Discover Singapore

As the global travel hub of Southeast Asia, Singapore mixes its colourful past with a high-tech present in an exotically exciting way.

Air New Zealand flies non-stop from Auckland to Singapore every day. From April to October, there are two flights a day. Domestic connections are available from Air New Zealand serviced airports. On flights to Singapore, you have a choice of Economy, Economy Stretch, Premium Economy and Business Premier™. The flight time between Singapore and Auckland is around 11 hours. For the most up-to-date flight schedule, please use the 'book your trip' functionality.

Singapore is the ultimate modern Asian city; a melting pot of people, business, design and ideas. Often called the Lion City, this convenient aviation gateway to the world has a dazzling skyline, which makes it one of the best places in the world to enjoy a rooftop cocktail.

A quick guide to Singapore attractions and sightseeing

Within Singapore's futuristic cityscape there are fascinating glimpses of history. From the colonial character of Raffles Hotel to the many churches, temples and mosques of Pagoda Street, the city presents a fascinating diversity of architectural styles and personal beliefs.

You'll feel the layers of generations in Chinatown too, where you can chow down on bowls of spicy laksa alongside the locals and taste your way around traditional street markets. Right next door is Little India with its famous Sri Veeramakaliamman Temple. And there's Kampong Gelam, a traditional neighbourhood that has evolved into a mecca for artistic creativity and a melting pot of diverse cultures.

A natural meeting point of cultures, beliefs and ambitions, Singapore is the stopover stay that always delivers the goods. Make sure you allow enough time to embrace its multi-faceted personality.

Sightseeing and transport

Most of Singapore's popular attractions are just a short walk away from an MRT station, so trains are a great way to get around. To use the MRT, get a Singapore Tourist Pass (STP), which allows unlimited travel for one, two or three days. The pass can be bought at the TransitLink Ticket Office in Terminal 2 at the airport. You can also buy a pass from TransitLink offices at many of the MRT stations, including Bayfront, Bugis, Chinatown, City Hall, Orchard and Raffles Place.

One of the best ways to see Singapore is on a hop-on hop-off bus tour. These tours cover major attractions, such as Marina Bay Sands, Gardens by the Bay, Chinatown, Little India and Sentosa Island. HOHO tours often include complimentary extras, like river cruises or walking tours.

For a guided experience, organised sightseeing tours cover specific themes, including architecture, heritage, food and culture. Seeing Singapore with a local will provide deeper insight into the city's history and culture.

Best places to eat in Singapore

Singapore is a culinary paradise that draws on its multicultural history to make every meal an adventure. From street-food centres to high-end restaurants, the city is brimming with exceptional dining opportunities. Here are a few of the highlights:

  • Maxwell Food Centre: Located in Chinatown, this must-visit hawker centre is as local as you can get. Try the famous Tian Tian Hainanese chicken rice - tender poached chicken served with fragrant rice and flavourful sauces.
  • Little India for something spicy: Roam the vibrant streets of Little India, where delicious smells will lure you in. Visit Banana Leaf Apolo for their signature fish head curry, a spicy and aromatic dish served on a banana leaf.
  • Liao Fan Hawker Chan for Michelin star street food: This humble stall in Chinatown can claim the world's first Michelin-starred hawker meal. Their specialty is the soy sauce chicken rice - a plate of succulent chicken drizzled with secret recipe sauce.
  • Odette in the National Gallery: For a night of fine dining, head to Odette in the National Gallery Singapore. This Michelin-starred restaurant offers modern French cuisine in a picture-perfect setting.
  • Burnt Ends for barbecue: Known for its succulent barbecue dishes, Burnt Ends is a popular spot for meat lovers. Try their signature pulled pork burger or the tender smoked short ribs.

Discover Singapore's culture and attractions

While Singapore is only a third the size of Stewart Island, it makes the most of every square kilometre. It has outrageously wonderful buildings, highly creative man-made attractions and beautifully curated green spaces.

One of the first stand-outs is Gardens by the Bay, a futuristic public park that blends nature and tech. During the day you can wander around two large climate-controlled conservatories. At night you'll be amazed by the illuminated 'supertrees'.

Chinatown and Little India are vibrant neighbourhoods that are true to their names. Their temples, shops and eateries deliver a world travel experience without leaving Singapore.

For a day of non-stop fun, head for the theme park neighbourhood of Sentosa Island. Choices include Universal Studios Singapore, S.E.A. Aquarium, and Adventure Cove Waterpark.

When it's time for a refreshing dose of green serenity, call into Singapore Botanic Gardens, a UNESCO World Heritage site in the heart of the city. A special attraction here is the National Orchid Garden.

To discover the past, visit the National Museum of Singapore to learn about Singapore's history, culture and art through engaging exhibitions and interactive displays. Another history-based activity is Haw Par Villa, a cultural theme park built in 1937. The villa's main drawcard is Hell's Museum, which looks at the afterlife across different cultures and civilisations.

Before you leave Singapore, allow enough time to discover Jewel at Changi Airport. Within its huge glass and steel dome, it houses the world's tallest indoor waterfall - the Rain Vortex - surrounded by lush gardens. It's an unforgettable outdoor world that's entirely indoors. The best way to see Jewel is to check in your luggage, then explore before you go through security.

Keep exploring Singapore

Essential information

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Best time to go

Apart from an increase in rainfall from November to January, Singapore's climate is fairly consistent. Expect plenty of rain and sunshine, high humidity and daytime temperatures of around 30 °C.

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How much will it cost?

Hotel prices in Singapore are similar to Tokyo, and a little more expensive than Hong Kong and Shanghai. Food halls and hawker centres are the cheapest way to eat – a meal will cost between NZD$5 and $10. Yum cha at a dim sum restaurant is around NZD$25 a head. Dinner at one of Singapore's French restaurants will cost around NZD$60+ per person (without wine). To get around on the metro, a transport card costs about NZD$12 for one day, NZD$19 for two days and NZD$24 for three days.

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Chinatown image courtesy of Afur Wong.