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Changi Airport in Singapore is a traveler’s playground that is forging the future of pre-flight entertainment and stopovers which allow you to discover a destination, not just an airport. The travel hub had already earned itself bragging rights as the “World’s Best Airport” on multiple occasions before it even opened the doors to its new extension – Jewel Changi Airport – in April 2019.

Jewel Changi Airport in Singapore is a glimpse at what the future of travel looks like, and that future is emitting some serious sci-fi vibes. The new(ish) Jewel Changi is a glass-domed rainforest with a Vortex Waterfall that cascades from the rooftop, a Canopy Park with a glass-bottom walkway, and a Sky Train that takes you on a scenic journey through Sheiseido Forest Valley while transporting you between terminals. And let’s not forget the Mirror Maze, the Hedge Maze, and the two Sky Nets that are suspended from the dome’s ceiling – one for walking along and one for bouncing on. I could go on…

…And I will.

Typically, I leave it as late as possible before heading to an airport to avoid the boredom of waiting around – except for the fleeting few months when I held Silver Status with Emirates and actually went early to make use of the complimentary Lounge Access. However, on this occasion, I made a point of being at Changi Airport 3 hours ahead of the flight to check out whether it’s actually deserving of the hype. Just to be clear, it is deserving of every ounce of that hype, and I could – quite happily – live there. To give you a glimpse of what to expect from the best airport in the world, here are a handful of things we managed to squeeze in before boarding our flight bound for Abu Dhabi:

World’s Largest Indoor Waterfall

The Vortex Waterfall inside Jewel Changi Airport surrounded by the Sheiseido Forest Valley

Jewel Changi boasts a green, urban jungle that bathes in natural sunlight and, at its core, we found the world’s largest indoor waterfall. You can walk around the 40-meter Vortex Waterfall on 5 floors to see it from different vantage points and to enjoy a leisurely stroll through a rainforest before boarding your plane. There’s a light and sound projection at the waterfall when the sun goes down, but we didn’t have time to stick around for that.

Canopy Park

A canopy walkway across the Jewel Changi Airport in Singapore

Sitting on the top floor (L5) of Jewel Changi, Canopy Garden is a 14,000 square-metre hub that will lure you in with its multiple attractions. You can dine under the trees, walk the canopy bridge or – like us – you can put adult life on pause while exploring mazes and sky nets. It costs 5 Singapore Dollars for entry to the Canopy Garden, but you’ll need to top up if you want to to try some of the best attractions that are inside it.

Sky Nets

Girl standing on Manulife Sky Nets in Singapore Airport

One of the most surprising things about Canopy Garden and all its attractions was that it was so quiet, but I imagine it won’t stay like that for long as more and more travellers head to Jewel Changi Airport early for some pre-flight downtime. We didn’t even have to queue to get a ticket to the Manulife Sky Nets (15 SGD), but at the time we didn’t realise that one was for walking and the other was for bouncing. While the bouncing Sky Nets stretch across 250 metres, they only sit at a height of 8 metres, whereas the walking Sky Nets soar above 25-metre void. The Sky Nets are essentially huge web-like trails suspended from the ceiling, so you can catch some air time and wear yourself out if you want to go straight to sleep when you finally board your flight.

Sky Train between Terminals

Sunset over the terminal tower at Singapore International Airport

When you look down from the top floor of Jewel Changi Airport, you’ll see trains passing the Vortex Waterfall and making their way through the trees, palms and shrubs of Sheiseido Forest Valley. And if that wasn’t enough, both the rainforest and the waterfall make use of collected rain water that fuels the futuristic dome. We caught the Sky Train from Jewel Changi Airport to Terminal 3 and caught our last Singaporean sunset as it left the dome and passed over the highways below.

Foodie Adventures

Fast food street in Terminal 3 of Changi airport

Singapore is a melting pot of cultures, so its foodie scene spans cuisines from across the globe, and its airport foodie scene is no different. Whether you want some fast food on ‘Food Street’ or a fine-dining restaurant experience, an Insta-worthy macaroon or a High-Tea experience, you’ll find so many top places to eat inside Changi Airport. What surprised us is that even if you’re sat in a food court, there’s a peaceful tranquility is that is highly unusual for an extremely busy travel hub. Perhaps it’s the sheer size of the terminals that makes it seem quiet… or maybe people are just hiding away in the fancy spas and funky transit hotels that I haven’t even mentioned yet.

High-Street to High-End Shopping

High-end Louis Vuitton boutique inside Terminal Three at Changi Airport

Butterfly Garden

Pink flower and butterfly on a leaf

Have you ever walked through an airport and stumbled across a butterfly sanctuary? Nor had I until I flew out of Terminal 3 in Changi Airport. Yes, there is an actually butterfly garden where you can zen with vibrantly-winged insects. Free Movie Screenings

Just more real-life evidence that Changi Airport is a traveller’s paradise. You. are. welcome.

Other things at Changi Airport…

People walking through a colourful airport terminal

I would happily go back to Singapore airport again.Here are some more things to try while at the airport:

  • Check out the Giant Airport Slide – we were flying from Terminal 3 where multi-storey slide is, but we made the mistake of thinking it was after security, so we missed it. It’s actually before, and you can’t go back.
  • Get some shut-eye in the Snooze Areas – there are zen zones dotted all over the airport with recliner chairs, massage chairs and more
  • Free recharge while working out: you can hop on pedal bikes that use human power to recharge your electronics.
  • Relax at one of the many spas across the four terminals
  • Go to the Gaming Hub for some arcade fun
  • Take a dip in the Changi Airport’s rooftop pool
  • Get a makeover at the Dior Beauty House
  • Check-in at YotelAir – SmartBeds, rain showers, free drinks, a gym… access to Jewel Changi and more.

Where else in the world would you see an airport featuring as a must-visit attraction in a city? Yep, Jewel Changi Airport is a must when it comes to top things to do in Singapore.

Looking for more travel inspiration? Check out top destinations from around the world.

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Inside the Jewel Changi Airport in Singapore | Travel