In the past, Chinese New Year used to be really fun for me. I was so excited about Chinese New Year every year because I could stay up really late and receive many red packets. I could also eat all the snacks and sweets I wanted, and my youthful metabolism will just take care of it.
However, now that I’m in my twenties, Chinese New Year is nowhere near as fun. As an adult, I am wishing that Chinese New Year will just past by quickly for these reasons. For those who are single, I’m sure your extended family will ask an endless list of awkward questions and make you more uncomfortable than Singapore’s humid weather ever could. Furthermore, a lot of food places will be closed and you won’t be able to escape the incessant sound of Chinese New Year music and the sight of Mediacorp artists made to dab.
This year, Chinese New Year falls on 5th and 6th February. You’ll be slapping yourself if you don’t take leave on 4th February for a five-day break. There’s no better time to escape the madness so here are 7 refreshingly short getaway ideas to escape Chinese New Year!
Bintan, The Grand Lagoi Hotel
Disregarding its reputation as a place where retirees would go and waste their CPF, Bintan is actually pretty nice. Getting there a breeze as the trip only takes 45 minutes to an hour to escape Singapore’s concrete jungle to the oasis that is Bintan.
We would recommend that you visit Village Resort Grand Lagoi as it is located right in the hear of Lagoi Bay, along with a beautiful beachfront that is just 15 minutes away from the Bandar Bentan Telani ferry terminal. The lush 4-star resort is also near many amenities which include Plaza Lagoi Mall, many F&B locations and entertainment spots. Another reason to consider the Grand Lagoi is that it is one of the few spots in the island where you get a view of the sea and the lake right at your doorstep. This results in a serene and relaxing environment where you can really take a well-deserved break.
The best part about this is that they currently have this offer where you get 3 nights for the price of two.
55 minutes Ferry Ride from Tanah Merah to Bandar Bentan Telani for about $15
Village Resort Grand Lagoi Bintan
Address: Jalan Gurindam Duabelas, Plot 27 & 29, Sebong Lagoi, Pulau bintan 29155, Kepulauan Riau, Indonesia (Map)
Contact: +62 770 692 988
Facebook: Grand Lagoi Village
Next on the list in Hanoi, the beautiful and enigmatic capital of Vietnam. Known for its fabulous coffee, amazing street food culture, beautiful scenery, and French colonial architecture, Hanoi is on many a traveler’s bucket list.
As Hanoi is not too big, you can cover a lot of ground in a day. Must see places include the Old Quarter, where you can find colonial-era buildings, Buddhist temples and historic boutique shophouses, galleries, and cafes next to each other. Near the Old quarter are major attractions like the Hanoi Opera House and National Museum of Vietnamese History you need to visit. If you are into scenery, you have to visit Ba Vi National Park where you can hike up the triple peak mountain explore lush rainforests and make your way up to a shrine built in the 11th century at the summit. Don’t forget to check out Hoan Kiem Lake for more sightseeing and Dong Xuan Market for your food and shopping fix!
3 and a half hour flight from Singapore to Hanoi for about $175.
Bored of Bali? Why not take a flight to Lombok, home to the majestic Mt Rinjani, pristine beaches and thriving marine life you can interact with. Located in West Nusa Tenggara, Lombok is home to many attractions on land and sea.
Adventurous folk should definitely stay on Lombok island as it is much easier to hike up the majestic Mt. Rinjani from there. For those who can’t get enough of the beach, you can stay Gili Islands, a group of 3 (Gili Trawangan, Gili Air, and Gili Meno) picturesque and very instagramable islands. This is where you can go snorkeling or experience marine life from a comfortable glass-bottomed boat.
Transport on the island is rather unique to as you can go around horse-drawn carts for about SGD$10. For a more traditional experience, you can make your way to Sukarara Village, Jonggat village, North Lombok district where you can immerse yourself in the local culture.
2 hour 40-minute flight from Singapore to Lombok International for about $490.
Rawa Island Resort
Alternatively, you can consider Rawa Island Resort, a tropical island resort located in Mersing District, Johor, Malaysia. Rawa means dove in Malay and the island is filled with them. This is a great place to unwind from the hectic demands of life in Singapore.
On the island, take a walk and experience the simpler things in life as you take long walks on the beach and feel the grains of sun-baked sand. Dive into the warm emerald colored waters of the South China Sea and snorkel along the coral reefs surrounding the island. When night falls, watch the sun slowly disappear over the crimson horizon.
2-3 hours by land and 30 minutes by boat.
You can hire SGMYTAXI private car service to get to Mersing Jetty from Singapore.
Otherwise, you can take a bus from either Golden Mile Complex or Singapore FlyerThe pickup point of Five Stars Express is at Golden Mile Complex or the Singapore Flyer. One way ticket costs SGD $31.50 and SGD $40.00 respectively.
Transport will take you to Mersing Jetty where you need to take a 30 minutes boat ride to Rawa Island. Normally, it costs RM35 per way but it depends on the size of the group.
Another place you can escape to is Koh Samui in Thailand. This tropical paradise has something for everyone. If you are on a budget, you can consider the affordable beachside bungalows, for those wanting to live the high ses life, you can check out the numerous villas and luxurious resorts off the coast of Koh Samui.
Koh Samui’s broad appeal stems from its wide variety of beaches. From the busy Chaweng Beach, laidback Lami Beach, the historic appeal of Bophut’s Fishman village to the idyllic beach of Maenam; there’s much to see and do there. Attractions include Angthong National Marine Park, the Big Buddha shrine, Hin ta and Hin Yai natural geological formations, Namuang Waterfall and the Secret Buddha Garden.
2-hour flight from Singapore for about $680
Amanpulo is an exclusive private resort found on the island of Pamalican in the Philippines. The resort is only accessible via a private plane from Manila so you’ll feel like a VIP when you go there. This is the place to fall off the face of the earth.
At the resort, the accommodation takes design cues from bahay kubo (traditional stilt houses). The villas or casitas you book will give you access to the beach along with idyllic views of the seas.
Modeled after bahay kubo (traditional stilt houses), the Casitas and Villas you book will offer direct beach access and gorgeous sea views. Casitas also have broad wooden decks, hammocks in secluded corners and lovely furnishing. If you pay a bit more, there are two villas you can book which have private plunge pools while most of the villas have a butler and private chef at your service.
There’s also lots to do on the island as you can enjoy guided tours, kayaking and a chance to view turtles hatching eggs on the beach courtesy of the island’s turtle conservation program
3-hour flight from Singapore to Manila and 1-hour flight from Manila to Amanpulo.
Although Myanmar may have seen its fair share of troubles, there seems to be a light at the end of the tunnel as the country is developing at a rapid pace and opening up. There is no better time to visit Yangon, Myanmar’s largest city. Yangon’s architecture is an interesting mix as it boasts the most colonial-era architecture buildings in Southeast Asia along with many accompanying skyscrapers. As the heart of Myanmmar’s commerce and art, the city is a great representation of the country’s opening up to the world. Here are some of the things to do.
Undoubtedly, you should visit the magnificent Shwedagon Pagoda, an important Buddhist monument in Myanmar. Another important religious and historical landmark you should visit is the Sule Pagoda which has a long history as a space for politics, rallies and protests. For your shopping fix check out Bogyoke Aung San Market while delicious Chinese food can be found in Chinatown Yangon. For sightseeing, you can visit Kandawagyi Park, visit the National Museum of Myanmar and take the Yangon Circular Railroad Road.
3-hour flight from Singapore to Yangon International Airport.
Hope you enjoyed the article and got some ideas about where to escape to during the Chinese New Year break. For all your travel needs, IUIGA has you covered. Check out our full range of travel products for a better trip experience!