Singapore Sightseeing

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Singapore skyline

Singapore Sightseeing

After my arrival in Singapore on the luxury Transtar Solitaire bus I realized that I was in for a completely different experience than what I have gotten used to in SE Asia.  Singapore is an orderly, clean, almost peaceful city compared to the hustle and bustle of cities such as Bangkok or Kuala Lumpur. I can say one thing for sure that was a welcome respite is the lack of sewage smell which is common especially in Bangkok.

With an organized public transit system, neatly groomed parks and landscaping throughout the city plus a picturesque waterfront area Singapore feels like a very Westernized city, but still with an exotic asian vibe to it.

I booked a place in advance because I knew I would be arriving late and my bus dropped me right at the front door of the Five Stones Hostel. I have done a good job avoiding dorms for the most part, but Singapore is expensive so I opted to save a little money and go for the dorm room. Of course all the annoyances of sleeping in the same room with 7 other people came flooding back into my memory. Why is it that nobody ever wants to be the person to turn off the overhead light and inevitably you have someone clambering back into the room at 3 am talking on the phone and making as much noise as possible?

Despite the problems with staying in a dorm, at least it was a nice place to cool off from the sweltering heat of Singapore with ice cold air conditioning and some of the fastest wifi I have ever had the pleasure using.

Hiking through the heat of Singapore

Since I had a flight scheduled to leave for Bali the next day, I only had one full day to see Singapore. Big Mistake. The way to do Singapore is a couple hours in the morning and a couple hours after dark. You just don’t want to be out in the heat of the day. It is one of the hottest places I’ve ever been. It does sit just barely north of the equator so I don’t know what I was expecting. I was lucky that it got cloudy in the afternoon and didn’t even rain.

After a quick transfer on the MRT I was in the heart of Singapore’s Chinatown. I was almost 3 weeks early for Chinese New Year, but they were already starting the festivities handing out free snacks like peanuts and souvenirs. I winded my way through the busy streets packed with tourists, most of whom were Japanese and Korean.

Chinatown Singapore

I found my way to the Buddha Tooth Relic Temple, which they say actually contains the tooth of Buddha. I didn’t see any tooth, but it was in interesting temple.

Buddha tooth temple Singapore

Outside buddha tooth temple

Outside the Buddha Tooth Temple.

Next I made my way to the Maxwell Road Food Center, one of the famous hawker centers of Singapore. I wanted to try the Tian Tian Hainanese Chicken Rice which was made famous when this stall won a cooking competition against David Ramsey. It was pretty good. It’s simply rice cooked in a chicken broth topped with some plain chicken, but somehow it was still very flavorful.

Tian Tian Hainaese Chicken rice

After lunch I walked through the central business district right next to Chinatown north to the Quays and into the Colonial District. I saw some very nice cars on the way and some pretty cool historical sights especially in the Colonial District.

Singapore

Rolls Royce

Rolls Royce and a “measly” Porsche Panamera behind it.

Singapore Parliament

Singapore Parliament building.

Having walked around for the past four hours I was just about ready for a new shirt, instead I stopped in one of the multitude of nice air conditioned cafes that Singapore has to offer and cooled off with an iced coffee.

After drying off a bit, I continued walking around to Marina Bay, a beautiful waterfront Promenade that winds its way east from the Quays through skyscrapers and luxurious waterfront hotels. It kind of reminded me of the Oslo harbor walk that I did in November while awaiting my flight to Bangkok.

I took in the sights, then walked through the Marina Bay Sands Hotel, which is the three towers with the boat on top. There is a bridge from the hotel that crosses the highway to the entrance of  the magnificent Gardens by the Bay.

Singapore

Marina Bay Sands

Supertrees Grove

Supertrees Grove

Singapore Flyer

The Singapore Flyer from Gardens by the Bay.

Invigorated by my walk through the lush gardens, I made my way back to the MRT station under the Marina Bay Sands Hotel. A couple quick stops later I was back in Little India and the MRT station right across the street from my hostel.

The night was spent getting ready and packing for Indonesia then making use of the high speed internet with some HD videos before getting to bed early in preparation for my early flight the next morning.

Singapore is quite possibly my favorite city in the world, and I expect to be back (edit:In fact I just spent another night in Singapore last Thursday on my way to the Philippines after an incredible month in Indonesia. Sorry I know it gets confusing, but I will be caught up soon.)

 

Brooks

Brooks

I am traveling the world focusing on adventure and photography.

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