Welcome to our ultimate travel guide for Singapore in January!
January is an excellent time to visit Singapore, as the weather is relatively cooler and more pleasant than other months. Although it’s still the monsoon season, the rainfall is usually more predictable, allowing you to plan your outdoor activities easily.
This month is also a time for exciting events and festivals, such as Chinese New Year and Singapore Art Week, allowing you to immerse yourself in the cultural diversity and the city’s unique history.
Are you thinking about going in another month? Read our guide on the best time to visit Singapore.
Weather And Climate In January
Average Temperatures and Humidity
Singapore experiences a tropical climate in January, with warm temperatures and high humidity.
The average temperature ranges from 23°C (73°F) at night to 30°C (86°F) during the day. Humidity levels usually hover around 80%, sometimes making the weather feel muggy. However, the relatively cooler temperatures in January make it more comfortable to explore the city compared to other months.
Rainfall and Monsoon Season
January falls within Singapore’s Northeast Monsoon season, typically lasting from December to early March. This means that you can expect more frequent rainfall during your visit.
On average, Singapore receives about 240 mm (9.4 inches) of rain in January, with about 15 rainy days throughout the month.
While showers can be heavy, they are often short-lived and followed by sunshine, making it easy to continue your outdoor activities after the rain has stopped.
Tips for Handling the Weather
- Dress appropriately: Opt for light, breathable clothing made of cotton or moisture-wicking fabric to stay comfortable in the humidity. Don’t forget to pack a light jacket or cardigan for cooler evenings or air-conditioned indoor spaces.
- Stay hydrated: With high humidity and warm temperatures, drinking plenty of water throughout the day is essential to prevent dehydration.
- Carry an umbrella or a rain poncho: Be prepared for sudden showers by keeping a compact umbrella or a lightweight rain poncho in your daypack.
- Plan indoor activities: Singapore has plenty of indoor attractions to explore, such as museums, shopping malls, and art galleries. Schedule these activities during periods when rain is more likely, so you can still make the most of your day.
- Apply sunscreen and wear a hat: Despite the cloud cover, the sun in Singapore can be quite strong. Apply sunscreen with a high SPF and wear a hat or sunglasses to protect yourself from harmful UV rays.
- Be flexible with your plans: Keep an open mind and be prepared to adjust your itinerary if the weather doesn’t cooperate. By being flexible, you’ll still be able to enjoy your trip without letting the rain dampen your spirits.
January Events and Festivals
Here are the events to look forward to:
|Festival / Events
|New Years Day
|Chinese New Year
|January / February
(Depending on Lunar Calendar)
|Singapore Art Week
|January 19 to 28, 2024
|January 15 to 18, 2024
(Depending on Hindu Calendar)
|January 25, 2024
(Depending on Hindu Calendar)
New Years Day
To start your year with a bang, head to Marina Bay on New Year’s Eve and welcome the start of the year by seeing spectacular fireworks or joining lively celebrations.
On the day itself, Singaporeans usually spend time with their families, enjoying leisurely meals and visiting friends and relatives. Many people also take advantage of the public holiday to relax, recharge, and make resolutions for the year ahead.
New Year’s Day is an excellent time for tourists to explore the city more relaxedly, as the streets are less crowded and the atmosphere is more laid-back. Most attractions, shopping centres, and restaurants remain open, offering visitors plenty of options for entertainment and dining. Remember that public transportation may operate on a reduced schedule, so check the timings in advance.
Overall, New Year’s Day in Singapore is a time of celebration, relaxation, and new beginnings, providing a memorable experience for locals and visitors.
Chinese New Year Celebrations
Chinese New Year, also known as the Lunar New Year, is one of Singapore’s most significant and vibrant events, usually in late January or early February.
The city comes alive with colourful decorations, festive markets, and live performances as locals and visitors welcome the new year.
Key highlights include the River Hongbao, an annual event featuring giant lantern displays, cultural performances, fireworks, and the Chingay Parade, a dazzling street procession showcasing intricate floats, vibrant costumes, and traditional lion and dragon dances.
Singapore Art Week
Singapore Art Week, typically held in mid-to-late January, celebrates the city’s thriving art scene. This week-long event showcases contemporary art exhibitions, workshops, performances, and installations at various venues across Singapore.
From established galleries to unconventional spaces, Singapore Art Week offers a unique opportunity for art enthusiasts and curious travellers to engage with the city’s creative community and discover emerging talents.
Pongal is a four-day harvest festival celebrated by the Indian (Tamil) community in Singapore, typically held in mid-January.
The festival is marked by thanksgiving rituals, traditional music and dance performances, and the preparation of a special dish called Pongal, made from newly harvested rice, jaggery, and milk.
The celebrations take place mainly in Little India, where you can find beautifully decorated streets, lively markets, and cultural events that provide insight into the rich traditions of the Tamil community.
Thaipusam is a significant Hindu festival celebrated by the Tamil community in Singapore, usually on a full moon in late January or early February. The event is marked by a colourful and mesmerizing procession from the Sri Srinivasa Perumal Temple to the Sri Thendayuthapani Temple.
Devotees carry ornate kavadis (large, intricate structures) as an act of devotion and penance, often with their bodies pierced by hooks and skewers. While Thaipusam can be intense, it is a unique cultural experience that offers a glimpse into the deeply-rooted traditions and faith of the Tamil community.
The festival generally lasts for two days.
Top Attractions and Activities in January
Marina Bay Sands
Visiting the iconic Marina Bay Sands in January offers a fantastic opportunity to enjoy its breathtaking rooftop views and infinity pool without the scorching heat of other months. Additionally, with the Chinese New Year festivities around the corner, you can witness the beautiful decorations and light displays in the Marina Bay area.
With relatively pleasant temperatures, a visit to Merlion Park in January allows you to take leisurely strolls and admire the iconic Merlion statue, which stands proudly at the waterfront, symbolising Singapore’s humble beginnings as a fishing village.
Gardens by the Bay
Wander through the awe-inspiring Supertree Grove and marvel at the Cloud Forest and Flower Dome conservatories at Gardens by the Bay. You can find plants worldwide in climate-controlled environments, providing a refreshing break from the humidity outdoors.
January is a perfect time to immerse yourself in Singapore’s rich Chinese heritage as Chinatown bustles with excitement in preparation for the Chinese New Year. Enjoy the festive atmosphere, shop for traditional goods at the colourful street markets, and sample delicious treats.
During January, Little India comes alive with the Thaipusam and Pongal celebrations. These festivals allow visitors to witness the rituals, traditional music, and dance performances while sampling delicious Indian delicacies.
The historic district of Kampong Glam is a year-round attraction. Still, January’s cooler temperatures make exploring the vibrant streets, shops, and cafes of this Malay-Arab enclave a more comfortable experience. Don’t miss the beautiful Sultan Mosque and the bustling Haji Lane, adorned with colourful street art.
Singapore Botanic Gardens
January is ideal for visiting the UNESCO World Heritage-listed Singapore Botanic Gardens. Wander through the lush greenery, discover the National Orchid Garden, and enjoy outdoor concerts at the Symphony Stage.
Explore MacRitchie Reservoir’s beautiful nature trails, including the famous TreeTop Walk. Enjoy the serene surroundings, spot local wildlife, and soak in panoramic views from the suspension bridge. January is a great time of year to go trekking in Singapore.
As nocturnal animals tend to be more active in cooler weather, January is a great time to visit the Night Safari. Embark on a thrilling tram ride or walking trails, and witness over 2,500 animals worldwide in their natural nighttime habitats.
VivoCity, Singapore’s largest shopping mall, is a must-visit destination for shopaholics. Enjoy air-conditioned comfort while browsing various retail outlets, dining options, and entertainment facilities.
January is an excellent time for shopping enthusiasts to visit Orchard Road. Christmas Sale often extends into the month, offering fantastic deals and discounts at numerous shopping centres and boutiques along the famous shopping street.
A trip to the 24-hour Mustafa Centre offers a unique shopping experience in Little India. The cooler evenings make exploring the narrow aisles filled with an incredible array of products, from electronics to textiles, a more enjoyable experience.