14 Fun Facts About Singapore For Curious Travelers

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A small island with a big personality, Singapore has become an increasingly popular travel destination in recent years. The stunning modern cityscape and growing green spaces are home to a wide array of incredible sights and sounds.

The following list of Singapore facts highlights some of the fascinating places and intriguing culture that Singapore has to offer.

1. Singapore Is One Of The Last Surviving City-States In The World

The only 3 remaining city-states in the world are:

  • The Vatican City
  • Monaco
  • Singapore

Essentially, this means that even though Singapore is considered to be just one sovereign city, they also have their own political and economic systems in place to allow it to function similarly to a country.

2. The Merlion is Singapore’s Mascot

Singapura, the Malay form of Singapore, translates directly to “lion city”. From this name, a mythical creature with the body of a fish and the head of a lion, the merlion became a symbol for Singapore in 1964.

There is now an official Merlion statue that is nearly 30 feet tall that is in Merlion Park, a park near the Central Business District of Singapore.

3. The World’s First Night Zoo Is In Singapore

The Night Safari is the world’s first fully nocturnal zoo located in Mandai, Singapore. The zoo has over 100 different species of animals on exhibit, many of which are considered endangered or threatened species.

A sign for Night Safari Singapore

All of the lighting within the zoo resembles that of moonlight, to allow the patrons a good view of the animals without disturbing the many nocturnal species that are present.

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4. Chiangi Airport Is Considered The Best Airport In The World

Singapore Changi Airport first opened in December of 1981 and is one of Asia’s largest transportation hubs.

The airport has been ranked as the World’s Best Airport by Skytrax several times since it first opened. This is largely due to the Jewel Changi Airport development that added a huge nature and entertainment complex which attracts both native Singaporeans and tourists alike.

5. Singapore Has The World’s Tallest Indoor Waterfall

Also within The Changi Airport is The Rain Vortex, which is a 130 foot tall waterfall that stands at the center of the Jewel. Captured rain water is pumped to the top of the roof of the structure and then falls through a large hole to create a circular, freefalling waterfall. In order to prevent the airport from becoming overly humid, the waterfall cycles from a full downpour to a trickle throughout the day.

6. Gardens By The Bay Has The Largest Glass Greenhouse In The World

Located in the Central Region of Singapore, Gardens By The Bay is a 250 acre nature park. The park itself is split into the Bay South Garden, the Bay Central Garden, and the Bay East Garden.

People inside the largest greenhouse in the world

Bay South Garden is the largest and takes up about 130 acres of space and includes the famous Flower Dome which is the biggest glass greenhouse in the world. Within the Flower Dome are 8 unique gardens which are each themed to host a specific type of flora.

7. Singapore Is Made Up Of Many Small Islands

There are 64 islands that make up Singapore. While most of the population resides on the main island, most of the islands are inhabited. Some of the most popular islands for tourists looking to visit Singapore include Sentosa, Kusu, Chek Jawa, Pulau Ubin, and Coney Island.

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8. The Singapore National Anthem Is Printed On The Back Of Their $1,000 Bill

Most of the paper bills for the Singapore dollar have lots of micro text written on them, most with simple phrases or words that repeat over and over again. However, the S$1,000 banknote has the entirety of the Singapore national anthem written on the back!

9. Singapore Continues To Grow In Size, Literally

Singapore has undergone the process of land reclamation in order to support their growing population and economy. This process involves building up offshore land masses with sand, rock, and soil. The created landmass has been used for industry, infrastructure, and public facilities.

10. Most Of The World’s Ornamental Fish Come From Singapore

Singapore is the world’s number 1 exporter of pet fish. Guppies, goldfish, koi, and many other species of fish from Singapore make up about 15 percent of the entire market.

11. Hawker Centers Are The Best Place To Experience Singapore Food

A hawker center is a food market that hosts a variety of different vendors and food stalls.

People eating at a Hawker Center

They bring a wide variety of popular Singapore street foods, such as kway chap, roti John, and chilli crab, to one location so you can enjoy a little bit of everything!

12. Singapore Is One Of The “Four Asian Tigers”

The Four Asian Tigers are the countries with the top economies in East Asia. Hong Kong, Taiwan, South Korea and Singapore are countries with exceptionally high-income economies that have a large impact on international trade and industrialisation.

Singapore in particular is known as being a successful financial and educational center in East Asia, and much of this success followed Singapore gaining its independence from Malaysia in 1965.

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13. Singapore Has One UNESCO World Heritage Site

The Singapore Botanic Gardens was added as a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 2015, and is the only tropical botanic garden to be honored by UNESCO. The Gardens were an integral part of popularizing many plants for a variety of uses in Southeast Asia.

Today, the Garden’s Ethnobotany Garden showcases hundreds of species of plants and greenery that have been used for construction, medicine, symbolism, and more in many Southeast Asian cultures.

14. The World Toilet Organization Headquarters Are In Singapore

Let’s finish with possibly the strangest fact yet: Singapore is where the World Toilet Organization was founded and is the current home of its headquarters!

The organization was established on November 19, 2001 which commemorated World Toilet Day. The organization is focused on addressing the issue of sanitation to make sure there is universal access to sanitary bathroom environments for all people.


Leland grew up traveling across the United States with his family, visiting the country’s many national parks. These trips helped him find a passion for camping, hiking, and traveling the globe. From Helsinki to Saint Petersburg, Leland has traveled to several cities abroad and hopes to continue exploring and experiencing the many countries of the world. He is currently planning his honeymoon trip to Scotland, where he plans to enjoy seeing the many lochs, castles, and distilleries.

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