Kicking off a week of articles about Southeast Asia’s micro-nation that is now more than just a culinary capital of the world.

I have just returned from a brief but memorable visit to Singapore and found truth in its reputation as being a well-ordered, model city-state that is preserving its history while fully embracing the future. It also has another reputation, now outdated, of being a bit sleepy. It is lovely, but after that, what is there to do?

When my Uncle John heard I was going to spend some time in Singapore, he sent me a list of his favourite things to do there, including having a Singapore Sling in the old Raffles Hotel Long Bar, where the drink was invented and where Hemingway, and now I, imbibed. He also recalled an aristocratic Chinese woman from London with a proper Oxford accent he met more than 20 years ago, who cleverly summed up the city by advising, "There are only two things you can do in Singapore: shop and eat. On alternate days you can eat and shop."

You can do those things, in abundance, but Singapore has gone out of its way in recent years to add a lot more to your itinerary, including inventing its nightlife, peppering the city with tourist attractions, legalizing gambling and building what may be the most fun airport in the world. This week's line-up of Singapore stories will give you loads of options to pad any stay or extended layover in the small country with a big appetite.

Monday: A perfect day in Singapore

Tuesday: Singapore's marathon food tour (bring an empty stomach)

Wednesday: A little ‘sin' in Singapore and Travelwise: Singaporean food's past and present

Thursday: Lonely Planet's top five ways to catch jungle fever in Singapore

Friday: Changi: The airport of your dreams