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It seems like Singapore is the new “it” city on an Asia cruise, and for good reason. Singapore is fast yet sparkly, a city that prides itself on architectural beauty with a modern twist. Singapore also doesn’t lack for green space and places to play, whether that’s the stunning Singapore Botanic Gardens or the futuristic Gardens by the Bay, a waterfront park that looks straight out of a sci-fi movie. Part of the fun of the city is that when you cruise, Singapore feels more like an amusement park than a city. It’s fun, lively, luxe, and possesses all sorts of quirky touches, like the Singapore Flyer, a massive ferris wheel offering amazing city views. Or there’s even a nighttime safari to get up close and personal with leopards, tigers, and other exotic animals.
Walk along Marina Bay or explore long-standing colonial hotels and bars. When you cruise Singapore, you’ll find that it carefully balances history with a fun, carefree attitude that you’ll feel as soon as you arrive. Don’t forget to try the city’s signature cocktail, the Singapore Sling. It’s part gin, part pineapple juice garnished with a bright red cherry. It’s a staple on the menu of the Long Bar within the Ruffles Hotel, where it was first served. Both a booming resort town and a haven for relics and historic landmarks, Singapore offers something for outdoorsy types, adventurous foodies, wildlife lovers, and everything in between.
The Gardens by the Bay have become completely synonymous with Singapore. Here you’ll find sculptures in the shape of funky flowers lit up in bright colors. The garden is home to multiple greenhouses, like the Flower Dome, where the temperatures and the plant life are always in spring. In the Cloud Forest, a small mountain was built for visitors to scale, bringing a tropical mountain climate all the way to Singapore. Guided tours and shows happen daily, and there’s something for all ages here, including a children’s garden and a sculpture park.
This UNESCO World Heritage site is one of the few places to see the island’s rarest vegetation and greenery, making it not only a paradise but also one of the most important preservation efforts in all of Asia. When you cruise Singapore, take a leisurely walk through the grounds, where you can literally stop and smell the flowers. The Orchid Garden offers the largest collection of orchids in the world, and imported swans float along Swan Lake for a romantic afternoon out.
Take a ride on the incredible Singapore flyer, a massive Ferris wheel in the heart of Singapore. Rides last about 30 minutes and offer incredible, panoramic views of the city during the adventure. Watch the futuristic skyline on one side and the peaceful harbor as ships float in and out on the other. At night, the Flyer even lights up.
For a close look at some of Singapore’s most exotic wildlife, take an unforgettable night safari, where you’ll enjoy a tram ride through this nocturnal zoo in the heart of the rainforest while on your cruise to Singapore. Nearly 150 species call this ecosystem their home, and 38 of them are endangered. There are even shows like fire-twirling and dancing, and smaller group buggy rides through the park with an expert guide.
The definitive spot for shopping in Singapore is Orchard Road, the shopping district home to over 5,000 businesses. You can lose track of time here while on a cruise to Singapore, whether you’re looking to explore art galleries, try on new clothes, or browse for high-end goods. There’s even a rare whisky museum where you can enjoy whisky tastings. Orchard Road is also home to many bars and restaurants that add to Singapore’s gourmet scene.
Grab a beach towel and head to Sentosa Island before your cruise from Singapore, which is known for its parks, preserves, and unspoiled waterfront. There’s a variety of beachside restaurants and snack stands so you won’t have to venture far from the sand, which has been imported all the way from Australia. Enjoy activities like volleyball, kayaking, paddleboarding, and more.
When stopped before your cruise from Singapore, you’ll see the city has a vibrant energy that is infectious. Singapore’s Chinatown is a must-see for some of the cheapest, best street food in the city, shops featuring local artists and designers, and beautifully preserved temples. Walk the narrow streets, stop for a bite to eat, or tour the restored temple Thian Hock Keng.
Imperial Treasure Super Peking Duck
Make a reservation for one of the top spots for dim sum and its namesake, peking duck, here. There’s a location very close to the shopping along Orchard Road. This cozy spot is ideal for lunch after a long stretch of boutique hopping. You’ll want to plan ahead. Advanced orders are required if you want to nosh on the Beijing-style roasted duck.
Tarts at Tarte by Cheryl Koh
Address: #01-12, 1 Scotts Road, Singapore
When you’re craving sweets, Tarts at Tarte bring you pretty much every variety of tart, cake, and truffle available. Here you’ll find 66% dark chocolate tarts, blood orange tarts, and light-as-air sponge cakes. Bring some back to the ship with you as you cruise Singapore. Coffee and tea are menu staples, too.
Address: #01-03 Dorsett Residences, Singapore
The one Michelin-starred Candlenut frequently makes “best of” lists in Singapore for its gourmet takes on Peranakan cuisine. The menu changes based on seasonal and available produce, and also offers luxe a la carte options from baby squid to chicken curry. Chef Malcolm Lee brings an extravagance to recipes passed down through generations of family.
Park Bench Deli
Address: 179 Telok Ayer St., Singapore 068627
Unpretentious and styled like an American deli, Park Bench Deli is a place to hang out with a juicy sandwich and a cold beer. From a classic fried chicken sandwich to the more adventurous pastrami tater tots, head here for comfort food in the heart of Singapore.
The island of Singapore was settled by the British in the early 19th century, who then built up the port and encouraged international trade to the area. Singapore gained independence in 1965 and quickly became one of the wealthiest and most expensive places in the world as investments in housing, education, and trade began to expand. Singapore’s culture is a melting pot, known for influences by both Asia and Europe, where you’ll hear residents speaking many languages from English to Mandarin to Tamil. Its warm climate year-round makes it a favorite for tropical weather lover
Your Celebrity cruise from Singapore will be waiting for you at the Marina Bay Cruise Centre Singapore, or MBCCS. The cruise terminal is equipped with free wifi, souvenir shopping, and currency exchange. Plus, the Marina South Pier metro station is a short walk away, making it easy to get to or from your cruise ship to the city’s financial and business district. The city of Singapore has greatly invested in making its cruise facilities modern, luxurious, and state of the art.
Singapore’s Mass Rapid Transit (MRT) system is comprehensive and easy to navigate, not to mention efficient and clean. Hop off at the Marina South Pier station, just a short walk from the Marina Bay Cruise Centre, after spending time in downtown Singapore and the city’s main sights. Of course, taxis are very common in Singapore, but only stop at designated stands to drop you off once you’re in the city to curb traffic and make the drop-off process smoother for the city. Singapore doesn’t host ride-sharing services like Uber or Lyft currently. The city’s trishaws are mostly a tourist activity now, so be careful not to pay too much for one.
Find luxury brands and well known names when you’re shopping at the Marina Bay Sands Mall, which is just a short 15-minute ride from the cruise center, particularly if you’re interested in high fashion and Singaporean designers. Singapore’s Chinatown is also a must-see for its energy, where vendors not only sell cheap eats at their stalls, but also offer fashion from independent and emerging designers and artists looking to support their craft. Because so many vendors also sell food, you can hop from boutique to boutique and stay close to some of the best food before your cruise from Singapore.
The official currency of Singapore is the Singaporean dollar (S$). Tipping isn’t common practice in Singapore, and credit cards are considered the norm here. You can find currency exchange at banks and conveniently at the cruise port, called the Marina Bay Cruise Centre Singapore.