40 Fantabulastic And Free Things To Do In Singapore
 
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40 Fantabulastic And Free Things To Do In Singapore

Kenneth Fong
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Think that Singapore is boring and expensive?

Well…

Singapore Got Free Things To Do?

You just gotta know where to look.

Whether you’re a bored local with a long weekend (or any weekend for the matter) coming up, or it’s your first time visiting Singapore, here’s a list of free things to do in Singapore that should help you rediscover or explore this island we call home.


TL;DR: Free Things To Do In Singapore

UFO with Green Alien

Click to be teleported!


Health Events And Activities

The government is all about encouraging Singaporeans to lead an active and healthy lifestyle. And that means that there’re plenty of (free) activities to look forward to if you’d like to keep fit.

1. Group Workouts In The Heartlands

Healthy Living At Health Promoting Malls
Source: Health Promotion Board

The Health Promotion Board (HPB) has weekly initiatives where anyone can join instructor-led group workouts like:

  • Body Combat
  • HIIT
  • Piloxing
  • Yoga

and many more.

These workouts happen throughout the day (morning and evenings mostly, both during weekdays and weekends) and are held at heartland malls, parks, studios and gyms all over the island.

Check which Health Events are on through Health Hub’s event calendar here.

2. Do Yoga With Yoga Nikam

Nikam Guruji Yoga Practice At Junction 8
Source: Nikam Guruji Yoga Kutir

Yoga Nikam is a group of volunteers who teach Hatha Yoga for free. The classes are focused on imparting the basic skill you would need to practise yoga on your own, so you know that it’s legit.

Registration is on-the-spot and you need to be there at least an hour in advance to secure your place in class. The classes are usually held in their centres which can be found all over Singapore.

Have a look at the calendar here.


Galleries And Museums

If you want a place where there’s free air-con AND where you can learn something at the same time, there are plenty of galleries and museums which you can visit for free if you’re a Singapore citizen or Permanent Resident.

And if you’re a tourist who’s just visiting, all you have to do is pay a nominal fee – which goes towards conservation and maintenance of the exhibits – in order to enter.

Not exactly free lah for foreigners… but close.

3. Air Force Museum

RSAF Air Force Museum
Source: Republic of Singapore Air Force

This one’s pretty straightforward. If you’re a military nut and love aviation history, then this museum filled with decommissioned aircraft from the annals of the Republic of Singapore Air Force’s history should be right up your alley.

Address: 400 Airport Road, Paya Lebar Airbase, 534234

Nearest MRT: Eunos (EW7)

4. Asian Civilisations Museum

Asian Civilisations Museum
Source: The Straits Times

The Asian Civilisations Museum explores the rich artistic heritage of Asia, and pays particular attention to the ancestral cultures of Singaporeans.

The museum is free for Singaporeans and PRs, so bring along your NRIC for verification.

Address: 1 Empress Place, 179555

Nearest MRT: City Hall (EW13/NS25)

5. Changi Chapel And Museum

Changi Museum
Source: Visit Singapore

Dedicated to those who lived and died in the Changi area of Singapore during World War II. The museum is an educational institution which documents significant events of the Japanese Occupation while the chapel functions as a place of closure for the many families of Prisoners-of-War (POWs).

Note: both the museum and chapel are currently undergoing renovation and will only re-open in late 2020.

Address: 1000 Upper Changi Road North, 507707

Nearest MRT: Tanah Merah (EW4)

6. Civil Defence Heritage Gallery

Civil Defence Heritage Gallery Statues
Source: First Stop Singapore

The Civil Defence Heritage Gallery is housed in the Central Fire Station – the oldest existing fire station in Singapore – and showcases the history of firefighting as well as the developments of civil defence in Singapore from the 19th century till today.

Audio guides are available for walk-in visitors, while a one-hour guided gallery tour is only available to guests who make an appointment prior to visiting.

Address: 62 Hill Street, 179367

Nearest MRT: City Hall (EW13/NS25)

7. Indian Heritage Centre

Indian Heritage Building
Source: Indian Heritage Building

Located just a couple of steps from Tekka Market in Little India, the Indian Heritage Centre traces the history of the Indian and South Asian communities in the Southeast Asian region.

Be on the lookout for special exhibits and galleries during the month of Deepavali.

Free admission for all Citizens and Permanent Residents.

Address: 5 Campbell Lane, 209924

Nearest MRT: Jalan Besar (DT22)

8. Katong Antique House

Katong Antique House
Source: TimeOut

Part shop and part museum, the Katong Antique House is the perfect place to experience life in a Peranakan family home.

The private gallery offers tours – be sure to make an appointment (6345 8544) before visiting – to curious members of the public who would like to learn more about the unique cultural practices of the Peranakan Chinese.

FYI: located not too far away from here, are the Pastel Shophouses at Koon Seng Road

Address: 208 East Coast Road, 428907

Nearest MRT: Eunos (EW7)

9. Malay Heritage Centre

Malay Heritage Centre
Source: Visit Singapore

Istana Kampong Gelam (Malay for ‘Gelam Village Palace’) was once the residence to the Sultanate of Singapore over 170 years ago. Today, it is home to the Malay Heritage Centre and bears testimony to Singapore’s historical links to the Malay world.

The centre has exhibits, programmes and activities, for visitors to learn more about the Malay community in Singapore – past, present, and future.

Free admission for all Citizens and Permanent Residents.

Address: 85 Sultan Gate, 198501

Nearest MRT: Bugis (DT14)

10. National Museum Of Singapore

National Museum Of Singapore At Night.jpg
Source: Visit Singapore

The National Museum of Singapore is the nation’s oldest museum. This 19th-century architectural landmark hosts innovative activities and events all year round so check often to find out what’s new.

Entry is free for Singapore Citizens and Permanent Residents so remember to bring along your NRIC!

Address: 93 Stamford Road, 178897

Nearest MRT: Bencoolen (DT21)

11. Republic of Singapore Navy Museum

Guns Outside Republic Of Singapore Navy Museum
Source: Tripadvisor

If you love the Air Force Museum then you’ll probably love this museum too.

Get up close and personal with various weaponry and components taken directly from decommissioned warships in the Republic of Singapore Navy’s fleet.

Guided tours are only available for groups of 10 visitors and above. And if you’re planning to go in a group of 10 or more, you’ll need to submit a nominal roll at least 7 working days prior to your visit.

You are entering an actual naval base after all.

Address: 112 Tanah Merah Coast Road, 498794 (inside Changi Naval Base)

Nearest MRT: Expo (CG1/DT35)

12. Sun Yat Sen Nanyang Memorial Hall

Sun Yat Sen Nanyang Memorial Hall
Source: Visit Singapore

Gazetted as a national monument in October 1994, Sun Yat Sen Nanyang Memorial Hall is a museum that traces Dr. Sun’s revolutionary activities in Southeast Asia, and sheds light on lesser-known details of Singapore and Nanyang’s involvement in the 1911 Revolution.

This is definitely one for the history buffs.

Free admission for all Citizens and Permanent Residents.

Address: 12 Tai Gin Road, 327874

Nearest MRT: Toa Payoh (NS19)


Live Music And Shows

If you fancy a spot of live music or a performance, there’re plenty of places to catch those for free too.

Side note: we seem to have a fascination with light shows that involve water.

13. Beautiful Sunday @ Esplanade Concert Hall

Mus'Art Youth Wind Orchestra
Source: Esplanade

Beautiful Sunday is a series of free concerts by homegrown music groups and performances that are held once a month on a Sunday.

Tickets are given on a first-come, first-served basis at the Esplanade Concert Hall on the day of the performance. FYI: you’ll be assigned seats so you won’t need to rush in to chope seats for your friends.

Check here for upcoming performances.

Address: 1 Esplanade Dr, 038981

MRT: City Hall (EW13/NS25)

14. Crane Dance @ Resort World Sentosa

Crane Dance Resort World Sentosa
Source: Resort World Sentosa

This animatronic show tells a story of how two mechanical cranes meet, fall in love, and transform into real birds. There’ll also be plenty of water, lights, and pyrotechnics involved.

If you’d like to secure a good seat, arrive at least 30 minutes before the show starts at 8pm daily. Oh, and if you’re sitting all the way at the front, you might get a bit wet. #dontsayneversay

Address: 8 Sentosa Gateway, 099958

MRT: Harbourfront (CC29/NE1)

15. Esplanade Outdoor Theatre

Esplanade Outdoor Theatre
Source: Esplanade

The people behind Esplanade (Theatres on the Bay) believe that the arts is for everyone, which is why the outdoor stage hosts a diverse range of daily performances from music to dance and theatre.

Click here to find out what performances are on.

Address: 1 Esplanade Dr, 038981

Nearest MRT: Esplanade (CC3)

16. Garden Rhapsody Light Show @ Gardens By The Bay

Garden Rhapsody Light Show Gardens By The Bay
Source: Gardens By The Bay

Garden Rhapsody is the signature light and sound show of the Gardens By The Bay, and it happens right in the Supertree Grove.

For the best view, you’ll want to be as close to the Supertrees as possible.

Address: 18 Marina Gardens Drive, 018953

Nearest MRT: Bayfront (CE1/DT16)

17. HSBC Rain Vortex Light And Sound Show @ Jewel Changi Airport

HSBC Rain Vortex Light Show Jewel Changi Airport
Source: Jewel Changi Airport

Besides holding the accolade of being the world’s tallest indoor waterfall, the Rain Vortex at Jewel Changi Airport puts on a stunning light and sound show every night that really shouldn’t be missed.

Light and Sound showtimes: 7:30pm to 11:30pm daily (hourly intervals)

Address: 70 Airport Boulevard, 819661

MRT: Changi Airport (CG2)

18. Spectra @ Marina Bay Sands Event Plaza

Spectra Marina Bay Sands
Source: Marina Bay Sands

Spectra is a nightly outdoor display which traces Singapore’s journey to becoming the cosmopolitan city that it is today.

The 15-minute outdoor show consists of dancing fountain jets, colourful visual projections, lasers, and mist effects… all synchronised with an orchestral soundtrack.

Showtimes: 8pm & 9pm (Sun – Thu); 8pm, 9pm & 10pm (Fri & Sat)

Address: 2 Bayfront Ave, 018972

MRT: Bayfront (CE1/DT16)


Neighbourhoods

To see Singapore like the locals, check out these intimate neighbourhoods!

19. Chinatown

Letter Writer Chinatown Mural
Source: The Occasional Traveller

This bustling, historic district is where you can find beautifully restored colonial building as well as cultural landmarks like the Buddha Tooth Relic Temple and Sri Mariamman Temple.

If you’re looking for a photo op, here’s a couple of street art to look out for:

  • Cantonese Opera: Junction of Temple Street and South Bridge Road
  • Bullock Cart: 28 Temple Street (side wall next to the alley)
  • Mid-Autumn Festival: 83 Pagoda Street (back alley behind Lucky Chinatown)
  • Letter Writer: Chinatown Complex @ 335 Smith Street
  • Home In Chinatown: Junction of Smith Street and 266 South Bridge Road

Nearest MRT: Chinatown (NE4)

20. Joo Chiat

Pastel Shophouses at Koon Seng Road
Source: thewanderblogger.com

This heritage-rich neighbourhood is steeped in Peranakan history and is famous for its colourful shophouses that are adorned with floral or geometrical tiles.

If you’re looking for a good photo op, be sure to check out:

  • Rumah Bebe @ 113 East Coast Road
  • Terrace Houses @ 150 East Coast Road
  • Pastel Shophouses @ Koon Seng Road
  • The Red House at Katong @ 63 East Coast Road (tip: try a scoop of botanical-flavoured gelatos at Birds of Paradise Gelato Boutique located next to The Red House)

Nearest MRT: Eunos (EW7)

21. Kampong Glam (Arab Street & Haji Lane)

Haji Lane Wall Mural
Source: Visit Singapore

This Malay enclave is Singapore’s oldest urban quarter and is the perfect place to while an afternoon away as you explore the Persian carpet shops, jewellers, and antique shops on Arab Street.

If you fancy more contemporary surroundings, you can always window shop in the eclectic boutiques and multi-label stores that line colourful Haji Lane.

Nearest MRT: Bugis (EW12/DT14)

22. Little India

Sri Veeramakaliamman Temple
Source: Visit Singapore

If you only know Little India as the place for authentic Indian food and mad bargains at Mustafa Centre, do yourself a favour and take this one hour Little India Heritage Trail to reacquaint yourself with the history of this 200-year-old enclave.

Note: while most of the religious institutions on the trail are open to the public, be sure to observe any instructions with regard to appropriate behaviour and dressing as a sign of respect!

Nearest MRT: Little India (NE17/DT12)

23. Tiong Bahru

Tiong Bahru Pasar Mural
Source: @jay_cmxii | Instagram

Home to hipster cafes, vinyl shops, and indie boutiques – all housed in pre-war shophouses – Tiong Bahru is a favourite haunt of local artists and creatives.

Keep an eye out for murals that give you a glimpse of a Singapore of yesteryear.

Here’s where you can find them all:

  • Giant Goldfish: Tiong Bahru Post Office @ Block 28 Tiong Bahru Road
  • Family Of Goats: Tiong Bahru Market @ Block 30 Seng Poh Road
  • Birds: Block 71 Seng Poh Road
  • Tiong Bahru Pasar & The Fortune Teller: Block 73 Eng Watt Street
  • Home: Block 74 Tiong Poh Road

Nearest MRT: Tiong Bahru (EW17)

24. Toa Payoh

Toa Payoh Heritage Trail Dragon Playground
Source: The Straits Times

The first town designed and developed entirely by the Housing & Development Board (HDB), Toa Payoh is the ‘granddaddy’ of all public housing towns in Singapore. It’s the first town to employ the Neighbourhood Police Post System; saw the first co-op supermarket (NTUC Welcome, better known today as NTUC Fairprice); and even the first MRT station to be built.

Oh and if you don’t know what’s the big fuss over the Dragon Playground, spend an afternoon on the Toa Payoh Heritage Trail to find out more about this estate of many firsts.

Nearest MRT: Toa Payoh (NS19)


Outdoor Activities

Ideal for those who would like to soak in the sun, or just want to do something different.

25. Movies Under The Stars by MovieMob

Movies Under The Stars MovieMob
Source: MovieMob | Facebook

This outdoor movie specialist holds free movie screenings at landmarks such as Singapore Botanic Gardens, Seletar Aerospace Park, Marina Bay, and many more.

If you’re lucky, their themed events like the screening of Aquaman will also come with fringe activities like ‘Best Dressed Superhero’ where you can win a prize, free popcorn and cotton candy, and balloon sculpture making.

Check their Facebook page for the next screening!

26. Movies By The Beach @ Sentosa Palawan Green

Movies By The Beach Sentosa
Source: Sentosa

This one’s pretty straightforward, it’s essentially a cinematic experience by the beachfront at Sentosa.

Expect a mix of both local and international movies, all of which will be screened on selected Sundays at 7:30pm.

Check this page for more info on the next screening!

27. Open Air Movie @ B.Y.O Cinema

B.Y.O. Outdoor Cinema
Source: IMDA

B.Y.O Cinema is an initiative by IMDA which hosts outdoor pop-up screenings featuring local titles such as Zombiepura and Lulu the Movie.

The screenings are held at various locations like Esplanade Forecourt Garden and Fort Canning Green.

The current season is over but follow the page here to be informed when the next season starts!

28. Intertidal Guided Walk @ Sisters’ Islands Marine Park

Sisters' Islands Intertidal Guided Walk
Source: Sisters’ Island Marine Park

The Sisters’ Islands are located to the south of the main island of Singapore, off the Straits of Singapore.

On a bi-monthly basis, NParks conducts a free Intertidal Guided Walk along the Intertidal Zone where you can get to see marine life in their natural habitat. The guided walk is free-of-charge and conducted by NParks’ very own nature guides.

Pack light, wear covered shoes, and book your slot fast!

FYI: each guided walk session is open to a maximum of 45 people and each person can register for up to 2 tickets.

Book your Intertidal Guided Walk here!

29. Feed A Goat @ Hay Dairies Goat Farm

Goats At Hay Dairies Goat Farm
Source: Hay Dairies Goat Farm

In case you didn’t know, there ARE farms in Singapore.

And one of the best ones to visit is Hay Dairies Goat Farm – pretty self-explanatory as to what you’ll be seeing there.

For groups of less than 10, you can enjoy a free and easy tour of the premise and also feed the goats (alfalfa hay is on sale there and costs $5 per packet). If you’re thirsty, there’s goat’s milk on sale too.

Be sure to be there between 9 to 10:30am to catch the goat milking session!

Pro tip: Take the Kranji Countryside Express from Kranji MRT station, which brings you all the way into the farm. The schedule for the express can be found here.

Address: 3 Lim Chu Kang Lane 4, 718859

Nearest MRT: Kranji (NS7)

30. Friday Night Stargazing @ Science Centre Singapore Observatory

Singapore Science Centre Observatory Stargazing
Source: littledayout

Every Friday night, the Science Centre Observatory holds complimentary stargazing sessions which are open to the public.

If don’t know anything about astronomy, fret not.

There’ll be Science Centre staff on duty to operate the telescopes, give explanations, and point out objects in the sky.

Here’s how you can score tickets to the free Open-For-All Session at the Science Centre Observatory

  • Get a time card (available from 7am onwards on a Friday that the observatory is open for an Open-For-All Session
  • Check this page to find out if it’s an Open-For-All Session or Guided Session (the latter has an Admission Fee)
  • Each registration allows you to reserve up to two timecards so if you need more, you’ll need to make multiple registrations

Always check their Facebook page for the latest!

Address: 21 Jurong Town Hall Rd, 609433

Nearest MRT: Jurong East (EW24/NS1)

31. Guided Nature Walks by NParks

Bukit Timah Reserve Walking Trail
Source: Straits Times

If you’re a nature enthusiast, NParks has a whole calendar of events and workshops which include:

  • Biodiversity Guided Walk @ Jurong Lake Gardens
  • Bird Watching @ Southern Ridges
  • Nature Appreciation Walk @ Bukit Timah Nature Reserve
  • Guided Walk @ Sungei Buloh Wetland Reserve
  • Monument Trail
  • Pioneer Trail Along Ann Siang Hill Park

and many more!

Remember to register early, dress appropriately on the day, and keep in mind where the meeting point is!

32. Hiking @ Mount Faber Park

Mount Faber Park Vantage Point With Binoculars
Source: NParks

Starting from the foot of Mount Faber on Telok Blangah Road and take the scenic walk up to Faber Peak. If you time your hike right, you’ll be rewarded with a stunning view of Singapore’s cityscape against the glow of the sunrise (or sunset).

Wear comfortable shoes and drag an unwilling friend along for maximum fun.

Address: Junction of Kampong Bahru Road and Telok Blangah Road, Singapore 099448

Nearest MRT: HarbourFront (CC29/NE1)

33. See Farm Animals @ The Animal Resort

The Animal Resort Feeding Horse
Source: TripAdvisor

If I had to describe what The Animal Resort is… I’d likened it to a kampong zoo.

You’ll find farm animals like chickens, ducks, and geese roaming freely. Plus an assortment of fishes, exotic birds, guinea pigs, rabbits, and a retired racehorse – which you can pet and feed.

All of this makes for a pretty interesting experience, especially if the closest you’ve ever come to a chicken is when it’s served deep-fried on a plate.

Address: 81 Seletar West Farmway 5, 798061

Nearest MRT: Sengkang (NE16)

34. ‘Shop’ (Or Give Your Stuff Away) @ The Singapore Really Really Free Market

Singapore Really Really Free Market
Source: Singapore Really Really Free Market | Facebook

The Singapore Really Really Free Market is a temporary market where everything is free.

Yep. Not kidding.

It’s a market that is based on building a community to share resources, with the ultimate goal of reducing consumption and waste of resources.

So if you’ve got stuff to give (anything from books to toys to food) or skills to share (poetry writing, hair cutting, and etc.) all you have to do is announce your participation on their Facebook wall and turn up.

And if you’d like to see what’s available or just want to experience what the community is like, check their Facebook page to find out where and when the next market will be held!


Places Of Interest

There’re plenty of places of interest to visit in Singapore. But I’ll list those that aren’t so common, are interesting, or have been forgotten over the years.

35. Haw Par Villa

Haw Par Villa Entrane Archway
Source: @pandagrxph | Instagram

This bizarre theme park is famed for its gruesome depictions of the Ten Courts of Hell from Chinese folklore – if you were a kid who grew up in the 90s, chances are, your parents brought you here for a lesson in traditional Chinese morality.

If that’s not your kind of thing, there’re plenty of dioramas within the park which depict various scenes from Chinese legends like Journey To The West, and the Eight Immortals.

While the park is free to visit, there’s a Journey To Hell Twilight Tour that runs every Friday night from 6:30pm to 8:30pm (excluding Public Holidays). Tickets cost $20 for adults, $10 for children (7 to 12 years old), and $15 for students. Highly recommended for those curious about death and the afterlife. And a great way to experience Haw Par Villa after dark.

Address: 262 Pasir Panjang Rd, 118628

Nearest MRT: Haw Par Villa (CC25)

36. Kampong Lorong Buangkok

Kampong Buangkok Old Postal Code
Source: Delfina Utomo | Honeycombers

Affectionately known as “The Last Kampong in Singapore”, this zinc-roofed village in Buangkok is slated to make way for a major road and two schools in the future.

But before that happens, the 1.22ha plot of land is a rare glimpse into Singapore’s past that stands in stark contrast amidst the surrounding HDB flats.

Address: Kampong Lorong Buangkok

Nearest MRT: Buangkok (NE15)

37. Go Late Night Shopping At Mustafa Centre

Crowd Outside Mustafa Centre
Source: The Finder Singapore

Need something to do when it’s 2am? Why not go late night shopping at Mustafa Centre?

It’s a hypermarket that has everything from gold jewellery to electronics to household essentials like toothpaste.

Even if you don’t buy anything, it’s still a nice place to hand out in the middle of the night since it’s open 24 hours a day.

Address: 145 Syed Alwi Road, 207704

Nearest MRT: Farrer Park (NE8)

38. Search For The Merlion(s) Of Singapore

You probably know that there are two Merlions at the Merlion Park near One Fullerton:

  • an 8.6m tall one overlooking Marina Bay, and
  • a smaller 2m tall one facing away from its larger sibling

But did you know that there are a total of seven STB-approved Merlions located all over Singapore?

Go on a hunt to find the other five:

  • a 37m tall one at Imbiah Station on Sentosa Island (which is about to be demolished soon)

sentosa entry and transport fees merlion promotional prices

  • a 3m tall polymarble statue at the taxi drop-off point of Tourism Court
  • a 3m tall polymarble statue at the highest point of Mount Faber, Faber Point
  • a pair of statues stand guard at the car park entrance of Blocks 216 to 220 at Ang Mo Kio Avenue 1, opposite Bishan Park

39. Sembawang Hot Spring

Man Relaxing At Sembawang Hot Spring
Source: Straits Times

Yeah… It looks pretty ghetto but it is an experience just being there.

FYI: Sembawang Hot Spring is being developed into Sembawang Hot Spring Park and is currently closed till 30 November 2019.

However, hot spring water is still available from two temporary taps, located next to the current entrance of the hot spring site.

Address: Along Gambas Avenue

Nearest MRT: Yishun (NS13)

40. Visit Sir Stamford Raffles And His Twin

Sir Stamford Raffles Bronze Statue
Source: Lucian | Flickr

Everybody knows the polymarble statue of Sir Stamford Raffles which is located at the historic Raffles Landing Site, along the Singapore River.

But did you know that the statue is actually a copy of the original dark bronze statue which was first unveiled on Jubilee Day on 27 June 1887?

Yep, the older, original statue is located a short walk away, in front of Victoria Memorial Hall at Empress Place.

Address: North Bank, Singapore 179555

Nearest MRT: Raffles Place (EW14/NS26)


Know any other unique, fun, AND free things to do in Singapore? Let us know in the comments below!

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About Kenneth Fong
Editor of Seedly's blog. Owner of a 4-room HDB BTO and married to a financial clutz. Probably the closest to an adult you can find on the Seedly team.
You can contribute your thoughts like Kenneth Fong here.

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