Whether you're on a quick layover or you're indulging in a mini break, Singapore has something for everyone.
From the cheapest Michelin-starred food in the world, to some of the most stunning neo-classical architecture and old-world luxury, Singapore is a country that strikes the perfect balance of celebrating history, all while embracing the future.
If you're in town for a short amount of time, but still want to soak up Singapore like a local, these hot spots and activities will give you an authentic understanding of the Lion City.
Where to stay
The Fullerton Hotel Singapore
There's something quite magical about staying in a hotel that has history. Commissioned in 1919 as part of Singapore's centennial celebrations and eventually completed in 1928, the Fullerton Hotel building has Doric columns, coffered ceilings and an air of elegance that only a classic beauty can possess.
As this building was once home to the General Post Office, Chamber of Commerce and the Singapore Club, the 400-room hotel only began construction in 1998 to give travellers an opprtunity to personally experience a piece of Singaporean history. The result is comfortable, sumptuous accommodation that shows off the stunning city around it.
There are a range of luxurious options at the hotel. Guests can add breakfast to their booking, which gives them the opportunity to feast at the Town Restaurant - an unlimited range of both west and east breakfast cuisines. Additionally, there's also a luxury car service you can book to seamlessly transfer between the airport and the hotel.
If relaxing is on the agenda, an infinity pool with amazing views of the Singapore River provides the perfect spot to laze about with a book. For those in search of a pamper session, the in-house spa has an extensive list of treatments on offer, too.
What to do
Heritage walking tours
Gain a new appreciation for the majestic architecutre and uncover new knowledge about the history of Singapore with the free walking tours on offer for all tourists - not just guests - at the Fullerton hotel. Choose between the Fullerton Monument Tour or Maritime Journey Tour and go back in time to the 18th and 19th century to learn about the biggest historical moments that shaped the nation we know today.
Explore the Gardens by the Bay
Spanning an impressive 101 hectares, Gardens by the Bay in central Singapore will surprise and delight you. Even if you don't have a green thumb, you'll appreciate just how large scale some of these floral installations are. Giant, air-conditioned conservatories like the Flower Dome house some of the most spectacular plant life, and the Cloud Forest features a formidable 35-metre-tall mountain with the world's largest indoor waterfall. For the outdoor exploration, my hot tip is to spend the $8SGD per person on the 20-minute audio tour - especially if you're pushed for time.
Have a drink at Raffles bar
The historic Long Bar situated inside the Raffles Hotel is inspired by Malayan life in the 1920s. Lush greenery, patterned tiles and a large spiral staircase provide a glimpse of life from the Singapore of yesteryear. If you're in the mood for a cocktail, the Singapore Sling is an absolute must - and is especially refreshing after snacking on a handful of peanuts served with every drink.
Where to eat
Lau Pa Sat
Situated in the city's financial district, Telok Ayer Market - or Lau Pa Sat as it's also known - is a bustling Hawker centre featuring many delicious delicacies. Built in the 19th century, this food court is open until 3am every day, and you can find chilli crab and satay sticks aplenty here - two very quintessential Singaporean dishes.
In 2016, Chinatown's Hawker Chan restaurant was bestowed a Michelin star. Not bad for a modest Hawker stall serving authenic Asian fare! One of the items on the menu (Soya Sauce Chicken and Rice) will set you back just $4 SGD, which makes it the cheapest Michelin-star dish in the world. Yes, the queues are sometimes long, but you will not regret this experience.
Afternoon tea at the Landing Point
If it's one thing I've learned over my visits, it's that Singapore does afternoon tea well. Drawing on its colonial past, afternoon tea at the Landing Point, Fullerton Bay Hotel is a very generous offering of both British-inspired sweet treats and snacks, as well as tasty Asian favourites and of course, tea. The best part of the this venue is however, the view, which overlooks the Marina Bay and the iconic Marina Bay sands hotel.