We are Michael and Pinky, a Bangkok-based couple who loves to travel, explore, and go on adventures all over the world. We are always looking for the greatest experiences for adventurers on a budget.

Singapore: 9 Free Things to do

Singapore: 9 Free Things to do

Merlion and hotel at Marina Bay, Singapore

Singapore, the tiny little city-state sitting at the southern tip of the Malaysian Peninsula, is not a cheap city! Compared to its neighboring countries Malaysia, Thailand, and Indonesia, the cost of living, and therefore your traveling expenses in Singapore, are much higher.

That's not to say you have to spend a fortune to visit this cool and fun country! There are plenty of free things to do around Singapore.

1. Buddha Tooth Temple

One of the coolest sites in the city is the Buddha Tooth Relic Temple and Museum.

If you are interested in Buddhism, or are interested in culture and art, don't miss this big, beautiful red temple complex located in Chinatown.

red Buddha tooth temple in Singapore

This multi-story temple contains several important Buddhist relics and lots of beautiful art. In the basement, a charitable group serves FREE daily vegetarian meals to any visitor, although donations are accepted and appreciated.

red and gold shrines inside Buddha tooth temple, singapore

Chinatown MRT

2. Haw Par Villa

Originally called "Tiger Balm Garden", Haw Par Villa is probably one of the weirdest attractions in Singapore. It's... odd.

Haw Par Villa is a sort of theme park, I suppose, but there aren't any rides. There's just a bunch of bizarre and kind of spooky old statues depicting scenes from Chinese mythology.

statue at haw par villa

Originally meant to teach Chinese values, the park depicts scenes from classic Buddhist and Confucian works, as well as famous Chinese literature. The most famous attraction is the "Ten Courts of Hell", a spooky cave-like feature depicting the Confucian afterlife theology of punishment and rebirth.

strange depictions of Chinese mythology, Singapore

It's weird for sure, but it's free and definitely worth spending a few hours exploring.

Haw Par Villa MRT

3. Watch the Nightly Light Shows

Singapore lights up with flashing lights and lasers during its three nightly light shows! You can catch them all in one night with a little planning:

Start out at MRT Harbourfront for the 8:00pm Crane Dance Show at Sentosa Resort.

Next, hurry to the Gardens By The Bay for the 8:45 Garden Rhapsody, where the big metallic trees and fountains light up in crazy colors.

light show in Singapore

Finally, head to Marina Bay (MRT Marina Bay) to watch the Wonder Full Light Show over the world-famous Marina Bay Sands Hotel at 9:30pm. This is the biggest and most impressive of the light shows, and if you can only make one, don't miss spending a night out at Marina Bay.

marina bay sands light show singapore

MRT Bayfront, MRT Harbourfront

4. Gardens by the Bay

After seeing the Garden Rhapsody, you might want to see the beautiful Gardens by the Bay in the daylight.

singapore gardens by the bay

While going into the big butterfly garden or the giant indoor botanical gardens does cost money, visiting the beautiful outdoor gardens are free. If you have some money to spend however, admission to the indoor gardens are completely worth the price.

singapore gardens by the bay

MRT Bayfront

5. Changi Prison Museum

If you are interested in history, you won't want to miss the well-preserved and moving Changi Prison Museum. During the Fall of Singapore in the Second World War, 50,000 Allied soldiers, mostly British and Australian, were captured by the Imperial Japanese Army and held at Changi.

Today, it's a museum. It's worth it to check out an audio guide, and listen to the surviving POW's telling the stories of the prison in their own voices.

small wooden chapel at Changi POW Prison Museum in Singapore

Bus to Changi, Eastern Singapore

6. Visit the Beach at Sentosa Island

Just off of Singapore lies Sentosa, a small resort island dedicated to relaxation, entertainment, and fun. Here, you'll find lots of cool museums, Universal Studios amusement park, and some beautiful sandy beaches that you can visit for free.

sunny beach on Sentosa Island, Singapore

It's not actually free to get to Sentosa Island, but walking on foot across the short bridge to the island costs only S$1. You can spend a day at the tropical sandy beaches with a cold drink and beautiful views.

Siloso beach, Sentosa Island, Singapore

7. See the Art along Haji Lane

Do you like street art? Singapore has a reputation as a straight-laced and serious city, but there are plenty of places in the city that buck this trend. Singapore is a vibrant, fun, and cool place to be, you just need to know where to look.

street art in Singapore

Haji Lane is a trendy road in the old Muslim district, Kampang Glam. Now popular with students, the area boasts dozens of independent shops and cafes.

brightly colored street art in Singapore

Of course, the biggest draw is the cool street art that covers the walls of the shops along the lane.

Bugis MRT

8. Explore Chinatown

One of the city's most atmospheric and interesting neighborhoods is "Niu Che Shui", Chinatown.

Besides being full of amazing food on "Food Street", Chinatown has a number of beautiful and fascinating temples and charming shop houses to explore.

old chinese temple in Singapore

You can spend hours just wandering around these streets, stopping in at temples, and taking in all the sights and sounds of the neighborhood. It's worth spending a few hours exploring.

colorful shop houses in Singapore's Chinatown

MRT Chinatown

9. Go Hunting for Merlions

The "Merlion" - half fish, half lion, is the tongue-in-cheek, yet official symbol of Singapore. There are three Merlion statues throughout the city. Can you find them all?

symbol of singapore at Marina Bay
the singapore merlion
Collecting Stamps in a Thai National Park Passport

Collecting Stamps in a Thai National Park Passport

Comic #26 - Texas

Comic #26 - Texas