Singapore - a little red dot

Trip Start Feb 18, 2011
Trip End Feb 17, 2012

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Where I stayed
WOW Hostel

Flag of Singapore  ,
Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Coming from Jakarta, we stopped by Singapore on our way to Malaysia only for 4 days as it was quite expensive compared to other south east asian countries. Upon arrival at the "Budget" terminal of the airport, we could see everything is very modern and well organized. The SMRT(Singapore mass rapid train service) was well designed to make it effective and safe for passengers. Also, they don't have any paper train ticket. Even if you take just one ride, you get a plastic card with an IC chip. Not only the train, but also the city itself is made in order. The road system is well designed, leaving space for green patches and light between the buildings.

On the other side, they still have many traditional food stalls called “hawkers”. They are just like food courts, but with more variety. We went to have lunch at “Lao pa Sat pavilion” which is one of the biggest hawkers courts in Singapore. We could choose from over 100 food stalls serving Singaporean food, Indian, Korean, Indonesian, Malay, Japanese and much more.

In spite of the short stay, we did quite a lot. One of our favorite places was the big National Botanical garden. We really liked the Botanical garden in Sydney, but we liked Singapore’s even better! The place was huge(you could easily spend two days just walking around and discovering new stuff).

There is a big variety of tropical plant species, sculptures, ponds and animals and even a concert hall. We visited late afternoon on a weekday and we saw many locals playing and relaxing with their kids as well as more than 5 wedding couples shooting their wedding photos in the beautiful green gardens. After some hours of walking and dehydrating under the tropical sun, we decided to leave the garden although we looked around only a small part of it.

Since we saw good reviews on tripadvisor about museums in Singapore, we visited the contemporary art museum called SAM, Singapore Art Museum.(As you might notice, Singapore is famous for using abbreviations, for instance, SAM, SMART, GTM,…) The current exhibition at SAM was “VIDEO – an art, a history 1965-2011”. Several TVs and headsets were placed together with comfy sofas in dim lit rooms, which produced a nice vibe. We enjoyed it so much, that we finally had too less time to visit the SAM HQ building – which would have been included in the ticket…

While walking down the streets, we heard the people are talking in different languages. However once we asked something, they switched their language to fluent English (with Singlish accent, which is influenced by Chinese words).

Religioniwhise it was nice to see so many mosques, Chinese Buddhist temples, churches and Hindi temples located very close to each other – seemingly without any problems.

However, our next stop - Malaysia - was more diverse in a lot of different ways…

Next stop: Melaka in Malaysia
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