Most people have it already planned when it was released that it’ll be a 2 day holiday. You see, February 5 and 6 2019 were declared a holiday, which falls on a Tuesday and Wednesday. If you are a budget traveller (or a wise one), you’ll be filing your leave to maximize the whole week, which will give you a 9-day holiday (Feb 2-10). It’ll just cost you 3 paid leaves to enjoy the 9 day holiday. YAY!!
So, where can you go on a 9-day holiday? This is the best time to check off some places on your bucket list. If you have saved up and ready to go, there’s the US, UK, Europe and Japan trip just to name some. But for us, budget travellers, these trips need more in depth planning and saving up to do, so they are still out of the picture (maybe someday).
If big and expensive trips are out of the picture, I’ll share with you other places that you can go for a holiday. I made a list long before of places you can visit this Lunar year holiday. Here are some suggestions:
I have taken into consideration that most places with a strong Chinese community will probably be on a holiday as well, so most establishments will be closed. Hongkong, Taiwan, Singapore, and most of China for example. Here in Singapore, most hawker places and restaurants are closed for days due to the holiday.
If you are just planning it last minute, like us, don’t worry. I have taken into consideration that flying out is not an option due to budget constraints and that no paid leaves will be used (that has been allocated on a different holiday). Here are some doable places you can visit to enjoy the Chinese New Year holiday:
1. Johor Bahru
Johor Bahru is a popular place for Singaporeans to go. It is near and accessible by a highway. A trip down there calls for an enjoyable road trip. A word of caution, the highway can get clogged up, especially during the weekends. The influx of people crossing the border, undergoing two immigration stops, you can expect a bit of waiting time to cross.
Some things you can enjoy in Johor Bahru are Legoland Malaysia, Sanrio Hello Kitty Town and the newly opened Desaru Coast Waterpark. If waterparks and theme parks are not your thing, fret not because you can also enjoy shopping at Johor Bahru’s outlet stores and eat your way along Johor.
2. Batam, Indonesia
Batam is also just a stone throw away from Singapore. You can easily drop by Batam via ferry. Batam is known for a place to unwind and relax for hey have beaches, rich food culture and best affordable spas.
Your Singaporean Dollars have better purchasing power versus the Indonesian Rupee. Most Singaporean escape to Batam for spa excursions, food tripping and a bit of shopping.
3. Bintan, Indonesia
Same as Batam, Bintan is also near Singapore, just a ferry ride away. Bintan is a bit further down Batam. Bintan is known as a beach haven for they have nice beaches and resorts. Bintan is a bit pricey than Batam because they are more detached to the city. You are looking for more of an island vibe, Bintan is the way to go.
We have been to Bintan Lagoon and I must say we enjoyed our stay there. It was a great way to unwind and chill after a weeklong city hustle.
If you are in no mood to get out of Singapore, there are a lot of places you can check out in the island. There are a lot of celebrations island-wide that you can join in. Just be informed that most places to eat and stores are closed for days here.