No more long layovers to get to these unique holiday destinations!
While we love returning to familiar destinations like Taipei and Osaka, we’ve also been exploring lesser known destinations like Hainan and New Caledonia thanks for new direct flights from Singapore! Leaves are precious so it’s understandable that a huge part of deciding where to explore is whether there’s a direct flight there.
So this comes as good news early in the year because there are seven new direct routes flying out of Changi!
If hidden gem destinations where you can explore a shipwreck or spot humpback whales excite you, you’ll want to bookmark this list!
1) Vancouver, Canada
Photo credit: Danny Hoang via Unsplash
Starting April 2024, there will be a new direct flight between Singapore and Vancouver! Sitting on a plane for around 15 hours without any layovers may sound daunting, but hold your mooses, Canada is worth it.
From the famous Niagara Falls to the gorgeous Canadian Rockies — you can bet almost every part of Canada is a natural wonder. And for city gals (and boys), explore the culturally vibrant city of Vancouver with attractions like the Vancouver Art Gallery and Royal Ontario Museum (the largest museum in Canada)!
As for the best time to visit, September and October are right after the peak tourist summer season (from June) and offer beautiful scenic orange foliage views. Or come during wintertime from November to March, perfect for activities like skiing and snowboarding.
Flights from Singapore: From ~S$1,540/pax for roundtrip
Flight time from SG: ~15hrs
2) Noumea, New Caledonia
A French territory made up of several islands in the South Pacific, New Caledonia is located near countries like Australia, New Zealand, Fiji, and Vanuatu! There are plenty of things to do here, from island-hopping to wildlife spotting — during mid-July to mid-September, catch humpback whales travelling all the way from Antarctica!
While you’re there, also try the local dish bougna, which is usually wrapped in banana leaves and cooked underground for 2 hours. In it, you can find ingredients like yam, taro, sweet potato, banana, and chicken. I tried it when I was there and it tasted just like a warm chicken stew!
Flights from Singapore: From ~S$984/pax for roundtrip
Flight time from SG: ~8.5hrs
3) Jeju, South Korea
I know, Jeju isn’t really a “new” holiday destination per se. But since Scoot announced a direct flight from Singapore back in 2022, now it’s even easier to get to this honeymoon paradise — without having to transfer from Incheon International Airport in South Korea 🤩
Here’s a refresher of what Jeju has to offer: tea-tasting at Osulloc Tea Museum for matcha lovers, visiting the iconic 23m-tall Jeongbang Waterfall, and catching the sunrise at UNESCO World Heritage site Seongsan Ilchulbong!
To get the most out of your trip though, we’d recommend renting a car as public transport is not as accessible on the island. Also check out our travel guide on things to do, as well as travel tips for the ultimate Jeju road trip 🚗
Flights from Singapore: From ~S$313/pax for roundtrip
Flight time from SG: ~6hrs
4) Koror, Palau
Photo credit: Changi Airport Group
Just a 5-hour flight away from Singapore lies the beautiful island of Palau! If you’re wondering where it is, it’s near countries such as the Philippines and Papua New Guinea.
*Note: Flights are currently on hold due to low demand, but will return once a week on Thursdays from 3 October 2024.
Flights from Singapore: USD$1,250/pax (~S$1,676) for roundtrip
Flight time from SG: ~5hrs
5) Okinawa, Japan
Forget the usual Tokyo, Osaka, and Hokkaido. Now, there’s direct flights from Singapore to Okinawa — dubbed the “Hawaii of Japan”!
This Japanese island features a tropical climate all year round, with long stretches of charming beaches and pristine coasts. Besides enjoying water activities like snorkelling and scuba-diving, also take the time to soak in Okinawa’s unique culture.
Fun fact: The locals there don’t speak the standard Japanese language, but rather a different one called Uchinaguchi. Psst, if you’re interested to know more, we’ve also previously talked about how Okinawa is so different from the rest of Japan!
On top of that, the food here is also pretty interesting. Try snake soup, goat sashimi and Okinawan onigiri (which are rectangular-shaped)!
FYI, there’s only one airline which’ll take you there from Singapore and that’s Jetstar — it finally resumed services in 2023 after stopping in 2020 due to the Covid-19 pandemic.
Cost: From ~S$474/pax for roundtrip
Flight time from SG: ~5hrs
6) Bhubaneswar, India
Photo credit: Ayiman Mohanty via Unsplash
But once you’ve been there, done that, why not venture to other cities too? Since June 2023, there have been twice-weekly flights to this interesting Indian city 👇
Bhubaneswar is the capital city of Odisha (India’s eastern state) and it’s also known as the Temple City of India! It’s home to more than 500 temples, including the Lingaraja Temple (built in the 11th century). Apart from temples, also check out the Udaygiri and Khandagiri Caves — these caves once served as a place for Jain monks to meditate and rest 🛕
Cost: From ~S$265/pax for roundtrip
Flight time from SG: ~4.5hrs
7) Sibu, Malaysia
Photo credit: Jennifer Lau via Flickr
We’re no strangers to Malaysia, we love our day trips to JB on the weekends 😉 But head out further and travel to the lesser-known Sibu instead!
Located in Sarawak, it’s only 2 hours by plane from Singapore (around the same time it takes to get through JB immigration during peak period) 😜
Attractions here include the Sibu Heritage Centre (learn about the town’s history), Sibu Central Market (one of the largest in Malaysia with over 1,000 stalls) and Eng Ann Teng Tua Pek Kong Temple (admire the unique architecture and stone sculptures there)!
Cost: From ~S$123/pax for roundtrip
Flight time from SG: ~2hrs
If you can’t decide where to travel in 2024…
With so many unique destinations around the world, it can be hard to decide where to go! So here’s a useful tool to help you — Everywhere Agency ✈️
Launched by Skyscanner, it’s the world’s first “pop-up” travel consultancy where you can reach out to a group of seasoned travellers (or Everywhere Agents) who have been to every country in the world. They can then offer advice and tips on where to go or things to do via virtual appointments!
There’s also an online widget on Skyscanner with answers to frequently asked questions based on the experiences of the Everywhere Agents if you prefer a non-human interaction 😂
Alternatively, if you’re more spontaneous and want to make new friends in a new destination, sign up for a TTI experiences trip! You’ll get to try cool experiences like camping in the Amazon or snowboarding in Austria with fellow like-minded travellers 😎
Which new holiday destination will you visit first? Let us know in the comments below!