Culturally Speaking

Culturally Speaking

Singapore has a wonderful culture and history surrounding it, and attracts people from all walks of life. It's accommodating, welcoming and promises an experience like no other. Here are some key facts you may find interesting about this one of a kind country:

1. The name Singapore comes from the Sanskrit words ‘simha' (lion) and ‘pura' (city). This name was given to the region by a young prince who spotted a Lion, which he had never seen before, and subsequently named it Singapura.

2. The country has a very diverse population and its principle inhabitants comprise mainly of Chinese, Malay and Indian heritages. There is a percentage allocated to expatriates who migrate from all over the world to work in its thriving economy.

3. Most people in Singapore speak more than one language and English is usually one of them. A lot of the country's media and content are published in multiple languages to accommodate most visitors and residents. Mandarin is the predominant Chinese language spoken throughout the nation.

4. With a land mass of around 700 square kilometers it is one of the smallest countries in the world, but also has one of the highest concentration of restaurants and entertainment hotspots. Best things do come in small packages.

5. With one of the most efficient public transport systems in the world, there is no need to rent a car or spend a fortune on taxis. The trains (MRT and LRT) are frequent, clean and safe.

6. There are laws against chewing gum, spitting and littering and as a result, is one of the cleanest cities in the world. If all other cities followed suit the world would be a much cleaner place!

7. Singapore has its own cocktail called the Singapore Sling which has been around for over a century. It's refreshing in the tropical climate and is still enjoyed by the locals as a nationally treasured taste.

Yours Truly, Singapore

Yours Truly, Singapore

Dearest Visitor,

There is nothing more satisfying to me than people enjoying their time here and I have worked tirelessly to provide fun, adventure, relaxation and opportunities for different experiences in my culture. The people here are full of life and spirit and will make your visit one to remember.

For the Adventure Seeker; Sentosa Island is my playground and is host to lots of family fun. Universal Studios, water activities, the Lake of Dreams, spectacular beaches, nature parks, wildlife and traveling to a different world with CineBlast are a few of the surprises I have waiting for you.

For the Creative Spirit; We are extremely proud to host one of the only two Red Dot Design Museums in the world. We have collected works of some of the world's greatest designers and housed it all under one roof. Come and see the future of design and even create a few masterpieces yourself with workshops in creativity and art. Our wonderful gift shop allows you to take a piece of the museum home with you.

For the Shopping Enthusiast; Enjoy tax free splurges in some of the finest shopping locations in the world. My beautiful Orchard Road is an experience in itself made even richer when you find exquisite items to your taste. My malls are luxurious, plentiful and cater for all.

For those in need of Relaxation; I have many spas which provide massages, therapeutic beauty treatments and of course insist on pampering you whilst you are in their care. A beautiful walk through one of my nature parks is an ideal way to relax and just enjoy life. One of my islands Pulau Ubin is an ideal way to remove yourself from the hustle and bustle of my city life and enjoy a simpler time.

For the photographic opportunist; My Singapore Flyer is a wonderful place to see what I have to offer as far as the eyes can see. I share my horizon with Indonesia and Malaysia. You can indulge in panoramic views and see my landmarks from a different angle to the norm.

For the Food Lover; The dining experience in Singapore needs no introduction as there are a wealth of restaurants, delis, eateries and cafes to accommodate any pallet and budget. My Hawker Centres are a great place to start for plentiful, authentic cuisine and delicacies for the daring.

With all of this and more I can't wait to welcome you. Yours Truly, Singapore

Singapore’s Playgound

Singapore’s Playgound

Singapore's Playgound

What was once an abandoned military fort has come alive as Singapore's playground, and what a playground it is!

The wonderful island that is Sentosa Island attracts thousands of people every weekend and especially public holidays, so it's wise to plan ahead to ensure the maximum amount of fun for the whole family. Tickets can be booked in advance for the attractions or on site if you just fancy going with the flow. Because of the many attractions it offers, you may want to dedicate a whole weekend to the island so that you don't have to rush any of the magnificent sights or tire yourself and your family out too quickly.

Sentosa's attractions fall into four locations;

Imbiah Lookout - Great to keep the family entertained and educated about Singapore's history and wildlife. Proud host of the Merlion, Butterfly and Insect Park, Singapore Cable Car, Tiger Sky Tower, MegaZip Adventure Park and much more.

Beaches - For the beach and water loving adrenaline junkie! This location caters to those who are looking to surf, fly on a trapeze, indoor skydive, go kart around trails and whatever else your body can handle! After all of the action packed experiences there are tranquil beaches to unwind on or you can take a stroll down to Singapore's southern most viewing point.

Siloso Point - For the history buff and hands on action adventure seekers. It's a great way to actively explore Singapore's largest collection of WWII memorabilia. A touching journey to reminisce the nation's history and a great educational resource.

Resorts World Sentosa - This is the Entertainment hotspot of the island where Universal Studios, the Lake of Dreams and the Festive Walk are but a few of the main features. The biggest pop stars in the world frequently flock to the newly opened Pantages Hollywood Theatre to perform. Live music, food and shows are plentiful here.

All of the attractions are easily connected and accessible for everyone, so you can visit more than one location in a day. Sentosa is alive with hotels and Spas dotted frequently throughout so if adventure is not for you, there are options for a relaxing experience instead.

An Experience

An Experience

An Experience You Can't Buy

Singapore's shopping rivals that of London, New York, Dubai and Tokyo. There is variety to suit all personalities and budgets and the experience is a gift to yourself.

If you would like to browse modern stores all under one roof Singapore has over 70 shopping malls dotted throughout the country. The following are very popular and come highly recommended by frequent shoppers: Burgis Junction, ION Orchard, JCUBE, Marina Bay Sands, Raffles City, The Star Vista and West Mall.

If you like designer boutiques and want to visit the high end of luxury retail, these are a must: Orchard Road, Knightsbridge, Takashimaya.

If you like exotic food and would like to shop for delicacies or visit Hawkers' Markets start here: Little India Arcade, Maxwell road, Newton Circus, Smith Street, Chomp Chomp or Old Airport Road Food Centre.

Tax Returns: If you spend over S$100 you are entitled to a 7% Tax rebate if you leave Singapore by air. There are multiple ways to claim back, the easiest being the eTRS self-service kiosks at the airport. It's a good idea to ask each retailer for an eTRS token with each purchase so that you can collect them as you go along and present them to an attendant at the airport before departure.

A few things to bear in mind: Europe and America are pretty flexible on returns and most places offer buyer's remorse, however in Singapore most transactions are considered to be final and very strict policies are in place. Before you purchase anything make sure you are happy with the price and the product itself. Ensure everything is working and all the expected parts are in the box. Retailers are happy for you to check thoroughly at the time of purchase because more than likely there will not be an opportunity for an exchange later on. Be sure to educate yourself on what their particular policy is and ask questions regarding warranty coverage, refunds and exchange policies.