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Singapore is a country, unlike any other country I’ve visited. And while Crazy Rich Asians was able to capture the beauty and ostentatiousness of Singapore… it doesn’t quite capture the essence and uniqueness of the country. In a country that is quite young, having only become independent in 1965, it has since become a booming and innovative city. Singapore is a place where there are cameras on every street corner, chewing gum is illegal, and public caning is still legal. It’s a small island off of Malaysia, yet it feels as though you’re on a different planet altogether. This guide will show you how to spend 2 days in Singapore exploring the tourist hot spots as well as things more off the beaten path.
How to Spend 2 Days in Singapore
One thing that stands out about Singapore is the melting pot of cultures that have come together to make it what it is. From the Chinese to the Malays, Indians, and Arabs. Singapore is truly a melting pot of cultures with each ethnicity being represented. You’ll find Little India representing the Indian culture. Kampong Glam representing the Malay-Muslim population. Chinatown celebrating Chinese culture, and more. In two days you’ll get a taste of so many different cultures and traditions it might feel like you’ve visited many countries at once!
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Day One in Singapore – Marina Bay + Kampong Glam
Spend your first day in Singapore seeing the main attractions – the sites that you see and immediately recognize. Head away from the downtown core towards the southern edge of Singapore, where you’ll find Gardens by the Bay open every day from 5 am-2 am. Walk amongst the “supertrees”, visit the observatory, or any number of rotating attractions. You can find out what is showing in the area, here.
While you’re in the area, I also recommend stopping in at one of the most recognized hotels in the world – Marina Bay Sands. While you can’t access the famed rooftop infinity pool unless you’re staying at the hotel, you can shop or dine at one of the many restaurants on-site such as Spago or Club 55.
Upon leaving Marina Bay, head north, passing the Singapore Flyer and Helix Bridge. A 30-minute walk will bring you to the Kampong Glam neighborhood. Here you’ll be immersed in the Malay-Muslim culture where you can spend time at the Sultan Mosque and walk down Haji Lane.
Before your first day comes to an end, check out the Singapore food scene by visiting a Hawker Centre! Hawker Centres are open-air-food complexes that serve a variety of different types of food for cheap. There are over 40 Hawker Centres in Singapore to choose from!
Day Two in Singapore – Chinatown + Little India
On day two in Singapore get a taste of more cultures making Singapore great. Start by exploring Chinatown, where you can taste the signature dish – Hainanese chicken rice at the Tian Tian food stall in the Maxwell food center. If you’re in the area, it’s also worth the visit to the Buddha Tooth Relic Temple. For orientation purposes, the winding roads of Chinatown are found west of Marina Bay and south of the downtown core.
When you’re in Chinatown, absolutely don’t miss your chance at visiting Ann Siang Hill. During the day restaurants, bars, and shops open their doors and windows to the public. And at night, the streets transform into what seems like an outdoor market. Those same bars and restaurants set up tables and chairs in the street, giving a “block party” feel to Chinatown.
From Chinatown, walk 45-minutes north to the Indian hub of Singapore – Little India. With more shopping and dining, you’ll be able to experience a taste of India without leaving Singapore. Make sure to stop by Komala Vilas, one of the oldest Indian restaurants in Singapore that has been open since 1947.
While Singapore is made up of so much more than listed, you would need days to discover the entirety of the island. While two days in Singapore gives you enough of a taste for the country, I’m certain that you’ll want to come back.
Visiting Singapore? Make sure to check out my blog post – 10 Things to See and Do in Singapore