For my next destination, my sister and I headed off to Singapore! Thanks to our Tita and cousins, we stayed at their place and had a great time roaming around.
I spent a whole week in Singapore, which was ample time to explore the area. While my sister and I weren't able to see everything, we visited quite a lot and had the chance to experience the heat and eat EVERYTHING!
I'll do my best to bunch up our trip in Singapore into one post, mostly about some tips I'd love to share with you. But here's what we did in a nutshell:
Day 1 (March 30): Walk around Central Quay, Merlion Park, ION Orchard, and Central Perk!
Day 2 (March 31): Orchard, Newton Food Carnival, Escape Room!
Day 3 (April 1): Scape Underground
Day 4 (April 2): Rest day!
Day 5 (April 3): Sentosa Beach
Day 6 (April 4): Unicorn Tears (!) and Gardens By the Bay
Day 7 (April 5): Universal Studios
Though considered as the most expensive city, I really love Singapore and the modern and clean vibe. Everything was orderly, from the way you commute down to your surroundings. The locals are very nice and straight-to-the-point, accommodating you when needed. Plus, the food is delicious and come in huge portion sizes (which are, yes, good for two at times).
I also learned a lot of things as well. Here are some tips I'd like to share with you when you're going to Singapore:
1. Bring a water jug with you. Singapore was crazy hot when we were there, and we did a LOT of walking (though thank gosh it was still breezy). I recommend that you use comfortable shoes and avoid the unnecessary spending by bringing a water jug (It saves you around 2SGD, which is almost 70 PHP!).
2. Food courts and hawker centers are life. I'm not just saying that because it's affordable, but because they serve delicious food in huge portions. On average, you can spend around 7SGD on a plate of curry the size of my two (already big) hands. Prices range between 3-10SGD for food, and 10SGD is already heavy enough for two people.
You can also go for fast food, which is about 5SGD on average. But hawker centers are the way to go. You can budget around 10-15SGD a day for food.
3. My favorite food places would have to be in Newton Center and the ION Orchard food court. Many choices and good food! Try getting the Japanese chicken curry and Indonesian plates. The kaya toast with soft-boiled eggs are delicious as well. Those three are my personal favorites in terms of portion size and taste.
4. Walk and commute! Sure, there's Uber and Grab, but even our taxi driver from the airport mentioned how easy and inexpensive it is to commute going around SG. And it really was! You can say it's walkable, but if you want to get places quickly, you'll be able to find the appropriate bus stop or MRT station. Get a reloadable card to make things easier (minimum reload is 10SGD).
Another thing you should do is download the commuting apps, which will show you the bus stops, MRT stations, as well as how to get to your destination as quick or cheap as possible. Some apps also show you the time your bus will arrive!
I would most likely budget around 5SGD a day for your transportation.
5. There are a LOT of markets. While we didn't get to visit Burgis or Little India, there were still sales and shops around Orchard where you can find affordable souvenirs. But I do recommend that you try Burgis, as it's known to be similar to Greenhills!
Souvenir prices can range between 5-15SGD, depending on what you're purchasing. I bought 12 keychains for 10SGD, and you can find discounted chocolates for about 10SGD for 3 bars or more (and they are delicious!).
6. Universal Studios is a MUST. There are discounted tickets you can find that come with meal vouchers or photo frames. Also, there are free lockers near designated rides so you can take advantage of that. In Jurassic World, you will need to pay 4SGD per hour for the locker.
While to food in Universal Studios was nice, it's better to eat in VivoCity's food court beforehand, as the food in the park is expensive! Bring a water bottle or two as well (they won't check), since water costs around 3SGD a bottle (100 PHP?!).
7. Another must-see would be Sentosa Beach. Just a few stops away from Universal Studios. The ticket from VivoCity to Sentosa Beach is 4SGD (round trip), and entrance is free! You can explore the beach and other attractions. Going to VivoCity is easy by bus or MRT.
8. Marina Bay Sands is quite the experience, especially the Gardens (free entrance!). The shoppes are huge and you can roam around there as well to beat the heat. You can take the MRT that goes straight to Marina Bay.
9. For a more hipster or urban scene, try SCAPE Underground! You can find a lot of awesome things there, ranging from fidget boxes to cute character socks. They also have other cool things around the mall, like escape rooms or musicians playing outside.
And that's it! Singapore may be small, but there are a LOT to see and do around here. And it's still budget-friendly, as long as you shop wisely. With a lot of free entrances and affordable modes of transportation, you can explore Singapore with ease! ;)