Singapore had made us realise that it is not the cities which give us the most enjoyment. Cities have in fact become like a pitstop. A place to grab essentials and recharge a little. Which is a real shame because as an individual experience cities like Singapore are clearly great, but in the grand scheme of this lengthy trip of ours it just didn’t really appeal.
We arrived at Changi airport and used the MRT (a kind of underground and overground train) to get to our hotel. The MRT is incredibly well organised and amazingly clean and getting to our hostel was a breeze. The hostel itself was probably rather unique. It is like a modern boutique hotel but in Hostel form. We stayed in a 6 bed dorm.
On our first evening we decided to stroll down the main street for shopping. It’s like any high street in England, except instead of shops lining the road Singapore has endless shopping malls lined up along the street. Our tourist map suggests 40 large malls, all on one road about 1 mile long. I wanted to get some cheap trainers…but sadly 40 malls of shops were no help as nowhere stocked my size. At UK12 I would guess I fall into the category of “circus freak” here.
We only had one full day in Singapore and top of the agenda was to visit the world famous Raffles Hotel. This was an impressive place which is partially open to tourists. We strolled around for a while but what we really came for was the Singapore Slings. If you don’t know this the Sling was invented here by a bartender at the hotel in around 1910. They aren’t cheap at £13 a pop, but they tasted superb!
(Claire at Raffles)
I then gazed upon a wondrous sight….a Guinness pump. So I followed my cocktail with a pint (no flake) at the bargain price of £11. It’s traditional to eat lots of complimentary monkey nuts and chuck them on the floor. We got our moneys worth in nuts if nothing else!
After the drinks and being the lightweight that I am I was a little worse for wear and after a stroll and (an awful) lunch in the cleanest Chinatown we have ever visited we returned to our hostel to do some New Zealand planning.
Sadly the planning didn’t happen as we got chatting to the Scots and a Malaysian chap in our room. The Scots were on their way to Australia. Though during our lengthy conversation they were on their way to the more pressing engagement of a night out. As we went to bed at midnight they went out on the razz!
We certainly wouldn’t want to suggest that Singapore isn’t worth a visit, but as part of a round the world it doesn’t hold a candle in our opinion to other cities in South East Asia.
Next stop is Australia. We plan to take lots of photographs. I hope to meet an aborigine, see a kangaroo, eat shrimps from the barbie, tell somebody to “rack off”, refer to Claire as my “Sheila” and generally just behave like a flaming galah!