Standing at a staggering 165 metres tall, the Singapore Flyer is the world’s highest observation wheel. With 28 capsules, and a maximum capacity of 28 people per capsule, you can easily imagine how big it must be. It is visible from afar, as it stands proudly in the heart of Singapore. Each rotation takes 30 minutes to complete, offering 360 degree panoramic views across Singapore city and beyond. You have the option to sit or stand during your flight and you can move around the capsule freely. The Singapore Flyer is fully wheelchair accessible.
There are various packages available for people to make the most of their Singapore Flyer experience. These range from the basic one rotation in a capsule with other people, to private capsules and drink and dining packages. People can book to have a full butler service dinner flight, the first place in the world to offer this, enjoy high tea in the air, sip champagne, or quaff back a Singapore Sling cocktail or a Signature cocktail. Flights are available during the day and after dark.
Surrounding the Singapore Flyer are many shops, bars and restaurants, where people can relax and have fun pre or post flight. Additionally, for those who want an extra spot of pampering, there is a fish foot massage spa and a reflexology centre.
A word of advice for anyone going on the Singapore Flyer – visit the bathroom before you enter the capsule! You may not need the toilet, and you may think it is only a 30 minute flight, but imagine how awful it would be to find yourself trapped in a glass capsule, high in the air, bursting for the toilet and knowing you cannot go for some time. Maybe I’m just over-cautious, but I also know what I am typically like.
I decided to take a basic night-time flight to enjoy the sights of the city in the dark. After buying my ticket, I took a wander through the Journey of Dreams exhibition. 7 different sections educate visitors about the history of Singapore and about the observation wheel. Some displays are interactive. One section in particular was particularly enjoyable, if a bit bizarre. Animal images were projected onto a curved screen on top of angular black shapes. These images then morphed into psychedelic patterns which twisted and turned on the screen. I didn’t really get the point of it at the time, but nonetheless, it was pretty and mesmerising to watch. Apparently, I found out afterwards, it is meant to represent the circular nature of the Singapore Flyer…
After this I found myself on the boarding platform, waiting to hop into a capsule. Being a bit nervous of heights, it was with a slight sense of foreboding that I stepped into the glass carriage. I quickly took a seat on the central wooden bench, and stared up at the capsule in front of the one I was in.
The views of the city were fantastic, and despite me not liking heights, I did manage to make myself go right up to the glass to take better pictures of the shiny dazzling Singapore skyline at night. The lights were reflecting off water below, which created a very pretty sight. I think the views at night are perhaps like looking at any other city at night – lots of lights and car headlights, but it was still very beautiful, even though I could not really make out any landmarks.
You are not permitted to take your own food and drink into the capsules, though I did have a sneaky bottle of Pepsi in my handbag.
Being on my own, I asked some other tourists if they would kindly take my photo with the city lights in the background. They kindly obliged. Looking at the pictures after though I realised that what I thought was a dazzling smile was something more akin to a grimace. I think I was more edgy about being right up to the glass than I actually thought!
It was an enjoyable experience though, and one that I am glad I did. I almost regret that I didn’t have the time to take a daytime flight as well to get a different perspective of the city.
When the capsule completed its rotation, after I disembarked I went for an obligatory mooch in the gift shop, where I bought several souvenirs that I probably did not need. But at the time, I had managed to persuade myself that my family and friends would all be overjoyed to receive a fridge magnet from the Singapore Flyer. Luckily, they were all too polite to say otherwise!
Tickets can be booked online or bought at the venue, with the exception of dining experiences which must be pre-booked. There are generally discounts for advance bookings made over the internet. The basic price is S$33. The flights operate from 8:30am to 10:15pm.
Have you been on the Singapore Flyer? What other observation wheels or observation towers do you recommend for exhilarating city views?