10 things to do on National Day that don’t involve the parade

Your usual plans of drinking at Marina Bay and just maybe making your way over to the Padang have been thwarted this year as Singapore’s National Day Parade is returning to Kallang and National Stadium after 10 years. There’s been some grumbling about this on the blogosphere, and if you’re feeling equally disgruntled, worry not. Here are some other ways you can show your patriotism. 

, 10 things to do on National Day that don’t involve the parade

Put On Your Dancing Shoes

We The Citizens Fest
Known for their annual National Day parties, Zouk remains a good option for party types—resident DJ Lincey kicks the party off with his arsenal of electro beats, followed by the smooth vocals and impeccable production by Singaporean crooner Charlie Lim. Zushan takes over just before Australian multi-disciplinary creative Ta-ku drops some “genre-killing” beats. Other acts include Mark RonsonHayden James, Sam Feldt and more. More info here.

Majulah National Day
Sure, you won’t be in the front row to catch the fireworks anymore at Ce La Vi since the NDP has moved back to the National Stadium, but there’re still a bunch of things you can do with your friends and family at this hot spot, like gorging yourself with Singapore style barbecue bites, playing interactive games and grooving to the sounds of local DJs and musicians. Details here.

, 10 things to do on National Day that don’t involve the parade
East Coast Lagoon Food Village’s Roxy laksa at River Hawker Festival

Eat Something Delicious

National Day Heritage Brunch
The Knolls at Sentosa’s Capella puts a spin on some of Singapore’s most iconic dishes at this Mediterranean all-day dining restaurant. It’s all about nostalgia here, with spicy options like sambal stingray and ikan kunyit, as well as Chinese standards including drunken prawn mee and live crab. $178++ with free flow of Taittinger champagne, specialty cocktails and wines. Read more here.

River Hawker Festival
You can catch the last day of the festival at Town Restaurant at Fullerton Hotel, which has collected recipes of 10 solid dishes by well-known local hawkers along the Singapore River. On showcase are dishes such as ABC Brickworks Market and Food Centre’s Nusa & Tara lontong, Havelock Road’s Ya Hua bak kut teh and Casuarina Curry Restaurant’s roti prata, under one roof. $51++ with coffee and tea. Full list of signature dishes here.

, 10 things to do on National Day that don’t involve the parade
Sling, Kopi-B and TEH-Ice at Rumpoles Bar, Hotel Jen Tanglin

Wash it Down With Something Potent

Hawker-inspired cocktails
Rumpoles Bar at Hotel Jen Tanglin gives all your late-night hawker supper drinks a boozy upgrade. Drinks like TEH-Ice, Kopi-B, Asam and Fare are mixed with copious amounts of alcohol and ingredients to recall the flavors of its non-alcoholic counterparts. Oh, and there’s also a version of the Singapore Sling, served in a takeaway plastic bag. More info here.

Japanese-inspired cocktails
Japanese ingredients and techniques are used for these seasonal cocktails concocted by bar manager Shinya Koba and bartender Gento Torigata, and tucked-away in Club Street bar, Cache. For Pandan’s Sake prides itself in some good old pandan flavor, mixed in with coconut rum, sake-kokatou reduction, pineapple juice and coconut cream. Other drinks include Tofully Annin that claims to recall the taste of an almond dessert and Cha Cha Cha, which is inspired by masala tea. $22++ each.

, 10 things to do on National Day that don’t involve the parade
“Orchid Extravaganza” Floral Display

Soak in the Great Outdoors

Orchid Extravaganza
Hot on the heels of the Singapore Garden Festival that just concluded is Gardens By the Bay’s impressive display of more than 12,000 orchid plants set in an enchanted forest. Highlights include a brilliant spiral of 100 orchid species and hybrids designed by a Singaporean landscape design and a secret village you can walk through, which is filled with fruit-shaped houses. Get your tickets here.

Heritage Trails
While there’s still no news on whether Pokemon Go will hit Singapore or not, you shouldn’t shy away from exploring the fascinating heritage trails, especially since they’ll bring you on a journey through neighborhoods that are filled with historical landmarks. Thanks to the NHB’s cool trails app, there are 85 different trails to choose from. We’ve picked our favorites here.

, 10 things to do on National Day that don’t involve the parade
Alfredo & Isabel Aquilizan (b. 1962; 1965, Philippines). Photo credit: Singapore Art Museum

Visit an Art Exhibition

Odyssey: Navigating Nameless Seas
Take a trip down into the watery depths of the planet, as seen through the eyes of contemporary artists like Rashid Rana, Sally Smart, Wyn Lyn Tan and more at Singapore Arts Museum. Expect commissioned artworks, artist loans and works like a conceptual dock, maritime artefacts and reproductions, a time-lapse video of the Arctic landscape and more are on full display. Oh, and it’s free admission on National Day. Check out the other exhibitions at the Singapore Arts Museum.

National Day Open House
It’s free admission for Singaporeans and PRs to the National Museum, which means access to all the galleries and exhibitions like We Built A Nation, a showcase that explores the first 10 years of Singapore’s independence, as well as a display of artefacts that were donated from the Estate of the late Lee Kuan Yew; back-to-back screenings of films by Royston Tan; and a whole lot more.