Anyone who has been following me for some time now on Instagram (you DON’T? Goooo nowwwww!!! Here!), knows how much I love airports and hopping on and off flights. I LOVE the thrill of takeoff, the AMAZE views from the window (ALWAYS the window seat 😃 ), the inflight entertainment, even the food (yeah I know.. It’s not always great), and the excitement of landing in a new city. There’s just something about airports and aircrafts that seem to magnify the joy of heading out to a brand new place, don’t you think?
But there’s one part of it that can get a tad dreary – the layover. No one wants to be stuck in a stopover city for any longer than absolutely necessary. It’s like being in a sort of limbo, where you’re not where you have to be yet, and there isn’t much you can do but wait around hoping time does its thing a little quicker than usual. And some layovers, such as ones which involve a stopover of more than 2 hours, can really drive you nuts.
I had a layover at Changi Airport – for 5 hours, 40 minutes.
A normal person would get antsy with the amount of time between the first flight and the next, and I am no different. You know you’re just a few hours away from where you need to be, but the hours just seem to drag and your resolve starts to crumble and impatience sets in, making the wait even harder, you feel me? But to speak the truth, if I have to survive a ~6 hour layover, there’s nowhere I’d rather be than at Singapore’s Changi airport. Why, you ask? Read on!
Things to do during a Layover at Changi
There is NO DEARTH of things to do here! It’s got something for everyone, for any length of time, and any age group. Here are some of my favourites –
See the city
Yep. Changi airport is so cool, it organises free city tours for folks with a layover of over 5 hours. I’ve visited the city before, so I didn’t opt for this, but it’s a great way to explore another country before heading over to your actual destination, don’t you think?
You nature lover, you!
Changi boasts of plenty of natural beauty (strange within an airport, huh). There’s a Koi Pond at every terminal, with little bridges to cross and look over at the vividly coloured fish floating in the pond below you. You can take some great pictures over here, the backdrop is excellent 😜 Speaking of excellent backdrops, check out the Enchanted Garden at T2! It is GORGEOUS, and looks exactly the way it sounds – enchanting.
There’s a Butterfly Garden at every terminal, and if your layover is during the day, you’ll be lucky enough to see lots of colourful butterflies fluttering around! Some might even perch on your nose, you never know. There’s also a Water Lily Garden, which is laid out in the shape of a water lily (duh), a Sunflower Garden bursting with, you guessed it, sunflowers, and a Cactus Garden as well (don’t need to explain that one). Step out of the airport premises onto these gardens for a breath of fresh air – quite literally.
There are FREE MASSAGE CHAIRS all over the airport! I am not even kidding. These will be located near the food court and shops, so they can be occupied. But hey, it’s an airport and people are always moving, so if you find one that’s occupied, hang around and you’ll get it to yourself soon! Stick those twinkle-toes in, kick back and let the machine pamper those poor, tired feet. There’s also a Spa Express with an extensive menu for those who want some major pampering 😍 (You’ll have to pay for this one, though)
Water babies, this one’s for you
There is a ROOFTOP POOL. The only outdoor pool in an airport. Need I say anything more?
A treat for the eyes, the Kinetic Rain at T1 can be seen by those who clear immigration, so if you’re going for the free tour I’ve mentioned above, you’ll probably get a glimpse of this! There’s also a Social Tree at T1, which allows you to create and save messages on the tree which you can then access later. Cool, huh?
Awaken your inner child by going ‘WHEEEEEEE’ on this giant slide at T3! Except that it’s outside, so folks clearing immigration, this one’s for you. You know you need the fun after that long flight, what are you waiting for? 😃
Catch a movie
Kill a good bulk of your layover at Changi with a good movie. There’s a mini theatre inside the airport at T2. Walk in, grab a seat and catch one of the latest releases. Best part? It’s free 😎
Some retail therapy?
Each terminal has TONS of shopping options! Clothes, cosmetics, accessories, food, drink, you name it. I love the M&M store for the sole reason that there’s a model of a different M&M outside it every time, and it’s fun to take pictures with 😜 But I’ll tell you what I really love. Charles and Keith is a Singapore based brand which sells shoes and bags and other accessories. This stuff is sold at its CHEAPEST at Changi airport. Why? Home brand, AND no duty! Plus their collection of shoes and bags is so dreamy, I want it all 😍 Go crazy!
EAT ALL THE FOOD
Of COURSE. How can one not? Changi is peppered (pun unintended) with some AMAZING options to treat those tastebuds. You will find fast food joints, local nosh, healthy options, desserts, and bars, so take your pick and head there! I’d sworn to eat healthy this trip (I tried guys, I really did try!), so I treated myself to an organic hummus wrap at Pret a Manger. It was quite delicious. For those of you who want to try some Singaporean cuisine, theres a place that serves chicken rice in T1. The sign just says ‘Chicken Rice’, you’ll see it. Check it out. Grab a drink at Harry’s Bar and Diner at T2 before boarding your flight (please don’t get drunk before your flight though, just don’t 😝) and call it a day 😊
These are spread across the 3 terminals, but you really don’t need to worry about getting around.
The terminals are connected through an internal Skytrain, which turns up at every terminal pretty frequently – every 5-7 minutes – so it’s super easy to shuttle around.
Here’s a tip –
You needn’t lug your hand baggage around with you either. Drop it off at one of the luggage storage facilities and experience the airport at complete ease. They’ve thought of everything, seriously.
So here you go! I’d say I hope you find this enough to cover your layover at Changi, but I’d rather say I hope your layover is long enough to cover all of this, am I right? 😄
Do you think I’ve missed something out? I’d love to add to the list, so let me know if you think there’s something more we can do at Changi! Love x