Aside from catching up with the 3Fs (family, friends and – of course – food), why not join in some events and activities to make this mid-year trip back home one that’s meaningful and memorable?
Here is an extensive list of things that you and your family can do while you’re back on our sunny shores – we’re sure your time here will be a blast! Remember to also hashtag #overseassingaporean on your Facebook and Instagram posts to show us what you’re up to back home.
Dining in the Dark
(Image credits: Singapore Association of the Visually Handicapped)
Enjoy a dining experience with a difference at Dining in the Dark, an initiative by the Singapore Association of the Visually Handicapped (SAVH) that aims to bring awareness to the daily challenges of the visually impaired. Train your senses as you savour your meals in complete darkness, prepared and served by specially trained SAVH clients. According to SAVH, this initiative gives them the opportunity to “earn a means of living”, and “facilitates their integration process with the community”.
SAVH’s Dining in the Dark takes place twice in a day: lunch (Mondays to Saturdays, 12-2pm, $30 nett) and dinner (Mondays to Fridays, 6.30-9pm, $38 nett). Reservations are to be made at least a month in advance – call 6251 4331, or fill in the reservation form here. Visit the SAVH website for more information.
(Image credits: Ground-Up Initiative)
Put your green fingers to work at non-profit organisation Ground-up Initiative’s weekly volunteering sessions, as they work towards building their Kampung Kampus in Yishun. You and your family can support them through tasks like helping to upgrade their workshop space, or do general gardening work on their premises.
Learn more about Ground-Up Initiative (GUI) at their website, and sign up as a volunteer here. You can also take part in other GUI activities and workshops like harvesting vegetables and woodworking. Refer to their calendar of events here.
Race Against Cancer
Run for a good cause in Singapore Cancer Society (SCS)’s fundraiser on 22 July, which is in its 10th year. Registration closes on 9 July, or when slots are filled. For more information, visit the Race Against Cancer website.
Other volunteering opportunities
"No act of kindness, no matter how small, is ever wasted", show your SG Cares spirit by doing something meaningful on your mid-year visit home by volunteering your time and energy towards a good cause. For example, you could help out at Willing Hearts’ soup kitchen by preparing, cooking and packing food or by doing the washing up, or delivering warm meals to elderly folk with TOUCH Home Care’s Meals-on Wheels. For other causes and opportunities to volunteer, visit giving.sg.
(Image credits: Overseas Singaporean Unit)
There are many opportunities for your children to get reacquainted with Singapore’s culture and heritage, and what it means to be Singaporean, on your mid-year visit back home.
Camp@Home is a fun and educational four-day programme for young overseas Singaporeans ages 7-14 to learn more about Singapore, through activities like heritage walks and attending classes at a local school! Rediscover Home is a new programme for overseas Singaporean youths ages 15-18 to embark on a journey of self-discovery, to discover what home and identity means to them. For overseas Singaporean males aged 15-18, the NS Familiarisation Visit will provide a peek into army life at the Basic Military Training Centre at Pulau Tekong.
FOR NATURE LOVERS
Singapore Garden Festival
(Image credits: Singapore Garden Festival)
Journey into a world of colours at the Singapore Garden Festival, where local and international garden and floral designers gather to showcase their works in this biennial tropical garden and flower show. Marvel at the unique and exquisite garden exhibitions around Gardens by the Bay, including ‘Floral Windows to the World’ and ‘Balcony Gardens’, and view new displays like the ASEAN Garden, which marks Singapore’s ASEAN chairmanship this year.
The Singapore Garden Festival will be in bloom from 21 July to 3 August at Gardens by the Bay. Tickets range from $6 to $33 and can be purchased onsite or online. For more information, click here.
Singapore Botanic Gardens Heritage Festival 2018
This year, the Singapore Botanic Gardens marks its third anniversary as Singapore’s very first UNESCO World Heritage Site. Partake in a wide array of activities like tours, concerts and food trails over two festival weekends, pick up some fresh flowers from the Plant Bazaar, and don’t miss the chance to visit the National Orchid Garden for free!
The Singapore Botanic Gardens Heritage Festival takes place at various locations around the Singapore Botanic Gardens from 30 June to 8 July, 8.30am to 7pm daily. Admission is free. For more information, click here.
Chek Jawa Wetlands Tour
Learn more about the biodiversity and various ecosystems of the Chek Jawa wetlands, located at the southeastern tip of Pulau Ubin. The next tour is on 4 July and limited slots are available. Register your interest at the NParks website.
Nature Appreciation Walks
Take a guided walk through our local parks and nature reserves and discover their rich flora and fauna. The next tours take place at the Bukit Timah Nature Reserve on 16 June, and Windsor Park on 23 June. Reserve your space on the respective NParks pages.
FOR FAMILIES AND YOUNG ONES
Istana Open House
(Image credits: Ministry of Communications and Information)
The historic Istana opens its gates to welcome visitors five times a year – the second day of Chinese New Year, Labour Day, Hari Raya Puasa, National Day and Deepavali. Aside from walking the grounds and enjoying a variety of performances, visitors can also enter the Istana Main Building for a tour of selected function rooms, and to view gifts presented to the President and the Prime Minister from dignitaries of other countries.
The next Istana Open House takes place on 15 June (Hari Raya Puasa) and on 29 July (the week before National Day) from 8.30am to 6pm. Admission is free, but an entrance fee of $2 applies to visit selected function rooms in the Istana Main Building. Visit the official Istana website for more information, including guided tours.
The More We Get Together: Singapore’s Playgrounds 1930 – 2030
(Image credits: National Museum of Singapore, National Heritage Board)
Among Singapore’s most memorable landmarks, the dragon playground is one that still holds a special place in many of our hearts. Relive your childhood memories at this nostalgic yet forward-looking exhibition, with recreations of Singapore’s most iconic playgrounds throughout the ages, and opportunities to imagine what the future of playgrounds in Singapore could be like.
While you’re at the National Museum, be sure to also check out the finalist artworks of the Asia Pacific Breweries Foundation Signature Art Prize 2018, which features the best of contemporary art across the Asia Pacific and Central Asia.
Take a walk down memory lane at The More We Get Together: Singapore’s Playgrounds 1930 – 2030, from now to 20 September at the National Museum of Singapore, 10am to 7pm daily. Admission is free and open to all. For more information, click here.
Singapore Zoo’s 45th Birthday
(Image credits: Wildlife Reserves Singapore)
Our beloved Singapore Zoo is celebrating its 45th birthday – and everyone is invited to the celebrations! Join in the fun by learning more about the zoo’s animals with your little one in the ‘Zoolympix’ (weekends only), enjoy a mesmerizing bubble performance, and discover 45 things you can do at the zoo, like greeting the zoo’s baby rhinoceros and petting a ferret.
To mark this special milestone, the Zoo will also be launching Rainforest Lumina, a special multimedia night walk experience that transforms part of the Zoo’s tropical rainforest into a luminous world. Look out for some quirky critters known as the Creature Crew, which will accompany you on your journey.
Activities in conjunction with the Singapore Zoo’s 45th birthday will be held till 27 June – visit www.zooturns45.sg for details. Regular zoo admission fees apply.
Rainforest Lumina launches on 1 July and tickets can be purchased online at www.rainforestlumina.sg. Visit the website for more information on opening hours and answers to other frequently asked questions.
Professor Crackitt’s Light Fantastic: A Mirror Maze Experience
Join Professor Crackitt at the Singapore Science Centre as he navigates his mirror maze laboratory in search of his pet parrot! For more information, click here.
Ocean Fest @ S.E.A Aquarium
Through an array of interactive shows, installations, and activities, learn more about how plastic pollution affects the ocean and what you can do to help. For more information, click here.
FOR ART AND CULTURE BUFFS
Imaginarium: Into The Space of Time
(Image credits: Singapore Art Museum)
Calling all fearless time-travellers! Immerse yourself in the curious world of Imaginarium: Into the Space of Time at the Singapore Art Museum (SAM). Back for its eighth edition, this annual family-friendly exhibition tackles the concept of time with interactive artworks by artists around the world, a specially curated list of short films and workshops for the little ones.
Imaginarium: Into The Space of Time runs from now till 26 August at SAM at 8Q. Admission to the exhibition and its activities is free. Visit the SAM website for more information, or download the brochure here to view event information and workshop timings.
Joanna Dong ‘So Here I Am’ Concert
(Image credits: Red Roof Records)
Singapore’s jazz darling Joanna Dong is back with her long-awaited homecoming concert! Join the 2017 Sing! China finalist as she delights with songs from her EP and from the competition, and shares her stories and adventures. Due to overwhelming demand, a second show has opened up on 1 July.
Joanna Dong ‘So Here I Am’ Concert will be held at the Esplanade Concert Hall on 30 June (Saturday, 7.30pm) and 1 July (Sunday, 5pm) – at the time of publication, the 30 June show is almost sold out. Tickets range from $38-$98. For more information and to purchase tickets, click here.
Singapore Theatre Festival
(Image credits: W!LD RICE)
Celebrate the local theatre scene at the Singapore Theatre Festival’s sixth edition, which presents a range of new voices and original local productions. Highlights of the festival include ‘Press Gang’, written by Tan Tarn How and directed by Ivan Heng, and Alfian Sa’at’s ‘An Actress Prepares’, featuring the ever versatile Siti Khalijah.
The Singapore Theatre Festival takes place at LASALLE College of the Arts from 5 to 22 July, and tickets range from $45-$65 (excluding ticketing fees). For more information on the individual plays and tickets, visit the official website.
FOR THE FOODIES
Geylang Serai Ramadhan Bazaar
(Image credits: Overseas Singaporean Unit)
With close to 1,000 stalls selling clothes, decorations, and of course, food, the annual Geylang Serai Ramadhan Bazaar is the place to visit for those festive vibes. Prepare your appetite, and put on a good pair of walking shoes, and have a hand fan ready as you brave the heat and crowds for a taste of traditional culinary fare, and more modern, ‘hipster’ food offerings! To celebrate our ASEAN Chairmanship this year, the bazaar also hosts a special ASEAN-themed street fair at the new Wisma Geylang Serai hub, featuring items from each of the 10 member states.
Visit the Geylang Serai Ramadhan Bazaar from now till 14 June, 11am-11.30pm. The stalls stretch across Haig Road, Paya Lebar and in front of Tanjong Katong Complex. The nearest MRT station is Paya Lebar.
Singapore Food Festival
(Image credits: Singapore Tourism Board)
Singapore’s annual culinary festival is back this July to whet more appetites for our local cuisine! The festival kicks off with STREAT, its two-day signature outdoor event, with other highlights including The 50-Cents Fest: Colonial Singapore, A Taste of Eurasian Heritage and Beer Yoga and Citylights.
The Singapore Food Festival (SFF) runs from 13-29 July at various locations. More details about its programmes will be made available at the official SFF website.
FOR SPORT FANS
Singapore Badminton Open
(Image credits: Singapore Badminton Association)
Watch some of the world’s top shuttlers compete against each other at the Singapore Badminton Open 2018 – the biggest and most prestigious badminton tournament in Singapore. This Super 500 tournament – one of seven held in the world – is part of the new HSBC BWF World Tour Series, hosted in Singapore for the next four years.
Be a part of the action at this year’s Singapore Badminton Open, held at the Singapore Indoor Stadium from 17 to 22 July. Individual tickets start from $20, general season tickets start from $100, and family bundle packages range from $90-110. For more information and to purchase tickets, click here.
Singapore Premier League
(Image credits: Football Association of Singapore)
The S-League kicked off its 23rd season with a fresh vision and a new name - now known as the Singapore Premier League (SPL), our local football league looks to continue bringing our national sport to greater heights.
Two exhilarating matches will be played at the National Stadium for an enhanced matchday experience – our Young Lions takes on Home United FC on 23 June (Saturday, 5.30pm), while Hougang United FC pits themselves against Brunei DPMM FC the next day (24 June, Sunday 5.30pm).
Support our local footballers at an SPL match near you, held at multiple locations across the island. Season passes range from $30-$50, depending on the clubs, while individual match tickets start from $5. View match fixtures here, and purchase tickets here.
1st Women’s Asia-Oceania Floorball Cup 2018
Singapore’s women’s floorball team goes up against regional teams like India, Japan and Malaysia on home ground, at the first edition of the Women’s Asia-Oceania Floorball Cup. Admission is free – find out more here.
Singapore Football Festival
Bond with your family, friends and community through this month long celebration of our national sport! Find out more here.
Returning home in time for National Day? That’s all the more reason to look forward to your visit! Join your fellow Singaporeans in commemorating our 53rd National Day and celebrate what ‘We Are Singapore’ means to us. Visit our website and Facebook page for updates and details on upcoming National Day activities.