There is no reason to feel too guilty gorging yourself on Singapore’s famous cuisine. It is easy to burn off the calories while staying here with a great range of sports and outdoor activities to keep you fit and healthy.
The city’s luxury hotels are a good place to start if you simply want to keep in shape with a few hours in the gym. Most also have swimming pools and health spas and you should also be able to find properties boasting tennis and squash courts.
Despite first appearance, Singapore has plenty of green open spaces for practising your favourite pursuits, be it a friendly game of football, mountain biking, golf or even sky diving.
As an island nation, Singaporeans love to mess about on the water and there is a whole host of watersports to try by the beach and on its inland lakes and reservoirs.
There are dozens of professional expat sports clubs covering most major activities and some even offer temporary memberships for enthusiasts staying for just a few days.
Bear in mind that you are in the tropics and the heat and humidity can be fierce. Take things slowly at first and try not to over exert yourself. Always keep hydrated with plenty of liquids and make sure you take enough rest breaks.
Recommended Singapore sports and activities
Cycling and mountain biking
Road and mountain bikes can be hired at many places in central Singapore. However, head to East Coast Park at Bedok for a large network of car free cycling trails in tranquil surroundings. There are over 40 miles of routes here with picturesque woodland, lakes and some of the island’s finest beaches to explore. For a more challenging day you can hire a bike at Bukit Timah Nature Reserve and pedal through dense rainforest and undulating hills.
Golf in Singapore
Singapore boasts some of the most picturesque and exclusive golf clubs in Southeast Asia. There are 10 in total and all but two are open daily to non-members. Championship courses such as the Sentosa Golf Club attract the very best pros on the Asia PGA tour but there are still plenty of options even for the weekend hacker. The Gary Player Golf Academy offers professional tuition, club hire and a driving range and is a good bet if you fancy a round in informal, relaxed surroundings.
Water Sports in Singapore
There are many excellent facilities for water sports fans in Singapore. East Coast Park is at the centre of all the action and nowhere is more popular than Ski 360°. It offers high speed wakeboarding without the need for a speed boat, using a 40mph cable way and seasoned boarders can show off a little on strategically placed ramps on the water.
Swimming in Singapore
Most large tourist hotels in Singapore have swimming pools for guest’s use and many also provide access to non-residents for a small charge. For those lucky enough stay at the brand new Marina Bay Sands Hotel, there is the world’s largest open air swimming pool, located on the rooftop at over 700 feet above the ground. If your budget doesn’t stretch that far and you have demanding kids, Wild Wild Wet Aqua Park is a full day out with several swimming and wave pools plus water slides.
Nearby at the Mana Mana East Coast Beach Club you can also indulge in windsurfing, water skiing and sea kayaking. Further east is the Changi Sailing Club, here you can rent canoes (SGD$8) or go yachting in a single seater laser boat for SGD$30 per hour.
Rock climbing in Singapore
Singapore is not a mountainous place by any stretch of the imagination but does have its own rock climbing club with a testing vertical wall. It is similar to those used for the Asian X Games and has sections for both beginners and experienced climbers. There is also a football club and academy here and a lively and popular ten pin bowling centre.
Snow sports in Singapore
Believe it or not, Singapore offers the chance to go skiing and snowboarding in the tropics at the incredibly popular Snow City indoor ski centre. Climate controlled at a chilly -5°c using artificial snow, you can slide down a steep ski slope in an inflatable tube, learn the basics of skiing and snowboarding or try a few freestyle moves on the halfpipe. Great fun for all ages and all equipment is provided including winter jackets and gloves.
In the same neighbourhood is the Fuji Ice Palace, a compact indoor ice rink popular with families and young couples. You can glide around at leisure or take lessons from professional instructors. It also features a lively amusement arcade that should keep teenagers occupied for hours. (Open: 10:00-22:00 (daily); Jurong Entertainment Centre, 2 Jurong East Street, tel: +65 6565 1905).
Skateboarding and rollerblading in Singapore
The Xtreme Skate Park is the latest attraction for thrill-seeking youngsters at East Coast Park. It is an ultra modern assault course of ramps, poles and halfpipes that will keep daredevil teens more than happy. There are weekend events and competitions for serious BMX freestylers and skaters and a safe area suitable for beginners and smaller kids.
There are a host of other intriguing and some rather obscure activities to get involved in during your stay in Singapore. Tai Chi and yoga classes are a popular distraction at the hotel resorts in Sentosa, and Bedok Country Park hosts occasional weekend regattas of dragon boat racing, which are always a colourful spectacle. There are several expat and local teams based in Singapore which regularly race each other for charity and anyone interested can also have a go. Other adrenaline activities on offer include flying trapeze, zip line acrobatics and street luge, all doable during a day at Sentosa theme park.