Everything you need to know about holidaying in Sentosa

Why Sentosa is the hottest destination for relaxation and adventure

Let’s be honest – when you think of island getaways, Singapore’s Sentosa probably doesn’t leap to mind. But it really should. Away from bustling city life, Sentosa is the perfect place to relax.

Only 20 minutes from Singapore’s premier shopping precinct, Orchard Road, Sentosa couldn’t be more different to the mainland. While sky-rise buildings dot the city landscape, on Sentosa, nature and adventure rule. That means plenty of pretty beaches and lush rainforest… and the occasional peacock.

Traditionally, Singapore has been viewed as a stopover destination for Kiwi tourists. A few days in the Lion City and then a lot of travellers venture on to Europe. But why not make Singapore the destination for your holiday? If you’re looking for a sun-soaked family getaway that is clean, safe, culturally enriching and visually stunning, Sentosa has it all. Plus, it’s only around a 10-hour flight from New Zealand.

Where to stay

Stay at the Shangri-La Rasa for stunning beachfront views.

Shangri-La Rasa Sentosa

A beachfront resort perched on the western tip of Sentosa, the hotel boasts 454 guest rooms with jaw-dropping views across the South China Sea. And there’s plenty to look at. Every time I’d take a glance, a new container ship would lumber past. It’s a busy waterway.

If you ever tire of drinks and snacks by the pool (and who really does?), there’s beach volleyball on Siloso Beach or you can take a kayak out for a paddle. And keep an eye out for the peacocks – the super-chilled pretty birds are forever strutting around the resort.


Where to eat

The buffet breakfast at Silver Shell Café offers a variety of international cuisines. Singapore is a melting pot of several cultures. Once a British outpost, it has grown to reflect three main cultures – Chinese, Malay and Indian. What that means is you get a fantastic array of mouth-watering dishes. One of the best – if not the best – butter chicken I’ve had was in the Silver Shell Café. It’s seriously good!

And let’s talk about the hotel’s restaurant, Casserole, the first meat- alternative restaurant in a Singapore hotel. My brain – and perhaps more importantly my taste buds – couldn’t tell it wasn’t meat.

Of course, there are some great options just outside the hotel too. I had lunch at the Italian eatery Trapizza, a few minutes walk from the resort and right on Siloso Beach. Wash it all down with a Singapore Sling, the country’s most famous cocktail.

What to do

Writer Stephen lives the high life on the SkyHelix.


Sentosa is not just for those who want to kick back and unwind by the pool – there are also activities for those who crave thrills. You can go zip-lining at MegaZip Adventure Park or bungee jumping at Skypark. If you like theme parks, check out Universal Studios.

Take a trip on the SkyHelix, an open-air panoramic ride that rotates as it takes you to a height of 79m above sea level. That’s a long way up with your feet dangling in the air! But oh, the views – you can see all over the island, across the sea and over to the city.

The less adventurous should visit the SEA Aquarium, one of the largest aquariums in the world, with more than 100,000 marine animals.

Take in the history of Fort Siloso.

Fort Serapong & Fort Siloso

Want to see another side of Sentosa and learn some history? SentoSights offers guided tours of the Serapong Trail, which takes you up to Mount Serapong and the now-abandoned Fort Serapong. Built by the British in the 1800s, the fort was bombed during World War II. Fort Siloso, located above Shangri-La Rasa Sentosa, was built by the British to guard the entrance to Keppel Harbour. It’s now the only surviving coastal gun battery.

Chi, The Spa at Shangri-La

If, like me, you’re not the kind of person who would ordinarily get a massage, then it’s time to change. The overall experience here is tension-relieving blissful relaxation. You deserve to be pampered!

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