Why you should visit Singapore in November / December
What’s the first thing that comes to your mind when you hear Singapore? Shopping paradise? East meets west? Twinkling skyscrapers? Well, the list could probably go on and on.
Also known as the “Lion City”, it’s a fascinating melting point of cultures given through the influences by its three largest ethnical groups, Malay, Chinese & Indians and a whopping four official languages.
Singapore is located just a mere 137 km north of the equator, at the southern tip of the Malay-peninsula, conveniently connected with major destinations from across globe.
The city-state boasts a compelling mix of attractions; from hyper-modern shopping malls to traditional markets and colonial buildings; from several beaches over a green countryside to the world’s most expensive hotel project.
Its climate is tropical all year round, yet November and December are considered the wettest months. We show you below a captivating selection of great spots and why you shouldn’t skip it during that time:
Gardens by the Bay, Flower Dome & Cloud Forrest
Entering the Gardens by the Bay will give you first the impression of another world: the park is home to the futuristic Supertree Grove which harvest solar energy and is a perfect example for environmental sustainability. It’s even possible to stroll between the trees along the Supertree Skyway, above the park.
Tip: Visit the Gardens once at night to see the supertrees illuminated!
Open: daily from 09.00 am to 09.00 pm. Entrance fee: S$5 / person
Welcome to another futuristic object – the spectacular Flower Dome! The Flower Dome (38m high) is located adjacent to the Gardens and home to a huge number of different flowers and plants. It replicates a mild Mediterranean temperature of 23 C to 25 C. Right next to it is the slightly smaller Cloud Forrest which replicates cooler tropical mountain regions and features also the world’s highest indoor-waterfall at 35m.
You don’t need to be even a fan of flowers, but given the uniqueness of the park itself, is worth a visit.
Open: daily from 09.00 am to 09.00 pm. Entrance fee: S$ 28 / person (incl. Flower Dome & Cloud Forrest
Visit historical places
Kampong Buangkok: Granted! It may be located a bit outside of the city centre and depending on weather conditions it might not be the ideal place to visit for everyone during November/December; but given the fact that Kampong Buangkok is considered the last remaining traditional village (Kampong) of Singapore and not a typical tourist spot, you can be assured that you might be just one of a handful of visitors.
How to get there: Bus 103 from Serangoon Central
Raffles Hotel: Operating since 1887, it is widely considered as the most iconic landmark in the city. Grab a Singapore Sling (yes, it was invented here) at the Long Bar and immerse into an atmosphere of colonial days.
Singapore Sling: S$ 20
The Civic District:
Being a former British colony, Singapore is home to a number of beautiful and well preserved colonial buildings. The Civic District is probably the best part where you can find these buildings, such as the Old Supreme Court, the City Hall and of course – the aforementioned Raffles Hotel as its centrepiece.
How to get there: by MRT, between the stations ‘City Hall’ and ‘Dhoby Ghaut’
Go for a walk
Who said you just need to spend time inside your hotel or some malls? Let’s go out for a walk and experience the local culture first hand! If it rains – just take an umbrella, it’s going to be worth it!
Kampong Glam: The most colourful of all districts in Singapore, Kampong Glam was once allocated for the Muslim population of Singapore in the 19th century. Today, beautiful painted house-walls marking the small streets of the Kampong. Stop by at one of the countless coffee shops for a good café and a sheesha, before heading further to the Sultan Mosque, one of the city’s oldest mosques.
How to get there: by MRT, station ‘Bugis’.
Clarke Quay: The quay is perfect for a night stroll with its numerous restaurants and bars. If the weather should not permit to walk around, why not stop at the Asian Civilizations Museum and soak up some Asian history?
The museum opens daily from 10.00 am to 07.00 pm and Fridays from 10.00 am to 09.00 pm. Entrance fee: S$ 8
Little India: Little India is definitely one of the more busy parts of Singapore –most of the “action” happens around Syed Alwi Road with plenty of markets around as well as the Mustafa Centre, a bustling 24 hours mall where you can get (almost) everything you want.
How to get there: by MRT, station ‘Little India’
Chinatown: If you’re into shopping and love haggling you’re right here! You can get all types of souvenirs here; from T-Shirts to magnets to caps to key tags…you get the picture!
How to get there: by MRT, station ‘Chinatown’
Orchard Road: Singapore’s number 1 shopping area. If you’re into shopping you’re right here, if not, better avoid it.
How to get there: by MRT, stations ‘Orchard’, ‘Somerset’, ‘Dhoby Ghaut’ and ‘City Hall’
Food & Drinks
People say that the best way to explore a culture is through its food. Since Singapore is home to different ethnical groups, the variety of food offered is as diverse as its people. From Street Food to some of the world’s top rated restaurants, the city is a haven for food lovers.
Indulge into a colourful mix of fragrances and ingredients, from oriental spices to fresh herbs and vegetables. Stop at Kampong Glam for a delicious kebab or at Little India for a Masala Dosa, stroll around Chinatown for some fresh pork dumplings.
Events & Festivals in Singapore, 2014
Singapore Writers Festival – 31st October to 09th November
The festival is held annually and one of the few multi-lingual writers festivals in the world. It features local and international artists, from newcomers to established ones.
Singapore Art Fair – 27th November to 30th November
The fair is held at different locations and galleries throughout Singapore and showcases artworks from the Middle East, North Africa, South –and Southeast Asia.
Singapore International Film Festival – 4th December to 14th December
After a two-year hiatus, the 25th edition will screen more than 100 films from around 50 countries.
Standard Chartered Marathon Singapore – 7th December
Zouk Out – 12th December to 13th December
Held at Siloso Beach, it’s one of Asia’s biggest music dance festivals and features some of the world’s best DJ’s such as Carl Cox and Armin Van Buuren.
Christmas Light Up – End of November to beginning of January
A 6-week-festival held on Orchard Road and around Marina Bay. Streets turning into a sparkling winter wonderland and malls and shops compete to put up the best Christmas decorations.