Listed below are the Top 10 best FREE things to do and tourist places in Singapore.
Singapore has many free visitor attractions. These free attractions include gardens, parks, nature reserves, music shows, cultural festivals, nature walks, beaches, museums, art galleries, religious places, ethnic precincts like Chinatown and Little India, monuments, memorials, etc.
Commercial places like Sentosa Island too offer many free activities for visitors.
1] Singapore Botanic Garden
Singapore’s Botanical Garden is among its most popular free visitor attraction. Spread over 183 acres (74 hectares), Singapore Botanic Garden has theme based Gardens, Children’s play area (Jacob Ballas Children’s Garden), concerts (Shaw Foundation Symphony Stage, Palm Valley), National Orchid Garden, 3 lakes/ponds (Swan Lake, Symphony Lake, Eco Lake), Bandstand, Library, Heritage Museum, Shop, Halia Restaurant and Kidz Café. Gardens at Singapore Botanic Garden are Bonsai Garden, Sun Garden, Evolution Garden, Healing Garden, Rain Forest, Ginger Garden, Fragrant Garden, Eco Garden, Foliage Garden and Learning Forest. With over 60,000 orchids and plants, the National Orchid Garden has the world’s largest orchid exhibit. Botanic Garden is located on the northern side of Orchard Road. Most concerts are on Saturday evenings at the Shaw Foundation Symphony Stage (Palm Valley), and they are free. Visit this page to view calendar of events at Singapore Botanic Garden. The Singapore Garden Festival usually takes place in mid August.
2] Gardens By The Bay – Free Admission and Events
Gardens By The Bay is a stunning park in the heart of downtown Singapore. Spread over 250 acres (101 hectares) Singapore’s “Gardens By The Bay” consists of 3 main gardens – Bay Central Garden, Bay East Garden and Bay South Garden. In addition to the scenic beauty and 380,000 plants, the key attractions at “Gardens By The Bay” are Supertree Grove (free, except for Skyway), Children’s Garden, Dragonfly & Kingfisher Lakes, Flower Dome Conservatory (7 mini gardens from around the world; there is an entry fee), Cloud Forest Conservatory (entry fee), 2 Horticultural Gardens with a Heritage Garden, Event Space, Flower Market. “Supertrees Grove” has large (25 meters to 50 meters) tree like structures, which are vertical gardens; there is also a free 15 minute “Garden Rhapsody” light and sounds show at the Supertree Grove. Cloud Forest Conservatory has an elevator that takes visitors to a 42 meter Cloud Mountain and visitors come down a circular path; it also has the world’s tallest indoor waterfall.
3] Orchard Road – Malls and Window Shopping
The shopping malls and luxury shops on Orchard Road, Singapore, are world famous. There are 22 Shopping Malls and 6 Departmental Stores on the 2.2 Km (1.4 mile) long Orchard Road. The biggest malls and shopping centers on Orchard Road are Ngee Ann City (it has Takashimaya and Books Kinokuniya), ION Orchard, Orchard Central, The Paragon, DFS Galleria, Shaw House and Centre (it has Isetan Store and Lido 8 Cineplex), Palais Renaissance, Liat Towers, 313@somerset, Tang Plaza, Wisma Atria, The Centrepoint, Forum The Shopping Mall, Plaza Singapura, Mandarin Gallery, Hilton Singapore, Lucky Plaza, Far East Plaza, Orchard Towers, Wheelock Place, etc. There are special parades and festivities during Christmas. Orchard Road also has 4 cinema complexes and over 200 dining options from all over the world.
4] Marina Bay Waterfront and Down-town Singapore
Its easy to spot the iconic Marina Bay Sands Hotel and the Merlion statue opposite it. The area around the Marina Bay and mouth of the Singapore River forms the 266 hectare “Downtown Core” area of Singapore. This is also the Central Business District (CBD) district of Singapore and the heart of its financial success. As one walks around the Downtown Core area, the main attractions and places of interest are the Merlion statue (mythical lion-fish that is the mascot of Singapore), Waterfront Promenade, Fullerton Hotel, Cavanagh Bridge, Asian Civilization Museum, Raffles Landing Site, Singapore’s Parliament, Boat Quay (with its multi-cuisine restaurants along Singapore River), Clarke Quay, Buildings of the CBD, Raffles Place, walk along Marina Boulevard, Gardens By The Bay, Marina Bay Sands Hotel, Art Science Museum, Helix Bridge, Singapore Flyer, Esplanades – Theatres On The Bay, Raffles Avenue, Esplanade Park and St Andrew’s Cathedral. “Wonder Full—Light & Water Spectacular” is a daily free Light, Music, Visual Effects, Fountains and Sound show at 8 pm and 9:30 pm, which takes place at the Marina Bay Waterfront Promenade.
5] Nature Trails and Walks in Singapore
Singapore offers many interesting nature trails. Singapore’s 10 Km long Southern Ridges has 8 trails and it connects 5 parks – Mount Faber, Telok Blangah Hill Park, HortPark, Kent Ridge Park and Labrador Nature Reserve. Conveniently located in the South of Singapore, between West Coast Park and Harbour Front, Southern Ridges has many walkways and pedestrian bridges. MacRitchie Nature Trail spans 3 to 11 Kms along MacRitchie Reservoir. A key attraction on the MacRitchie trail is the 250 m long HSBC TreeTop Walk on an aerial free standing suspension bridge. Cycling, Other Singapore Nature Walk Trails are Eastern Coastal loop, North Eastern Riverine Loop, Northen Explorer Loop, Western Adventure Loop, West Coast Park, Lower Peirce Reservoir Park Boardwalk, Changi Point Coastal Walk, Changi Walking Trail, Heritage Roads, Pasir Ris Park, Tampines Eco Green, Bukit Timah Nature Reserve, Labrador Nature Reserve, Sungei Buloh Wetland Reserve, Ketam Mountain Bike Park in Pulau Ubin.
6] Singapore’s Chinatown: Temples, Shopping and Attractions
Almost 74% of Singaporeans are of Chinese ethnicity. Singapore has a vibrant Chinatown, which is a major tourist destination. Key attractions at Singapore’s Chinatown are Chinatown Food Street, Chinatown Night Market (Smith Street), Kreta Ayer Wet Market, Chinatown Heritage Centre, Chinatown Complex, Maxwell Food Centre, Chinese shops, bars, hawker stalls and Chinese restaurants. The architecture of Chinatown is a mix of Chinese, European, Baroque, Victorian and Mediterranean; many buildings are painted in bright colors. Chinatown is famous for its many religious places of worship, including Buddha Tooth Relic Temple (Tang Chinese Buddhist Temple), Sri Mariamman Temple (Tamil Hindu Temple), Jamae Mosque (Muslim Mosque). Streets that make up Chinatown, Singapore, are South Bridge Road, Temple Street, Mosque Street, Pagoda Street, Sago Street, Trengganu Street. Kreta Ayer Road, Telok Ayer Street, Banda Street, Bukit Pasoh, Ann Siang Hill. Neil Street. Chinatown is made up of 5 districts/precincts – Telok Ayer, Tanjong Pagar, Bukit Pasoh, Kreta Ayer and Ann Siang Hill.
7] Beaches in Singapore
Many of Singapore’s mainland beaches are integrated with parks, making them ideal places for the whole family. These beach-parks include the East Coast Park, West Coast Park, Sembawang Park (with a natural beach), Pasir Ris Park, Changi Beach Park and Punggol Point. Of these beaches, only the Sembawang Beach, Changi Beach and unggol Beach are natural sandy beach; whereas the others have been created or enhanced artificially. The Singapore beach parks offer many free things to do such as games (beach volleyball, etc), jogging tracks, cycling tracks, exercise areas, children’s play areas, water sports (these are paid activities), boating, fishing, barbeque pits, campsites, etc. Singapore’s Offshore beaches include 3 beaches at Sentosa Island (Siloso Beach, Palawan Beach, Tanjong Beach), Pulau Ubin Beach and Kusu Island Beach.
8] Parks and Gardens in Singapore
Singapore is known as Gardens City. In addition to the Garden By The Bay and Singapore Botanic Garden, the other key gardens, parks and nature reserves in Singapore are the Coastal Parks (West Coast Park, East Coast Park, Changi Beach Park, Pasir Ris Town Park, Pasir Ris Park), Nature Reserves (Bukit Timah Nature Reserve, Labrador Nature Reserve, Sungei Buloh Wetland Reserve), Southern Ridges (Southern Ridges, Mount Faber Park, HortPark, Kent Ridge Park, Telok Blangah Hill Park), Riverine Parks (Lower Seletar Reservoir Park, Upper Peirce Reservoir Park, Bedok Reservoir Park, Admiralty Park, Bishan-Ang Mo Kio Park, Kallang Riverside Park, Sengkang Riverside Park, Kranji Reservoir Park, Woodlands Waterfront Park), Arts and Heritage Parks (Esplanade Park, Fort Canning Park, Dhoby Ghaut Green, Raffles Place Park, Istana Park, Tanjong Pagar Park, Tiong Bahru Park, War Memorial Park, Hong Lim Park, Youth Olympic Park). In addition, there are community parks, such as Ang Mo Kio Town Garden, Bedok Town Park, Punggol Park, etc, which are spread all over Singapore. Many of the larger parks have free Concerts and Performances throughout the year. Visit this page for more information on Singapore’s Gardens, Parks and Nature Reserves.
9] Little India, Singapore: Sights, Tourism, Things To Do
The area around Sungei Road (Bukit Timah Road), Jln Besar Road, Serangppn Road and Race Course Road, makes up Little India, Singapore. As the name suggests, Little India has a large concentration of the 9.2% of Singaporeans who are of ethnic Indian origin; mainly Tamils from Tamil Nadu. The main attractions and things to do at Little India are Tekka Market, Tekka Wet Market (for fruits and vegetables), Tekka Food Court (authentic South Indian food is served), Mustafa Center (open 24 hours), Little India Arcade, visit quaint shops and street vendors selling Indian wares, such as spices, food, snacks, jewelry, flower garlands, incense, Ayurvedic products, clothes, textile, astrologers, etc. Visit the Sri Veeramakaliamman Temple (Goddess Kali Temple), Sri Srinivasa Perumal Temple, Sri Vadapathira Kaliamman Temple, Abdul Gafoor Mosque, Jalan Mosque, Angullia Mosque, Central Sikh Gurdwara and Sakyamuni Buddha Gaya Temple . To enjoy traditional Indian food, visit, Muthu’s Curry, Khansama Tandoor, Jungle Tandoor (North Indian Tandoori Food), Komala Vilas (Vegetarian), Saravana Bhavan (South Indian restaurant from Chennai), Banana Leaf Apolo (South Indian Food), Delhi restaurant, Mustard (Bengali, Punjabi food), Andhra Curry, Jungle Tandoor, Leaf Restaurant, Kashmir, Jade of India, Sankranti, Raj and Tekka Food Court. “Little India” and “Farrer Park” are the two MRT stations in Little India.
10] Free Admission to Singapore’s Museums and Galleries
Singapore has emerged as a serious center for art and culture. Entry to two of Singapore’s four national museums (National Museum of Singapore and Asian Civilisations Museum) is free for Singapore citizens and residents (foreigner pay an entry fee). Free Singapore Museum and art galleries include NUS Museum, Changi Museum and Prison, Collectors Contemporary, Chinese Heritage Centre, Eurasian Heritage Centre, Ngee Ann Cultural Centre, Connoisseur Art Gallery, Civil Defence Heritage Gallery, Asia Ancient Gallery, The Arts House, Singapore Tyler Print Institute, Galerie Belvedere, Yang Gallery Pte Ltd, Utterly Art, Ode To Art Contemporary, Living Portraits Gallery, Gajah Gallery, Dynasties Antique & Art Gallery, etc. Visit this site for more information on Singapore’s Museums and Art Galleries.
In addition to the above listed free tourist destinations and things to do in Singapore, visitors can enjoy the below free Singapore attractions and activities:
11] Jurong East Swimming Complex and Sengkang Swimming Complex: Entry charges are a nominal $1-2. Both these complexes are like waterparks with slides, indoor and outdoor pools, waves, etc.
12] Sentosa, Singapore: Free Shows, Things To Do and Attractions: Sentosa has a couple of free world class shows; these are “Crane Dance” (Monday to Friday, at Waterfront, Resorts World Sentosa) and Lake of Dreams (FestiveWalk, Resorts World Sentosa). Entry to Sentosa’s three beaches (Siloso, Palawan, Tanjong) is free and visitors can spend an entire day on the beach. Beach volleyball at Siloso beach is free. Animal and Bird Encounter is free at Palawan, Sentosa, and so is Sentosa Nature Discovery. Please visit this page for more information on free activities at Sentosa, Singapore.
13] Temples and Places of Religious Worship in Singapore: Singapore has Mahayana Buddhist temples, Tibetan Buddhist temples, Fujian Buddhist temple, Hokkien temple, Hindu temples, Mosques, Churches (Anglican, Catholic), Synagogues and a Gurdwara. Visit this page for more information on Singapore’s religious places of worship.
14] Free Music Shows and Cultural Festivals in Singapore: There are free cultural events and concerts all throughout the year in Singapore. Popular cultural festivals in Singapore include “Singapore Arts Festival”, “Singapore Drumfest”, “Baybeats” (at Esplanade), “SingFest”, “Singapore Garden Festival” and “Mosaic Music Festival” (more than half the performances are free). The Open Theatre at Esplanade – Theaters By The Bay, regularly hosts free performances. Many of Singapore’s big parks have free Concerts and Performances, throughout the year; these include Fort Canning Park, Pasir Ris Town Park, Raffles Place Park, Sun Plaza Park, Tanjong Pagar Park, Hong Lim Park, West Coast Park, Ang Mo Kio Town Garden West, Dhoby Ghaut Green, Admiralty Park, Woodlands Waterfront Park. Usually on Saturday evenings, there are Free Concerts at Singapore Botanic Garden’s Shaw Foundation Symphony Stage (Palm Valley); visit this page to view calendar of events at Singapore Botanic Garden. Many Singapore bars have live music; patrons do not pay extra for music shows; visit this page for more details on Singapore’s Live Music venues.
15] Free Activities and Things To Do at Changi Airport, Singapore: Many of the entertainment and leisure activities at Changi Airport are free for passengers. These include Children’s Playground (all 3 terminals), Canopy indoor playground for kids (Terminal 1), Entertainment Deck (at Terminal 2, with XBOX, Playstation, Movie Theatre, Music, MTV, Cafeteria), Free Singapore City Tour (2 hour Heritage Tour and City Lights Tour), Singapore’s tallest slide (Terminal 3), Butterfly Garden (Terminal 3), Cactus Garden (Terminal 1), Enchanted Garden (Terminal 2), Orchid Garden and Koi Pond (Terminal 2), Sunflower Garden (Terminal 2), free rest areas, lounge areas, Music Bar Lounge, Shower, Gym, Spa, Swimming Pool (Terminal 1), Interactive Art (Terminal 2 and 3, ), Changi Aviation Gallery (Terminal 3), free Wi-Fi and internet terminals (over 500), Zone X (arcade games at all 3 terminals), etc.
16] Haw Par Villa, Singapore: Also known as Tiger Balm Gardens, this park at Pasir Panjang Road has over 1,000 statues and 150 giant dioramas from Chinese mythology, legends, history and folklore. Entrance to the park is free.
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- Supertree Grove, Gardens By The Bay: Image by Shiny Things. Image taken from Wikimedia Commons. This file is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 Generic license.
- Supertree Grove at night, Gardens By The Bay: Image by William Cho. Image is licensed under the Creative Commons license Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 2.0 Generic (CC BY-NC-SA 2.0). //www.flickr.com/photos/adforce1/
- Merlion, Marina Bay Sands: Image by fad3away. Image taken from Wikimedia Commons. This file is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 Generic license. Source http://www.flickr.com/photos/76425142@N07/12948445504/
- Forest Walk, Southern Ridges, Singapore: Image by The Soon. Image taken from Wikimedia Commons. This file is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Unported license.
- East Coast Park, Singapore: Image by Senkang. Image taken from Wikimedia Commons. The copyright holder of this work allows anyone to use it for any purpose.
- Orchard Road Mall: Image by Choo Yut Shing. Image is licensed under the Creative Commons license Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 2.0 Generic (CC BY-NC-SA 2.0).
- Chinatown: Image by Choo Yut shing. Image taken from Wikimedia Commons. This file is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 2.0 Generic (CC BY-NC-SA 2.0). Source https://www.flickr.com/photos/25802865@N08/11811938906
- Bukit Batok Nature Park Singapore: Image by Hekege. Image taken from Wikimedia Commons. The copyright holder of this work allows anyone to use it for any purpose.
- National Museum: Image by Terence Ong. Image taken from Wikimedia Commons. This file is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Unported license.
- Little India: Image by Senkang. Image taken from Wikimedia Commons. The copyright holder of this work allows anyone to use it for any purpose.