In my freshman year of college, I was given the opportunity to live in Singapore as part of a tri-city college experience. Pegged as one of the most expensive cities in the world, budgeting and finding a way to keep my finances intact while still making sure I didn’t just stay at home seemed like a daunting thought. You could imagine the relief I felt when I came to know that, as much as it is a city-state that offers luxury, it also has much to offer to those of us who come to visit with somewhat tighter budgets.
Gardens by The Bay
Number 1 on my list is Gardens by The Bay. Though it is located in a rather pricey area of Singapore, it has beautiful views and a calming ambiance that all can come to you for free. The picture above is actually one that I took the very first time I ever went there and as you can see, the place is truly breathtaking. It’s perfect for hanging out with your closest friends, date nights or if you ever need time to slow down and get away from all the noise and pressures of the world.
Fun Fact: The supertrees found in the picture aren’t just for aesthetic purposes. Gardens by The Bay have 18 of them in total and they serve as vertical gardens, solar power generators and air venting ducts.
Sentosa: Palawan and Siloso Beach
One of the many wonderful things about the SP Jain Singapore campus is how close it is to Sentosa Island. Once you guys get to campus, you’d see that it’s just a couple of bus-stops away. As freshmen, our go-to relaxation place after classes was Palawan and Siloso Beach in Sentosa. These beaches are safe and are only littered with memories and not trash.
Sentosa as a whole has a lot more to offer other than beaches, as within it’s gates you’ll find Universal Studios, S.E.A. Aquarium and all kinds of restaurants. With the variety of its offerings you can definitely find something that will fit your itinerary and budget.
Fun Fact: Palawan beach was originally a reef and was previously called Serembu Palawan, it was only referred to as Pulau Palawan or Palawan after land reclamation.
Raffles Quay is the place to go to if you want to have a relaxing stroll around the city. It truly encapsulates the beauty and modernity of Singapore’s cityscape. Like most places around it also offers a variety of things to do that would be able to accommodate the things on your checklist and the budget in your wallet.
Fun Fact: The Raffles Hotel is the birthplace of Singapore’s signature cocktail, the Singapore Sling. We don’t promote drinking but experiencing this myself was amazing.
After your stop at Raffles Quay, Esplanade Park and the Merlion would only be a couple of bus stops away. This area is also just walking distance from the National Gallery, so to our arts and culture enthusiasts, this might be the stop for you.
Esplanade Park and The Merlion areas are perfect for a quiet afternoon with yourself. The assortment of coffee shops around as well as the relaxing ambiance provided by the Marina Bay couple with the local greenery is truly the cherry on top for a relaxing day.
Fun Fact: The Merlion symbolizes Singapore’s humble beginnings as a fishing city and it’s original name, Singapura, which means ‘lion city’ in Malay.
Alexandra Arch and The Park Connectors
This one is for our exercise enthusiasts. If you want a wonderful trail that takes you on a small adventure, the Alexandra Arch and the park connectors right outside the Singapore campus will surely win over your heart. It is a 1.7 km long path that takes you on a loop with beautiful views of the nature that surround the area. It’s so well taken care of that you would even see signs that warn you of monkeys.
Fun Fact: If you take the right path, it takes you straight to this resto-bar called Handlebar, which can facilitate your quick rewind session after classes with your friends. Take note, have fun responsibly people!
Overall, Singapore is a wonderful place to discover yourself. The place is a wonderful balance of challenges and safety that will push you in just the right amount. As you start your journey with SP Jain, we hope you find your own share of favorite places that’ll house your memories. The city-state has so much more to offer but this little list can be your checklist of starting points for your adventures.