I had traveled a lot with my parents when I was little; it’s a pity that I don’t recall most of it. My recent trip to Singapore is one of those places I always intended to visit to add to my international travels. It also happens to be the place where the #TravelBug bit me, long last and much needed! Thereafter, my first travelogue which encapsulates the 4 days well spent in Singapore.
This trip to Singapore was a last minute plan and even given the control freak that I am, it couldn’t be planned in terms of the itinerary. It started with my sister telling me that she’s going there on business and I decided to tag along; truly one of the best impulsive decisions of my life. Coming back to the itinerary, I planned my entire trip during the onward journey. Well, the flight took an additional 2 hours since a passenger fell ill and it had to turn back for an emergency landing. Yes, these kind of things happen to me quite often.
We reached and checked-in at The Westin only to realise that it was a non-smoking hotel. The hotel was so beautiful that we completely ignored the fact. Moreover, Singapore is so clear and non polluted, you don’t feel the urge to smoke. Additionally, buying cigarettes will burn a hole right through your wallet.
After check-in, we took a power nap and headed to Marina Bay in the evening, by foot. In Singapore, walking is great because the roads and buildings are gorgeous. Hailing a cab again is super expensive so it’s a lot better to walk. We sat on a bench by the water, grabbed some food and waited for the water and light show. I wouldn’t call myself well traveled but that show happens to be a tad bit overrated. You can happily give it a miss and explore the Marina Bay promenade instead.
For those of you who love skyscrapers, Singapore is an absolute delight for the eyes. Not wanting to end the day so soon, we took a cab straight to China Town a place which may turn one into a shopaholic. From clothes, to mementos and restaurants- there is practically nothing you won’t find here. A must visit place to get things back for your family and friends- inexpensive too.
Next day started with breakfast at this quaint and colourful cafe called My Awesome Cafe. Thus started Day 02 in Singapore after some awesome salad, well done eggs and bacon. You must visit this restaurant when in this country. At this point, I must thank my dear friend, Sanjay who stays in Singapore and came to my rescue while my sister was busy working. He was my partner in doing all things tourist-y and definitely an integral part of this perfect vacation.
The only thing on my itinerary for the next day was #UniversalStudios and I am so glad I spent an entire day there. It is without doubt, the highlight of my trip. The cinema lover that I am,
The Transformers zone was numero uno on my list. The rides in this zone were totally mind blowing and cannot be missed. The official merchandise store is quite expensive but worth a visit. While I left universal studios with tears in my eyes as my “education” was now halfway complete, I had a jam packed schedule planned for the next day.
Woke up in the morning for a nice walk by the hotel because walking in Singapore is true blissful what with the perfectly managed traffic and the power of being able to manage it with the press of a button. We headed for lunch at Old School Delight, a small restaurant in an arcade mall called Esplanade. They serve traditional Singaporean specials and I loved every bit of it, course by course. We then walked through Helix bridge and Marina Mall straight to Gardens by the Bay.
Gardens by the Bay is an absolute visual delight and takes approximately about 2 full days if you have to see it all. We chose the Flower Dome in Bay South Garden which also happens to be the largest glass greenhouse in the world and closest to the the Supertree Grove, given we didn’t want to miss the light and music show in the evening.
The cloud mountain which is 138 ft high inside the flower dome has a 115 ft. high waterfall which is again something one must not miss. We made it just in time for the show which was truly delightful. The only thing that played spoil sport here was the unprecedented rains that started in the middle of the show and I had to cancel the plan of visiting the Singapore Flyer (this I shall do on my next visit) therefore I went back to the hotel to freshen up and head for dinner.
Dinner was at Clarke Quay, a massive house space next to the Singapore River housing over 100 restaurants and night clubs. Glad we chose Jumbo over the rest- the Crab Speciality Restaurant on the Riverside. We ordered two of their signature crab mains along with some sweet bread which went perfectly well with the crab dishes and some sticky rice. We licked our fingers through the meal and I can’t wait to go back there for another meal. Glad the day ended on a delicious note despite the uncalled-for rains.
On our last day in Singapore, we had only a couple of hours in the morning before catching the flight so sister and me decided to get to some shopping. We headed to Bugis Street where we did the last bit of some impulsive street buying before heading to the famed Merlion Park. I somehow always imagined the Merlion to be way taller and bigger than it actually was and this was a complete disappointment contrary to popular perception.
We hardly spent much time here before heading back to the hotel to collect our bags before heading to the airport. Singapore (Changi) Airport is known to be one of the best airports in the world. The Harry Potter themed zones (they have seasonal themes) at several places in the terminal was visually arresting. The butterfly garden was also quite a pretty sight before we indulged in some duty free shopping.
Singapore might be considered to be one of the best family vacations one can take given the amount of tourist venues the place graces. Plan in advance and your tickets might cost you less or equal to a domestic flight. I would suggest (for someone going there for the first time) to plan at least a week of travels as visiting all relevant places would take that much time unlike me who now has to go back to finish the rest (not complaining one bit).
I hope you find this helpful and interesting and plan your next international trip soon. I have visited two more countries and in the process of planning another. 🙂 Do let me know what you feel about this travelogue and post your comments in the section below. Always happy to receive feedback.