Singapore is a crossroads of the world, on the way to a vast range of places. Millions of people flow through Changi airport every year, many of them taking a stopover. But Singapore deserves much more attention. You can easily fill a week with adventures in the city-state. The diamond at the tip of the South East Asian peninsula is a dazzling destination in its own right, with a rich ethnic mix, a fascinating history and a warm welcome for visitors. And, as I discovered this winter, with a feast of new experiences for the 21st-century traveller.
Get your bearings
Take the lift 56 floors up to the SkyPark Observation Deck at the top of the Marina Bay Sands. Even better, take a room at this vast and iconic hotel, and enjoy the world’s greatest infinity pool.
Whether you are immersed or simply in awe, the constantly changing skyline is a joy.
At ground level, the Helix Bridge was inspired by that very molecule. The crossing looks impossibly delicate – yet 3-D software was used to create a unique bridge that has immense strength.
On Sentosa Island, Skyhelix offers a very different high-altitude experience. It lifts you 79 metres above sea level and then gently rotates, yielding spectacular visions of the Singapore skyline as well as the offshore islands as far away as Indonesia.
The range of places to stay has never been wider. You could choose the classic Raffles Singapore, home to the world famous Singapore Sling cocktail, with its rich heritage. Alternatively, many hotels are now demonstrating their sustainability credentials, such as the spectacular PARKROYAL COLLECTION Marina Bay. Or re-energise at the Shangri-La Rasa Sentosa, an island property beautifully located between the rainforest and the beach.
Eating and drinking
Flavours from across Asia and beyond have been imported to the city-state, often with an added Singapore twist. You could dine on a different cuisine every day of the month.
Start your evening 39 floors above the Singapore streets at Mr Stork, the open-air bar at the top of the Andaz Hotel. Order a locally brewed beer to heighten the appreciation and sharpen the appetite.