October 13, 2016
Six reasons why I loved Singapore
Straight to the Point
Singapore is one of the most modern and culturally diverse countries I’ve had the pleasure of visiting. And although this may sound strange, it’s one of the cleanest countries I’ve been to as well. The bustling downtown area of Singapore is immaculate. You’re also immediately hit with immense cultural diversity as people from all over Asia and the world live on this island. It’s a striking “East meets West” country full of modern skyscrapers and luxuries along with ancient religious sites.
Marina Bay is one of the most iconic areas in central Singapore. It’s a beautiful mix of commercial, waterfront, residential, and entertainment space. Take a walk along the path by the lake or go for a jog. You can see one of several Merlions that Singapore is known for, walk across the Helix Bridge (which is designed to look like DNA), get a ground floor view of the largest infinity pool in the world atop the Marina Bay Sands Hotel, stop by one of the dozens of restaurants and bars, and go shopping in the massive Marina Bay Mall-all as you walk around the beautiful Bay.
Gardens by the Bay
I should mention that Singapore has a fantastic tropical climate so you’ll see tons of vegetation everywhere. If that’s doesn’t satisfy you, make your way to the beautiful Gardens by the Bay located just off of Marina Bay. This is a huge 250-acre outdoor garden that resembles a city made of trees and flowers. It’s also filled with huge manmade “Supertrees” between 9-16 stories high which light up beautifully at night. And in the very center of the garden you can find a restaurant on the roof of the central Supertree with one of the best views of the garden.
Buddha Tooth Relic Temple
This is a Chinese Buddhist temple located right in the center of Singapore. It’s called the Buddha Tooth Relic Temple because it’s said to contain a relic of Buddha’s tooth on the fourth floor. You’ll see locals burning incense and praying, beautiful golden statutes, and monks at this temple. Keep in mind that this is a religious site where tourists are welcome so remember to be respectful.
Kong Meng San Phor Kark See Temple
This was both my favorite and the largest temple complex that I visited in Singapore. Built in the 1920s, this Buddhist complex is huge and contains 12 separate buildings. The first thing you’ll notice when entering is how unusually quite it is. This despite the fact that there were locals visiting to pray, as well as resident monks and tourists with cameras. The complex itself is located a good distance away from downtown Singapore and is comfortably nestled among trees and flowing creeks. The temples, statues, and pagodas are unlike anything you will see in the West and I’d definitely recommend visiting if you’re in Singapore.
Sentosa is a large island resort in Singapore. There’s not much to see in terms of local culture, but if you want a family fun day of entertainment you can’t go wrong with Sentosa. You’ll find places to go like Universal Studios, SEA Aquarium, a cool Merlion statue, Madame Tussauds Wax Museum, Dolphin Island, a waterpark, and a sky tower for great views of the island. You can also enjoy the beautiful beaches of the island as well as zip lining and cable car transportation. If you plan on visiting Sentosa it’s good to stay at one of the hotels on the island as it’s about a 30-minute drive from downtown. Sentosa is a great spot to have fun with your family and kids in a tropical environment.
If you feel like shopping, head over to Orchard Road. This is the main shopping street of Singapore. Start at the mall called ION Orchard and walk down the long Orchard Road. You’ll find plenty of high end designer stores as well as local brands and great places to eat.