Last night we ran around from Chinatown to the Boat Quay to Marina Bay and onto that world’s biggest “observation wheel” (cause fancy people don’t go on ferris wheels). It was warm and relaxing and filled with puke-worthy couples being all cutesy with each other along the river.
All three of these areas are pretty nice to walk around at night. We took the mile trek out from Chinatown along South Bridge Road and passed a lot of nightlife along the way. The sparkly lights made for an awesome view from the Singapore Flyer (though if you’d rather take that money and spend it on a similar view with access to alcohol, you should go up the hotel across the highway instead. Yes, the one that looks like it has a giant hotdog speared on top.)
We grabbed some snacking stuffs from the food stalls a few minutes out from the flyer, and headed back with happy stomachs.
Today we spent a large part of the morning in, thanks to a quail-egg sized blister that had grown on my ankle overnight. I went to a clinic to get it checked out and the doctor had to use a syringe to suck out a good part of the pus before he cut it open. It was absolutely disgusting and means that I need to be extra diligent on my bug lotion application so I don’t get another allergic reaction like this.
We spent a good part of our afternoon at the Botanical Gardens. This place is absolutely gorgeous, so obviously we had to camera-whore our way through the different areas. The word from other travelers is that the best time to visit is around January. We got caught in a light drizzle during our visit, but it helped cut through the heat and humidity. The gardens are separated into different areas which were devoted to a specific climate or family of plants. Most of the gardens are free, with the exception of the orchid garden which is $5 SD for adults or $1 with a student id to get in. There are also several lakes within the park, and you can catch glimpses of turtles, fish, and swans paddling around. You can buy little plastic balls of food to feed them with!
After too much time with nature (thats a lie, there’s no such thing), we took a bus down orchard road to the shopping area. It was pretty interesting seeing the hodgepodge of random stalls bordering one side of the road in contrast to the giant mall screaming high end name brands on the other side. We decided to start with the poorer side (quite frankly it had a lot more character) and walk around. It was a lot like Taipei’s subway markets, with all sorts of goods and cheap souvenirs being offered. We had a great time at the food court, where we got some Indonesian beef ball noodle soup and shaved ice with soursop fruit, grass jelly, and lime.
In our efforts to find a bathroom (with the unpleasant surprise to Amy that they cost 20 cents to use), we decided to cross the street. It was pretty funny walking into the bathroom and seeing pretty much every other mirror occupied by some girl fixing her bangs or makeup. I had a hard time not laughing or judging, but I succeeded in keeping my comments to myself (for the time being). There’s not much else to say about Orchard Road. Malls are malls are malls.
We ended our day in Singapore with some lazy time and chatting with other travelers at the hostel, then dinner at Clark Quay and a second dinner at Chinatown. Yes, our first dinner of supposedly fancy chinese food was so unsatisfactory (despite the pretty riverside view) that we had to have a second exponentially more delicious meal (where Amy and I just ordered drinks and shared a plate of Singaporean chili crab).
We ended our day with a rush to Woodlands checkpoint to hop on our overnight train to Kuala Lumpur.
For reference – Singpore’s MRT system takes you to Woodlands Station, but you still need to head downstairs to the bus depot to catch a bus (911, 912, or 913) to Woodlands Checkpoint, which is where the train to KL actually leaves from.
Overall I wasn’t a super big fan of Singapore. It’s a really big city with lots of pretty things but almost in a snooty way. It’s somewhere I would go if I was looking for partay fun, but not as much for a backpacking trip. I’m glad we had chosen a hostel located away from the bustle of the city.
As a closing remark, the reason boobs is in my title is because my allergic reactions to big bites have an unfortunate effect of making them look like nipples in a big pink boob. Sad days…:(