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Thursday, April 2, 2015

Day 7 - Singapore: Out and About in Singapore

Singapore: Day 7 - 2.4.2015:


After a not exactly lavish breakfast at the Keong Saik Hotel (toast, marmalade, beans) we walked to the nearby Outram Park MRT Station and drove to Boon Lay MRT Station, which took a while. Our first destination for the day would be the Jurong Bird Park, which is a bit outside the city. From the Boon Lay MRT Station we followed the signs through a shopping mall to the huge bus terminal. The bus 251 was just boarding and so we went in, using our Three-Day-Pass for the trains and busses in Singapore.




We didn´t really know when to exit the bus, so my friend tracked our bus ride with our map and it was just a few stations to the bus stop in the Jln Ahmad Ibrahim. When we entered the Bird Park, the staff told us, that a show will just begin, so we walked there first and found ourselves in an huge arena, when the "High Flyers"-Show started, featuring parrots flying through rings. They actually have several shows, including the "King of the Skies"-Show featuring eagles, which we missed. 



The park is big and after the show we walked along a lot of aviaries and took the shuttle-bus to what I liked most - the rainforest themed Waterfall Aviary, where the birds, including Crested Guineafowls ran and flew around in an area, that included a huge artificial waterfall. Later at the Flamingo Pool we also stumbled upon a Green Iguana.




The Jurong Bird Park was fun and interesting, as they have many different sections and a lot of information on the birds. Originally we had planned to go from there to the Singapore Botanic Gardens, but we also wanted to visit Sentosa Island and it seemed like there´s not enough time for both, so we skipped the gardens and took the bus 251 back to Boon Lay MRT Station and took the MRT to Harbour Front MRT Station. There we came to Vivo City, a huge shopping mall and had lunch at their food court, which featured many Indian, Chinese and even Filipino meals.

We read, that there´s a Monorail from Vivo City to Sentosa Island, so we started looking. The weather had changed for the worse, from burning hot to cloudburst and thunderstorm. It took a while (including an unwilling excursion to the cinema area inside Vivo City) until we found the Monorail ("Sentosa Express") entrance among the abundance of stores and floors. Despite the weather we decided to buy a ticket and off we went with the Monorail through the thunderstorm across the ocean to Sentosa Island.



Sentosa Island is basically a tourist island with expensive hotels and huge and also expensive Attractions like the Universal Studios, a waterpark and the world´s largest aquarium. We just wanted to take a look at the island and visit the free or cheaper attractions like the beach and Fort Siloso. We first stopped at the Imbiah Lookout Station, where several attractions are located, like a Butterfly Park and Madame Tussauds Singapore. However - the rain was still heavy and we stopped walking around when the thunderstorm and the rain seemed to get worse. So we basically just got a glimpse of the big Merlion statue, which seemed to be as huge as the one we saw the day before at Marina Bay.



I was not ready for defeat against the weather and needed to go to my personal must-see, the Palawan Beach. Coming from the original Palawan, Philippines, I of course had to take a look at Singapore´s Palawan. So we took the Monorail to the Beach Station and then a free shuttle. Due to the weather however we just could make a quick photo stop and then we gave up and returned to the hotel, as the rain wouldn´t stop and we were getting wet even in the shuttle. The beach was fine, but of course the real deal ist even better, like the beach in my hometown of Araceli, where I spent some time last year.




Back at the hotel we rested and I had planned to meet a friend, which unfortunately didn´t work out. So we just walked for dinner to Chinatown, where we had another great dinner in the "food street" Pagoda Street, including dessert, consisting of fried banana. We later also stopped by the Maxwell Food Center again to get more of their delicious mixed fruit drinks. Then we already had to pack, as we had to leave the next early morning to the airport, for our next destination, Taiwan. 


All said, Singapore was a great stop for  few days with interesting cultural attractions, especially the different city quarters, great food, tropical climate and many huge tourist attractions like the Gardens by the Bay. We haven´t seen half of it - next time I hope we can see the Botanic Garden, the Night Safari, the River Safari and the MacRitchie Reservoir Park. And I really hope I get the chance to come back. 

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