Changi Airport Activities
Visit the Famous Waterfall
Singapore’s Changi Airport houses the largest indoor waterfall in the world and you simply cannot leave the city without paying a visit. Thousands of gallons of water cascade into this architectural marvel known as the HSBC Rain Vortex, which sits in the heart of the glass-domed Jewel area above lush gardens, shopping malls, and restaurants. It typifies Singapore’s renowned architecture and innovation and provides an awe-inspiring experience for travelers passing through.
Wander the Indoor Gardens
You’re likely to forget you’re in an airport once you start wandering through Changi’s stunning lush gardens. Whether it’s the vibrant and tranquil Butterfly Garden full of over a thousand different butterfly varieties (Terminal 3), live music in the Cactus Garden (T1), or the Enchanted Garden featuring thousands of bird species (T2), the spectacular natural spaces are an ideal way to breathe in some fresh air between flights.
Enjoy the Airport Lounges
Unlike most airports, you do not have to be a club member to enjoy many of Changi’s airport lounges. For a small fee, you can enter various lounges, regardless of airline or boarding priority. Here, you can enjoy snacks, drinks, television, and quiet workspaces, and for an additional fee, you can even get more personal space to enjoy a nap or take a shower.
Indulge in a Spa Treatment
Singapore’s airport offers multiple treatments at its various spas and salons — an ideal way to relax and release any tension built up from long flights and days of travel. You can indulge in a manicure, pedicure, massage, and even a haircut. Certain spots in Changi even offer free foot massages, and you will also find free full-body massage chairs in some terminals.
Head to the Movies
Changi’s movie theater features super comfortable seats and the newest box-office releases playing on a continual loop throughout the day, which is way better than watching a movie on the plane or your laptop. Check the schedules and showtimes to make sure you don’t miss the first scene!
Peruse the Galleries
Singapore’s airport houses a number of sculptures and galleries, offering travelers a cultural experience that is accessible without ever having to leave the airport. Discover the world’s largest kinetic sculpture called Kinetic Rain in Terminal 1 and explore the Social Tree interactive exhibit in the Central Piazza. History buffs in particular will enjoy the Aviation Gallery in Terminal 3, which exhibits the history of air travel and aviation in Singapore and offers an inside look into the behind-the-scenes happenings at Changi.
Go for a Swim
The on-site Aerotel Transit Hotel allows visitors to use its pool facilities for a fee. A day pass will give you hours of leisurely pool time and let you get a few laps in. You can also enjoy their jacuzzi and shower facilities, helping you feel fresh and ready to hop on your next flight.
Head Out to the City
Sign up for a Free Tour
If you have at least five hours to spare between flights, Changi Airport and Singapore Airlines sponsor two different two-hour city tours that are well worth your while. The Heritage Tour takes tourists on a bus through the city’s major monuments and neighborhoods, where a guide will enlighten you on Singapore’s rich history and culture. The evening City Lights Tour takes visitors up to see breathtaking views of the city skyline from some of its most famous attractions.
If group tours are not your style, you can also explore Singapore on your own. Store your luggage at one of the airport luggage storage spots, snag a visa if you need it, and head out to experience the city and create your own adventure. Singapore’s transit system is well-designed and highly efficient, so getting around town and back to the airport is very doable.
Visit the Marina Bay Sands
This iconic resort offers endless entertainment to visitors. You can shop ‘til you drop at The Shoppes at Marina Bay Sands, featuring top luxury brands from around the world. You can visit multiple museums and art exhibits, head to the theater for a show, or snap a picture of the impressive design of the Crystal Pavilions. Even more important is a trip to the SkyPark Observation Deck, where you can check out the world’s longest high-rise infinity pool (only hotel guests can go for a swim) and enjoy some of the most coveted panoramic views of the city skyline.
Check out Gardens by the Bay
A park spanning the center of the city with three waterfront gardens and over 1.5 million plants from all over the world, Gardens by the Bay is a great way to make the most of your extended layover. Feast your eyes on the largest glass greenhouse in the world at the Flower Dome or check out some of the tallest indoor waterfalls (yes, there are more here too!) and exotic plant species in the Cloud Forest. And of course, you simply cannot miss the Supertree canopy’s extension of sustainable vertical gardens housed in Avatar-like trees. Enjoy from below — particularly the nightly light show — or head up to the observatory deck for immersive learning experiences and views of the Marina Bay.
Ride the Singapore Flyer
The Singapore Flyer is more than just a ferris wheel. Asia’s largest observation wheel is about 42 stories high and has 28 individual capsules that can carry up to 28 passengers each. If riding the Flyer for breaktaking views of the city sounds exciting (a night time ride is highly recommended), that’s just the beginning. The capsules can be booked for private events, and you can even have a four-course meal as you ride along the Flyer. The attraction is a popular proposal spot too, so if you’re heading to Singapore with your special someone, you may want to start planning the big moment.
Try the Local Cuisine
Whether you’re craving Chinese, Indian, or Malay food after a long flight, Changi Airport’s many food courts have something for you. But if you really want to experience the best of Singapore’s world-renowned cuisine, your best bet is to head into town. Whether it’s a sit-down meal at one of the city’s over 100 Michelin-star restaurants, or an immersive visit to the city’s version of street food stalls, called hawker centers, the restaurant scene is a strong display of Singapore’s mélange of cultures and food traditions. From savory bowls of noodles to spicy chili crab, it’s practically impossible to go wrong at the Singaporean table.
So much of Singapore’s food scene is based on tradition and innovation, and the country prides itself on its care of the planet. For example, Singapore is the only place in the world where you can taste revolutionary sustainable proteins like cultivated meat. Cultivated chicken, for example, is newly available in Singapore and is served throughout the country in a wide variety of dishes, from creative renditions of traditional plates to newly born recipes.
You don’t want to miss your chance to taste and experience new flavors and sensations on your extended Singapore layover. Whether it’s a venture into the city to taste the local food and feast your eyes on the stunning architecture, or a relaxing airport stay full of entertainment and comfort, Singapore offers endless opportunities for every traveler.