I recently explored Singapore with my children for the first time and found it to be such an easy, accessible and enjoyable place for families.

A five-hour direct flight from Perth, in the same time zone, and predominantly English speaking, makes it very convenient for a quick and stress-free getaway.

We flew with Scoot, Singapore Airlines’ budget carrier and, despite reading incriminating reviews, the experience was pleasant. Although our flight was delayed several times, they offered us a meal voucher for $30/head. The flight was comfortable and professional with lovely staff.

We spent five days in Singapore which was adequate to explore the city’s sights and tourist peaks. We didn’t shop as were on-route to Vietnam and only had carry-on luggage. Although, the quality and range of fine-quality clothing were plentiful, but not cheap and on par with Australian prices.

I loved the warm, tropical climate of Singapore, and was surprised by the omnipresence of green, lush vegetation in a bustling international city. It was extremely clean and pleasant to walk through.

The city is so easy to get around. Communication was stress-free, English speaking and services top-notch – from the taxi drivers, or Grab (the Asian Uber equivalent car service), to retail staff and in the hotels.

The Singaporeans and overall energy of the city were relaxed and welcoming; which was surprising given its high density and large population of 5.45 million over a mere 758 km2, compared with Perth’s 2 million people over 6.4 square kilometres.

It was apparent why Singapore Airport was voted the world’s best. It has several tropical gardens, including a butterfly garden, as well as a robotic train that commutes between terminals, and check-in was seamless. High-end shopping was plentiful and food options ranged from Burger King to Singaporean street food.

Pan Pacific Singapore
Pan Pacific Singapore

We stayed three nights at the Pan Pacific Singapore which was a very modern 5-star resort with excellent amenities, including multiple dining options, and a warm, large swimming pool. The hotel’s breakfast and dinner buffets at Edge offered variety and flavours beyond what I had experienced. The Pan Pacific has a fantastic location – within walking distance of the Esplanade and popular Marina Wharf. And the staff service was exceptional.

Gardens by the Bay
Gardens by the Bay

On our first day, we walked from the Pan Pacific hotel to the Gardens by the Bay, which was a lush sanctuary of 101 hectares in the heart of the city. Set on the banks of Marina Bay, there were many aspects to explore in among the diverse flora, including winding pathways, majestic tall trees, a children’s playground and a community vegetable patch. My kids enjoyed tinkering on the top-nick piano. I was surprised to see no vandalism or abuse of these free available services.

Gardens by the Bay Singapore
Gardens by the Bay

Adjacent to the Gardens by the Bay, was the exclusive and massive The Shoppes at Marina Bay Sands – a mall of luxury brands such as Gucci, Versace, Tiffanys, Chanel and Prada. It featured a waterway, with boats traversing a seemingly endless array of shops. The futuristic architecture along the Esplanade was impressive, including standalone buildings for Apple and Louis Vuitton.

Shangri-La Singapore
Shangri-La Singapore

We spent two delightful nights in the opulent Shangri-La Singapore’s Valley Wing, which, set close to the shopping and dining hub of Orchard Road, was a luxurious treat. Built in 1971, this was the world’s original Shangri-La, and maintained its olde-worlde charm and glamour. The personalised service created a very welcoming feeling. The décor, ambiance and sparkling feel of the exclusive wing was a special experience away from the hubbub of the city. This hotel is in the top five places I’ve stayed worldwide.

Siberian tiger
White Bengal tiger in Singapore Zoo
Red panda
Golden-headed lion tamarin in River Wonders

We visited the famous Singapore Zoo. Set in a rainforest environment, the main zoo featured 4200 animals over 1 zones including Australasia, Africa, China and a Fragile Forest housing lemurs and sloths. We meandered along the flourishing trails admiring the vegetation as much as the animals. The kids were excited to see a Siberian tiger, a red panda, a chameleon and naked mole rats. The zoo also provided complimentary tram rides. Feeding sessions are on offer with animals such as giraffes and zebras, as well as animal shows with elephants in the presentation of Elephants of Asia and sea lions in the Splash Safari. There was also an Amazon River Quest boat ride featuring leopards in River Wonders.

The zoo had two additional parks – a SEA Aquarium showcasing 100,000 animals including sharks, manatees (Sea Cows) and giant otters, and the Night Safari featured nocturnal animals such as the Big Cats, owls and porcupines.

I was hospitalised in Singapore as a result of an unfortunate accident, so can attest to the exceptional medical standards. Communication was effortless, treatment immediate and hotel staff accompanied me to the medical centres to provide personal support, which was unnecessary as the medical teams were extraordinarily diligent.

Throughout Singapore, I only experienced respect, cleanliness, and a free flow of traffic and order.




Far from a boring, predictable place to visit, Singapore is now a very appealing travel destination for Australian families.

Many years ago I did a stopover in Singapore en-route to Europe. I found it be ‘nice’, but, to be honest a bit dull. So when my husband suggested a family holiday to Singapore, I wasn’t overly enthused. When the time came to go, it was with some trepidation that I boarded our flight; however, I am happy to say it was completely WORTH IT. I can honestly say that it was one of the best family holidays we’ve ever had!

Highlights include

  • English is widely spoken
  • Clean and safe
  • Good, cheap public transport
  • Good shopping
  • Not much time difference

Top Tip
When planning your holiday, don’t book a transfer from the airport. These are ridiculously overpriced and taxis are cheap and readily available.

Sentosa Island

Where do I start?? This place just teems with fun and adventure. We did a ‘Swim with the Dolphins’ package and it was truly magical.

  • Dolphin Island
  • Adventure Cove Waterpark
  • S.E.A. Aquarium
  • Universal Studios
  • Underwater World
  • Singapore Cable Car

For more information visit


Singapore Zoo

This is a great zoo to visit. You can stroll around at your leisure or hop on and off the trams.

  • Jungle Breakfast with the Wildlife
  • Animal Shows
  • Animal Rides
  • Follow the ‘Feeding Trails’
  • Rainforest Kidzworld (bring your bathers!)
  • The Night Safari (one of the most popular tourist activities in Singapore)

For more information visit


Explore the neighbourhoods

Did someone say shopping?

  • Chinatown
  • Little India (not that great for prams but good for cheap shoes!)

For more information visit



Gardens by the Bay

These are massive gardens spanning over 100 hectares.

Some of the gardens are free and some you pay to visit.

There is something for everyone here.

  • Cloud Forest (amazing)
  • Children’s Garden (Bring your bathers!)
  • OCBC Skyway
  • Supertree Grove

For more information visit


Clarke Quay

This spot has a great vibe to it. It’s a terrific place to have dinner and relax.

  • Restaurants
  • Great cocktails!
  • Stroll along the waterfront
  • Catch a boat tour along the river
  • Watch and play in the fountain that shoots out water from the ground.

For more information visit


Handy Hint
Singapore doesn’t follow the same school timetable as us. If you can avoid their school holidays it can sometimes be cheaper and less crowded.

Where to stay

There are several places that spring to mind, from bustling Orchard Rd to Clarke Quay and Sentosa.

  • Shangri-La’s Rasa Sentosa Resort (higher end hotel)
  • Novotel Clarke Quay (good mid-range hotel)
  • York Hotel Orchard Rd (good mid-range hotel)

Top Tip

If you want to save some money, go for something slightly further out.

Getting there

Direct flights take just over 8.5 hours and there are several to choose from.

For more information visit