When was it?
Actual Day: 9 August 2018
You know you are witnessing the lead-up to the country’s National Day when the island starts turning red and white from the flags fluttering from buildings, houses and some cars.
5.55pm – Naval Divers Free Fall
6.00pm – Red Lions Free Fall
6.49pm – State Flag Flypast
6.50pm – RSAF Starburst
6.51pm – 21 Gun Salute
6.57pm – Fire of Joy (Feu de joie)
7pm – RSAF Flypast
7.38pm – Old Playgrounds Water Floats
7.43pm – Mini Fireworks
8pm – Fireworks
8.08pm – Main Fireworks
8.16pm – Fireworks
What is it?
Singapore National Day is a celebration of this small city nation state (one of only three in the world; the others being Monaco and the Vatican City).
Singapore achieved independence in 1965 amid doubt it could survive with its tiny size and lack of natural resources, but the island succeeded against the odds, emerging on the world stage as a major commercial hub, financial centre and global hub.
What happens ?
There is a National Day Parade with a varied itinerary (see the schedule above). Tickets are by free ballot open to Singapore’s permanent residents. Tickets cannot be bought or sold. Spectators at the show get a ‘funpack’—the National Day Parade version of a goodie bag.
The fireworks started at about 8pm and were visible all around the bay.
For those unable to get a ticket, the aviation displays were repeated four times over the weekend at the Marina Barrage to give everyone the opportunity to enjoy the skills of the pilots and the manoeuvres.
Theme for 2018
The official website (ndp.org.sg) explained the theme for 2018:
The theme “We Are Singapore”, celebrates our people, our nation and our home. A pledge of unity and togetherness among our diverse cultures, “We” in this year’s theme emphasises the collective, where regardless of our origins and wherever we are, Singapore is our way of life and will always be our home.
“We Are Singapore” defines the Singapore Spirit, invoking the strength and resilience which built Singapore and empowers Singaporeans to overcome future challenges and adversities together. It reminds us that we will collectively shape and be responsible for Singapore’s future.
What do the ticketless do?
Some stay at home and watch the parade on TV with family. Others go down to the Marina Bay Area to catch a glimpse of the parade and fireworks from around the bay. Others spend time with family and friends at the beach, having picnics and having a fun day out.
We went wake-boarding followed by lunch with friends and an evening picnic on the beach. It was a lovely, long, relaxing, enjoyable day.