The Singapore River: A Quick Guide for Visitors

The most beautiful sights on the Singapore River are free. But I recommend the Hippo River Day Pass for enjoying a day here. Read on.

Jump to: [Map of River Attractions] [River Things to Do]

Map: River Attractions, Cruise Jetties and Hotels

Tourist Spot 1 Asian Civilisations Museum Singapore River Hotel 1 Fullerton Hotel
Tourist Spot 2 Boat Quay (restaurants, clubs) Singapore River Hotel 2 Merchant Court Hotel
Tourist Spot 3 Clarke Quay (restaurants, clubs)

Singapore River Hotel 3 Novotel Clarke Quay Hotel

Tourist Spot S Singapore River Cruise Jetties Tourist Spot H Hippo River Cruise Jetties

Q: What's the easiest way to get to the River?
A: Take the MRT to Clarke Quay (upriver) or Raffles Place (downriver).

7 Great Ways to Enjoy the Singapore River

The River is exciting enough to occupy you meaningfully for a day. Here are 7 ways to enjoy this enchanting part of Singapore...

1. Discover the River's fascinating history at ACM.

Located beside the River, the Asian Civilisations Museum has an incredibly good Singapore River Gallery. Enjoy the relics, records and old photos - and understand how the river has evolved over the years.

After this, your ramble around the River will never be the same again.

2. Enjoy unlimited travel with the Singapore River Day Pass. Best Buy!

If you have limited time, you could of course take either the 30/45-minute river cruise by Singapore River Cruise, or the 30-minute cruise by Hippo Tours. There is even a river taxi which you could take from just $4 per trip.

But the River looks very different during the night, versus the day. And the best way to enjoy it is to get the spend at least an afternoon and evening here, using the Hippo River Day Pass.

The River Day Pass allows you to hop-on-hop-off at Clarke Quay and the Esplanade to shop, dine and sightsee - unlimited river transport at roughly 25-minute interval from 9am to 10pm.

More about taking a Singapore River cruise.

3. Take a Singapore River walking tour.

Singapore River with the city skyline. Seen from Elgin Bridge.

Photo: The CBD skyline as seen from Elgin Bridge on a walking tour of the River.

Enjoying the Singapore River need not burn a hole in your pocket. Take your camera and go on a DIY Singapore River Walking Tour. Stop where you want, when you want. And the best part? You get to enjoy these lovely river spots for free.

4. Pub-hop at Boat Quay.

Sip tea or eat pasta by an al fresco riverside cafe. Have a tipple on a roof-top bar. Take in the river sights and enjoy the breeze.

Or retreat indoors and get rowdy in a lively Irish pub.

5. Feed your senses at Clarke Quay.

What's there to do at Clarke Quay before you hit the restaurants and pubs? Buy a ticket and scare yourself on the G-Max Reverse Bungy. And if you survive the dizzying toss-about, you could buy a video recording of your most undignified moment in life!

After that, go reward yourself with a delicious steak at Hooters - and a chance to ogle at their shapely shorts-and-tanktop waitresses. If it gets too hot, make a beeline for the -15°C Ice Palace @ Bar Cocoon. Put on their winter suit and then down a few shots of vodka.

Clarke Quay Singapore rocks!

6. Celebrate one of the River festivals.

The River hosts a variety of traditional and modern festivals. Marvel at the larger-than-life floating lanterns during the Lantern Festival. Watch a cyclist dance on water. And watch fire-stunts juggle torches at Read Bridge. These are just some of the amazing sights that have graced the River in recent times.

Look out for more of these during these upcoming festivals:

  1. Chinese New Year (3-4 Feb 2011)
  2. Singapore Arts Festival (14 May 2011 - 13 June 2011)
  3. Singapore River Festival (mid-June to mid-July; watch for updates here)
  4. Lantern Festival (29 Aug - 26 Sep 2011, events at River to be confirmed)
  5. Singapore River Regatta (likely Nov 2011, to be confirmed)

7. Enjoy the enchanting views from a riverside hotel.

Fullerton Hotel as seen from Anderson Bridge.

Photo: Fullerton Hotel as seen from Anderson Bridge.

The Fullerton Hotel has an inviting infinity pool, from which you may enjoy the lovely views of the River below. The Fullerton also has rooms that face Marina Bay and the River.

Further upriver, there are 2 other highly rated hotels: Swissotel Merchant Court and Novotel Clarke Quay Hotel. Both afford nice views over the River and the Quays as well.

See Also...

Walking Tour of the River

360° Virtual Tours of Singapore River:

Page author: Gabriel Tan. All rights reserved.
Page created 26 Dec 2009. Updated 23 Feb 2011.

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