You’ve seen it all in Singapore – from taking in the sights of the beautifully landscaped Gardens by the Bay, to visiting the incredible Night Safari and enjoying uninterrupted vistas from the top of the Singapore Flyer.
Now that you’re done with the typical bucket list items, it’s time to get a feel of the island’s off-the-beaten-path attractions and activities. Here’s a roundup of our favourites:
1. Explore Singapore’s hipster neighbourhoods
Quaint cafés, vintage fashion, gourmet food and a lively atmosphere – Singapore’s hipster neighbourhoods have it all.
Haji Lane is a crowd favourite, with its charming shophouses and wide-ranging variety of indie fashion boutiques, quirky cafés (Going Om) and bars serving up glasses of carefully crafted cocktails (Bar Stories). The vibes are different at Keong Saik; here you’ll find stylish eateries and chic cocktail bars made for the trendy, fashionable crowd. Enjoy burgers and cocktails in the breezy rooftop setting of Potato Head or feast on tapas at the elegant Esquina. Or soak up the laidback atmosphere of the residential neighbourhood of Tiong Bahru, home to well-loved hangouts like Forty Hands and Plain Vanilla Bakery.
One of the things that makes Singapore unique is the fact that it is home to the world’s only Michelin-starred hawker food stalls. However, the stalls are far away from each other and the queue can take up two hours. The popular The Great Singapore Food Tour – with Michelin Stalls lets you to skip the queues, takes care of your transfer between different stalls, offers plenty of tasty Michelin-starred dishes and a professional tour guide who shares the stories behind the dishes and Singapore culture.
3. Immerse yourself in the art of Chinese tea appreciation
Discover all about Chinese tea appreciation at Tea Chapter, a tea house-cum-retail shop nestled in a two-storey shophouse along Neil Road. The peaceful vibes here are ideal for the zen-like art of tea appreciation, and makes a great bet for a quiet, leisurely afternoon spent away from the bustling action in town. At the end of the session, you’ll leave with a greater appreciation for the rituals of Chinese tea drinking, as well as knowledge of preparation methods, tea varieties and tea drinking etiquette.
4. Play a game of underwater hockey
Bored of the usual land sports? Switch things up by taking the action underwater with underwater hockey – a game that dates back to the 1950s. Armed with sticks and snorkels, players inhale at the water surface before diving down to the depths of the pool to play out a match using a lead puck. If this thrilling sport sounds like your cup of tea, you’re more than welcome to join in the twice-weekly game held at Queenstown Swimming Complex.
5. Bask in nature’s beauty at the MacRitchie Reservoir TreeTop Walk
Get away from the hustle and bustle of the city with an escape to MacRitchie Reservoir TreeTop Walk, a free-standing suspension bridge connecting the highest points within the reservoir park. Follow a trail that snakes through the forest (steep stairs included) until you arrive at the entrance of the bridge – an excellent vantage point to take in sweeping vistas of the surrounding flora and fauna. Cool down after your walk with a drink at the nearby Singapore Island Country Club.
6. Sip cocktails at a secret bar
Crowned the best bar in Asia by Drinks International in 2016, 28 Hong Kong Street checks off all the right boxes with its “secret” entrance and fabulous cocktails and oh-so-cool vibe. This speakeasy cocktail joint, located discreetly on the ground floor of an old shophouse, is the epitome of urban chic meets underground grit and once you’re settled in at the intimate, dimly-lit seating area, all that awaits is an evening of conversation, boldly presented cocktails and moreish bar food. But first, you have to find the your way there.
If you’re also into discovering Singapore’s most popular secret underground bars, The Most Secretive Bar Crawl takes you to 3 of the top 5 secret bars in Singapore.
7. Become a human hamster in a water ZOVB ball
Always wondered how it’s like to run on water? This unimaginable feat is now possible with water ZOVB balls – large, inflatable balls that stands at a height of three metres, with a hole at the side that you can squeeze into. While the normal ZOVB balls are designed for land use (just like a human hamster ball that you can roll across flat or sloping terrains), water ZOVB balls can be used on swimming pools, and make a great addition to pool parties.
8.Get artsy at an art jam cafe
Unleash your inner Picasso as you munch on tasty bites or sip a latte! Art jamming cafes are a great bet for visitors and locals with a creative streak – you’ll get to paint it all out on a canvas, and take home your masterpiece after. Budding artists will enjoy the wide-ranging menu and bright, airy interior at My Art Space, or the selection of gourmet teas and European-inspired mains at Arteastiq.
9. Go on a shopping spree for unique, one-of-a-kind finds
Not a fan of ubiquitous souvenirs or mass-produced pieces? We know just the right places where you’ll enjoy browsing through a well-curated collection of unordinary finds. Discover a fascinating selection of antiques and trinkets sourced from across Southeast Asia at pop-ups and exhibitions by Mata-Hari Antiques, hunt for vintage furniture and designs at Things Your Mother Throw or admire the variety of unique ornaments and jewellery at Curious Curios.
10. Laugh out loud at a comedy show
Round up your clan for an evening of hilarity at a comedy show. There’s something for everyone – from individuals tickled by dry humour, to those who crack up over dirty jokes. Our favourite places for getting a good laugh are: Comedy at Canvas, Comedy Masala and open-mic nights by Talk Cock Comedy.