

Declared a National Monument in 1987, the hotel was restored and reopened in 1991. Raffles Hotel today stands as a jewel in the crown of Singapore's hospitality industry, renowned and loved for its inimitable style and unsurpassed excellence in service and facilities.

It was named after Sir Stamford Raffles, the founder of modern Singapore. Tropical suites and sola topis were as much a part of Raffles Hotel's early style as bentwood tables and rattan chairs. Over the years the hotel has evolved into one of the world's most beloved grand hotels and welcomed innumerable celebrities, writers and royalty.

www.raffles.com/

Botanic Gardens

Established in 1859, the gardens main attraction is the National Orchid Garden. Although the main gardens are free, you will have to pay for entry to the orchid garden.

There is also a small tropical rainforest area, a ginger garden, children's garden and the evolution garden which tells the story of plant life evolution on Earth.

With many different walks through the gardens, it's three lakes, cafe and French fine-dining restaurant, you could quite happily spend the entire day here and still not see it all. A great relaxing day out.

www.sbg.org.sg/

Orchard Road

This is the retail and entertainment hub of modern Singapore City. As well as the many shop fronts, bars and restaurants along this strip, you will find a large number of shopping malls each with there own unique take on city life.

Most of the top hotels are found up and down Orchard so expect to bump into a couple of other tourists during your stroll. And don't expect to pick up a bargain here - just take care not to max out your credit card!

It's well work visiting the strip both during the day for the shopping and at night for the bars, clubs and restaurants.

wikitravel.org/en/Orchard_Road

Sentosa Island

This popular southern island resort is visited by up to 5 million people every year. Sentosa translates into peace and tranquility and the island boasts a 2km long sheltered beach, two golf courses, two five star hotels and Fort Siloso, a restored World War II coastal gun battery turned museum.

Other attractions include the Sky Tower observation platform at a height of 110m, a Butterfly and Insect park and Dolpkin Lagoon.

If you're not lucky enough to be staying in one of the hotels on the island, day-trips can be arranged from any of the many tourist information centres or larger hotels in the city.

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With the planned 2010 opening of Universal Studios Singapore, the island will be an even bigger tourist attraction in the coming years.

www.sentosa.com.sg/

Little India

As the name suggests, this is the center of Singapore's large Indian community.

Colourful temples co-exist side-by-side with small restaurants, shop stalls and parrot fortune tellers. Walking through the streets here will get your senses tingling form the bright colours of pottery, silverware, silks and woodcarvings to the wonderful aroma of spices and jasmine garlands.

There's definitely a sense of hurriedness on the streets here with locals busy in acting out their daily lives.

If you'd like to learn a little more about the life and culture of this area, some tour operators offer guided walks.

wikitravel.org/en/Singapore/Little_India

Singapore Cable Car

The Singapore Cable Car provides an 80m aerial experience from Mount Faber on the main island of Singapore to the resort island of Sentosa across the Keppel Harbour.

The 20min ride commands a captivating view of the city centre, port and nearby isles. You also get the opportunity to see the local bird life up close.

Cable cars run daily from 8.30 am to 9 pm.

en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Singapore_Cable_Car

Chinatown

This is the traditional Chinese quarters of town, and while the entire city is largely Chinese these days the area does retain some of its own charm.

Filled with restored shop fronts full of strange little shops selling everything from plastic Buddhas to dried seahorse you really just have to wander around and see what you come across.

There are a few worthwhile attractions to visit in this area; Thian Hock Keng Temple being the oldest in Singapore, Jamae Mosque again the oldest of it's type in Singapore and free to enter, Chinatown Heritage Centre and Buddha Tooth Relic Temple a four-story temple towering over Chinatown.

Avoid the sales touts, who will inevitable home in on you, as this is an illegal practice in Singapore.

bit.ly/pi6FA

Singapore Flyer

It seems that every world city worth their weight in salt nowadays has to have a large Ferris wheel offering panoramic views over the skyline and Singapore is no different.

Located on the southeast tip of the Marina Centre, the wheel opened in 2006 and stands 165m tall at it's highest point and has 28 fully air-conditioned capsules. Each revolution of the wheel takes 37mins.

If you are looking for some great aerial pictures and a chance to take in the expanse of Singapore city, the Singapore Flyer is a must.

From simple hop-on tickets to VIP Champagne "flights" and even a dining experience! the attraction certainly caters for all types of tourists.

www.singaporeflyer.com/

Night Safari

The Night Safari is the world's first nocturnal zoo and is one of the most popular tourist attractions in Singapore.

Officially opened on 26 May 1994 it occupies 0.4km² of secondary rainforest adjacent to the Singapore Zoo.

Unlike traditional nocturnal houses, which reverse the day-night cycle of animals so they will be active by day, the Night Safari is an entire open-air zoo set in a humid tropical forest that is only open at night. It is divided into eight geographical zones, which can be explored either on foot via three walking trails, or by tram.

The animals are made visible by lighting that resembles moonlight. Although it is brighter than full moonlight by a few orders of magnitude, it is dim enough not to disturb the animals nocturnal behaviour.

Cultural performances are a regular feature at the safari, and include tribal dances, blowpipe demonstrations and fire eating displays.

www.nightsafari.com.sg/index.html

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Temperature & Rainfall Guide for Singapore

Climate graph for Singapore

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Great Airfare Deals to Singapore

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Travel Essentials

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