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Marina Bay Singapore is an entertainment, commercial and residential area of city built on reclaimed land. Development only began in 1988, but quickly grew and gained status as one of the top Singapore tourist attractions. The modern-marvel Marina Bay Sands Hotel is a focal point of the area – and can be seen from afar – but there are many more Marina Bay Singapore attractions to see.
Marina Bay Waterfront Promenade
Our self-guided Singapore Marina Bay Waterfront Walking Tour begins with an up-close look at the Merlion fountain. Walking counterclockwise, we follow the Marina Bay Waterfront Promenade around the perimeter of the bay – detouring only a couple of times – to explore the best things to do in Marina Bay. We’ve included a Marina Bay map of sights at the end of the post.
Marina Bay Singapore Attractions
Some of the Marina Bay Singapore Attractions require a fee. Because we were visiting Singapore on a budget, we didn’t partake in all of the Marina Bay activities, yet we were able to see the many sights on our self-guided Marina Bay Walking Tour. To help other travelers, we’ve included additional information regarding admission prices and tickets.
Tip: If walking to Marina Bay from the Downtown Core, use the air-conditioned underpass at Fullerton Hotel to avoid both the heat and the traffic!
The half-fish-half-lion creature, the Merlion, is a symbol of Singapore that melds the city’s history as a fishing village (translating the word sea to mer) and meaning of its original name (Singapura, meaning Lion City). One of the five official Merlion statues in the city sits at the edge of Marina Bay with water spouting from its mouth. A viewing platform has been built over the water to allow visitors to see – and pose for pictures – from multiple angles and is one of the top Marina Bay attractions.
Built in 1933, Clifford Pier welcomed immigrants, tourists and island-visitors until 2006 when it was no longer needed. The historic building how houses an upscale restaurant, The Clifford Pier, which is part of The Fullerton Bay Hotel, a 5-star Marina Bay hotel.
Often used for Marina Bay events, The Promontory offers spectacular views of the iconic sights on Marina Bay. Tip: Set your phone to Pano mode for a great panoramic shot!
Marina Bay Financial Center & LeVel 33
Marina Bay Financial Center is comprised of five soaring office/residential use skyscrapers – the tallest exceeding 800 feet. Beer enthusiasts and those seeking an elevated view of Marina Bay will want to visit LeVel 33, the world’s highest brewery located on the 33rd Floor of Tower 1. Of all the Marina Bay bars, this is the one we most wanted to see! From the prime balcony seating, views stretch over the bay to the Singapore Flyer and Gardens by the Bay. It’s an ideal place to take Marina Bay Singapore pictures from above. Like in all of Singapore, beers aren’t cheap…but the view is free.
Shoppes at Marina Bay Sands
The Shoppes at Marina Bay is a luxury shopping mall in Singapore (one of the many). The mall is very Las Vegas-esque, complete with high-end shops, restaurants, a Marina Bay casino and even an indoor ‘river’ with gondola rides. Regardless of whether or not you are a shopper, the Shoppes at Marina Bay Sands offers a nice place to cool off from the sweltering outdoor temperatures and strolling by the stores is one of the free things to do at Marina Bay Sands complex.
Marina Bay Sands Singapore
The iconic Marina Bay Sands Hotel is the centerpiece of Marina Bay Singapore. Looking as if the towers emerged from the depths of the sea, sweeping a boat right out of the water and hoisting it up in the air, the architecture is astounding. While looking at the building is awe-inspiring, visitors are invited to go to the top to take in the incredible Marina Bay Sands view of the city. The most coveted viewpoint is from the famous Marina Bay Sands rooftop infinity pool, but unfortunately, the Marina Bay Sands Pool is only open to hotel guests (find out just how much a room will cost for your stay!). However, the 57th Floor SkyPark can be visited (ticket required) and Marina Bay Sands restaurants and bars are open to the public.
Gardens by the Bay
Gardens by the Bay tops the list of Things To Do at Marina Bay Singapore! Highlights of the gardens include the Supertree Grove, Sun Pavillion, Heritage Gardens, World of Plants, Dragonfly Lake and Kingfisher Lake…and admission to these Marina Bay tourist attractions is free! Gardens by the Bay are a must when Marina Bay sightseeing. Time your visit to coincide with the daily Garden Rhapsody light show (or make a return visit at night) at 7:45pm and 8:45pm. Note: There are two indoor gardens, the Flower Dome and Cloud Forest, that require a ticket for entry.
Visiting the Barrage is one of the Marina Bay activities that many tourists miss – but shouldn’t! The Marina Bay district dam was built in 2008 to maintain a fresh water supply for the city and doubles as outdoor space for residents and tourists to enjoy. Cross the dam to walk through Gardens by the Bay East – or, better yet, go to the top of the Marina Barrage building for phenomenal views of the Supertree Grove and Marina Bay Sands Hotel Singapore. The massive, grassy park is perfect for a picnic, flying a kite and watching sunset.
Top Tip: If you need to cool off before or after arriving at Marina Barrage, kick off your shoes and wade into the splash park at the base of the Barrage.
ArtScience Museum Marina Bay Sands
As part of the hotel complex, visiting the ArtScience Museum is one of the more educational Marina Bay Sands activities. The shiny building, designed to resemble a lotus flower, houses intriguing exhibitions relating art to science. A ticket is required for entry.
Marina Bay Bridge
The Helix is a DNA-looking pedestrian bridge crossing the narrow opening of Marina Bay. The bridge has lookouts offering views of the marina and city from different vantage points.
From a distance, the Singapore Flyer might look like any ordinary carnival Ferris wheel, but the Marina Bay observation wheel is truly incredible. Standing at 541 feet, it ranked as the World’s Tallest Ferris Wheel when it opened (and only was surpassed in 2014 by the Vegas High Roller). The wheel has 28 air-conditioned capsules, each of which can hold up to 28 people – and is a major Marina Bay tourist attraction. A ride on the Singapore Flyer requires a ticket.
Marina Bay Float
Complete your Marina Bay walking tour along the Marina Bay promenade on the north side of the bay and pass by the Marina Bay Float: a professional floating soccer field. The Marina Bay floating platform also hosts other events, like ceremonies and concerts.
Esplanade Theaters by the Bay
Another example of unique architecture on Marina Bay, Esplanade Theatres by the Bay is a performing arts center, housing both a concert hall and a theater inside. It’s the outside, however, that garners much attention from tourists. The design looks to some like the eyes of a fly, but to many Singaporeans, it resembles the stinky, tropical fruit, durian.
Makansutra Gluttons Bay
End your Singapore Marina Bay self-guided walking tour with a bite to eat at the popular Gluttons Bay hawker stalls – some of the best cheap food around Marina Bay Sands. Cooks whip up meals at a frenzied pace and the aromas are too good to pass by! Grab a plate of local fare and dine community-style at the plastic picnic tables. Tip: We liked the spicy noodles from Soon Lee Fried Hokkien Prawn Mee – but each stall has a signature dish, so check them all out and decide which looks best!
Light Show Marina Bay Sands
One of the top Marina Bay things to do is see the bay at night! With glowing city lights, Marina Bay at night is spectacular – and is enhanced with the impressive laser light show at Marina Bay Sands. Colorful streams of light cut through the dark sky set to the beat of a music soundtrack. Marina Bay Sands Light Show Time: Every day at 8pm and 9pm – and an additional show on Fridays and Saturdays at 10pm.
Top Tip: See the best of Singapore at night on a guided tour – sights include Gardens by the Bay, the Marina Bay Sands SkyPark Observation Deck and a short Singapore River cruise! Book before you go with Viator.
Marina Bay Tourist Map of Sights
Before You Go: Our top tips for your trip
- Don’t forget to pack a pair of lightweight and comfortable walking shoes. I (Sarah) have traveled with these shoes by Columbia, Skechers and Reef. Kris prefers wearing these shoes by Merrell and Sanuk.
- We’re certain you’ll be snapping tons of photos during your trip. Rather than relying on your mobile phone to capture the sights, upgrade to an actual camera for higher quality photos. We travel with a Canon Rebel (which takes amazing photos, but can be a bit clunky) and a Canon PowerShot ELPH (which takes beautiful pictures, is slim and lightweight – and the new models are wifi enabled so you can share your trip pics to social media in real time!).
- It’s easy to get turned around or lost in any new city! Be sure to have a good city map and/or guidebook prior to arriving.
- We think travel insurance is essential! If you haven’t already obtained travel insurance for your trip, travel protected with World Nomads.
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