Need some retail therapy, or arranging an afternoon tea date with your BFFs? Chances are, you’ll find yourself heading to town. After all, that’s where all the action’s at.
But there’s more to Orchard Road than just shopping and eating. In fact, you don’t even have to spend any money to enjoy an entire day in the heart of Singapore.
Head to levels 11 and 12 of the Orchard Central building and you’ll find a charming roof garden overlooking the city, where you can enjoy some peace and quiet.
Little waterfalls provide very zen sound effects, and it’s perfectly serene when night falls, with a cool breeze to keep you company.
NEXT: Take in the view of the city from the 55th floor of ION Orchard →
You probably know ION Orchard for the shopping, but that’s the beautifully dizzying view over the city you get when you take the lift up to the lovely viewing gallery on level 55. You can even spot Marina Bay Sands and the Singapore Flyer in the distance. The last admission is at 5.30pm, before they close at 6pm – we wished they stayed open till later, but you’ll still be able to catch the first signs of sunset.
Check out ION Sky while you’re up there: From now till 31 August, follow a LEGO family as they travel around the world! Spend at least $20 to redeem a ticket.
NEXT: Unwind at the prettiest library in Singapore →
For a library, it looks insanely fashionable, with crazily undulating shelves and designer chairs. Not surprisingly, the main focus of the library@orchard is design, so if you’re looking for books on the latest graphic trends or avant garde fashion, you’ll be spoilt for choice. Chill out in the cosy cocoons with a book once you’re done with your shopping.
NEXT: Take a walk in Fort Canning Park →
If you’re feeling suffocated by city living along the Orchard belt, head over to the Bras Basah side and take a hike at Fort Canning Park. This underrated park is littered with historic sights, mostly war-related, and it’s surprisingly tranquil (nowhere near as crowded as the Botanic Gardens!).
NEXT: Go museum-hopping… within ION Orchard →
Visit the Opera Gallery, one of Singapore’s most well-known art galleries, at ION Orchard (yes, a museum in the mall). It’s host even to works by Andy Warhol, Salvador Dali, and more. Even if you’re not planning to buy any of these works (Yes, they’re on sale!), it’s fun trying to spot lesser-known works of famous artists.
NEXT: Admire the beautiful heritage shophouses along Emerald Hill →
The beautifully preserved shophouses along Emerald Hill speak of a charming, multi-facted heritage and culture. Peranakan tiles meet French windows and Portugese shutters, with Chinese statues adorning some frontages and old-school swings framing others. Warning: It might trigger serious house envy.
NEXT: Work up a sweat at the skate park →
You’ve probably seen energized youth practising and parading their stunts at the skate park opposite 313 Somerset. Can’t skate? It’s a pleasure to watch, too.
NEXT: Lounge at the Orchard Central rooftop garden →
By Joanne Poh, MoneySmart, additional reporting by Pinky Chng and Sandhya Mahadevan / Updated July 2019
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