Top Expat-Friendly Family Neighborhoods in Singapore

As you stroll through the tree-lined streets of Orchard, a sense of cosmopolitan charm and international flair envelops you. The vibrant mix of cultures and the glittering shopping malls create a unique backdrop for expat families seeking a dynamic yet family-friendly neighborhood in Singapore. But what really sets these top expat-friendly family neighborhoods apart? Let's take a closer look at the key factors that make these areas ideal for expat families settling in Singapore.

Key Takeaways

  • Central Orchard, Bukit Timah, Holland Village, River Valley, Tanglin: These neighborhoods offer a vibrant mix of amenities, renowned international schools, and a well-connected environment, making them ideal for expat families.
  • Woodlands: With its suburban feel, ample outdoor activities, and reasonably priced family houses, Woodlands is becoming an increasingly popular choice for expat families looking for a supportive and welcoming environment.
  • Sentosa Cove: Conveniently accessible and offering a peaceful retreat from the city, Sentosa Cove is an attractive option for expat families seeking a tranquil living environment while still having access to urban amenities.
  • East Coast: With its spacious and reasonably priced accommodation options, proximity to Changi Airport, and family-friendly amenities like East Coast Park, the East Coast neighborhood is a great choice for expat families looking for a vibrant social scene and efficient connectivity.

Central Orchard

Central Orchard is a bustling neighborhood in Singapore, offering a vibrant mix of amenities and a well-connected environment for families seeking a convenient and cosmopolitan lifestyle. This area is a haven for expats and families, boasting an array of shopping malls, cinemas, and restaurants, making it an ideal location for those who enjoy a bustling urban environment. The presence of renowned international schools in the vicinity further enhances its appeal, providing top-notch educational opportunities for expat families settling in the area. While housing options in Central Orchard may lean towards the higher end, the peaceful atmosphere and green surroundings make it an attractive choice for families seeking a relaxed yet sophisticated environment.

The neighborhood's accessibility is another key draw, with the MRT line connecting Central Orchard to downtown areas and beyond, allowing for easy exploration and commuting within the city. The allure of Orchard Road and the serene beauty of the Singapore River add to the area's charm, offering a mix of vibrant city life and scenic tranquility. Additionally, the presence of numerous expat communities enriches the neighborhood's diversity and community spirit, providing a welcoming environment for those seeking a sense of belonging and freedom in their new home. Central Orchard truly embodies the essence of a cosmopolitan neighborhood while catering to the needs and desires of families and expats alike.


Looking for a suburban feel with ample outdoor activities and a growing community of expats? Woodlands might just be the neighborhood for you. Offering reasonably priced family houses with gardens, this area provides a peaceful and family-friendly living experience. With plans for future attractions and a town garden, Woodlands is evolving into a vibrant community, making it a dynamic environment for families.

Housing Options

Woodlands offers a range of reasonably priced family houses with a suburban feel and a slower pace of life, making it an attractive option for expat families seeking a comfortable and family-friendly neighborhood. The area provides various housing options, including spacious residential areas and serviced apartments, catering to different preferences. Woodlands is known for its excellent schools, making it one of the best places to live in Singapore for families. The neighborhood's evolving nature also presents growing amenities, shopping places, dining options, and cinemas, providing a well-rounded living experience for expat families. With a large community of American expats, Woodlands fosters a welcoming and supportive environment. Its fast-growing nature makes it an increasingly popular choice for expat families seeking a relaxed yet vibrant neighborhood in Singapore.

Family-Friendly Amenities

As you consider settling into the family-friendly neighborhood of Woodlands, it's important to explore the array of amenities that cater to a comfortable and well-rounded living experience for expat families. Woodlands offers a slower pace of life with amenities like Admiralty Park and hiking trails, making it perfect for family outings and relaxation. The neighborhood is home to a large community of American expats, providing a familiar and supportive environment for expat families. Woodlands is evolving into a vibrant community, with a growing range of shopping places, dining options, and cinemas, offering convenience for families. Families in Woodlands can find reasonably priced family houses with a suburban feel, making it an attractive option for those seeking a family-friendly environment. Woodlands neighborhood is close to the Singapore American School and offers large houses with gardens for a reasonable price, catering to expat families with children.

Family-Friendly Amenities Description
Admiralty Park Offers a serene environment with amenities for family outings and relaxation.
Community of American expats Provides a familiar and supportive environment for expat families.
Growing range of shopping Offers convenience for families with an increasing variety of shopping places, dining options, and cinemas.

Bukit Timah

Bukit Timah offers an array of stellar school options for families seeking quality education. The neighborhood's community facilities provide a conducive environment for families to engage in recreational and social activities. With its focus on education and community, Bukit Timah stands out as a prime choice for expat families looking for a well-rounded living environment in Singapore.

School Options

With a multitude of prestigious schools catering to various international curriculums, expat families in Bukit Timah are presented with diverse and high-quality educational options for their children. The neighborhood's proximity to the Singapore Botanic Gardens and its excellent public transport connectivity make it an ideal location for families. When it comes to school options, expats in Bukit Timah can consider the Canadian International School, which offers a globally recognized curriculum and a vibrant community. Additionally, there are several other international schools in the area, providing families with the flexibility to choose an educational institution that aligns with their values and preferences. The availability of such reputable educational establishments contributes to a sense of freedom and peace of mind for expat families settling in Bukit Timah.

Community Facilities

One can readily access a range of well-equipped community facilities in Bukit Timah, from sports amenities and cultural centers to healthcare services, enhancing the neighborhood's appeal as an ideal location for expat families in Singapore. The area's multiculturalism is reflected in its diverse dining options, offering residents a taste of cuisines from around the world. Additionally, Bukit Timah's suburban feel is complemented by its proximity to the Bukit Timah Nature Reserve and the Botanic Gardens, providing a peaceful environment and a variety of outdoor activities for families. The neighborhood also boasts community centers, sports facilities, stadiums, libraries, and cultural centers, providing well-developed community infrastructure. Residents enjoy convenient access to healthcare services, further contributing to the area's attractiveness as a good place to live for expat families. Bukit Timah's excellent transportation connectivity enhances its appeal, making it a top choice for families with diverse needs.

Sentosa Cove

Nestled on the tranquil shores of Sentosa Island, Sentosa Cove offers expat families a luxurious and exclusive oceanfront living experience, complete with resort-like amenities and a strong sense of community. Here's why Sentosa Cove is the perfect choice for expat families:

  1. Premium Lifestyle: Sentosa Cove provides a premium lifestyle with its beachfront living, golf course, and a variety of luxurious condos or landed houses. The neighborhood fosters an exclusive and tranquil environment, ideal for families seeking a serene and high-end living experience.
  2. Conveniently Situated Retreat: Despite being farther from central Singapore, Sentosa Cove remains conveniently accessible by car or tramline, offering a peaceful retreat from the bustling city. This makes it an attractive option for expat families who desire a tranquil living environment while still being able to access the amenities of urban life.
  3. Expat-Friendly Community: Sentosa Cove boasts a strong expat community, creating a welcoming environment for families relocating to Singapore. The neighborhood's sense of community, combined with its resort-like amenities, makes it an attractive choice for expats looking for a supportive and integrated living experience.

East Coast

East Coast in Singapore offers expat families spacious and reasonably priced accommodation options, making it a popular and vibrant neighborhood known for its peaceful and beautiful environment. This area is highly sought-after due to its proximity to Changi Airport, making travel convenient for expat families. The Thomson-East Coast MRT Line also provides efficient connectivity to various parts of the city, including River Valley, Robertson Quay, Tiong Bahru, Outram Park, and Tanjong Pagar, offering the freedom to explore the city with ease.

East Coast is renowned for its family-friendly amenities, including the scenic East Coast Park, which offers an array of leisure activities such as cycling, entertainment, and running along the coastline. Families can also take advantage of safe park paths for biking and rollerblading, making it an ideal location for outdoor activities with kids. Additionally, the neighborhood boasts an abundance of restaurants, bars, and shopping centers, providing a vibrant social scene for expat families.

Moreover, East Coast provides value for money in terms of accommodation, with a range of housing options that cater to the diverse needs of expat families. The area's blend of affordability and quality living spaces makes it an attractive choice for those seeking a comfortable and convenient lifestyle in Singapore.

Holland Village

With its vibrant atmosphere and European influence, Holland Village stands as a sought-after neighborhood for expat families, offering convenient access to major train routes and office complexes, including Biopolis, Fusionopolis, and Mediopolis, akin to the appeal of East Coast. Here are three reasons why Holland Village is a top choice for expat families:

  1. Diverse Culinary Scene: Holland Village is home to an array of restaurants, coffee shops, and hawker centers that offer a wide range of local and international dishes. This diversity caters to different palates, allowing you to savor a variety of cuisines without leaving the neighborhood.
  2. Central Location: The neighborhood's central location provides easy access to shopping malls, healthcare facilities, and international schools, offering convenience and accessibility for families. This proximity to essential amenities can save you time and effort, allowing you to focus on what truly matters.
  3. Landed Properties and Value for Money: Holland Village offers a mix of housing options, including landed properties, condominiums, and apartments, catering to different lifestyle preferences. Despite the high demand, the area still manages to provide value for money, making it an attractive choice for expat families seeking a comfortable yet cost-effective living environment.

Holland Village's lively atmosphere, diverse dining options, and convenient location make it an ideal neighborhood for expat families seeking freedom and a vibrant community.

River Valley

River Valley, a vibrant neighborhood in Singapore's city center, provides easy access to the CBD and offers a diverse array of dining and entertainment options, making it a popular choice for upscale living. This lovely area is well connected and conveniently located, making it a prime choice for families looking to settle in the heart of the city. The neighborhood's peaceful atmosphere and green surroundings make it an ideal place for kids to enjoy, while its proximity to local and international schools adds to its appeal. River Valley offers a range of reasonably priced accommodation options, including condos and serviced apartments, ensuring that expats can find a suitable home to fit their needs.

To emphasize the convenience and appeal of River Valley, here is a comparison table showcasing its key features:

Feature Description Benefits
Accessibility Easy access to CBD and transportation networks Quick commute to work and around the city
Family-friendly Peaceful atmosphere and nearby schools Ideal environment for children's upbringing
Dining options Diverse array of local and international restaurants Culinary experiences for the whole family
Accommodation Range of reasonably priced condos and serviced apartments Housing options to suit various preferences

With its blend of urban accessibility and family-friendly amenities, River Valley stands out as an expat-friendly neighborhood where families can enjoy a high quality of life while being close to the pulse of the city.


Nestled among the lush greenery and colonial architecture, Tanglin offers an idyllic and affluent setting, making it an attractive choice for families seeking a serene and upscale living environment in Singapore. Here's why Tanglin stands out as an expat-friendly family neighborhood:

  1. Serene Environment: Tanglin's clean and peaceful atmosphere provides a tranquil living space for families, ensuring a peaceful and safe environment for your loved ones. The neighborhood's picturesque surroundings and colonial architecture create a sense of charm and tranquility, offering a perfect escape from the hustle and bustle of the city.
  2. Convenient Amenities: Tanglin boasts easy access to a range of amenities, including the Tanglin Mall, Tanglin Village, and the renowned Dempsey Hill. These places offer a diverse mix of bars, restaurants, independent shops, and galleries, catering to the diverse needs and preferences of families within the area.
  3. Family-Friendly Facilities: The neighborhood features large houses and is home to the prestigious Tanglin Club, which provides a wide array of family-friendly facilities and activities. Additionally, the nearby Singapore Botanic Gardens, known for its beautiful orchid garden, offers an ideal space for families to engage in outdoor activities and leisurely strolls.

Tanglin's blend of urban and suburban living, coupled with its family-oriented amenities, makes it a prime choice for American expats and other families seeking an upscale yet welcoming neighborhood in Singapore.

Frequently Asked Questions

Where Is the Best Place to Live in Singapore for Expats?

The best place to live in Singapore for expats depends on your priorities. Consider school options, healthcare facilities, transportation access, community activities, housing affordability, safety and security, job opportunities, cultural integration, language support, and expat support services.

Is Singapore Good for Expat Families?

Singapore is great for expat families. You'll find excellent school options, top-notch healthcare facilities, and plenty of family activities. The cost of living is higher, but safety measures, transportation options, and expat support groups are abundant.

Which Is the Best Residential Area in Singapore?

For the best residential area in Singapore, consider affordability, child-friendly amenities, safety, proximity to international schools, public transportation, community engagement, healthcare, recreation options, cultural diversity, and work-life balance. These factors contribute to a well-rounded living experience.

Is Singapore Still Good for Expats?

Singapore is still great for expats. Job opportunities are abundant, the education system is top-notch, and the healthcare options are excellent. The diverse culture, convenient transportation, and safe environment make it ideal for a work-life balance.

About the author

I'm Gabriel, an expat and wordsmith. ExpatBuddy is your gateway to my life abroad, where I pen down my adventures, cultures, and expatriate experiences.

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