Farewell South-East Asia

Trip Start Feb 16, 2010
Trip End Apr 08, 2010

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Tuesday, April 6, 2010

We arrived in Singapore around 5pm and we had no idea where we where. Oddly the bus driver could not point out our location so we had to catch a taxi. Two left turns later and we arrived at the road for our hostel. The hostel itself had a 99% rating on hostelworld so we thought we would give it a try. It turned out the hostel was only a month and a half old and so everything still smelt new. It was a good hostel but we found that the more the owners (Rick and his wife who appeared to have no name) banged their own drum about how good it was, the more we found small faults.

Singapore itself is a great place. It is spotlessly clean and a really relaxed place to just walk around and appreciate the surroundings. Its pretty easy to walk around but also has the handy option of a tube ride for a dollar to head back to the hostel if the mid 30 degrees heat got too much, which it did a few times. We spent our first night having a brief look around getting our bearings and then headed out for a proper look around on our first full day. The first sight we passed was the Raffles hotel, that had a rather nice Lambourghini parked out front alongisde an array of other cars owned by rich folk. We then reached the waterfront, where you have the skyline of the business district to your right, the weird floating footballpitch to your left and what we found out was an even weirder open air concert arena being developed. After stopping for a cold drink and to soak up the view we then followed the river inland which was a really nice walk taking in the centre of the city. At one point the path took us under two bridges where somehow Starbucks had managed to squeeze an outlet under one of the bridges. Also lurking under the bridge was an old man who had a big snake, in a basket, waiting to whip it out on unsuspcting tour groups. We managed to sit long enough to see the man get out his snake and wrap it arround and old lady. Seeing the size of the pyhton was enough to put either of us off from evening asking how much the a photo would be.

With our stomachs now rumbling a little we stumbled accross a really good salad bar which offered portions which were aptly called rabbit and zebra for the ladys, and elephant for people like me. It was a good feed and made up for the junk (Mcdonalds) we had to eat in Malaysia. The rest of the afternoon was spent navigating the city and seeing various areas such as the bar area on the quays and Chinatown. In the evening we headed to the area of Little India in which we had heard there was a very impressive shop called Mustafas. Impressive is a pretty small word in comparison to the size of Mustafas. The shop fills two huge buildings linked together by a walkway and sells absoultely everything from food, drills, books, clothes, hardrives and tiger balm. There was a tester bottle of the 'hot' version of the tiger balm on display. As its a tester, Laura had to have a go and rubbed the stuff all over her back, and then moaned all way home that it was burning and that she could not rub it off. This panic/disater only lasted a  few minutes and normal service soon resumed.  

Singapore is renowned for having good shopping and it does not dissapoint. Orchard road is the mainshopping street which is a massive road lined with department stores and shopping malls. We spent a bit of time in this area, partly for the shops and partly for the impressive aircon that the malls all have. When we checked out we found out a possible reason why the hostel had maintained such a high rating (To be fair, it was a very good hostel that was spotlessly clean). The owner Rick is rather keen to get you to give your review in front of him when you check out. This was ok with us though, as we where late checking out so Laura got him to wave the late check out fee as long as we gave it top marks.

We both thought Singapore was a great place to end our time in South-East Asia. Apart from it being a really nice and relaxed place to explore, it was also useful on a practical level to get used to the increase in the prices of food and drinks before we headed to Australia.

The next time we will update this blog we will be upside down, typing whilst eating bbq'd shrimp and sipping on XXXX. If that how its turn out, we'll be happy.

Paul x 
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roz on

singapore looks unreal but good at the same timeenjoy oz talk to you soon. xxxx

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