Escaping From Exam Stress: 5 Places to Chill in NUS

Alas! Reading week is finally here, and it’s time to catch up on the dreaded readings and webcast lectures.

Unfortunately, it’s also that time of year when you have to reach school way early in the morning if you want to get a seat at in-demand study spots, like the Central Library and PC Commons.

If you’re studying in school and want to take a chill pill from exam stress, why not escape for an hour or two and take a breather at one of these spots?

1. Starbucks at Medicine Faculty MD11


Having trouble staying awake? Folks studying around the Faculty of Science and Faculty of Medicine may want to head to Starbucks at Medicine MD11 to get their coffee fix. Besides beverages, you can fill up your tummies with food fuel like cakes and pastries. Service staff are friendly too!

Term time opening hours: 
Mon – Fri: 7.30am to 10.00pm
Sat, Sun & PH: 8.00am to 5.00pm

Vacation opening hours:
Mon – Fri: 7.00am to 8.00pm
Sat, Sun & PH: 8.00am to 5.00pm

2. Humble Origins at Ventus


Want to get away from the study crowd at NUS without leaving the campus – and free WiFi – behind? Head down to Humble Origins for a cupcake, sandwich or an ice cold drink at the Ventus building. As Ventus has an open concept design, it is a well ventilated place for a relaxing chill. Conveniently located behind Kent Ridge Terminal, Ventus is easily accessible by internal shuttle buses and public buses.

Term time opening hours:
Mon – Fri: 8.30am to 6.00pm

Exams and vacation opening hours:
Mon – Fri: 8.30am to 3.00pm

3. Recreation Pool at Stephen Riady Centre

Recreation Pool 1
Source: Yong Jing Yi (@jingsreise)

If you find yourself feeling sore from sitting down and studying for too long (yes, there’s such a thing as studying for too long), perhaps it’s time to loosen up those muscles. Bring along your swimming suit the next time you pop by UTown and head to level three of Stephen Riady Centre. Spend some time swimming a few laps or floating on your back for a well-deserved study break!

Opening hours

  • Mon – Fri: 7.30am to 9.00pm
  • Sat, Sun & PH: 9.00am to 7.00pm

4. Sports Gym at Stephen Riady Centre


Besides swimming, you can visit the gym to work out some muscles after a long study session. Having long study sessions does not mean accepting a sedentary lifestyle – we can and (should) keep fit in the midst of prepping for finals. The best part? The gym is usually much less crowded during reading week, so you can use whatever fitness equipment you want without having to wait in line.

Opening hours

  • Mon – Fri: 9.00am to 9.00pm
  • Sat, Sun & PH: 9.00am to 7.00pm

5. Town Green at UTown

  A photo posted by louis (@chiawahtat) on

Craving for some group fun after a quiet time mugging solo at the library? Why not gather some friends and play soccer at Town Green or a simple game of catching? (Best to call up your friends staying in UTown colleges since they’re nearby and are usually game!)

The best thing about Town Green is its 24/7 accessibility, so those studying overnight and want some downtime can head to Town Green to enjoy the night air too.

Know any other chill-worthy study spots in NUS? Share your thoughts on Facebook or in the comments below!

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