- Continent: Asia
- Area: 683 km²
- Population: 4,490,500
- Capital city: Singapore
- ISO code: SG
- National language: Malay, Mandarin-Chinese, Tamil, English
- International dialing code: +65
- Currency: Singapore Dollar
- License plate number: SGP
- Flight routes from Singapore: 1263
- Flight routes to Singapore: 1150
- Popular airports: Singapore (SIN), Singapore Seletar (XSP)
- Large cities: Singapore, Tanjong Pagar, Yio Chu Kang Estate, Yio Chu Kang, Yew Tee, Yan Kit, Woollerton Park, Woodleigh Park, Windsor Park Estate, West Coast Village, Wessex Estate, Watten Park, Victoria Park, Mount Vernon, Ulu Bedok
- Airlines based in Singapore: Singapore Airlines, Scoot, Jetstar Asia, Silk Air, Valuair
Singapore travel guide (Asia)
The island state of Singapore is the smallest country in Southeast Asia. The name Singapore is derived from the Sanskrit words Singha (Lion) and Pura (city). In the north it shares borders with Malaysia and in the south, with Indonesia.
Geography: Singapore is located at the southern tip of the Malaysian peninsula and is connected to the mainland via two piers accessible for motorised vehicles. The island is mainly flat and the highest elevation of this city-state is the 164 metre high Bukit Timah Hill in the reserve of the same name in the northeast.
Climate and the best time to travel: Singapore is located on the equator and is also in the tropics. The weather throughout the year is hot and humid. There are no real seasons to speak of and daytime temperatures range between 23 and 35 ° C throughout the year. The relative air humidity is a constant 85% and after strong rainfall can climb to 100%. There is no fixed rainy season; however, December and April are the wettest months.
National language and communication: the official language is English. The national language is Malay. Tamil and Mandarin Chinese are also spoken.
Health, immunisation and precautions: vaccines against hepatitis A, typhoid, polio, diphtheria and tetanus should be up-to-date. Medical care in Singapore is excellent and comparable to European standards. However, visitors should have a comprehensive travel and medical insurance as hospital and doctor’s fees must be paid immediately and can be high. Fruit should be peeled and vegetables boiled before consumption. Visitors found to be infected with the HIV virus will be immediately expelled from the country and smuggling, dealing or selling narcotics are faced with draconic penalties.
For current vaccination and entry requirements as well as further safety matters please refer to the homepages of the Foreign Office.
Entry requirements: a passport valid for six months is needed. It is recommended that children have their own passport as the entry of the child in the passport of a parent is only possible until the end of 2007. British citizens do not require a visa to enter Singapore for tourist purposes, business trips or social visits.
Arrival and onward journey: Singapore is an important hub for the Southeast Asian area. Changi International Airport (SIN) is served daily by many international airlines. Qantas Airways (QF) or Singapore Airlines (SQ) provide cheap connections and non-stop services from many European airports. There are also many airlines flying to Singapore with a stop over in Dubai (DXB), Doha (DOH), Delhi (DEL) or Bangkok (BKK).
Capital City: for most tourists Singapore is only a stop over when travelling to other destinations in Asia or Australia and New Zealand. However, the city-state has a wealth of attractions and a longer stay in Singapore is well worth while.
Places of interest and beaches: Despite only being used as a stop over for most travellers, Singapore is perfectly interesting in its own right. The population is comprised of Chinese, Malay, Indians and workers from around the world. Visitors are given the possibility of exploring the whole of Asia squeezed onto a just few square kilometres. The city has a broad spectrum of attractions. The Jurong Bird-Park should not be missed, being home to more than 600 different species of birds in enormous aviaries. The best cuisine of the city is to be found in Chinatown, one of the founding cores of the city in which many historical buildings are still to be found. An Excursion to the Zoo in the Suntec city complex is a must for night birds, as it is the first zoo with nighttime opening hours. Rare species of goldfish may be seen in the large aquarium on the island of Sentosa. Gourmets should head for the East Coast Park, as this has gained world fame for its many good and clean food courts. The islands Palau Hantu, Pulau Sekeng and the Sisters Islands are ideal for swimming.
Highlight: many visitors come to Singapore for the excellent food. Eating out is a so-called local sport in Singapore. Paradise for the gourmet are for example the Hawker Centre, a collection of cook shops found in closed complexes with high hygiene standards as they are controlled on a daily basis by the authorities.
Religion: due to the mix of peoples and nationalities in Singapore, nearly all religions are represented: Buddhists, Taoists, Muslims, Hindus, Christians, and Jews all lead a peaceful co-existence.