Singapore is officially The Garden City. A recent study by The Economist magazine’s Intelligence Unit ranked Singapore as the greenest city in Asia. Here are our top tips for ways to getting (mainly) outdoors and active without breaking your budget. If you are looking for free things to do in Singapore, go get some of these!
Out & About
1. Walk the Southern Ridges
The Southern Ridges Trail winds its way through 10 km of verdant forest and canopy walks. Along the trail, you will cross the Henderson Waves - Singapore’s highest pedestrian bridge - and take in Mt Faber, Telok Blangah, Kent Ridge and Hort Parks. Or you can do a section at a time, the choice is yours!
2. Get Into A Game
Whatever your sport, Singapore has something for you, and it’s often free to play. Check out these 12 group sports you can play in Singapore or head to public parks such as East Coast Park come evening time (5.30pm onwards): odds are you’ll find a friendly scratch match. If you’re not the sporty type, head to the front of the Chinatown Market for pick-up games of Chinese chess.
3. On You Bike
If you like your biking high-octane, Crank Arm Steady is a free membership, young, local fixed-gear club that, in its own words, is about ‘mashing the road’. The group’s regular ride starts at the Raffles City Shopping Centre on Sundays at 7.30am.
For more regular fun, Joyriders is Singapore’s largest recreational cycling community. Rides cater to enthusiasts of all ages; whether you are just starting out, race competitively, training for triathlon or just visiting from out-of-town. From Tuesdays thru Sundays, membership from $80 including a jersey.
4. Running Shoes On
Purple Lights is an ultra hip-cool social running group, check out their Facebook group. The group normally meets at 7pm on Wednesdays, City Hall MRT to go running. Membership free
The Singapore Shuffle mostly does Monday evening circuit training, with 15-30 runners turning up to get their running shoes on. Different fitness levels are accommodated.
If you are a serious runner, you may want to head for the well-established MacRitchie Runners25. To join, you will be required to do a 5km time trial (4.6km for ladies) below 25 minutes, on a Cross-Country course. Time trials are held every even month. New members £40, existing $20 annually.
For something that’s a cross between running and orienteering, often with friendly drinking thrown in, there are Hash groups to suit most abilities and ages. Hash runs are designed for a group of individuals to follow a trail (true or false) created by two or three other individuals, trails are set all over Singapore so you will not only get fit and make friends, but you’ll learn about the city while you’re at it. Check your chosen group for guest/membership fees.
5. Dance The Night Away
Clarke Quay has a pick of cool dance bars like Crazy Elephant and The Pump Room featuring live bands and no cover charge on weeknights. If you’re a lady, every Wednesday, there are a bevy of 1-1 and free dining and party privileges at over 30 restaurants and clubs as you head to Clarke Quay with your girlfriends.
6. Watch The Birds
If you want to get off the beaten track, the Sungei Buloh wetland reserve is located in the northwest of Singapore and was designated in 1989 as a nature park and home to mangroves and associated wildlife as well as to resident birds such as herons, kingfishers and sunbirds. It is also home to many rare migratory birds during colder seasons. Free entry except on Saturdays, Sundays, Public Holidays and School Holidays, then $1.00 per adult, $0.50 per child / student / senior citizen.
7. Grab a Free Walking Tour
Why walk alone when you can have a guided walk for free? Singapore Footprints, run by friendly volunteers from Nanyang Technological University’s Tourism and Hospitality Management Club, offers brings you on an exciting journey tracing Singapore’s roots from our humble colonial trading port beginnings along the Singapore River. Every Saturday and Sunday.
At The Airport
8. Freebies at Changi
According to an extensive international surve,yChangi Airport is ranked the best in the world. If you are there for a few hours, relax, there’s plenty to do. Take a walk through the butterfly garden, surf the net or Skype using the free wi-fi. Need a refreshing shower or a relaxing massage? Visit the following centres for shower facilities, nail care, foot reflexology, massage therapy and a gym.
If you need a nap, why not make your way down to the free rest areas for hours of relaxation on Changi’s specially designed snooze chairs! Or if you’ve got five hours (or more) of transit time, book a free city tour.