One of the gateways of Asia to other parts of the world – Singapore! Known for it’s diverse culture, wide array of cuisines and luxurious shopping! No wonder a lot of people wants to visit Singapore. But in all honesty, I never thought of going there because of the weather as I prefer colder regions than tropical ones since I’m from a tropical country and I’m so done with the hot weather here. LOL!
In every country you visit, the first thing you will see upon arrival is it’s airport terminal. I’ve been to Incheon, HKIA, Narita & Jeju and I must say, Singapore’s Changi Airport is a destination itself! Well, unless you are in the transit area, that is. There’s a wide array of food restaurants you can choose from, duty free shops, free massage chairs, free movies, convenience stores, etc. You will definitely enjoy the transit area if you have lots of cash to splurge! But to us budget travelers, there’s always a way to kill our boredom without spending, right?
When we arrive, the first thing we looked for was food. The four hours flight made us hungry! Since Terminal 3 has only a few options, we went to Terminal 2 instead. But since it was past midnight, most of the food stalls are already closed. After looking around, we ended up having our meal in Mcdonald’s in T2.
We spent our first night at the airport since there’s no MRT when we arrived. It was one of the most uncomfortable sleeping experience in a public area! But what choice do we have, right? Sure, you can book Uber or ride a taxi, but it would cost too much. So spending the night at the airport is the best thing to do especially if you’re traveling on a tight budget. And by the way, they I say that it was my first time to sleep at the airport? One for the books.. or not.
Finally, daylight came! We went back to the Changi MRT station situated in between T2 and T3, disembark in Tanah merah and transfer to another train bound for Bugis Station. We arrived at our hostel and left our luggage since it was way too early for check in. We went around Bugis and Little India. First stop was Kampong Glam – an area full of colors and artistic wall paintings especially in Haji lane! This is where you see the famous wall art you see on your social media feed! If you want to take a photo with less people, I would suggest visiting the area early morning on Sundays. Most of the shops are closed during that day. Since you are in the area, just a few walk you from Haji lane is the Arab Street, where you get to see lots of quirky shops, local restaurants and bars and it’s near Masjid Sultan – One of Singapore’s iconic landmark. After strolling around Arab Street and Haji Lane, we stop by Our Lady of Lourdes Church in Bugis.
Without particular place in mind, we went around aimlessly. Though, we do check the map from time to time. We were unfamiliar with the area but we just strolled around and see whatever there is to see. After a long walk, we knew we where in Little India. Why? Well, the place felt like India (As if I’ve been there. LOL!). It became more clear where we were because of the local eateries around the area and the banners (Like they are celebrating some kind of fiesta or something.). At the corner of the street, we saw the Sri Veeramakaliamman Temple located right across where we were standing. It is, according to the internet, that the temple is dedicated to the goddess and destroyer of evil, Sri Veeramakaliamman or Kali. From the outside, the color and details of the temple was stunning!
We went back to our hostel around 2PM. Took a nap at the reception area until we were allowed for check in. After a quick rest and freshen up, we then went to one of the “iconic” and luxurious destination in Singapore – The Marina Bay Sands. It was late afternoon already when we arrive there. We went around The Promenade (MBS side). Took a few snaps and leisurely walked around. The weather was kinda gloomy but it did not rain. Still, it was really hot! I swear, I was sweating so much!
You’ve never been to Singapore if you don’t have a photo of the famous Merlion! The place is sure crowded! Lots of couples dating, families bonding and friends enjoying their rest day around it!
A few meters away from the merlion, you can see the Esplanade; Outside. I have nothing much to say about this place actually. We only passed by here as we were heading towards Makansutra. Sugbo Mercado in Cebu; Mercato Centrale in Taguig. After a long day, literally and figuratively, we finally had our dinner! We tried the Famous Chili Crabs at SGD 25/Piece. We also had both the roasted hainanese chicken and the steamed hainanese chicken. Both Chickens were actually too bland for my taste. If I remember it correctly, that was around SGD $5-10.
Today’s an exciting day! Why? We’re heading to the UNIVERSAL STUDIOS SINGAPORE! Upon entering USS, we went straight to the Sci-Fi City where you can ride the TRANSFORMERS! It was definitely worth the wait! Thanks Bumblebee for saving us! *Wink* My friend almost collapsed because he doesn’t like “thrilling rides” so to speak. Nonetheless, we all enjoyed the 4D ride! 따봉 (Thumbs up) Up next was supposed to be the Cyclon or Human ride. Unfortunately, my friend is fainthearted and so we skipped those rides (for now). From Sci-fi city, we went to Ancient Egypt! Here, we tried the Revenge of the Mummy – a roller coaster ride; and my other friend told us about it already. But I guess my friend was not paying attention that was why he was “OK” about it. After the ride, he got so pale! LOL! But it was also really good! That’s like two straight good rides in a row. Now I love roller coasters! After the ride, we ran towards The Lost World as we were trying to catch up with the water world show! The show was very good! Great performances, stunts from the actors and the effects were dope! I also love the “Plane crash” scene! After the show, we went to Jurassic Park Adventure Rapids! “Time to get soaked” and so I though. It wasn’t really exciting as it looks but yeah, got kinda wet. Serves its purpose, I guess? Anyway, after drying off, we went to Far Far Away! Surely, the Kids and kids at heart will definitely enjoy the Shriek 4D Adventure! Or am I the only one who enjoyed it? I mean, it was something contrast with all the rides we’ve been to. Moving on, next attraction – Madagascar! We hop on to Madagascar: A Crate Adventure! And because, I really wanted to try either Cyclon or Human, we went back to Sci-fi City! Only me and my best friend’s girlfriend rode the Cyclon! I’ve never shouted so much in my life! I think it was a good thing though because it took away all my stress! I saved the best for last!! The excitement I felt did not die down easily! It was one of the best and memorable thing I did! And because of that experience, I’m planning on going back to Singapore just so I can do unlimited Cyclon, Human, Transformers and The revenge of the Mummy!
It was 7PM when we arrive at Vivo City and so we met with a friend (of my friend). We had our dinner at Ajisen Japenese Gourmet town or simply, Ajisen Ramen! It was one of the best tasting ramen I’ve ever had! But Ichiran will always be number one in my heart and stomach. I ordered.. tadaa! Their Ajisen Ramen! Surprising choice, eh? LOL! The ramen is pretty much.. a ramen. It has the chaysu, the hard boiled egg and greens. Though it’s like basic ramen, the difference boils down to the broth and obviously, I liked it! The meal cost me a whooping 15 SGD! The most expensive meal I had by far since I came to Singapore. No regrets though.*wink* After Eating, we then took a quick stop at Giant – a local supermarket located at the basement of Vivo City.
Since we’re in the purple line, we made a stop at Chinatown. We were just looking around for stuff to buy for our families back in the Philippines. Typical Pinoy, I know. One of the things that I wanted to buy was the beef jerkeys I saw. It looked so appetizing that I wanted to buy it regardless of price. Unfortunately, it might not reach the Philippines since I will be traveling to Indonesia the day after tomorrow. Imagine the pain you’ve felt when you can’t eat your favorite food! Sobs.
It’s our 3rd Day in Singapore and their last day! Since we’re checking out of our hostel today, we went around in Bugis area for the 2nd time! We went inside this market, where you can see lots of fashion items, accessories, food stalls etc. I happen to passby a stall which sells variety of drinks. But what caught my attention was the Bandung (Rose tea)! It’s not that I’m not familiar with the taste. But you know, curious about the “difference” of the taste, well, if there is. Actually there was a little difference, the one in Manila tasted too sweet and flowery that it became cloyed once you reach the mid level of the cup. Whereas the one I tried in Singapore was rather better, it was rose-y (or flowery), the sweetness was mild and it was perfect for the very hot weather! We strolled further, we saw a 2 dollar mini convenience store and bought chocolates and some chips (for later). We then went back to our hostel, freshen up again and checked out.
We left our luggage at the front desk and went out again. This time, we went back to Chinatown to buy some key chains. Well not me but my friend. Anyway, a 45 pieces key chain was only about SGD 10! What a great buy, don’t you think? I didn’t buy those key chains as most of my friends have been to Singapore. Pretty sure they have it already. Anyway, after that quick shopping in Chinatown, we went to Clarke Quay! We had a hard time since it was raining cats and dogs!
After strolling around Clarke Quay, we arrived at Somerset and the nearest MRT was Fort Canning. Sadly, the MRT was closed! OF ALL TIME! WHY?? So we went back to Clarke Quay MRT which was like the opposite side of where we were and braved the rain back to that station.
Alas, we’ve finally arrive in Orchard road! Took so much effort to be here for nothing. Well, not really nothing, atleast I’ve finally tried Pablo’s! So it’s not really “nothing”, I guess? Nothing much to say about Orchard. Anyway, to cut the story short, got back to our hostel and went straight to the airport!
I bid farewell to my friends as they will leave first. Me? I got left alone at the airport for another overnight stay courtesy of Changi Terminal 2. Free of charge! Wifi included!
Goodbye Changi, kay wa nako’y money!
(Translation: Goodbye Changi, because I don’t have money!)