My first visit to Singapore was not deliberate. Our intention was to kill a few hours at Changi Airport on our way home from a South East Asian jaunt. But political upheaval in Bangkok forced a change of plans and we spent 3 days exploring the unnerving organised, food obsessed, multicultural metropolis.
I’ve loved it ever since and now intentionally book flights through the island nation that don’t quite match up so that I can head into town and explore a new neighbourhood.
So below are 3 things that I enjoyed during my last trip to Singapore. It was only 3 weeks ago but now back in Geelong, battling blustery southern winds and depressing drizzling rain the humid air of Singapore has become a distant memory.
Water Taxi Ride
My research of the water taxi system in Singapore consisted of me pointing to a boat sauntering across the bay from the observation deck of the Marina Bay Sands and suggesting that we catch one to the hawker’s market on the opposite side of the river. But lack of research often leads to the best results.
We jumped into one of the antique looking but obviously immaculately maintained wooden boats in the evening intending to head straight to dinner but accidently ended up agreeing to a tour of the Singapore River all the way to Clark Quay.
Finding ourselves in an unfamiliar part of the city we did what any seasoned traveller would do. We got off the boat and made our way back towards our intended destination sampling entrees and cocktails at as many restaurants as we could along the way.
Marina Bay Sands Complex
In a modern city crowded with metallic structures reaching for the sky it takes something special to stand out. And this building is something special; three towers rising out of the bay, a futuristic ship straddling them.
The complex, with its casino, ludicrously expensive shops and an indoor tributary with gondola rides is a shrine to consumption and excess. There is even an indoor ‘ice’ skating rink.
But of course the crowning glory of the Marina Bay Sands that ship suspended above the city and its observation deck. It may be tradition to have a Singapore Sling at the famous Raffles across the river but for a new millennium this venue is fast becoming the icon of Singapore.
|A Singapore Sling at the base of the luge|
Cheesey day out on Sentosa
Sentosa is marketed as the playground of Singapore and it is cheese all the way. But if you just let yourself go with it it’s impossible not to have fun. From Universal Studios to climbing the giant Merlion or getting your photo taken with a tame macaw everywhere you turn there is something outrageous to do.
We indulged our inner children with a few loops of the luge and then please our adult selves with some cocktails by the beach. Sentosa has Singapore’s best beaches but I have to say that the hundreds of container ships waiting in the Singapore Strait did put me off a dip. Instead we walked along the beach and watched people take on the artificial waves at Wave House and the locals playing beach volleyball.
This blog may have jaunted a little further afield than usual but Singapore is only a 7 hour flight from Melbourne so hey it’s all within a day’s travel time from home.
This is my submission for the ‘3 Things in the City’ I Love contest by Velvet Escape, Traveldudes and Wimdu.co.uk