This spring season, the island-nation is lush with new sights and experiences sure to enthral you, in every sense.
By ANITA RAO KASHI
There’s no place quite like Singapore, given the astonishing number
of experiences it packs within its compact size. What’s more, there is always something new to see, try, and experience, indoors or outdoors. From a drink on the brand-new, open-air ride SkyHelix and
a delicious swirl in the Ice Cream Museum, to a walk through a cloud forest straight out of the whimsical movie Avatar—the options here are seemingly endless!
OF ARTISTIC DREAMS
Spring in Singapore means everywhere you look, there are brightly coloured flowers spilling over from balconies, boulevards, and avenues, all set against the backdrop of slick high-rises. Enjoy this profusion of colours by introducing some additional whimsy into
your day. What better way to do that than by stepping into a movie.
Literally! Located in Cloud Forest at Gardens by the Bay, Avatar: The Experience is a truly spectacular, multi-sensory experience—the likes of which most people would never have seen. As you wander around the gigantic greenhouse, waterfalls, winding walkways, bioluminescent environment, and see the mystical creatures of the Na’vi, you feel as if you’ve stepped into the unreal world of Pandora. Hidden amidst these are creatures from the latest movie, as well. Making it feel even more dreamlike are species of natural flora that are so extraordinary, one would imagine they were unreal! Available for viewing till the end of March, this is a must-visit for sure.
If you thought walking through a movie was mind-boggling enough, then just imagine walking in, around, and through paintings! Organised at Resorts World Sentosa, Van Gogh: The Immersive Experience is yet another brilliant extravaganza, offering a deep dive into the artist’s life and art. The exhibition uses 360° digital projections and hyper-realistic virtual reality to transport viewers into Van Gogh’s world of colours and strokes. Be transported to the sunny landscape of bright-yellow sunflowers, his most famous masterpiece, as you enter the hall. Then head to the projections showcasing his other iconic works. The most stunning exhibit, however, is the adaptation of his famous work The Starry Night—the painting comes alive in a sprawling room where it swirls around, mesmerising you with its dreamy blue spirals. All you need to do is sit down and be swept away by the colours, movement, and emotion.
FOR THE CHILD IN YOU
From satiating artistic cravings to a gratifying binge indulging the sweet tooth, Singapore has a special treat for everyone. All you need to do is step into an uninhibited landscape of joy and a vibrant wonderland filled with frozen desserts. Located on Loewen Road in Dempsey, the Ice Cream Museum is like a dream come true. Brimming with colours and sensory experiences, this paradisiacal space is not just for children but also for the child in every adult. Think pools filled with sprinkles, exhibits showcasing the history of ice cream through multi-sensory displays, and unlimited ice creams in various shapes and forms. Delightfully delicious!
You can continue with the theme of stepping back into childhood, or keeping the children captivated at another fascinating place— Singapore’s first-ever Children’s Museum, which opened in December last year. Meant as a space for both learning and play, the permanent and rotating galleries here are both illuminating and enthralling. Housed in a century-old historic building on Coleman Street, the museum is home to numerous engaging, interactive exhibits. The most evocative among these is the one that whisks visitors back to the various times periods in Singapore’s history. Another unmissable delight is the exhibition on the wonders of nature made entirely of paper sculptures.
After a sugar high, it’s time to fly high. Again, quite literally! The nation’s highest open-air ride, the SkyHelix Sentosa is a sky-touching rush of adrenaline. The ride starts off gently as you sit in a comfortable gondola that slowly circles and climbs to a height of nearly 80 metres above the sea. Not surprisingly, the views are breathtaking—it’s a liberating experience, to feel the wind in your hair and the freshness around you. The sight of your feet dangling in the air is sure to be one for the ages! You can even partake of some beverages and snacks for a meal in heaven, so to speak! Opt for an evening ride to get the most out of the experience. And while at Sentosa, it is a good idea to swing by Scentopia—a lovely place that lends a fascinating peek into the universe of scents, with scented tours, augmented reality activities, and even a perfume making bar. Take a test to determine perfume preferences and then design your own distinctive perfume, choosing from over 200 fragrant oils. What’s not to love?
There’s still more to captivate hearts of all ages. Last year, for a few months, the Mandai Singapore Zoo introduced Staycation in the Wild. This unique experience, however, was so successful that it is back this year for a brief period till the end of March. Wildlife enthusiasts and adventure-junkies will love spending part of a day and the night camped out in the zoo with specially curated events, such as meeting gentle giants like elephants and other animals, as well as enjoying dinner in a forest lodge and breakfast on a terrace with unparalleled views of the wilderness. Even better is going to bed in a luxurious dome tent with spectacular views of the night sky. The entire experience is undeniably memorable.
Back on terra firma after a ride in the sky and other adventures, it’s probably time to get some shopping in. And Singapore is the ultimate destination for this pleasurable activity. While mall-hopping is definitely fun, there’s another unusual place waiting to charm. One of Bangkok’s most enduring places, Chatuchak Market makes an appearance in Singapore for all of March! Located at 200 Turf Club Road, The Grandstand, South Carpark, this night market is a veritable haven for shoppers and foodies alike. Incredibly seductive, and not just because of the alluring aromas wafting your way from the many food vendors selling mouthwatering dishes, it hosts more than 180 merchants across retail, pop-ups, entertainment, and eateries, each displaying their exciting range of wares and skills.
For a more upscale shopping experience, the space creating the most buzz is the newly revamped Raffles City Shopping Centre, home to brands like Sephora, Creed, Australian beauty and wellness spa Rationale, as well as flagship boutiques by French brands Guerlain
and Givenchy Beauty.
So, while Singapore may not have a typical spring, it still presents plenty of colourful offerings to entice during springtime. Happily, there’s something for every age group, and loads of memories to
bring back home!
Vistara offers daily direct flights to Singapore from Delhi and Mumbai, and four times a week from Pune.
Related: Deutsche Discovery