Nightlife in Singapore - A photographer’s perspective

Apart from being a sprawling metropolis, Singapore is also a fabulous photographic destination. At dusk, Singapore transforms itself into a glittering extravaganza of light and colour that makes it irresistible for photographers. A creative eye, a decent camera and a tripod is all that you need to photograph this vibrant city at night. From popular tourist attractions like the Merlion Park to the lesser known Johor Straits, you have an ample choice of hotspots to explore and capture.

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On festive seasons like the New Year or the Chinese New Year, Singapore extends a magnificent buffet of opportunities. During the Chinese New Year, the Buddha Tooth Relic Temple in China Town is lit up in a way that makes it impossible to not photograph. Not just that, the light trails of vehicles and the decorations on the roads add another dimension to the photos. A fisheye lens can provide unique angles to the subject being photographed and is worth a try.

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One of the most visited attractions in Singapore is the Marina Bay Sands and its surrounding areas. One can easily climb up the Marina Bay Sands to get a bird’s eye view of the entire city. An ultra-wide or a fisheye lens is recommended.

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After descending from the Marina Bay Sands, you can experience the light and laser show held at its premises at 8 pm regularly. A photo trip to Singapore is incomplete without a shot of this spectacular show. From here, you can walk further up to shoot the Art and Science museum and the Helix Bridge. The Art and Science Museum structure symbolises the welcoming hand of Singapore. The Helix Bridge on the other hand is a pedestrian bridge linking Marina Centre to Marina South in the Marina Bay area of Singapore.

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From here, you can walk down to the Merlion Park and photograph the reflections of the surrounding buildings with the Merlion in the foreground. At 9 pm, the laser show is repeated and a shot captured from the Merlion Park is worth the wait. During the New Year Eve, this area offers a perfect view of the fireworks. If you are in Singapore on eve of New Year, this is the place to be.

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Another location which guarantees a perfect view of the Marina Bay Sands is the Marina Barrage. This location is a must visit for shooting sunrises or sunsets. Post sunset, the reflections of the Marina Bay Sands and the Gardens by the Bay in the backwaters is something that must not be missed.

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The Gardens by the Bay, located in the vicinity of Marina Bay Sands, is something unique to Singapore. The greenhouses, constructed in the shape of sea shells, form the two domes - the Flower Dome and the Cloud dome, which recreate the tropical gardens and the rainforests. At night, the super trees in its premises provide a delightful spectacle of light which is a treat to photographers. The lights seem to dance to the tunes of popular numbers and are a delight even to those not too keen on photography. The light show is a regular attraction from 7:45 to 8 PM.

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From here, one can head to the the Suntec City Mall, to view and photograph the Fountain of Wealth, listed as the largest fountain in the Guiness book of world records.

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The moment someone mentions nightlife in Singapore, one place that comes to mind is Clark Quay. Clark Quay, with its many restaurants and nightclubs, is a party hub. As a photographer, one can spend some quality time capturing trails of the boats on the Singapore river.

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At a walking distance from Clark Quay, there is the Raffles place, which also offers good night shots of the bridges in its vicinity. The Anderson Bridge and the Cavenagh Bridge are two of the most captured bridges in the area.

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Spread across an area of 7 hectares, the Kalang Riverside Park flanks both sides of the Kalang river and is a go to destination for water sports. For photographers, it presents a great location for sunsets and long exposure shots.

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Another popular location by the Kalang river is the Singapore Indoor stadium and its surrounding areas. The pedestrian bridge and the deserted Tanjong Rhu restaurant during sunset offers a great setting for that perfect shot.

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A personal favourite is the Raffles Marina Lighthouse or Johor Straits Lighthouse, located on the far west of Singapore. From the lighthouse premises, one can clearly see the causeway bridge at Tuas, which crosses over to Johor Bahru in Malaysia. It is located on the outskirts of the city, but can be clubbed with a visit to the Jurong Bird Park and the Chinese Gardens. The twin pagodas at the Chinese gardens presents an amazing view of the sunset.

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Popular for fishing, the Changi boardwalk is listed as one of the best destinations to capture sunsets in Singapore. The boardwalk is a 2.2 km stretch and connects the Changi beach club to the Changi ferry terminal. The walk presents some great views of the sunset, specially at the sunset point close to the Changi beach club.

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Another popular destination for capturing sunsets is the Henderson Bridge. The wave-shaped bridge provides ample photographic opportunities, at any time of the day, but at sunset, the magenta hues in the sky provides the perfect setting for that picture perfect shot.

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Wildlife, landscapes and natural vistas have been the eternal favourites of photographers. However, the sheer spectacle that a man-made forest like Singapore offers, more so during night-time, is often overlooked and worth exploring at least once. Singapore provides all the ingredients for a perfect photographic recipe – vibrance, colour, light and spectacle. All that is needed is a keen eye and an eagerness to explore.

Let the images do the talking…..

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