24 hours in a location may not seem like a long time. It may feel too overwhelming to venture into such a bustling, unfamiliar place on a time crunch. Plus, with the incredible airport in Singapore, you may be tempted to just spend the night there. But don’t. Resist every urge to stay comfortable and go see a few things this incredible city has to offer.
There is free Wifi all over the airport so it’s quite easy to put together a quick list of must see places. There are also free tours from the airport in Singapore. Just make sure you check into these before passing through security. We made this mistake, thinking they would be in the main hub therefore, we were unable to partake. They seemed like a safe and easy way to see a lot of the city! (http://www.changiairport.com/en/airport-experience/attractions-and-services/free-singapore-tour.html)
Make sure that you get a ticket for the public transportation system (MRT). I know it can seem daunting, especially if you do not have much experience with it. However, the MRT is a perfect place to learn. Everything is in English, the maps are incredibly easy to follow, the trains announce all upcoming stops clearly, and they even indicate which side of the train in which you should exit. We purchased the tourist pass which can be used for 1, 2, or 3 days. It is a flat rate with unlimited usage on busses and trains. (More info here https://www.thesingaporetouristpass.com.sg/) This seemed like the best option for us because we knew that we would be riding multiple ties and we didn’t want to have to mess with constantly adding more money. It may end up being cheaper to pay per ride however, the ease of this made it worth it for us.
We stayed at the Fragrance – Crystal Hotel located in Geylang. The rooms were incredibly clean and offered everything we needed. It took about 45 minutes to get there from the airport. As you round the corner at the Aljunied stop, your nostrils will be filled with the amazing aroma of fresh baked bread. Do yourself a favor and grab a snack here. There are several (cheap) options and you can’t go wrong with any of them!
Although we were incredibly tired, we dropped our bags and began exploring. Our first stop was the Gardens by the Bay. At 7:45p and 8:45p there is a light/music show at the Supertree Grove. The Gardens are open both day and night with plenty to see! There are free and paid exhibits. We only explored the free and were not at all disappointed.
From here you can also walk down by the water or even go for a walk/jog on the nearby path. Marina Bay Sands will be visibly noticeable and even if malls aren’t your thing, check it out anyway. There are high-end stores and honestly, just being in air conditioning was a good excuse for us!
Dinner time was quickly approaching so we took the train to Raffles Place. There are endless food options here. You could easily walk for hours simply taking in all of the restaurants in this one pocket of Singapore. We stopped at a random little corner joint and ordered a typical roasted chicken and rice meal.
The following day we chose to explore Chinatown. We thoroughly enjoyed getting lost as we walked up and down the rows and rows of colorful streets. There are hundreds of little shops and food stalls. Our last stop was Orchard Street. There are lots of sculptures and high-end shops here. It wouldn’t be a must see place for me next time but it was an enjoyable stroll.
Our 24 hours are coming to an end so we start heading back. We went a little early purely to explore the airport. It may sound silly but you will understand when you see this place. I ordered a traditional Singapore breakfast, Kopi Coffee and Kaya Toast and a soft boiled egg, which I really enjoyed. Then, we just wandered around until it was time to board. Side note, you must have a ticket in order to go into the main area of the airport however, you are free to roam from there. You only go through security when you reach your gate which made getting through the airport incredibly stress-free! The staff were incredibly friendly and helpful. Everything just makes sense at this airport and you’ll constantly be saying, “Why aren’t more airports like this?!” But, as incredible as it is, wander around and see a few things Singapore has to offer. You will not be disappointed.