Updated: Oct 19, 2018
by Nina Sabin - Travel
Well, we have made it now to country number three on our Infamous Asian Tour. Just to remind you this was our first repat out of Saudi and we are taking you through our journey of visiting six Asian countries on our itinerary.
At this point, we already have visited three cities in Thailand and one city in Malaysia. On the 16th day of our tour, we again boarded the plane. This time we flew Singapore Airlines. It was just as nice as Thai Air. Everyone was so friendly. Even though the flight was only one and a half hours, we still received a nice meal and drinks. Very different from flying domestically in the states, where you have to pay for each item.
We arrived at Singapore in early afternoon, so we had time to get to the hotel and settle in before our exploring began.
If you did not know, Singapore is known as one of the cleanest cities in the world. They have rules to keep the city clean and enforce those rules with fines. You will not see any liter on the ground or in the Mass Rapid Transport (MRT). There are signs on the MRT that say no chewing gum, eating, drinking, or littering on public transportation. You can tell people respect there city and do what they can to keep it looking beautiful and clean.
One sign we found fascinating was a picture of a fruit that was prohibited. It looked a little like a sea urchin or hedgehog. It is called a durian. It is not allowed on the MRT due to its follow smell. Food writer Richard Sterling has written “its odor is best described as…turpentine and onions, garnished with a gym sock. It can be smelled from yards away.” We thought about trying the fruit, but to be honest, couldn’t get passed the smell. They say the fruit it delicious. I know I have said we need to taste the culture, but this is one taste we have yet to try.
Singapore has so many wonderful sites, especially for children and it is easy to travel on the public transportation or just walk to places. Two of the famous roads to visit are Orchard and Scotts Road. Also as I mentioned before, we never miss visiting the cities’ ChinaTown or Little India. We find it very cool, that so many cities have other cultures that live within the city and have a section just like their home country.
Our favorite area to walk was along the water near the Merlion, the symbol of Singapore. We took a boat ride around the water surrounding the Merlion. It was such a beautiful ride. We rode in the late afternoon and was able to capture the beautiful red, orange, purple and gold rays of the sunset as it set near the Merlion Park Waterway.
The Singapore Zoo was another enchanted time for us. We love to visit zoos and this one was really fascinating because it is a Night Safari at the Zoo. It opens at 7:15 pm and closes at 12:00 am. With two little ones, we weren’t sure if they would be able to stay up late, but after our trek through the jungles of Chang Mai they proved they could do anything. It was extremely fascinating to see the animals in their own environment. Most animals tend to be nocturnal so instead of going to the zoo while they are sleeping (like most zoos in the daytime), we were able to see the animals being active – frolicking, grazing, and even hunting.
No vacation to Singapore is complete without experiencing Sentosa Island. It is almost like a country in itself. Plus, the most southern point of continental Asia is located in Sentosa Island. It is so thrilling to know we stood at the most southern point. Unfortunately, our youngest daughter will never forget that day, as her sister accidentally knocked her into the corner of a picnic table and she had a cut just above her eye. At least it was at a historical moment for us.
There are waterfalls at Sentosa Island and at night a light show is done through the waterfall. It was so incredible that 16 years later and I can still visualize the hues of the lights as they sparkle through the waterfall. There are so many activities to do, I couldn’t list them all. Just plan a full day or two to spend at Sentosa Island. It is known as the playground for all ages.
After three days in Singapore, we were ready to move on to our next country on our Infamous Asian Tour. On our next blog, find out where our itinerary took us next. Also, this was not the only time we were blessed to have the opportunity to visit Singapore. About a year later, John’s work took us back to Singapore where we stayed for six weeks. More information about that to come in the near future.