How to do Singapore in 3 Days

Singapore: voted the #1 most expensive place to live in the world, the world’s best airport and soon to be the worlds first “Smart” country when it comes to cyber & data technology.  It’s surely enough to peak one’s curiosity to see what else this country has to offer. A business, government and trade epicenter, much is centered around this as you move through the clean and organized streets. With a country size of 278 miles – you can easily cover quite a bit in just a few days. One of the best times to visit is on the weekends as there is little traffic on both the roadways and public transportation. Speaking of, the public transit system is the way to go as it is quite efficient, inexpensive, safe and clean. You can even take the bus from the airport to a destination an hour away for less than $3. When planning your trip to Singapore you should highly consider visiting the below recommendations!

#1 Marina Bay Sands

Probably the BEST part about Singapore. By far. It includes the world’s longest infinity pool which sits on top of a 153 foot story hotel (Marina Bay Sands Hotel). You don’t have to stay at the hotel to get to the top and view the pool. The best way to check it out is to pay for a restaurant ticket which will get you to the very top of the hotel. Order a drink (Singapore Sling – is my recommendation….hey why not?) from the bar and enjoy the view! (By the way, when you order a drink, make sure you show them your ticket so that your drink is discounted) When you’re up top, you can enjoy 360 views of the harbor, downtown Singapore, Marina Bay Sands garden, and more! It’s a fantastic view that is worth the effort.

Another part of Marina Bay that is an absolute must see are the SuperTrees. These larger than life trees live up to their name. The best time to check them out is at night time when they are lit up with various colors. After you finish walking through the extensive SuperTree Groves, head on over to the harbor and watch the nightly holographic light and water show. It includes some pretty cool animated scenes synced to a score of symphonic music selections.

Marina Bay includes so many other things that you can check out including a shopping mall, casino, botanical garden, skytower and art & science museum.

#2 Singapore Art & Science Museum 

Which leads to the next pit stop you should try and make room for during your time in Singapore. The lotus flower statue alone in front of the museum is reason enough to visit this educational site. With rotating exhibits, you could catch a number of opportunities to both interact and/or admire. There are exhibits for all ages and art interests. A bit on the pricey side for experiencing all three exhibits, the value is better than the a la cart option of just choosing one or two.

#3 Botanic Gardens

Last but not least, mosey on over to the world renown Singapore Botanic Garden. It’s been selected as a UNESCO site which lives up to the acclaim. It’s massive garden is spread out of quite a few acres of land- so be prepared to do a lot of walking! Make sure you bring water too as it can get quite hot in Singapore during midday. So try and visit this exhibit either very early in the morning or early evening. The gardens offer several unique areas including an herbal, healing, orchid and fragrance garden. It’s a relaxing and beautiful experience, but make sure you keep watch while walking around as you may encounter a kimono dragon hanging out in the shade or crossing the pathway.

Of course there are many other things to do in Singapore such as the zoo, shopping, and checking out all some of the eateries that serve chili crab….but I found these aforementioned places to be in the top places especially if you don’t have many days to explore the country for the first time.

How to do Auckland in 3 Days

So far Auckland tops the cake as one of the most enjoyable and might I add peaceful places I have ever visited. I almost don’t want to spread the word about this hidden gem that remains far removed from the rest of the world’s shenanigans. But I would be remiss if I didn’t share some cool tips for those who are considering taking the journey down under. What’s great about Auckland is that if you don’t have a lot of time, you can still get around quite easily and experience much of the culture and what the city has to offer. Here are the top things you should consider doing while in Auckland:

#1. Waiheke Island

This place is a beaut! It’s about a 30 minute ferry ride off the downtown port. The price is around 30 USD for a round trip ticket and its completely worth it. The ride to the island is nothing short of picturesque so bring your camera! Once you arrive, you can either get a daily bus pass, taxi or take a private shuttle. Depending on where you are going in the island, you may have to opt for the taxi or private shuttle as the bus does not go everywhere. I was fortunatate enough to have a friendly shuttle bus driver pick me up and charge me a discounted rate to drop me at this winery where I had lunch reservations. On the way there he gave me the history of the island and explained to me that there are about 8,000 locals who live there year round and are self-sustainable. They have their own water towers and everything! It was a fascinating lesson as we drove by some llamas grazing on the side of the road. The island is known for its wineries and relaxing activities such as archery, shopping, and segal watching at the beach. It’s a great day trip if you want to take your time eating lunch and walking around the island. You can certainly do it in less than a day, but in Auckland…what’s the rush?

#2 Mount Eden & One Tree Hill

One of the best things I love about Auckland is there “oneness” with nature. They allow locals and visitors a chance to get up close and personal with the sheep, geese, volcanoes, trees, etc. I love how they don’t commercialize their nature offerings with ticketing or entrance fees. You simply drive to the site, park your car and walk up the hill to touch and feel the vibrations of these historic sites.

Mount Eden is a dormant volcano that once erupted over 500 years ago and is now covered in grass but you can still see the bowl-shaped imprint of where the action took place. At the top, are great views of the sky tower, downtown Auckland, and surrounding bodies of water/islands.

One tree hill is a place to get up close and personal with grazing sheep while enjoying a relaxing picnic on the lush grass. Make sure you read up on the history of this landmark as it contains a pretty cool story that I’ll leave you to discover.

#3 Art/History Museums -Maori performance + Gardens

Lastly, take time to visit the Auckland art museum and cultural center along with it’s adjacent botanical garden. As you walk or drive into the courtyard take some time to browse the unique mix of landscaping on the surrounding grounds.

I would start with the museum first and pay for the private Maori cultural performance. It’s a great look into the cultural rituals of New Zealands’ native people. The even do the famous Hakka as also seen during warm-ups by NZ Blacks Rugby team. The museum is quite thorough and a true value. The artifacts are well preserved with a variety of exhibitions for all ages. Probably one of the best museums I have ever been to. A true “kiwi” lesson!

After visiting the museum, head on over to the botanical garden down the hill and enjoy the beautiful orchid greenhouse.  It’s a great way to wind down from all the walking and reading of the museum, there’s even a cafe close by if you want to grab a coffee and sit on the bench near the solarium fountain.

Just a few bus stops down the road is the art museum with a really cool exhibit at the very top level that features a short (voice-less) film reinacting an indigenous ritual.

There are many other things to do in Auckland which include visiting the SkyTower, eating fish and chips by the port (which are amazing btw), or taking a stroll at a few of the local beaches. At the end of the day, whatever you do it really doesn’t matter, because hey you’re in Auckland, New Zealand!