Temples and skyscrapers, consumers and more consumption and more consumers and designer labels. Singapore has managed to become an economic powerhouse and one step into the city will tell you why - people are coming, going, buying, doing, planning - it is a busy place and it sure has had to be to be one of only three city states in the whole of the world.
It sits on the southern end of the Malay Peninsula. Separated from the rest of the peninsula by the Strait of Johor, Singapore was founded as a British trading post in the early nineteenth century.
Singapore became independent from the British in 1963 and eventually become separate from the rest of Malaysia in 1965. Today it is home to a vast culture that has been influenced by many parts of the world. In fact, about two million of the nearly five million people living in Singapore today are from other countries.
Also, while Buddhism is practiced by about a third of all people in Singapore, the Christian, Muslim and Taoist faiths have increased in popularity over the years. Singapore also has four official languages in English, Mandarin, Malay and Tamil. English and Mandarin are the most commonly used languages here.
Singapore is divided into five regions with the Central Region in the middle of the country being the most prominent of them all. This area is home to the major downtown region of Singapore. Travelers can visit hopping Sentosa Island, a resort island in the region that is home to the Maritime Experiential Museum and Universal Studios Singapore.
To get a taste of the Chinese side of Singapore a visit to Ann Siang Hill is in order, it is a section filled with many Chinese shops and restaurants as well as architecture that sings of the motherland. Folks can also head to the West Region to see some of the most beautiful forests and natural sights in all of Asia or over to the North Region, a place home to the Singapore Zoo and Mandai Orchid Garden. The Toa Payoh shopping station is especially popular in this space.
Singapore has a tropical rainforest climate without the distinct four seasons experienced by Western countries. The highs in the country are consistently close to the mid 30s while the lows are in the mid 20s. It can get downright humid when the rains begin and a typical month will likely have as many wet days as it will have dry.
Airlines serving the route include Malaysia Airlines, Qantas Airways, China Eastern Airlines, China Southern Airlines, Jetstar Asia, Singapore Airlines, Virgin Australia, Emirates, Philippine Airlines, Korean Air and Cathay Pacific.
Australia to Singapore
Popular stopovers include Kuala Lumpur, Shanghai, Guangzhou, Manila, Singapore and Hong Kong.
More information at the Singapore Holidays guide.