Having made its debut to much fanfare at the Bayfront Event Space last December, the Prudential Marina Bay Carnival has successfully played host to a 1.4 million-strong crowd of adrenaline seekers across the four-month extravaganza. Back for its sophomore run from now till 24 March 2019, this year’s edition boasts 50 thrilling rides and attractions spanning over 23,000 square metres (that’s the size of four football fields), alongside a refreshed lineup of festival grub, fun workshops, music performances and more! If you’re heading down this weekend, here’s what you can expect.

Three new rides

Wave Swinger

Besides the classic mainstays of rollercoasters and vikings, there are also three spanking new rides in addition to its lineup: Wave Swinger, Freak Out and Jumper Jumper. The highlight attraction is no doubt the Wave Swinger, a swing carousel that is decorated with mural paintings of iconic landmarks such as Gardens by the Bay and Marina Bay Sands – which makes for a super photogenic backdrop if you’re here for the ‘gram.

Freak Out

The other two attractions are just as thrilling, but Freak Out takes the cake when it comes to upping the scream factor. As its name suggests, try not to freak out as this gut-wrenching ride sends you spinning in all directions (not for the faint-hearted).

Jumper Jumper

For a more family-friendly option, hop on the Jumper Jumper – the carnival equivalent of a fidget spinner that takes you round and round on a whirlwind adventure.

More fun and games

 
 
 
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Aside from the solid repertoire of rides available, you can also look forward to an array of fun-filled programmes to keep you entertained throughout – think food challenges, themed dress contests (more on that later), open mic sessions, interactive workshops for all ages and more. While you’re there, don’t forget to keep an eye out for a Chewbacca Santa roving the festival grounds!

Come dressed to win

Although admission is free, you’d still require a good amount of credits for the rides and games. Well, here’s an easy way for you to score more perks: simply come decked out according to the theme of the month, and the first 150 visitors donning the craziest outfits will walk away with bonus credits. Not only will you be the coolest kid at the carnival, you’ll also get more bang for your buck!

Enjoy live performances

What’s a carnival without a good soundtrack? Be treated to stunning live performances by homegrown music acts such as Among Four, Daniel Sid and DJ Gainzter, who are set to bring the house down with their addictive tunes. How’s that for supporting local?

Feast to your heart’s content

Prudential Marina Bay Carnival F&B

Feeling peckish after the rides? Pop by the F&B tent where you can indulge in a variety of lip-smacking fare – from hipster-approved meatballs served in a bucket at Sofnade, to classic All-American burgers found at Burg Nerds. With action-packed thrills, delicious grub and all-around good vibes, there’s plenty to play, eat and do at Prudential Marina Bay Carnival!

Prudential Marina Bay Carnival runs from 22 December 2018 to 24 March 2019, 4pm to 11pm daily (extended hours till 2am on New Year’s Eve). For more information, head over to www.marinabaycarnival.sg

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What a year 2018 has been! From all-night partying to explosive firework displays, end off the year on a high note at these celebratory New Year’s Eve countdown parties.

Bang Bang Club NYE Special: Future Shock

Ring-in-2019-at-These-10-Insta-Worthy-Year-End-Celebrations-01-Bang-Bang-Club

Get the party started at Bang Bang Club’s NYE Special, along with Californian DJ J.Espinosa who will be spinning the decks with his high-energy EDM mixes – all the way into the first hours of 2019. Come dressed in your best futuristic glam get-up as you gather and countdown to the club’s very own version of the Times Square ball drop!

Tickets from $35, visit Peatix for more information.

Coastes New Year’s Eve Beach BBQ Countdown Party

Ring-in-2019-at-These-10-Insta-Worthy-Year-End-Celebrations-02-Coastes-New-Years-Eve-Beach-BBQ

What better way to ring in the new year than an indulgent buffet as you dance the night away by the beach? Hosted by the good folks at Coastes, enjoy a rustic beach barbecue party that features a scrumptious spread of freshly-grilled seafood, hearty mains and sweet treats alongside live performances by music mastros Stephen Francis and Lily Anna Nuris.

Tickets from $75, visit Coastes for more information.

Esplanade New Year’s Eve Countdown

Esplanade New Year’s Eve Countdown

Join celebrity host Timothy Nga and local talents Nick Zavior, Amni Musfirah & The Hustlers, NovoBloco and Bloco Singapura for six hours of non-stop entertainment as you come together with your loved ones for a melodious end to 2018 at the Esplanade Outdoor Theatre.

Admission is free, visit Esplanade Theatres for more information.

Lulu Presents: Winter’s Garden

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Who says we can’t have a white Christmas in Singapore? Step into a winter wonderland and immerse yourself in the dazzling display of flamboyant performances at the transformed LuLu’s Lounge – think stilt walkers, jugglers and live musicians with a cheeky circus twist.

Tickets from $30, visit Peatix for more information.

Marina Bay: Food Truck Fest

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Eat your way to 2019 at the Food Truck Fest with a lip-smacking lineup of local delights! Located right at the promenade of Marina Bay Sands, you are in for a culinary adventure as you tuck into a truckload of gastronomic treats like the signature USDA Black Angus ‘Choice’ Ribeye with ‘Heart Attack’ Fried Rice from New Ubin Seafood, to the famous Salted Egg Burger from The Quarters.

Admission is free, visit Food Truck Fest for more information.

Siloso Beach Party 2018

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Countdown in style at Siloso Beach Party, where you’re set for a bangin’ night of spectacular fireworks and electrifying tunes from Asia’s finest DJs including Tomorrowland alum, Jay Hardway. For a more exclusive experience, treat yourself to some VIP tickets to enjoy the best views of the grand fireworks finale at the stroke of midnight!

Tickets from $48, visit Sentosa for more information.

Star Island Singapore Countdown Edition

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End your 2018 with a bang as you immerse yourself in a multi-sensory fireworks musical coupled with larger-than-life pyrotechnics and synchronised light shows. Bringing the futuristic beauty of hanabi to our shores, don’t miss out on this one-of-a-kind theatrical extravaganza along with a variety of fringe activities, including roving performances and a DJ party!

Tickets from $38, visit Star Island Singapore for more information.

Let’s Celebrate 2019

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Celebrate the start of 2019 with your favourite local celebs at Let’s Celebrate 2019 organised by MediaCorp. Aside from the exciting display of technicolour fireworks, you’ll also get to enjoy thrilling performances by notable homegrown acts like Taufik Batisah, Gentle Bones, Joanna Dong and more.

Admission is free, visit Let’s Celebrate 2019 for more information.

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Celebrate the spirit of giving in style. If you’re not into the traditional ways of gift wrapping, these out-of-the-box DIY ideas will definitely make your presents stand out under the X’mas tree.

Apply some flower power

Apply Some Flower Power2

For something rustic, how about sticking a small bouquet of dried flowers onto your presents? Use small bunches of dried flowers and wrap them up with leftover wrapping paper, and secure with some twine.

Stitch it up

Stitch It Up2

Here’s something that will put a smile on your friends and family: a gift stuffed into a star-shaped envelope. Draw the shape of a star on two pieces of construction paper. Make sure that it is large enough to contain your present. Cut the two pieces out using scissors. You’ll need a sewing machine, needle and thread for the next step. Sew up the seams along the sides of the star, but remember to leave one corner unstitched to insert your gift. Fill it up with tinsel and your gift and sew up the last bit.

Go for gold

Go for gold2

This DIY gift-wrapper is at once wallet-friendly and pretty. You can recycle gold-foiled shopping bags and punch out circles using a hole puncher. If not, store-bought foiled paper works too. Using glue, stick the circles on plain brown or white paper. Once dry, wrap your present and embellish with a couple of Christmas ornaments for a festive touch.

Add some star accents

Add Star Accents2

This quick and easy gift-wrapping idea puts a spin on the conventional bow and ribbon combo. Keep it monochrome for a modern take. You’ll need a star-shaped hole puncher, stack of art cards, string, scissors, construction paper and glue. After wrapping your gift, wrap the string around it a few times. Punch out stars from the art cards and glue them to the string. Finally, add gift tags and you’re done!

Consider natural elements

Consider natural elements2

This super simple gift-wrapping idea is so easy it takes no time at all. You’d have to spend some time outside foraging for leaves though – ferns make good choices as they sport intricate designs. Once you have wrapped your present, tie it with twine and slip a leaf under the knot. You can add personalised gift tags too.

Feather away

Feather flair2

Impressive as they may be these feather gift tags are functional too. Gift receivers can re-use them as bookmarks! To make, trace out outlines of feathers on coloured art card. Cut them out and brush some gold poster paint at the ends for the gold-dipped effect. Once dry, secure them to ribbons using glue. 

A version of this article first appeared on SquareRooms.

More related stories: 8 Unexpected Christmas Gifts That Will Surprise Anyone On Your ListQuirky Under $50 Gift Ideas For The Tech Junkie In Your Life

Christmas shopping can be fun, but it often turns into somewhat of a nightmare when you’re set on finding the perfect gift for the people on your list, then turn up empty-handed. Instead of losing sleep over the ideal item, why not switch things up with a little unpredictability? Be inspired by our list of quirky, one-of-a-kind gifts that would make wonderful surprises for your loved ones this festive season!

#1 Receive divine intervention for your food decisions
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As a well-known food haven, living in the gourmet paradise that is Singapore often plagues us with too much or too little choices. To solve this first-world problem, let fate make the food decision for you. With these Meal Divination Sticks, you can choose to pick the sticks from a holder at random, or shake the holder the traditional way and wait for one of the sticks to fall out. Whatever it is, these sticks are looking to be a foolproof meal plan!

#2 Enjoy local flavours in a cup

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Nothing hits home more than familiar local flavours like ice kachang and nasi lemak turned into refreshing cups of tea. Founded through tea maker Victor Koh’s imaginative plate, these original tea blends from ETTE Tea are sure to please even the most discerning of tea connoisseurs.

#3 Hug your organs to sleep
Surprise-Your-Loved-Ones-This-Christmas-03-Plush-Organs

If you know someone who’s really into plushies, these Plush Organs might make an ideal substitute for the usual teddy bears and animal soft toys available in the market. This adorable line of stuffed guts includes all the major organs in our human body, and are squishy enough to hug without causing any internal damage.

#4 Will the perfect Singaporean please stand up?
Surprise-Your-Loved-Ones-This-Christmas-05-The-Singaporean-Dream-Card-Game

Created by the masterminds at SGAG, The Singaporean Dream is an interactive card game that all locals need in their life. Encompassing the things we are best known for, this innovative game allows you to sabo, complain and pay your way into becoming the perfect Singaporean – one card at a time.

#5 Be a traveling performer

Surprise-Your-Loved-Ones-This-Christmas-06-Mini-Karaoke-Microphone

You no longer have to feel obligated to go to a karaoke sesh anymore when you gift this Mini Karaoke Microphone to the wannabe pop star on your list. With the ability to be plugged straight into a smartphone, this palm-sized mic works perfectly with most karaoke apps, and can even be used to make phone calls. Dual functionality for the price of one!

#6 Grow organic ingredients at home

Surprise-Your-Loved-Ones-This-Christmas-08-Indoor-Allotment

Know someone who’s got a real knack for gardening? Challenge the green thumbs in your life to grow their own food with this Indoor Allotment. Complete with miniature plant pots, snips, soil pellets and seeds, your very own herb garden is open for business!

#7 Accessorise with wearable local delights

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Who says you can’t eat your food and wear it too? Having made waves on social media with their delightfully adorable clay food earrings, Klay’s collection of handmade miniature clay accessories would make the perfect gift for the fellow foodies.

#8 Go back in time with a nostalgic timepiece 

Surprise-Your-Loved-Ones-This-Christmas-10-Game-Boy-Watch

Ideal for a 90s baby, this Gameboy Watch is bound to bring back memories from yesteryears. Functional and retro, this bad boy can rival a Baby-G and win with its nostalgic Super Mario Land alarm. Throwback vibes, anyone?

What will you be getting for your loved ones this Christmas? Share the love in the comments below!

Escape rooms are pretty much passe, and karaoke just doesn’t cut it. So the next time you and your friends are looking for some unique activities to do (be warned: it isn’t ‘chill’ per se), check out some of these virtual reality game rooms that have been sprouting up all over Singapore.

Hado Singapore

Hado Singapore

We kick off the list with the mildest VR experience, though by no means less fun. For those afraid of jumping head first into an unknown realm, Hado Singapore provides a solution by introducing virtual elements into the real world instead – think dragons, mushrooms, and fireballs etc. Marketed as “techno sports”, they offer augmented reality instead of a fully immersive VR experience. The upside is that you don’t have to worry about motion sickness; and as you won’t be connected by cables, you’re free to move around and experience the activities. They offer three different games: dodgeball (but with fireballs instead!), monster battle and Hado shoot. It is one of the more affordable options on the list, priced at $20-23 per person for all three games lasting 30 mins in total.

Address: *SCAPE #02-15, Singapore 237978
Opening hours: 12pm – 9pm (Mon to Sun)
Tel: 6634 4668

HeadRock VR

HeadRock VR

With 11 different VR attractions spanning different themes, HeadRock VR is the place to check out if you’re hoping to spend hours lost in distant worlds. Full-fledged adrenaline junkies can have their spine tingled by plunging into the depths of hell – or more accurately, molten lava – from a jaw-dropping height of over 1000m on the Flying Dive ride. If you’re more of an extreme sports person, navigate through overflowing river rapids on Jungle Rafting, supposedly a crowd favourite, that won’t require you to have a change of clothes after. Or experience a blistering snow storm with the Storm Blizzard installation – a world’s first of its kind – that will see its debut in tropical Singapore. No winter, no problem. Admission tickets are sold as a bundle, allowing you access to seven ($65), five ($50) or three ($35) rides at a go.

Address: Resorts World Sentosa #01-38-39, Singapore 098269
Opening hours: 10am – 8pm (Mon to Sun)
Tel: 6963 4609

Sandbox

Sandbox

Sandbox offers a hyper realistic experience, using haptic technology to bring in the added sense of touch along with untethered movement. Bring a party of up to six people to play in one of two games: Curse of Davy Jones or Deadwood Mansion. With movie quality motion capture, actions are seamless and they themselves have compared it to the “Holodeck” from Star Trek. The games are priced at $29-40 per person for about half an hour of gameplay.

Address: Orchard Central #05-31, Singapore 238896
Opening hours: 1pm – 10.15pm (Mon to Thurs), 11.30am – 12am (Fri), 10.30am – 12am (Sat), 10.30am – 10.30pm (Sun)
Tel: 9832 5988

Virtual Room

Virtual Room

Touted to be the best collaborative or team-based VR game room, Virtual Room sets itself apart from other VR places by offering each player their own room to play in. Following their first sci-fi release, players must now work in teams of up to four and time travel all the way back to ancient Egypt to solve puzzles together in order to save the world. Prices here are slightly steeper at $44-49 per person, but you get 45 minutes of game time so the math works out to be about the same, really.

Address: Lucky Chinatown B3, Singapore 059432
Opening hours: 10am – 10pm (Mon to Sun)
Tel: 6966 8060

V-room

V-room

Located in the heart of Jurong East, V-room offers over 30 games, featuring horror, shooting, puzzle and multiplayer games. A suitable option for a casual game or two with your friends, it is by far the most affordable of the lot here as well – each cosy room fits two to four people and only costs $12-15 per person for an hour. You can consider coming here as an introduction to VR gaming, or just to get a quick VR fix that won’t break the bank.

Address: JCube #02-11, Singapore 609731
Opening hours: 11am – 10pm (Mon to Sun)
Tel: 6904 4045

Zero Latency

Zero Latency

Perhaps the biggest arena in Singapore, Zero Latency offers a staggering 4000 sq ft warehouse for you and your friends (up to eight players, no less) to play in. Cordless, you are free to move around without fear of bumping into a wall three arms’ length away. This is accompanied by a perfectly weighted controller and a headset with 2k resolution to provide the ultimate VR experience. Four games are offered here, ranging from zombie to space themes. The priciest of the lot, it’ll set you back about $48-70 per person, but the extensive game play and fully immersive environment makes it tempting to try it out at least once.

Address: Suntec City Mall #03-346, Singapore 038983
Opening hours: 11am – 10pm (Mon to Thurs), 11am – 11pm (Fri), 10am – 11pm (Sat), 10am – 10pm (Sun)
Tel: 6931 0331

A version of this article first appeared on SG Magazine.

More related stories: There’s Now A VR Theme Park In Singapore (And It’s Opened By Seungri!), Get Your Geek On At These Good Ol’ Board Game Cafes In Singapore

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