Long time no blog! Sorry about the 7-month hiatus. *insert excuses* Anyway, I wanted to share my travel guide for Singapore! I only spent 2 1/2 days there, but here is a short video on my YouTube, where you can see what my dad, mom, and I did on our trip. If you want to watch it, here it is!:
If you want to see my recommendations for Singapore, just keep reading!
VietJet Air (>$75)
I flew from Ho Chi Minh City because I was in Vietnam for a week, volunteering and traveling. Plane tickets are really cheap within Asia; my ticket from HCMC to Singapore was less than $75. The flight amenities are very standard (complimentary drinks and snacks, but meals are on-demand), but it didn’t bother my parents or me since the flight was only 2 hours long.
China Eastern Airlines (~$500)
I flew from Singapore to Los Angeles with China Eastern for approximately $500, since I booked my flight pretty well in-advance, and I bought it through https://www.justfly.com/ . I would totally recommend purchasing tickets through JustFly because they’re very discounted. I had a 5-hr layover in Shanghai, but I was super lucky because I got an entire aisle to myself! Also, on the way to Singapore from Shanghai, I shared a 4-row aisle with 1 other person, which meant some extra legroom.
The Ritz-Carlton Millenia (5 stars, ~$400)
To start, the Ritz is a beautiful hotel. Yes, it might not be as famous as the Marina Bay Sands Hotel, but it has 1) a great location, 2) fantastic service, and 3) incredible amenities.
The Ritz is in walking distance to Marina Square, a small mall with a big food court. Also, the Ritz is a 5 minute taxi ride to the Marina Bay Sands area. I actually prefer being away from the Marina Bay Sands because it is an overwhelmingly touristy area.
The employees were very helpful and kind. Our check-in and check-out ran very smoothly, and they gave amazing recommendations for restaurants.
Since it’s a Ritz, the amenities were fantastic, as expected. We stayed in a Premier Suite on the 6th floor, so we had a stunning view of Marina Bay. In the bedroom area, there is a desk, couch, coffee table, bed, and quite a large closet area. The bathroom was gorgeous, with the most amazing bathtub view of the cityscape.
Our booking came with breakfast buffet vouchers (scooore!). The hotel restaurant, Colony, is well-revered, and for good reason. The breakfast had everything you could ever want—American, English, Japanese, French, Chinese, and Indian dishes, all with the freshest ingredients. If you’re looking to eat something light, Colony had an assortment of fruit, including Southeast Asian fruit. If you’re looking to eat something heavy, try the Chicken Tikka Masala, the Cantonese cha siu bao (BBQ pork buns), and traditional English breakfast (beans, eggs, tomatoes, sausage, bread, etc.).
Gardens by the Bay
The Gardens by the Bay, which is a nature park in the Marina, is probably the most touristy site in Singapore, for good reason. It really embodies the beauty of Singapore, being a gorgeous natural haven plopped in the middle of a big city. Walking through it felt unreal because it was so serene and well-manicured. Also, it’s free (for the most part)!
The main attractions within the Gardens by the Bay are the 1) Flower Dome, and 2) Cloud Forest, both of which have admission fees of S$10 each. I recommend you go to both.
The Flower Dome is a giant conservatory of bright colors and fragrant scents. As you might assume, it has any flower you could name.
The Cloud Forest is another huge conservatory with a waterfall that runs down a large tree thingy (lol), with a walkway that wraps around it. This place literally looks like Jurassic Park.
The Botanical Gardens is a twenty minute cab ride from Marina Bay. My mom and I went specifically for the National Orchid Garden, which is sooo sooo spectacular. It’s pretty large, so it’ll take you approximately 45 minutes to walk through the whole garden.
The ArtScience Museum is a modern art museum at Marina Bay Sands. First of all, the architecture of the museum itself is stunning and iconic, being very much a prominent piece of architecture on the Marina skyscape.
I went to the ArtScience Museum specifically for the TeamLab Future World exhibition, which I believe is permanent. The exhibition incorporates technology to produce a musical, colorful, interactive, and beautiful space.
Shoppes at Marina Bay Sands
If you want to go shopping, especially for high-end items, go to the Shoppes at Marina Bay Sands, where you can find hundreds of stores.
I’ve been told that Orchard Street is like the 5th Avenue of Singapore. There are lots of globalized stores, like H&M, and luxury stores, like Louis Vuitton. I didn’t walk down Orchard Street, purely because it was so hot and humid. However, I did go to the store,
Beyond the Vines:
This store has a number of locations in Singapore, but I went to the one in the Mandarin Gallery. It has really versatile clothing that can be worn for work, for dressier nights out, and for casual days. Also, the price point of the clothing is similar to Zara.
Here is a shirt that I bought from Beyond the Vines:
Haji Lane is a neighborhood nestled in Singapore with cute boutiques, cafes, and restaurants. I’d recommend walking down Haji Lane and the adjacent streets to peek into some stores or grab a bite to eat.
Wee Nam Kee
Hainan chicken rice is probably the national dish of Singapore. It’s basically steamed chicken often eaten with ginger, garlic, and soy sauce, served with rice that is cooked in chicken broth. The dish is so simple yet so delicious, and it can be found at many food courts in Singapore. We went to Wee Nam Kee, which is a pretty famous restaurant specializing in Hainan chicken rice. There are a few locations in Singapore, but we went to the one in Marina Square.
This cafe/store on Haji Lane is adorable, with delicious drinks and pastries, and cute jewelry for sale! My mom and I got tea and a scrumptious earl grey lavender cake.
This restaurant is an Asian fusion restaurant, with healthy dishes and tasty drinks. I ordered a tasty mango lassi, along with salmon, vegetables, and brown rice. The owner is super awesome, since he owns this restaurant and a yoga store right next door to the restaurant. As an added bonus, he has lots of animals (two Italian greyhounds, a bird of some sort, and two cats—1 Sphynx and 1 Persian (?) ).
This restaurant serves local dishes with elevated technique and ingredients. We went with a family friend from Singapore, so he ordered dishes to eat family-style. The flavors were so rich and had many different Asian flavors.
Open Farm Community
Open Farm Community is a farm-to-table restaurant/cafe that serves coffee, smoothies, juices, and food. The space itself is open and incorporates a lot of greenery. I imagine that this place would be a great spot to get some work done or meet up with friends.
I first ordered a banana mango smoothie from the cafe. Then, my mom ordered a really yummy BBQ chicken dish, and I ordered a red snapper. They tasted so fresh and flavorful.
Lau Pa Sat/Telok Ayer Market
This food court epitomizes Singaporean food. With tons of stands with cheap food of different cuisines, Lau Pa Sat represents the diversity and quality of food in Singapore, while paralleling the diversity of cultures within Singapore. I ordered another Hainan chicken rice because I am obsessed, but you have a lot of options to choose from (Japanese, Indian, Chinese, etc).
I really hope you guys found this blog post helpful or enjoyable to read! If you have any questions, shoot me a DM on Instagram, @aimeepham. Till next time!