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01 March 2014

Sunny Singapore!

Unlike my preparation for the majority of my holidays, I did actually do some research (read:tripadvisor-ing) on things to do in Singapore before we left. Although we didn't end up having time to do some of the nature walks that were recommended, we did manage to visit the prominent sites in Singapore. Here's a recap of some of the activities we got up to :)

The Zoo

I got a few surprised looks when I said that I really wanted to go to the zoo. But oh am I glad we did! Singapore zoo is apparently one of the top 5 zoos in the world. My motive for going was pretty simple - they had a polar bear. And he did not disappoint. It was really amazing being that close to one of nature's most beautiful creatures. Inuka, that's his name, has a lovely large pool at the SIngapore zoo. Sadly, he didn't feel like swimming that day but we did catch him at his feeding time. I just can't explain how humbling it felt to be watching him. I know that I will probably never see another polar bear and just having the experience was worth the trip to the zoo. 

But even if you aren't going to the zoo for Inuka, you should still try to visit it, if for the setting alone. As you walk around, you really get the sense of wilderness due to all of the tropical trees and plants. Then every once in a while you come upon a gorgeous reservoir, so peaceful. Makes you forget that you're only 30 minutes away from a busy city. There's a wonderful orangutan section where you could see the little baby orangutans playing with their parents. The zoo also had a couple of white tigers, absolutely stunning animals. We saw impressive rhinos and even some komodo dragons. It was a really, really fun day out. Don't forget to wear loose clothing and carry water though, as it can get really hot! 

Inuka, so shy.


Night Safari

We also decided to go on the night safari. I'm afraid I have no photos of that, as they strongly advise not having a flashing camera while you're out in the dark with wild animals! I enjoyed the night safari, mainly because you get to see nocturnal animals, like hippos, walking around and just going about their business. The atmosphere is also completely different to the zoo, in that I felt that I was in their territory and expected a snake to jump out at any point! The highlights were seeing some wallabies, servals and seeing a regal Malayan tiger.  

Gardens by the Bay and the Cloud Dome

Gardens by the Bay is basically a massive park that houses the "Super Trees" and two, large domes - one being the Flower Dome and the other being the Cloud Forest. Although I do like seeing flowers, I was more interested in visiting the Cloud Forest. 

It was completely worth the visit. Basically, the dome recreated the environments of some of the cloud forests around the world, Costa Rica and the Cameroon Highlands being a couple. Inside the dome is a very large structure, a mountain, imbedded with thousands of flowers, plants and shrubs. A waterfall falls from high above. It's very cool inside the dome, and mist encompasses you and you are literally spellbound by its beauty. There's an elevator that takes you to the top of the mountain and then there is a nice walk down the mountain. It's a little disconcerting in some places, because you're standing about 40 or metres above ground, walking on a pretty hole-y metal bridge. 

As you walk down, you can read about different cloud forests and their unique traits. You also read about the water cycle in the cloud forest and how the plants absorb water from the rain and mist around them. At the end there is a video about the forests and the impact that global warming has on them. And then before you leave, there is scale model of the entire Gardens, and a little presentation on the Super Trees and how they power the Gardens through solar and water energy. 

Although I was present for the presentation, I can't really tell you much about the Super Trees (science goes in one ear and out the other unfortunately). They are, however, spectacular. They are illuminated in the evening and you can watch a Light and Sound show, when different coloured lights come on in time with the music. 

Gardens by the Bay

The Watefall.

Definitely feel like I'm in an exotic rainforest!

View of Singapore from inside the Cloud Forest Dome.

Look at that!

Illuminated Super Trees.

Sentosa - Universal Studios

Sentosa is a tiny resort island that you can reach on the monorail from Singapore. You can also take a cable car, but we successfully (I mean, "sadly") avoided that trauma. I'm not sure how this happened, but we only managed to go to Universal Studios in Sentosa island, and not see much else. Which is a shame since I heard there's a massive Merlion there. Will just have to go back ;) 

Universal Studios wasn't even on my list of things to do, but I'm so glad we did! I'm not a fan of theme parks or big evil rides, but the ones in Universal were scary but not terrifying and were short enough to be over in a few minutes. What was also really cool was the Water World show that we saw. We hadn't planned to watch it but, again, so glad we did! It was like watching a movie in real life, but not like theatre. If you ever get the chance to watch it, then don't miss it. There were explosions, fireworks, jet skis. And so much more but I don't want to ruin for you. Another really cool experience was the "Sound Studio". This is basically a small hangar where you get to see how directors create a movie scene. For example, we got to experience a hurricane in New York, created with rain, fire, wind, a ship crashing into a wall(!) and lightening. It's impressive how much thought and detail go into a movie scene. 

I think in the future if I am in a city that has a Universal Studios, I'll try to pay it a visit.   

Water World show.

Turning into a Transformer.
Duck Tour

There are many bus and boat tours that you can take in Singapore. We chose the Duck Tour because it's a car that then goes into the water. Pret-ty awesome. I didn't take a photo of our Duck, but here's what they look like:
Singapore Duck Tours Bus photo Singapore-DuckTours_01.jpg
Found here
It wasn't a particularly long or comprehensive tour, but it was nice to be able to see the infamous Merlion (the one spouting water from its mouth) and learn some interesting facts about Singapore from our tour lady.


Louis had always told me that they like their food in Singapore. He was not wrong. You can find any cuisine at any price range. There are food courts in every mall, almost every MRT station and on the streets, where you can peruse different stalls, pick your food and then sit down to enjoy it. We had so many delicious dishes, including a lot of incredible duck, sushi, seafood (not for me though!) and, TOAST! I didn't realise before I got to Singapore, but they have a FANTASTIC coffee culture. There are coffee shops e.v.e.r.y.w.h.e.r.e. serving delicious coffee (but ask for little or no sugar, as they like their coffee sweet) and toast packed with butter and kaya, a scrumptious coconut spread. And there are literally hundreds of bakeries dotted all around. So cheap, fresh and yummy!


Unique avocado dessert and some Japanese food.

Interesting ice cream flavours!
Kaya toast.
I'm really thankful and happy that I had the chance to visit Singapore and see some of South East Asia. It's the furthest East I've ever been and I'm keen to see other countries in the area. Thanks to all of Louis' family who made our visit a lot smoother and for taking us out for many unbelievable meals. I found Singaporeans to be very friendly and honest people. Here are some more photos I took during the trip. Hope you too get a chance to see this green and beautiful country!


Old colonial houses.

A colourful temple.

So many ships!


  1. Wow! 1) that dragon is awesome/scary 2) I love going to zoos! 3) those trees are really cool!


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