Did you know Singapore is home to the tallest man-made waterfall? Or that its national anthem is printed in tiny text on the back of country’s $1,000 note? Well, now’s your chance to see these wonders and more for yourself during your next layover in Singapore.
Don’t just stand there waiting for your connecting flight—head into the heart of the city and get to know this Southeast Asian island. With hours until your plane takes off, you have just enough time to explore the expertly manicured gardens and take in the best views of the city.
Tarmac to treasures
Once you’ve booked a flight to Singapore, it’s time to determine the logistics of getting into the city. Your flight will land at Singapore Changi Airport (SIN), where you’ll find several transportation options. Bus 36 travels into the city, but you can also hop on the train, which services both Terminal 1 and 2. As for cabs, there are taxi stands at all the arrival levels, but if you’re looking to drive yourself around, you can always rent a car in Singapore in the Arrival Hall.
Your Singapore layover
As soon as you venture onto this island, you’ll discover why Singapore is referred to as a “City in a Garden.” Home to more than 1.3 million trees, 17 reservoirs, and four nature reserves, Singapore is also dotted with colossal skyscrapers that seem to be guarding the immaculate lawns.
To really get a sense of how the concrete meets the green in this city, start off your jaunt with a visit to the Garden by the Bay. This massive, 250-acre garden is a horticultural phenomenon. It features a cloud forest, greenhouses, and botanical gardens, but you’ll find the real stars of the show at the Supertree Grove. Twelve whimsical trees, some that are six stories tall, bring a futuristic vibe to the skyline. Covered in real vines and flowers, these unique-looking trees provide shade, collect rainwater, and harness solar power.
To continue marveling at the exquisite scenery, make your way over to Merlion Park at Marina Bay. The iconic half-fish, half-lion statue, which shoots water out of its mouth, is symbolic for the city-state. The fish portion represents its fishing village past and the feline head stands for Singapore’s nickname, “Lion City.” Beyond the mythical, hybrid creature, you’ll score some brag-worthy views of the city from this spot on the bay.
Hunting for more impressive views? Head to the Singapore Flyer on the other side of the bay. A staggering 541 feet tall, it’s the largest observation wheel outside of the United States. The magnificent attraction offers 30-minute rides and panoramic views of not only Singapore, but neighboring Malaysia and Indonesia, too.
With all the exciting sights to see, there’s a good chance you just might wind up delaying your next flight. If that’s the case, book a hotel in Singapore and keep the good times rolling. You can even venture off the island and plan day trips from Singapore to destinations such as Sentosa Island and Bintan Island. Sentosa is a perfect place for squeezing in some retail therapy, while Bintan Island is considered paradise for golf and beach lovers.
Viewfinder Tip: The MRT (mass rapid transit) train system is one of the quickest ways of traveling around town.
Even if you only have time for a short sojourn to Singapore in between flights, it’ll sure beat waiting in the airport terminal!
What are other can’t-miss destinations in Singapore?