You have only one day in Singapore? Technically, you could see all of the following places in one day, Singapore in 24 hours is totally possible, but it might be a bit of a rush. I recommend staying at least 3 days in Singapore to get the vibe of the city.
Further down is a map, so you can navigate your way through the city… If you find this article helpful, make sure to bookmark this guide for your next Singapore trip! Let’s get started!
01 | Haji Lane
Start your day with a coffee (and breakfast maybe) on Haji Lane, Singapore’s artsy hipster neighborhood, and a place you must visit while in Singapore! Haji Lane is one street full of trendy bars and restaurants with international cuisines, indie boutiques, hip cafe’s and loads of colorful street art. Don’t miss Haji Lane, it’s the perfect spot for some colorful Instagram shots, and one of the best places to go in Singapore!
What to do in Singapore at night?
Haji Lane offers a completely different ambiance at night. If you have enough time, I suggest coming back another time in the evening. At night, Haji Lane turns into a party place with live music and sometimes they even have street parties.
Haji Lane is a place I keep returning, if you have more than a few hours to explore, also check out Honeycombers Guide on where to shop, eat and drink on Haji Lane.
02 | Arab Street
Just a street parallel to Haji Lane is Arab Street, don’t get fooled by the name, it’s actually more than just one road. It’s a vibrant neighborhood in the Muslim quarter of Singapore that is becoming one of the coolest places to hang out.
Arab Street is known for its trendy lifestyle, eclectic eateries with excellent food, glam stores offering brightly-colored textiles, aromatic handmade perfumes, Persian rugs, and more.
Arab Street is very unlike the rest of Singapore and attracts plenty of visitors with its restored shop houses.
The heart of Arab Street boasts a magnificent sight as well: Masjid Sultan Mosque. It’s considered one of the most prominent mosques in Singapore, and you’re sure to be impressed by its golden dome and enormous prayer hall. Dress modest if you want to enter the mosque (they provide shawls to cover yourself if needed).
Stop here for a few pictures and if you’re hungry, grab a snack in one of the Middle Eastern restaurants across the mosque.
03 | Malay Heritage Centre
The Malay Heritage Centre is just beside Arab Street and might be worth to visit if you’re already in that neighborhood. Set inside an istana (palace) that was built for the last sultan of Singapore, the Malay Heritage Centre museum was officially re-opened in 2005 by Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong.
Since then, it has been a showcase that honors the past and creates a space to celebrate the Malay culture today. There are six permanent galleries, as well as limited time exhibitions and specialty programs to educate and entertain its visitors.
The Malay Heritage Centre is one of the must see places in Singapore if you want to learn about the Malay community, their history, culture and heritage.
04 | Bugis Street & Bugis Junction
Bugis Street is just a short walk away from Haji Lane and Arab Street. If you’re a shopaholic, you probably know already that Singapore is a paradise for shopping addicts! I suggest skipping the high-end malls at Orchard Road and head instead to Bugis Street, where you can find some real bargains! I bought a bunch of clothes and accessories there, and nothing was more than S$30! If you get hungry, there are plenty of street food stalls where you can get a taste of some local snacks.
Bugis Street is too messy for you? Just across is Bugis Junction, a multi-story shopping mall, with a variety of shops, restaurants, and salons that sell anything and everything from outfits, accessories, souvenirs, toys, and so much more. Plenty of food options, too. I love that restaurant called GreenDot on the ground floor, everything is vegetarian and super yummy! Try the lion mane mushroom curry, it tastes like chicken!
05 | Little India
Another Singapore must see is Little India! Once you’re done with exploring Bugis, walk over to Little India (or take the train from Bugis to Little India, it’s only 2 stops). This vibrant and lively neighborhood offers you a piece of India, with spice shops, sari boutiques, jewellery stores and plenty of authentic Indian restaurants…
If you haven’t eaten yet, Little India is for foodie lovers! If you’re vegetarian or vegan, this neighborhood will become your favorite place! One of my favorites is a place called Greenleaf Cafe, located on 43 Cuff Road, it offers amazing vegetarian Indian food.
If you want to get a dose of culture, visit Sri Veeramakaliamman Temple on Serangoon Road, one of Singapore’s oldest Hindu temples. You’ll be amazed by its colorful decor and all the detailed statues. Please cover your shoulders and legs, before entering the temple. You have to take your shoes off, too. It’s such a beautiful temple, well worth to visit.
06 |Joo Chiat
This place is still a bit of a secret and one the lesser known Singapore attractions. If you love colorful houses as much as I do, you have to take a trip to Joo Chiat! There are plenty of well-preserved heritage houses in that area, however, the most beautiful ones are on Koon Seng Road.
From Joo Chiat Road, turn into Koon Seng Road, and you’ll see some renowned shophouses in bright colors on your right, and another row of shophouses in pastel colors on your left. Please keep an eye on the cars passing by while taking pictures, there is plenty of traffic.
Walking around this area makes you feel like traveling back in time, it looks like the old Singapore and it’s such a contrast to the rest of the city, which is very modern, sterile and futuristic.
07 | Chinatown
Singapore’s Chinatown is one of the top places to go in Singapore, it’s such an iconic part of the city, full of history and culture. There is a lot of places to seein that area, I wrote an entire blog post about Things to do and see in Chinatown, if you have more time to explore this part of Singapore, make sure to check out that post.
This neighborhood is an interesting combination of old-world Chinese heritage and new-age modern additions with its tiny alleyways, cafes with a casual vibe, family-run shops, authentic restaurants, and boutique hotels. It’s also great for shopping, if you’re looking for textiles, head over to People’s Park Complex!
The temples in Chinatown are some of the best attractions this area has to offer. Don’t miss out on visiting the beautiful Buddha Tooth Relic Temple with its golden statues. A bit further down the road is Sri Mariamman Temple, which is the oldest shrine in Singapore.
There’s free WiFi all throughout Singapore’s Chinatown, so you can explore the rich history and culture of the area while still being plugged in and sharing all the amazing things you see.
08 | Lau Pa Sat (or any other Hawker Centre)
Where to eat in Singapore? You can’t leave Singapore without eating at least once at a Hawker Centre (you probably end up loving it so much that you’ll visit a Hawker Centre for every meal.)
What is a Hawker Centre you’re asking? Hawker Centres are open air places with a lot of food stalls where you can choose from a variety of local dishes for quite affordable prices. Some of Singapore’s signature dishes are chilli crab, hokkien mee, prata with curry, and chicken rice.
Don’t worry if you don’t eat meat (like me), there is still plenty of choice. Singapore is very vegan friendly. Most of the Indian and Chinese stalls provide a selection of veggie options. I usually go for Indian food.
Lau Pa Sat (also known as Telok Ayer Market) is one of Singapore’s most popular hawker centres. I literally managed to eat there 5 times in my first week in Singapore. Every time I have friends visiting Singapore, I tell them to eat at least once at Lau Pa Sat, because this place is so so good. It’s a food market favorite for locals, business people and tourists alike.
The food market is located in a striking, historic building from the 19th century, right in the middle of the financial district. Lau Pa Sat is known for offering a wide variety of authentic local cuisines, as well as plenty of international food, while also providing a scenic atmosphere with its mix of cast iron and filigree. It’s open 24-7, so come anytime!
09 | Gardens by the Bay
Hands down, this is probably the most iconic sight of Singapore and a must see for every visitor who is traveling to Singapore! The Gardens by the Bay is a massive, 101 hectares nature park that brings to life garden artistry in its truest form.
You can easily spend an entire day wandering around at the Gardens by the Bay, there is so much to see and explore, you’ll be amazed by all the sculptures, flowers and plants along the way. The garden contains more than 400,000 plants combined. Here is a map of the Gardens to get an idea of its size.
Once you enter the gardens, you will see 2 massive glass domes. The Flower Dome is one spectacular place to visit, it’s the largest greenhouse in the world featuring some of the most amazing plants and flowers on this planet. The taller dome beside is called the Cloud Forest, featuring the world’s tallest indoor waterfall, surrounded by lush vegetation. No matter which one you’ll visit, you’ll be amazed, either way. If you have time, visit both!
If you have limited time, head straight to the Supertree Grove! These famous futuristic-looking trees are between 25 and 50 meters tall and light up when it’s getting dark. You have probably seen more than one drool-worthy photo of these Supertrees on your Instagram feed, they look incredible and make you feel like you stepped into the film set of Avatar.
The best time to visit is around sunset, you’ll get magical views! Every night at 07:45PM and 08:45PM hundreds of people gather under the Supertrees to witness a spectacular light show where the trees are glowing hypnotically at night. Don’t miss this spectacle, it’s absolutely incredible! Plus it’s free!
10 | Marina Bay
Marina Bay is Singapore’s modern treasure that has been wowing visitors for decades. Ever since its transformation that started in the 1970s, Marina Bay is one of the major reasons why Singapore has become well-known as a luxury travel destination.
Marina Bay is situated at the entrance of the Singapore River and features some of the most iconic luxury hotels, one-of-a-kind skyscrapers, and upscale attractions including Sands SkyPark and Marina Bay Sands.
Above is a map with all the places and things to do in Singapore. Number 01-04 are all close to each other and within walking distance. If you don’t like walking, the public transport is a breeze in Singapore. Alternatively, Grabcar is a very affordable taxi option, most rides will only cost a few dollars.