No trip to Singapore would be complete without nipping over to the island of Sentosa.
Known in the past by the rather morbid name of Pulau Belakang Mati (Malay for the Island After Death), the present, more pleasant name (meaning ‘tranquil’) was given in the 1960s and the island has since boomed into a major tourist attraction. A great way to experience this serenity would be to take a cable car from Mount Faber on the main island. For starters, learn about Singaporean history at the Images of Singapore Museum with its state-of-the-art technology that will transport you back to the country’s humble beginnings. Lose yourself in the wax and 4D interactive museum. A little bit more of history can be seen in Fort Siloso, which once guarded Singapore’s western front. See its large collection of documents, photographs and life-sized replicas, reliving scenes from the Second World War.
Sentosa Island is a wonderland for all. Slake your need for fantasy and adventure at Songs of the Sea and VolcanoLand. The former, also the world’s first permanent show set in the sea at Siloso Beach, is held nightly and features awesome special effects, flashy pyrotechnics and a live cast acting out a fantasy tale. VolcanoLand takes you on an adventure with Professor Hugo and his robot deep into the earth’s core. The shows are both guaranteed to appeal to children but adults too will appreciate its fantastic special effects.
Visitors young and old will be enthralled by the feel of ‘wading’ through a school of fish in the Underwater World. Let your jaw drop as you watch sharks swim above you or if you’re adventurous you could even jump in and feed them. Watch dolphins jump hoops and play ball at the Dolphin Lagoon. And while you’re there, dunk your feet in water for a quick therapeutic ‘fish spa’. Then Hike up to the Carlsberg Sky Tower, the tallest observation tower in Asia – for a clear 360-degree view of Sentosa, Singapore and the Southern islands. If the weather permits, you could even manage to see the outlines of Malaysia and Indonesia. Don’t forget to drop by the 12-foot tall Merlion for a courtesy call. You are, after all, on his terrain and it won’t hurt to take just a few more photos with him!
With so much to see and do, why rush back? Take some time out to chill and truly soak in the sights and sounds that is Sentosa. For the feel of truly being on holiday, the Shangri-La Rasa Sentosa Resort, Singapore’s only beachfront hotel, has a fantastic view of the South China Sea with all the deluxe facilities one would expect for the perfect getaway.
Hidden away in a secluded spot on the Siloso Beach, the Shangri-La Rasa Sentosa is perfect for business or pleasure. Although slightly pricey at SGD230 (USD158), its pristine white sands and private beach make it worth your stay. Naturally, there is a health club and spa for you to relax and unwind, besides a large selection of games and activities to choose from.
Want to totally forget reality? You’ll do that and more at the Sentosa Resort & Spa. Set in a lush green sanctuary you can either opt to just lounge and let your hair down or let off some steam in its gym, Jacuzzi or other facilities. The resort is set high on a cliff which adds to its beauty – enjoy alfresco fine-dining overlooking the South China Sea or sips a cool tropical drink in one of its open-air lounges. You’re sure to find your own little sanctum within its walls. A one night’s getaway starts at SGD195 (USD134).
Honeymooners and lovers will be taken in by the Siloso Beach Resort Sentosa as it provides the ultimate escapism from the real world. Within its titillating fold, lovers can enjoy each other’s company undisturbed. Day or night, its beauty is astounding. Lush vegetation and beautiful landscaping – including an 18-metre high waterfall – makes it a heavenly paradise. What is the price of love? Just from SGD180 (USD124) for a night of quiet pleasure.
If you are seeking accommodation right in the middle of Sentosa Island, the Treasure Resort Sentosa provides cosy accommodation for you and your family. The hotel boasts colonial architecture dating back to the 1940s and is just minutes away from the towering Merlion with a scenic view of the sea. The hotel places great pride in giving you its best and you’ll surely enjoy your stay. With room rates beginning at SGD176 (USD121), all you have to do is kick off your shoes and drink in their hospitality. Indeed, with soft downy pillows beckoning sleep, shoes will probably be the last thing on your mind!