Been a while since you left Singapore for a good holiday? We are all desperate for a short getaway after a long week of work and we deserve a weekend of relaxation and fun! Instead of the same old bars and clubs that you’ve been going for years, check out these 8 best destinations you can go to for short trips from Singapore. They are not only close to Singapore but are also pretty budget friendly!

1. Johor Bahru, Malaysia


If you are looking for a weekend destination that offers a range of activities, markets and adventure sports, Johor Bahru is your pick. From beautiful beaches to being a shopper’s paradise, Johor Bahru has it all.

Hit these Spots:
Want to spend some time away from the buzz? Just laze around for a while at Danga Bay. You can steal a few moments of serenity here, as this spot is still unknown to a lot of people.

Take your girl to Annie’s Culture and pamper her with a spa and some shopping at the in-house boutique. Here’s the catch, you can relax at Coffee Signature while she is having her fun.

For those of you who want to throw in some dollars, Rusty Market and RM2 offer the best bargain prices!

Jadi Baru Botak is the place you are looking for if you want to savour amazing seafood. But hey, don’t stop here, you might want to try Lok Lok served by the Doomz Doomz Van (original name KK Lut Lut) and a variety of other food offered at ‘Lavender’.

2. Penang, Malaysia


Penang inspires creativity with its intuitive street art and unique architecture. It emanates old world charm and is one of the places where culture has been preserved as delicately as possible.

Hit these Spots:
Stroll down the streets of Penang and take in the creative street artwork done on the simplest of buildings. 

Penang has various heritage sites, mansions and churches and other places you might find appealing. Blue Mansion, Hainan Temple, Burmese Buddhist Temple, Yap Temple and Ker Lok Si are some must-visit places. 

Want to try some local cuisines? Hawker stalls are the perfect munch spot serving traditional Malay food along with a good mix of Chinese and Indian feasts. 

Penang Hill habitat is a good place to find some fresh air and end your trip. It is the highest vantage point with a couple of sky bridges through the rain forest featuring a beautiful top view of Penang.

3. Malacca City, Malaysia


Malacca has a colonial vibe to it. With all its attractions it offers a vast variety of food representing flavors of different countries. Here are some places that you might want to visit on your trip to Malacca.

Hit these Spots:
A walk along the Malacca River is something that you don’t want to miss during your time in the city, especially a night-time stroll. 

Themed cafes are one of the unique features of this city. Huskitory, Hello Kitty Café and Teddy Bear Café are also good places to eat and click some selfies. 

Melaka Sultanate Palace Museum is a beautiful architecture worthy of a visit especially if you want to explore the cultural history. And don’t miss the Floating Mosque especially during high tide. 

The city has some of the most amazing cycle carts decorated with animated characters and colorful lights. Riding in one of these is a great way to check out the city. 

If you are in Malacca for the weekend, Red Square and Jonker Walk are the best places to do some shopping and chill out.

4. Batam, Indonesia


Are you big on water sports? If yes, then Batam is a worthy option. But that’s not it, night parties are Batam’s speciality! Plus, there’s nothing like a ferry ride through the beautiful clear waters to kickstart your weekend.

Hit these Spots:
Nongsa Beach
 is must visit if you are in Batam. Clear waters and golden sand and away from the rush of the town. This is a perfect place to relax before you start partying. 

Did you know that you can get a PADI certification in Batam and that too at cheaper prices? Holiday and diving certification in a single trip. Win-win! For newbies, you will find some of the best scuba diving spots and instructors here. 

Make sure that you don’t miss the sunset at the Barelang Bridge, especially if you are enthusiastic about capturing some breathtaking pictures. Maha Vihara Duta Maitreya Temple is another heritage site in Batam that you might be interested in visiting. 

If you are not running out of time and have a few weekdays to spare, you might want to consider visiting Bintan Islands and take a dip in the clearest water bodies of the region.

5. Bali, Indonesia


Bali is holiday destination that all of you must visit at least once in a lifetime. This place is a mixture of awe-inspiring landscapes, customs, food and opportunities. Bali is a cocktail of experiences that will give you one hell of a holiday hangover.

Hit these Spots:
Bali has a collection of beaches that you can pick from for sunbathing. Apart from Kuta – one of the most popular beach towns – you can also visit the Jimbaran Bay, Canggu Beach and Sanur Beach. 

Culture is one of the most appealing factors of Bali. Experience different shades of spirituality at the Ulun Danu Beratan Temple and other religious sites. 

If nature’s mysterious ways fascinate you, Mount Agung and Mount Batur volcanoes are sights worth beholding, especially if you are into photography. 

Bali is a haven for surfers and you will find some consistent surf breaks here and some of the popular ones among these are Pecatu, Uluwatu and Ungasan. There are some amazing surfing schools and guides to assist first-timers as well. 

This amazing place is home to some of the most exquisite waterfalls that will blow your mind. Aling-Aling Waterfalls, Jembong Waterfalls and Singsing Waterfalls are the ones that you wouldn’t want to miss.

6. Bangkok, Thailand


Great parties, amazing spas and mind boggling food, Bangkok is the perfect place to let yourself loose for a weekend. From temples to clubs, malls to flea markets, Bangkok has something in store for everyone.

Hit these Spots:
The Grand Palace in Bangkok is the pride of the city. If you are looking for nearby historical sites, you can start from this extraordinary piece of architecture. 

If you tired of visiting beaches then the floating markets in Bangkok is the ‘difference’ you are looking for. Apart from the usual appeal you may find a lot of things to buy here. 

If you are in Bangkok for the weekend if you have got your priorities right, then you wouldn’t leave without getting a thai massage.  

Get a few drinks at one of the rooftop bars and enjoy the city skyline. Sky Bar and Hotel is the best but not the only place that offer a good view and drinks. 

Chatuchak market is a must visit if you are in Bangkok for a weekend. You’d be amazed what all you can find in this 35 acre-wide market. Not to mention, there is a whole variety of street food to try there. 

If you are into nature and green places, Bang Krachao Gardens and Lumpini Park are worth a visit.

7. Halong Bay, Vietnam


A trip to Halong Bay will allow you to plunge deep into nature. If you want to surround yourself with water, rocks and greenery, Halong is the place you are looking for.

Hit these Spots:
Swim through the morning mist that surrounds the water bodies around Halong. The peaceful aura of the sea will strip you of all the stress that you’ve been dealing with. 

Sung Sot also known as the Surprise Cave is a popular attraction. Located in the Bo Hon Island, this cave is about 30 meters high but the climb is totally worth it. 

Take a trip to one of the floating villages of Halong Bay to get an incredible cultural hit. Pearl farms are a good place if you want to try out some local cuisines and mingle with the local people. 

Monkey Island is a good spot if you are looking for white sand and clear waters. A good way to explore the lagoons is kayaking. 

Castaway Island is ‘the place’ for you if you are vacationing as a couple. A swim through the beautiful reefs here will make you forget the rest of the world.

8. Siem Reap, Cambodia


Siem Reap is known for its collection of historic temples and art that inspires. The place has been a huge attraction for artists; Christian Develter being the most popular among them. But there’s a lot more to this place!

Hit these Spots:
Jaya House River Park
 is the best place to stay if you are planning a holiday in Siem Reap. The place offers beautiful artwork, green landscapes, rooftop bars and much more to relish. 

Clink your glasses at Miss Wong Cocktail Bar. The place has artful Shanghai décor from the 1920’s and is known for its rose and lemongrass martini. 

Start your day early if you are planning to visit any of the temples, especially Angkor Wat. Take a hot air balloon ride to get an exquisite  view of the town. 

Looking for a place to eat? Sister Srey Café is your stop! If you want to surge deeper into authentic flavours, drive towards Route 60 for the street delicacies. 

Street-side markets in Siem Reap are a good place to buy souvenirs and much more. You may also want to visit Khmer Ceramics Fine Arts Centre and Made in Cambodia Market if you are a collector of the arts.

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