Why a basic itinerary of gay Singapore? Well, every blogger does ‘the ultimate itinerary’ but guess what? We are all very different and like different things. So that’s why I’m putting together my basic itinerary. Like every destination there is the must do’s of every city and I have made sure there included too.
Anyone who has travelled through Asia and then ended up in Singapore will know how different it is. It’s like being transported to a major city in the western world and is very different from other Southeast Asian cities like Bangkok, Hanoi and Phnom Penh.
Singapore is a very and I mean very clean city, you don’t see rubbish on the streets. There are signs around the city fining you for everything, so maybe this fining system helps keep the city clean, tidy and beautiful. You can’t even buy chewing gum in the city. Singapore is famous for its outlawing of the minty chew.
You need to keep in mind it’s not going to be cheap and to get the best deals it’s better to book as far in advance as you can. During my stay, we sampled two different types of accommodation one budget in the form of a space pod for one night. The other a mid-range hotel for two nights.
Oh My Pods: –
This hotel was a budget ‘space pod’ experience. You got given a phone number to text, Whatsapp or ring as well as a code to the entry doors. A member of staff would appear to take your money/card payment. You then get allocated your pod. If you have not stayed in a pod before it is just like a hostel, but with big double ‘space pod’ bunk bed things instead of beds. The pods had power supplies and bedding but overall pretty basic. For the one night, I paid SD$56 (£32) Cheap for Singapore standards for accommodation. As I said, it’s like a hostel but you get a thin pod to shut the other tourists out and your private space.
Hotel Mi: –
More expense that the pod, but still one of the cheaper midrange hotels in Singapore was the Hotel Mi. SD$293 (£171) for two night, which is expensive for a hotel, and a budget one at that, but it was one of the cheaper options I found for a weekend stay. The hotel was modern and had a pool, which was nice to relax in the evenings after a day exploring the city. The rooms were small and it had a built-in desk and a double bed. A small private modern bathroom was attached. By the side of the rooms, you could tell it was a budget hotel but it had so many modern features. The best in-room feature was the ‘Handy’. The Handy was a device with the internet that can be taken out of your hotel room and around Singapore. It could act as a ‘hotspot for your phone, information guide and much, much more. See my post about ‘The Handy’ for more information. Overall despite the price being a little high, I loved this hotel!
Singapore Day One
13:00ish: – Arriving into Singapore Changi Airport from a short 2-hour flight from Bangkok with Australian airline Jetstar. Whilst on the plane you’re asked to fill out immigration and custom cards, and they want you to know from the start, that their laws will be respected. A ‘Death for drug traffickers under Singapore Law’ is in bold red letters on the back of the immigration card! So don’t be silly and risk bringing drugs! After leaving the plane and joining the immigration lines in the hall, it seemed to take forever to get through, it took us a good 2 hours and there were only 20-25 people in front of our counter. There was a fast track line for Malaysian and Singapore citizens.
15:00: – There are many ways to get from the airport to Singapore. The cheapest is the airport bus, I just used Google Maps and it plans the route for you. Buses came like every 5-10 minutes and all easy to find. The buses, however, do not give change or take debit or credit card which is not very convenient and annoying, because normally when you land after an international flight to a new country you are either not going to have smaller notes or only your cards. I just went to the airport shop and brought a drink to break a large note up.
15:45: – Arrived at our first hotel (see short hotel reviews above), checked in and chilled out. Using Wi-Fi at the space pods to research things to do.
16:30: – When I arrive in any new city I love to walk around for a few hours, get lost and do some exploring. Do the same, get lost around the main tourist areas, you never know you mind find something really cool to do. I ended up in China Town, there is a China town in every city in the world I think, but this one had some cool buildings and the food smelt amazing!
18:30: – With food on the mind, it was time for some food, just like accommodation food and alcoholic drinks in Singapore are expensive. I always use TripAdvisor to give me a few selections of restaurants. I ended up going to one of the cheap eat restaurants called Zam Zam, I must admit the food was amazing and for a really good price for being in such an expensive city. If you’re visiting the area I would highly recommend this place. It’s nothing special on the outside but the Indian/ Asian food was delicious! Chicken that melted in your mouth. Only small downsides are your eating on the pavement and they do try to rush you with your order, it didn’t bother me, but it’s all very fast-paced.
19:30: – More exploring and this time on the hunt for some bars. It was a Friday night after all, and the night before my birthday, I wanted a few drinks!! We went to check out one of the gay bars, a bar called Tantric. Trouble is it only opened at 8 pm so decided to find a quiet bar up the road and return once they had finished setting up. We got stopped on the way by a hotel/bar that had a live singer and offered a two for one promotion on beers. BE WARNED, drinking is VERY expensive in Singapore, one beer alone in this bar was SB$14.99 (£8.70), and the same prices for wine! The live singer was fantastic though, we just had to remember to drink very slowly!
21:00: – We headed back towards Tantric, and I’m very glad we did, it’s like 3 gay bars all rolled into one complex. Very friendly people from all around the world, and the cocktails, some of the best I have tasted. Prices ranged from SD$14 – SD$18 (£8-£10). It was my birthday so with the help of my friend I spent wayyyy too much on alcohol. I tried to get someone to buy me a twin bottle of Veuve Champaign but at a regular price of SD$300 (£173), I can see why I didn’t get many, well come to mention it any offers! I did get a free birthday shot and the bar singing happy birthday to me! Pricey night but the fantastic staff and a really friendly venue made it worth it.
Sometime after 2 am:- Back to the pod to get sleep, ready for a busy day sightseeing the next day.
Singapore Day 2
11:00: – Checkout time for our Pod and time to make our way to our next hotel. Hotel Mi. We had a number of options on getting there, bus, subway, but I decided to walk, it was only a 25-minute walk and the sun was beaming down. A little hungover from the birthday night antics.
12:00: – Check-in for the hotel wasn’t till 14:00 but our room was ready and they let us check early which was nice. (see short hotel reviews above). After all checked in, chilled out by the swimming pool, which was nice and quiet for a few hours.
14:00: – Took a short walk down the road from the hotel to a place called ‘25degrees burger’ a small modern restaurant, that as you can probably guess does a range of burgers and side dishes. They also had happy hour deals on beers. (we found that a lot of the time during the day bars had these happy hours, not so much at night.)
15:30: – Got the subway to go and explore the Gardens by the Bay. THIS IS A MUST!! There so much to do down here and we spent hours looking around. The Sand Sky Park on top of the boat-shaped hotel takes you to an observation deck with amazing views of Singapore. The Shoppes at Marina Bay Sands is a mega shopping centre with high-end fashion to international high street stores and dining experiences. Just walking around the mall alone takes time.
17:30: – Walk around the Gardens by the Bay, this is magical to see when its daylight and will last many hours until it gets dark. So many attractions, it most definitely a must-see visitor attraction. A free light show that lasts 30-45 minutes daily by the Bay’s Supertree Grove, The light show will not disappoint, with its lights and music. My advice go, get lost and enjoy the area, get to the light show about 30 minutes before it starts to get a seat on the floor.
21:00: – Head back to the hotel, time for an earlier night. (Via McDonald’s, don’t judge, I normally do eat like a local, but it was my birthday and food is silly expensive in Singapore!)
Singapore Day 3
08:00: – Singapore has its own Universal Studios!!! YAY!! I love a good theme park and if you have attended the one in Orlando in Florida, you’ll know how much of a good day it can be. Whilst still a fun day out this park is a lot smaller than its American brother. Saying that I had a magical day out, the ride lines were not too busy or long and I got to go on everything. Somethings a few times over. I brought my tickets in advance before leaving the UK, so got a free gift and an SD$5 discount each on our food inside the park. Park ticket was SD$79 (£46). They have a range of deals that are always changing so make sure you shop around before you buy.
Universal Singapore has 7 fascinating zones. Hollywood, Madagascar, Far Far Away, The Lost World, Ancient Egypt, Sci-Fi City and New York. With rides and shows across the park and character appearance throughout the day. It really was a day to remember and a must-visit if visiting Singapore.
20:00:- Back to our hotel to get packed up. Chilled time by the pool and a few quiet drinks at a small bar next to the hotel. Early night as we had to make our way to Singapore cruise terminal the next day for a cruise!!
Singapore Day 4
11:00: – Check out of our hotel.
Anything Else I Could Have Done?
As mentioned before Singapore is very expensive, it is not in the ‘budget range’ like most other South-eastern cities in Asia. There are loads more to do and although not mentioned in this itinerary we had an extra day after disembarking from our cruise and continued to do more sightseeing. You could say because we moved hotel we also lost half a day, which is true. Some other popular attractions to do include:-
The main thing is you get out and do what you want to do. It all depends on how long you are there for and how much money your willing to spend. Whilst transport is cheap, accommodation, food and alcoholic drinks are above most western city prices. Just make sure you see the Gardens by the Bay, I can’t recommend it enough.
With how modern and advanced Singapore is for Asian standards, it does still surprise me how dated and backwards their LGBT+ laws are. Sadly it is still illegal and punishable by up to 2 years in prison for men to have oral or anal sex, including in the privacy of their own home or rental accommodation (hotels, etc). However, in 2007 oral and anal sex was made legal for both heterosexuals and lesbians. Same-sex relationships are not recognized by law in Singapore and there and no anti-discrimination laws in place to protect LGBT+ people.
Saying that, although these laws are disappointing during my visit to Singapore, I must say I felt very safe and hardly remembered that it was illegal to be gay and found the people I interacted with to be friendly and polite. Just remember there are no laws protecting homosexuals from any discrimination so any public displays of affection should be avoided.
The gay bars were really fun, expensive, but fun and I did not unsafe at all. Singapore is a really safe and tidy city. Just remember again there are no laws protecting LGBT+ people, so please keep safe, its a fabulous city to explore and I love it!
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