Travel ideas: Is this the world’s best airport to spend a layover?

A couple of traveller walk through Changi Airport with their suitcases. There's lots of people and greenery and a giant art installation.

Dreading a lengthy layover on the way to your next destination? If you’ve got a few hours to spend between flights, there can actually be plenty to see and do during your layover (if you’re in the right place). So, if you’re lucky enough to find yourself in-transit through this international airport, you might be in for a treat! 

Our pick is Changi Airport in Singapore! 

Changi Airport’s cleanliness and attractions (including four themed gardens, as well as play areas for your kids) make it a great airport to kill a few hours during your layover.

What to do at Changi Airport during your layover

Despite marvelling at what has been named one of the world’s cleanest airports, there are plenty of things to do at Changi Airport during your layover. 

With free phone charging stations, four different garden areas (including a koi pond), a pool and jacuzzi, and even a free movie theatre, there’s plenty to do that’ll make your layover at Changi airport speed by.

HSBC Rain Vortex at Changi Airport, Singapore

Earth’s tallest indoor waterfall

At 40 metres tall, the HSBC Rain Vortex is almost a travel destination in itself. Located in the middle of a lush, green indoor rainforest, fit with viewing platforms and seating, the waterfall is a sight to behold.

Plus, if you’re there for an overnight layover, you might even catch one of the nightly light shows!

A cafe inside the Jewel in Changi Airport, populated with travellers.

The Jewel (shopping and food) 

Fancy a bit of shopping or some grub during your layover? The Jewel can be found in the airport’s Terminal 2. It’s a 24/7 shopping hub where you’ll also find attractions like Canopy Bride, Hedge Maze, Mirror Maze, and the Manulife Sky Nets.

Colourful flowers and tropical plants inside Changi Airport's Butterfly Garden

Butterfly Gardens

Airports and travelling can be a stressful experience. What better way to take your mind off travel stress than entering the Changi Airport butterfly garden during your layover? There are over 40 species of butterflies fluttering about in there, amongst the flowers and tropical greenery.

The butterfly garden is located in Terminal 3 and is open 24/7.

Swimming pool and jacuzzi 

I know what you’re thinking, ‘a pool and jacuzzi at an airport? Who’d want to do that?’ Well, did I mention there’s a poolside bar? 

Now that I’ve got your attention, the pool is located on the rooftop of Terminal 1, above the Aerotel Airport Transit Hotel. You can take a dip and watch the planes take off from the tarmac, all while having an equally refreshing beverage. 

The pool is open every day from 12:00 PM to 9 PM, but it isn’t free unfortunately. The entry fee does however cover towels and shower facilities.

Free movies 

If you’re bored of everything else at Changi (or if you just want to sit back and relax for a while), then you might want to take advantage of the free cinemas in Terminals 2 and 3 at Changi. 

They’re open 24/7 and have the latest blockbusters playing on the big screen.

What else can you do during your layover at Changi Airport in Singapore?

This list hasn’t even scratched the surface of the facilities available to you during your transit through Singapore. 

There’s also: 

  • A free tour of the Jewel
  • Canopy Park (a rainforest with play area and dining)
  • An Entertainment Deck (fit with video games and movies)
  • Play areas for kids ages 1–12 (T1, T2, and T3)
  • The Sunflower Garden
  • Art installations
  • And plenty more! 

Got the travel itch? Check out more of our travel insurance guides to make the most of your trip!