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Written by Savi, 24 Comments

Singapore feels like home. Vid lived there for over 8 years and we spent months hunting down local eateries, offbeat gems, and exploring the island country when we were teenagers. But the other day, we ran a poll on our Instagram and so many of you asked for tips for first time visitors to Singapore, so we thought we would pen a day-by-day itinerary for all of you who are visiting Singapore anytime soon.

It is easy to explore the island country as it is safe and easy to navigate. We’ve tried to include all details that will help you plan your trip independently but if you have any other questions about visiting Singapore, then leave them down below and we’ll do our best to answer them

singapore sunset marina bay sands
Oh Singapore! How we LOVE thee

Let’s get going. However if you’d rather watch it in video form, we have a guide to Singapore on Youtube too:


Getting into Singapore

Singapore airlines offers seamless connectivity from all major cities in the world and is one of our personal favourite airlines. Singapore is extremely safe and it’s easy to get around because public transport is seamless. People queue up politely, everything is regulated and there is no scope for bargaining or getting scammed. Upon exiting the airport, you will see a queue for cabs. Just wait your turn and take a cab to your hotel.

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Up above the world so high ⭐️⭐️ It’s always a pleasure flying @singaporeair (one of our all-time favourite airlines) but this flight was extra special because we met so many readers amongst the staff and passengers ?Can I tell you a STORY? I rarely eat on flights, so I skipped dinner and was huddled over writing an article as everyone else around me slept when I heard a whisper “Want something sweet Savi? Would I even be a Bruised Passports reader if I didnt know about your sweet tooth?” I looked up to see a gorgeous stewardess with tray full of mini desserts and the biggest smile. @deepa_1001 thanks for this random act of kindness – it’s people like you that make the world go round ??? ✨ ✨ We always love meeting you guys but bumping into Bruised Passports fam is even more special mid air. Thanks Deepa, @vb_solace.seeker, Jennifer and everyone else who made our day! ✈️✈️ The two of us used to travel tons before Bruised Passports and I know we would still be travelling if we didn’t blog BUT we wouldn’t have had this family around the world! Perhaps that’s why this virtual family is the HIGHLIGHT of our blogging journey for us – just penning this down to say we are ever SO grateful for all the love each day ?? #grateful #storytime #bruisedpassportsfamily

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Planning Your Trip To Singapore

You could plan an independent trip and pay individually at all attractions listed below. But the most budget-friendly and convenient way of exploring Singapore for first time visitors is by purchasing a Singapore Explorer Pass if you’re flying with Singapore Airlines. They have a counter at the airport itself so you can show your Singapore Air boarding pass and pick 1, 2, or 3 day passes depending on the length of your trip. The pass includes entry to loads of attractions, lots of meals, and even a SIM card. You can find all details of the Singapore Explorer Pass here.

We got the 3 day pass that costs SGD 125. Everything we’ve included in our itinerary below is either included in the Singapore Explorer Pass or is free of charge, so you don’t have to spend even an additional penny to have the BEST time on your first trip to Singapore 🙂


Getting around on your first trip to Singapore

Cabs are affordable and you can take those if you want to get around Singapore. But rides on the Hop On Hop Off buses are included in the Singapore Explorer Pass, so we’d suggest saving some money and taking those instead. Hop On Hop Off Buses have free audio guides and wifi for visitors, making them ideal for a first time visitor to Singapore.


Choosing a hotel for your first time in Singapore

You can find some great hotels in Singapore, irrespective of your budget. We always suggest staying in a centrally-located hotel, close to Orchard Road.

If you prefer mid-range hotels, then Hotel Jen Tanglin is a great option. We spent 5 nights here on this particular trip and really enjoyed it. It was our second time at the hotel and we’d happily pick it the next time too. Rooms are comfortable, they have a great pool, and the breakfast buffet has a vast array of continental and Asian specialities. If you enjoy seafood, then do try their famous J65 seafood buffet one night!

Hotel Jen Tanglin Singapore
Hotel Jen Tanglin


An Itinerary for your first time in Singapore


Day 1: Morning

Spend half a day visiting the River Safari and Singapore Zoo. Singapore Zoo is more like an educational wildlife park that makes for an ideal visit if you’re travelling with kids. It gives them a chance to observe animals such as zebras, giraffes, monkeys, and even pandas in their habitat. The animals are not confined in tiny cages – kids can feed them, interact with them, and learn tons about wildlife conservation too.

Combine this with a visit to the adjoining River Safari. Here a small boat will take you through a replica of the Amazon rainforest. The boat ride is a fun little adventure and lasts 15 minutes.

Unwind by having the cutest panda shaped buns (we had the chocolate custard filling – YUM) and panda-stamped coffee at Mama Panda – it’s definitely the cutest looking coffee we’ve had in a while!

Singapore zoo
We thoroughly enjoyed the River Safari

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Panda coffee anyone? ? ?

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Day 1: Afternoon

After a fair bit of activity in the first half, you would want to cool down in the second half of the day. If you are an art or culture enthusiast you could visit the National Gallery Singapore. The historical building (a combination of Singapore’s erstwhile Supreme Court and City Hall buildings) is gorgeous and it houses a huge selection of South East Asian Art and several temporary exhibits too. We absolutely loved the exhibit on minimalism and would highly recommend it. It is on till April 2019.

The area around the National Gallery Singapore makes for some great photographs, so make sure you take a stroll in the area. If it’s too hot for photos, you could also cool down with a drink at the uber-scenic terrace bar at the National Gallery called Smoke and Mirrors.

National gallery singapore
Loved the National Gallery
Interesting exhibitions at National Gallery Singapore
You MUST experience the “Minimalism” exhibition


Day 1 : Evening

You’ve been exploring all day. It’s time to unwind. Take the river cruise and enjoy the panoramic views of skyscrapers and colourful buildings. Get off at Boat Quay or Clarke Quay, the focal points of nightlife in Singapore. Walk around enjoying the view of the distinctive coloured houses in the area and have dinner at Violet Oon Satay Bar and Grill. A satay meal here is included in the Singapore Explorer Pass, so we’d suggest having dinner here and then grabbing a drink at any bar that catches your fancy.

sunset river cruise in Singapore
Best time to go on the river cruise is at sunset
satays at violet oon in Clarke Quay
Scrumptious satays to end the day 🙂



Day 2: Morning

This is a day of adventure and loads of fun, so make sure you dress comfortably. Also pack a change and swimwear because you’ll need it.

Make your way to Mt. Faber to take the cable car to Sentosa Island. Kick start your day with some fun at the Skyline Luge. The Singapore Explorer Pass offers access to any one of 11 attractions available at Sentosa but we would highly recommend the Skyline Luge, irrespective of whether you’re 6 or 60 years old. The karting track is so much fun and completely safe. Once you’ve reached the end, you can take the skyride (an open-air cable car similar to ski lifts) back to the entrance.

luge ride in Sentosa Singapore
A ton of fun was had on the luge rides – a MUST try
Skyride after luge at Sentosa Singapore
We did this quite a few times 😉


Day 2: Afternoon

You could head to Madame Tussauds to marvel at wax figures of your favourite celebrities. But if you want to burn some calories on holiday, head over to the obstacle course called Mega Climb and indulge in a bit of zip lining, climbing ropes, and breaking into a sweat. After you’ve exhausted yourself, head over to Good Old Days Restaurant for a meal – a set meal is included in your pass, so choose one you like but make sure you try the Ice Kacang (Singaporean shaved ice) for dessert. Yummy!

We suggest spending an hour or so at one of the beaches in Sentosa too 🙂

Vid being errrr….Vid
Relax at the beach 🙂


Day 2: Evening

Now that you’re well fed and well rested, it’s time for round 2 of fun activities.  Head over to Resorts World’s Adventure Cove Waterpark in the vicinity. If you’re with kids or just love sugary treats, make sure you take a pit-stop at the gigantic candy store called Candilicious. It’s candy heaven 🙂

Once you’re at Adventure Cove Waterpark, change into your swimwear and let the adventures begin. Waterparks are always fun but kids especially love Adventure Cove Waterpark because of the range of activities available. There are several rides for kids and adults alike. You can go snorkelling in a tank full of thousands of colourful fish called Rainbow Reef or try out Asia’s first hydro magnetic roller coaster (loads of fun). One thing is for sure – your second evening will be packed with memories, smiles, and adventures.

Rainbow reef snorkelling at Adventure Cove Waterpark
Enjoy some snorkelling at Adventure Cove Waterpark
There are plenty of enthralling rides 🙂 (image courtesy: Adventure Cove Waterpark)



Day 3: Morning and Afternoon

All that activity on Day 2 is bound to leave you tired. So wake up late on Day 3 and go for brunch to Ya Kun at Suntec City to sample the traditional Ya Kun Kaya Toast (included in SEP). After that you can choose between two options below (we recommend and enjoy both!)

  • Explore Chinatown:  Visit the Chinese Heritage Centre to gain a better understanding of Singapore’s history, sample some scrumptious street food at the Chinatown Food Street where several hawkers cook a feast for tourists, and walk in the bustling alleys of Chinatown for a spot of shopping.
couple at tooth relic temple in Singapore's Chinatown
Head to the Buddha Tooth Relic Temple and museum early morning for some gorgeous photos
Chinese heritage centre Singapore
Chinese Heritage Centre – you should definitely visit to get a glimpse into the history of Chinatown and Singapore
Leisurely strolls in Chinatown
girl trying local cuisine at a hawker centre in Singapore
No visit to Singapore is complete without trying the local food at one of the food streets


  • Explore Little India and Arab Street: The colourful by-lanes of Little India have some amazing murals and street art. Explore them and walk to Arab Street to sample local delicacies like Roti Prata or Murtabak at hole-in-the-wall eateries in the area. We definitely suggest stopping by the former house of Tan Teng Niah in Little India and Masjid Sultan near Arab Street sometime during the morning
Tons of colours and chaos in Little India 🙂
Masjid sultan in Singapore
Gorgeous architecture all around


Day 3: Evening

Wrap up your trip to Singapore by visiting some of it’s premier attractions. Hop on to the Singapore Flyer to get panoramic views of Singapore. Walk to Gardens By The Bay and explore its 2 colourful domes, lined with flowers, plants, and even a waterfall! Expect to spend at least 2 hours exploring Gardens By The Bay. As the sun sets, make your way to the super trees for the amazing Garden Rhapsody Light and Sound Show that begins at 7.45 pm. The 15 minute show is sure to leave you spellbound and you might want an encore when it’s all over. What better way to end your first trip to Singapore than on this high note? Highly recommended!

view of Singapore skyline from singapore flyer
Singapore Flyer – perfect for a 360 degree view of Singapore and for respite from the afternoon sun 🙂
tallest man made waterfall at Gardens By The Bay
Beautiful waterfall at Cloud forest dome in Gardens By The Bay
Beautiful decor at the flower dome
view of singapore flyer and skyline from gardens by the bay
Walk along the bay for some beautiful views of the city
Rhapsody light show at Gardens By The Bay
PERFECT way to end your trip to Singapore 🙂


Visiting Singapore? Also read Planning A Short Trip To Singapore  for more information about shopping and dining options before you finalise your itinerary

24 thoughts on “The PERFECT Itinerary for your first time in Singapore

  1. I am going on my first ever solo trip..that to Singapore! On the 23rd of May..I hope I can make it a success through your guidance! Thank you. 🙂

  2. Me and my husband are travelling to Singapore with the Singaore Airlines and thinking of purchasing the Singapore Explorer Pass. Does it include all local transportation (MRT, bus, etc.) for travel to the attractions? Also, the website does not mention the river safari as an inclusion. Is that part of the Singapore zoo?

    We are planning to spend a week there with around 5 days in Singapore, and a 2-day short trip out of the city. Can we cover both Batam and Bintan (1 day each), or do you suggest a another better getaway?

    1. Hi Niharika,

      Yes, all transport is included. As for the attractions that are included, it’s always best to refer to the updated list on their website asn these attractions change every year. So it’s possible that river safari was included when we visited in February but has been updated at the end of the financial year in March.

  3. Hello, i was going through the itinerary. So i have a question you have mentioned about the 3 day pass. Is it available only for passengers of Singapore air or anyone going through different flights can also buy that.

    1. Yes it is 🙂 all depends on your budget – you can always find cheap accommodation and lots of cheap places to eat 🙂

  4. This post is so helpful!!! I am planning for a Singapore trip in December 2019(27th Dec to 1st Jan probably) to witness the New Years celebrations. Can you please let me know what places I should visit during that time; how I can enjoy the most being in Singapore during New Years Eve? Also which is the best place from where I can witness the fireworks on 31st Dec?

    1. Hey Ankita,

      All our suggestions for what to do and see is in the article – you can also check out our video on Singapore over on YouTube:

      We haven’t witnessed NYE fireworks in Singapore so can’t really give you a first-hand suggestion on the best spots, but I’d guess Marina Bay Sands hotel / area around Merlion will offer the best views?

  5. First things first-I LOVE U GUYS!!! You are living the dream for lot of people like me. Me and my husband has done some travelling and the next trip we will take will be with our son who is 11 months old right now. I really liked how you mentioned lot of places in the article which which will be fun with kids. Singapore is on my list with our son now.

    1. Hi Arti,

      Thanks for all the love. Yes Singapore is a great place to visit especially with kids – hope you make it there soon 🙂

  6. Hi Savi and Vid. I have been following you on Instagram and have huge admiration for both of you. You both are too adorable. :). I wanted some help. Me and my fiance are planning to visit Singapore and Bali for our honeymoon. We wanted to know few things and thought if you could help us.
    1. How do we buy the Singapore explorer pass, I mean do we directly buy while we are buying the tickets and then buy them through the explorer pass website?
    2. The website says that there are some restrictions on use of Explorer pass, but doesn’t mention them. Could you let us know if there are any.
    3. Does the explorer pass includes local transports for all the three days?
    4. Can you provide us with a list of 2-3 star hotels in Singapore within a mid range.
    5. We were thinking to travel to Bali on a cruise. Could you let us know if there are cruise for a day or two between Singapore and Bali.
    6. Will we need Visa for Bali if we go from Singapore as ideally citizens of India do not need so when travelling to Bali for less than 30 days.

    1. Hey Swati –
      1) you can collect Singapore Explorer Pass upon getting to Changi Airport
      2) We didn’t see any restrictions. We looked up the website and visited places & restaurants that were included in the Explorer Pass only
      3) Yes it includes local transport (ie buses not cabs)
      4) Unfortunately we don’t know a great 2-3 star hotel in Singapore. Would suggest renting an apartment on AirBnB if you’re on a budget
      5) Wouldn’t recommend 1-2 day cruise at all. It’s not a great experience!
      6) You can get visa on arrival in Bali

  7. Hey Savi and Vid.. U guys are amazing.. I have been constantly following you on instagram. U guys are living a dream and are an inspiration for many..
    I am going to Singapore in November with my family. I had some doubts.. Hope u could help..
    1) on an average how much will all the excursions incl. transport by MRT in Singapore cost (excluding food). If we are not taking the explorer pass.
    2) My parents are coming with me. They are not that interested in roller coasters and stuff. So is Universal studios for them a bad idea? Should they drop visiting Universal studios
    3) Is the Night Safari worth going to?? We dont have kids with us.

    1. Hey Pratik – please find responses to all your questions below:

      1) This is very hard to estimate as it depends on the excursions you take and how many of them you take
      2) Yes you can easily skip Universal Studios in that case
      3) Your parents might enjoy the Night Safari experience too as it is quite unique

  8. Hi Savi and Vid, I have been constantly following you on instagram. U guys are living a dream and are an inspiration for many..
    I am going to Singapore in September end with my family. I had some doubts.. Hope u could help..
    1) Is the Singapore explorer pass still available?
    2) And what all are the attractions available on the explorer pass? As, I couldn’t find it on the net as a clear idea of what all is included in it?

    1. Hey Shruti – yes but things are constantly changing up post pandemic. Would suggest getting it upon landing only – or if you want to explore just a few things, then do those independently 🙂

  9. Hello, thank you for sharing the itinerary. Can you also suggest some hidden gems in Singapore for people already living there?

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