Singapore

Posted by on Apr 26, 2013 in Asia, Play-by-plays, Singapore | 0 comments

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Oh Singapore, the city of contrasts. The sweltering heat blazes down on you if you make the mistake of being outside, and the hurricane of air con convulses you into desperate shivers if you make the mistake of being inside. There is almost equal demand for Louis Vuitton handbags as there is for $4 chicken rice at hawker centers. And while happy to see really good friends in our Road Trip reunion, I was just as sad that my trip was ending. Yus, however, is still going strong and will take over this blog for a bit after I catch up with Bhutan, although I’ll reappear with posts on my time in the States and eventually in Russia! (Stay tuned!)

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We did what most people do in Singapore, i.e. eat, eat, eat, drink, eat, and stay in air con as much as possible. For food, we went to cheap hawker centers in China Town (Maxwells and Chinatown Complex Hawker), had dim sum at Taste Paradise, and signature Singaporean Chili Crab at Palm Beach right on the water. Don’t let the name fool you, the chili crab is authentic.

And anyone who goes to Singapore has to try The Cajun Kings, my friend’s Cajun seafood boil restaurant. You are encouraged to eat delicious seafood with your hands, and smack at it with a little wooden hammer, which is very cathartic. Once again, Yus had to be left out of the party because he is too afraid to let me stab him with his epi-pen. Psshhh.

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I must give Singapore props for its Marina Bay skyline. The views are spectacular whether you are looking from the Sands Hotel or at it. The Singapore Flyer, Merlion, Fullerton Hotel, Marina Bay Sands itself plus many other buildings all create a gorgeous city scape. And at 8 and 9:30 each evening, there is even a light show that is reminiscent of Bellagio Fountains meeting the Hong Kong light show with a dab of Disney cheesiness.

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We skipped most of the touristy things, although admittedly I’ve done many before — Singapore Sling at Raffles Hotel, the Singapore Flyer, Clarke Quay, etc. What we did do was spend two afternoons relaxing at the ridiculous infinity pool at the Marina Bay Sands. The views are incredible, so if the hotel ever fixes the quality of the snack menu, the place will become perfection.

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Another popular activity in Singapore is going to malls, so we perused a few. Most of the goods are far above our budgets but if you a baller and a shotcaller, Singapore is definitely a spot for you. And as for nightlife, I preferred the bars and lounges on Club Street to clubs and discos.

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One last note, and that is on MacRitchie Reservoir — a place from which you can hardly see sky scrapers, where you can run around the reservoir in a bona fide jungle and get chased by monkeys. As a bonus, here are great facilities at the start of the trails–with lockers, showers, etc. I would say they are far better than anything in my beloved Central Park, whose scenery and nature factor is not nearly as wild.

My two weekends in Singapore were the bookends to my and jdub’s trip to Bhutan, so the Land of the Thunder Dragon is coming up!

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