Fun-Packed trip to Singapore-I had never imagined I would go on a foreign trip with my younger siblings, more so, an instant trip. So, after browsing through a lot of destinations, Singapore it was!

This was also my last trip before the pandemic struck in 2020. Sigh! let’s read on

Singapore

Too excited to go on a vacation without our parents, the three of us started planning for this trip. Being the eldest one and with experience of planning my Europe trips, I was responsible for travel and stay bookings while the other two got into shortlisting the activities and places we would visit. [Check out our detailed blog on Singapore travel for Indians].

If you are in a hurry, here is what our itinerary looked like-

Day 1Arrival, Jewel Changi Airport, Old Hill street police station, Clarke Quay

Day 2Sentosa Island, China Town street

Day 3Orchard Link, Marina Bay Sands, Gardens by the Bay, Little India

Day 4Universal Studios Singapore

Day 5Return journey to Mumbai, India

Day 1- Arrival and Sight-seeing

On 6th December 2019, we set to begin the much-awaited trip as we took a 1:35 AM [IST] Indigo flight from Mumbai. This 6-hour journey came to an end as we landed in Singapore at 10 AM [local time]. The first thing we did there was buy one local SIM card before moving on to look around the spectacular Jewel Changi Airport– a beautiful indoor waterfall and all the Christmas decorations around.

Indoor Waterfall- Jewel Changi Airport

We then boarded a train from the airport, towards our hostel 5footway.inn Project Ann Siang, near China Town. We had planned to stay 2 nights at a hostel and 2 nights at a hotel, to get both the experiences. After reaching the hostel, we rested for a bit and headed outside to explore the town on foot.

Before coming to Singapore, I had looked up some picturesque locations and was fascinated by the Old Hill Street Police Station. Hence, we went to the location on the first day, to get some really cool pictures clicked.

Old Hill Street Police Station

As it started to become dark, we stopped by Clarke Quay, stunned at how beautiful and calming it looked with all the lights at night. The place was bustling with people partying and taking boat rides. We concluded our first day with dinner at Pizza Hut and walked all the way back to our hostel, observing this beautiful place at night.

Clarke Quay

Day 2- Sentosa Island

The next day was the most exciting one as we were off to Sentosa Island. We took a cable car from the Sentosa Station Vivo City to Sentosa Island and started this super fun day. One of the first activities we did there was the Skyline Luge, followed by a simulated skydiving experience at I-Fly that my brother did and enjoyed thoroughly. Thanks to my slip-disc, I couldn’t do some of the most exciting activities there.

Cable car to Sentosa Island

My brother at I-fly experience

The entire route at Sentosa Island is really beautiful and it’s fun to even just keep walking there. Our next stop was Aj Hackett, for a top view of Sentosa through the glass bridge, before moving on to the S.E.A aquarium where we saw some beautiful sea creatures and watched a rather fascinating show where the experts dived into the water to feed the big fish. After having some more fun at the Trick-Eye museum and exploring other thrilling things around, our day at Sentosa came to an end as we sat by the beach to relax.

Aj-Hackett- view

S.E.A. Aquarium

A little beach creativity

We had our dinner that day at the China Town Food Street and shopped for some souvenirs at China Town before heading back to the hostel.

China Town food street

Day 3- The most adventurous day

Marina Bay Sands

Day 3 started as we checked out of the hostel and shifted to Hotel Boss at Jalan Sultan Road. After settling in, we stepped out and moved towards Orchard Link, by bus. We went around the street and mall, window shopping and clicking pictures amidst all the beautiful decorations.

Skate park at Rrchard Link

Orchard Link

Next on our itinerary was the Merlion. We sat by this tourist spot for a while and had some refreshing bubble tea. This was followed by a bus ride to the Marina Bay sands, to visit the top. While the view of the city and ‘Gardens By The Bay’ was spectacular, there was nothing more special to be experienced up there.

Merlion

Bubble Iced tea

View of Gardens by the Bay from Marina Bay Sands

Gardens By The Bay

We then moved towards ‘Gardens By The Bay’ a little late in the day, so we could watch it lit up in the dark. On entering, we first headed to the cloud forest. The experience there was so refreshing and serene. This indoor garden is a treat to the eyes and you enjoy even more as the temperature inside gives you a feeling that you are up on the mountains and amidst the clouds. You can click some amazing pictures and learn so much about rare plants. One should not miss this breath-taking view when visiting Singapore.

Cloud Forest

Cloud forest

Next, we entered the flower dome which was another spectacular sight. The colorful and rare flowers surely left us feeling joyful. It was now dark outside and time to watch the Gardens by the Bay all lit up and gorgeous.

Tired and drained, we walked out for the train station and were headed towards Little India for some Indian dinner.

Gardens By The Bay

Little India

I must admit, after spending 3 days in Singapore, it was a shock as we came out of the train station in little India. The street was filled with people, walking everywhere, and a huge number of people were gathered at the bus station nearby.

It actually felt like we were in India, on the over-crowded streets, with people speaking in different Indian languages. While exploring the street further, we witnessed a lot of things (good as well as unpleasant) including delicious Indian food shops, littered streets, fruit and vegetable vendors speaking in Hindi.

Little India

Ending this super tiring day, we had our dinner at an Indian restaurant on Dunlop Street before walking back to our Hotel.

Day 4- Universal Studios

Wohuuu.. Universal Studios day!! Ever since my childhood, I saw Universal Studios in pictures and always thought that I might never get to actually visit there. But here we were!

Universal studios

It was a slightly gloomy day and started raining as we were on our way to Universal Studios. With this, we thought that our entire day was ruined. However, as we entered there, it was just drizzling. We were still too excited to care about the rains. So, we started this fun-filled day at the Universal Studios, going through each attraction and some exciting rides, one by one.

Our plan was to visit here on a weekday so as to avoid the weekend crowd. However, we still had to take express tickets for one or two popular rides. If you do not purchase an express pass in the beginning, you can buy one for individual rides at the counters inside too.

While the entire experience here was a very delightful one, the one thing we enjoyed the most was the Water show. This was hands-down the best experience and one should definitely go for it- not going to give any spoilers :). The other extremely fun ride was ‘Transformers’ and should not be missed at any cost.

The Water show

After spending the entire day at Universal Studios Singapore, we headed back to our hotel. It was almost the end of this marvellous trip.

Day 5- The eventful return journey

We checked out on Day 5 and were off to the airport for our flight back to Mumbai! Much to our surprise, there was some technical issue at the airport and most systems (especially at the Indigo airlines counter) were down. Everything, including boarding and take-off, was delayed as operators sat down to create boarding passes manually. This was a first; receiving handwritten boarding passes.

Tips to plan your travel to Singapore

  • Ideal Time to visit– You can visit Singapore any time of the year, however, we visited in the month of December and were greeted with occasional rain. Overall, the temperature was hot to moderate, and humid. Plan a trip for at least 5 days to enjoy the beauty of Singapore thoroughly.
  • Food– If you are a non-vegetarian, you will have plenty of options, especially at the China Town food street. There are enough restaurant options for Vegetarians too.
    Must try- Noodles and Bubble Iced Tea
  • Stay– Having stayed at both a hostel and a hotel on the same trip, I would personally recommend staying at a hotel. You can choose a budget-friendly hotel as there are many options.
    Hostel 5 Footway.inn Project Ann Siang was decent enough but the rooms we got were extremely small and without any windows for ventilation. There was no lift or anyone to help with the luggage as you go up and down 2 floors through a really narrow staircase. On the other hand, we had an amazing experience at Hotel Boss with top facilities and great hospitality.
  • Travel– Singapore is connected through a good train network (the MRT). It is a convenient and affordable mode to travel from one destination to the other. To reach Sentosa Island/ Universal Studios, you can also avail of cable cars from a few of the stations.
    Use the ‘Citymapper’ app for accurate routes and transport options + timings
  • Offbeat Places to visit
    -Old Hill Street Police station is a great location to click some beautiful pictures in front of the colorful building.
    -Sit and relax in the garden by the skate park, near Orchard Link.
    -Narrow streets in China Town, for some cheap souvenirs.
  • BookingsKlook.com is a good website/ app to book your tickets for all the attractions in Singapore while availing certain discounts on current/ next bookings. We booked our entry passes for Gardens By The Bay, Sentosa Island, and Universal Studios through the Klook app. Our hostel booking was done through Hostelworld, while we booked our Hotel on Booking.com.

Summary

This trip was a unique one for me as it was my first trip with just my siblings (and the first international trip for one of them). Singapore is a perfect destination for a fun-filled vacation, with a number of places for sightseeing, amusement parks, and really beautiful attractions that please the eyes and mind.

People here are friendly and generous. You might also have a candid conversation with one of the cab drivers who will happily tell you how proud he is to be living in Singapore. You feel safe at most places, even at night.

So, pack your bags and plan your next trip to Singapore. Hope my travel experience helps you plan your trip. You can reach out to me for any additional queries or tips 🙂

Don’t forget to read my Venice blog!

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