Become a Local Tourist During the Holidays
Our recommendation of local attractions that will make you feel like you are on a vacation.
With the year-end festive season fast approaching, this is an ideal time to treat yourself to a well-deserved break from what has been a challenging 2020 for most of us. In order to help local businesses and encourage Singaporeans to further explore our local culture and heritage, our government is providing S$320 million on SingapoRediscovers vouchers to Singaporeans to help boost domestic tourism spending amid the COVID-19 slump.
The vouchers are digital credits that can be used for hotel staycations, as well as local tours and attractions. Every Singaporean aged 18 and above will receive S$100 worth of vouchers, which will be made available from December 2020 through June 2021 to coincide with the school holidays.
For those who miss travelling abroad, here are our top picks of some of the attractions and unique experiences to indulge with your loved ones.
Sunset dinner cruise on a Tall Ship
Having a romantic dinner while cruising on The Royal Albatross, a luxurious tall ship with 22 massive sails, will captivate your heart and mind without the need to travel overseas. Ideal for couples and even families, the Royal Albatross Dinner Cruise is a 2.5 hours cruise with a three-course dinner and free flow of drinks. While enjoying the tranquillity of Singapore’s calm harbour water, you can be sure that the pictures of the spectacular sunset will be Instagram-worthy. The cruise runs in the evenings from Fridays to Sundays. More details of the SingapoRediscovers promotion for The Royal Albatross can be found here.
Virtual reality adventures
Travelling abroad to seek out new adventures may not be on the cards right now, but fret not, for there is a digital alternative that can help to fulfil your desire for an adrenaline rush. You can now create unforgettable memories by going jungle rafting or taking down zombies at Sentosa’s Headrock VR, Singapore’s only virtual reality (VR) theme park with a total of 11 attractions made up of exciting rides and fun interactive games. One highlight is a fully immersive horror room that will satisfy the avid thrill seekers without the need to venture too far.
A SingapoRediscover promotion includes rides at HeadRock VR, free bicycle rental for you to pedal through the lush greenery of Sentosa as well as meal vouchers. The venue is closed on Wednesdays and children must be 110cm and above to play.
Go island hopping
Taking an exploratory trip to one of Singapore’s many beautiful offshore islands is a good way to get your beach holiday without leaving the country. Hop around popular destinations such as Kusu, St. John’s, Lazarus and Sisters’ Islands, where you can plan a lavish picnic or just take a breather from the hustle and bustle of the city. Check out the schedules to the islands at Island Cruise and Marina South Ferries.
Another popular option is the rustic Coney Island Park northeast of the mainland, where you will find plenty of white sandy beaches, as well as nature trails that stretch across mangroves, coastal forests, grasslands and casuarina woodlands. The park is home to a wide variety of fauna and flora, some of which are endangered species. You can rent bicycles to explore the park better by riding through the island along the 2.5 km Coney Island Park Connector, where you can enjoy the beautiful promenade view of the Serangoon Reservoir.
More information on the Park and how to get there can be found here.
Cruise to nowhere
With the official green light given to “cruises to nowhere” out of Singapore, those suffering from wanderlust can finally get to satisfy their need for a holiday. The first of such cruises, from Genting’s Dream Cruises, set sail earlier this month with around 1,400 passengers onboard. The ship’s voyage included the Straits of Malacca and part of the South China Sea.
Genting, along with Royal Caribbean, will be running these cruises from November to December, but you will have to grab the spots quickly before they sell out. The cruises will sail at only half capacity to comply with safe distancing measures, and passengers will have to undergo a health screening and COVID-19 rapid test before boarding the vessel.
Learn about local neighbourhoods
If you just want a short break and are contented to stay on the island, you can consider a tour of interesting neighbourhoods across Singapore. The Joo Chiat & The Peranakans day tour, for instance, will let you experience the sights and sounds of this historic area, and learn more about the rich culture of the Peranakans. All tours are led by an expert guide, and you can combine the tour with a staycation bundle that comes with two nights’ accommodation.
You can discover more day tour itineraries for a range of different neighbourhoods here.