With the first day of the Chinese New Year falling on a Monday, tomorrow marks the start of a four-day weekend. There are many events to keep you busy in between visiting relatives.


Image: Singapore Philatelic Museum


Some National Heritage Board museums will be offering visitors free admission on Monday and Tuesday, along with Chinese New Year-themed exhibitions.

At the Singapore Philatelic Museum, learn about monkeys through stamps. At the Sun Yat Sen Nanyang Memorial Hall, check out a Chinese zodiac exhibition. And, customise your own spring couplets at the Asian Civilisations Museum.

Where: Singapore Philatelic Museum, 23B Coleman Street

When: 10am to 7pm daily except for Sunday (10am to 6pm)

Admission: Free for Singapore citizens and permanent residents; other visitors pay $6 (adult) and $4 (child aged three to 12) on weekend, free admission on Monday and Tuesday

Info: www.spm.org.sg

Where: Asian Civilisations Museum, 1 Empress Place

When: Special Chinese New Year edition of Saturdays@ACM tomorrow, 1 to 5pm

Admission: Free

Info: acm.org.sg



Bored of lion dances? Head to the S.E.A Aquarium at Resorts World Sentosa and marvel at an underwater dragon dance, which is performed daily by divers.

Go on the Trail Of Fortune afterwards, a themed zone where visitors can uncover fun facts about festive customs and symbols.

Round up the day by popping over to Universal Studios Singapore, which is decked out in the celebratory colours of spring. You can take photographs with characters such as the Minions and Elmo dressed in festive outfits.

Where: S.E.A Aquarium and Universal Studios Singapore, Resorts World Sentosa, 8 Sentosa Gateway

When: Till Feb 22, 10am to 7pm daily; USS is open till 9pm from Feb 6 to 13

Admission: S.E.A Aquarium, $28 (Singapore resident), $32 (adult), $22 (child aged four to 12 and senior citizens aged 60 and above); Universal Studios Singapore, $74 (adult), $54 (child), $36 (senior citizen)

Info: www.rwsentosa.com



Sentosa is celebrating two special events this month – Chinese New Year and Valentine's Day.

At the Merlion Plaza, there is a lantern display to resemble a family of monkeys. Further down is the Union Of Love light display and Prosperity Bridge framed by arches of lantern and cherry blossoms.

From tomorrow till Tuesday, visitors can try traditional activities such as calligraphy, paper-cutting and lantern-making.

Where: Various locations on Sentosa

When: Till Feb 14

Admission: Standard entrance fees apply to certain locations

Info: www.sentosa.com.sg/en/febspringtime



Inspired by the Chinese classical tale Journey To The West, Gardens by the Bay has created its newest floral display, Dahlia Dreams.

Walk through a beautiful landscape of about 200 cultivars of dahlias, begonias and other flowers against the backdrop of a 7m-tall mountain, bringing to mind the flowers and fruit mountain where the Monkey King was said to be born in the novel.  

Capture a festive wefie with one of six monkey- shaped topiaries made of airplants and the dried leaves of the breadfruit tree, or a family of driftwood monkey sculptures.

Where: Flower Dome, Gardens by the Bay, 18 Marina Gardens Drive

When: Till Feb 28, 9am to 9pm daily

Admission: Singaporeans, permanent residents and those living in Singapore, $12 (adult), $8 (senior citizen/child aged between three and 12), free for children aged below three; standard (includes entry to Cloud Forest), $28 (adult/senior citizen) and $15 (child)

Info: www.gardensbythebay.com.sg


(First published in The Straits Times.)