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In Singapore!

It's the new year and here's my updated wishlist for 2014! :)

Wishlist:
1. Taiwan
2. Spain
3. Thailand
4. Italy
5. Nice, France

2013, I managed to:
1. Go to Thailand again
2. Went to England and Scotland :)

Smiles, Francesca

Francesca's Top 10 for Singapore...

A Brief on Singapore's must-see places:

1. The Zoo -- I know, we're adults but nevertheless, it's still a great
activity to do on early mornings. The zoo is opened by about 9am I think. Go early to catch the feeding times and shows.

2. The Night Safari -- yep, same area, right next to the Zoo but only opened in the evenings. It IS the World's First Night Zoo and you should go take a look see. Be there by about 6pm or so, you don't want to miss feeding times again.

3. Go to Sungei Buloh Nature Park -- also in the Northern part of the island -- pretty near to where the Zoo and Night Safari is. If you like nature, it's a
good place to take a walk-about and look at the natural ecosystem.

4. The Botanic Gardens -- love this place! Weekend mornings are the best cos there's a buzz of activity! Lots of people will be there engaged in all sorts of exercise... you get to see dogs too. Also, check out the Orchid Garden.

5. Clarke Quay -- newest entertainment hub: lots of eating places and pubs and there's the Ministry of Sound if you like dancing. My favourite is the Iguana Cafe which is actually opposite of Clarke Quay, near Brewerkz which brews its own beer! :)

6. Singapore River & Esplanade -- just a short walk from Clarke
Quay, down past Boat Quay, all along the Singapore River to the Esplanade. It's lovely. Of course, the alternative is to take a bumboat ride! :) Especially nice at dusk, where it's still a bit light and you can see the setting sun.

7. MRT ride -- be adventurous! Hope on the MRT train and visit one of our HDB estates -- ie. Singapore's award-winning urban housing plan! :) Look at how the majority of Singaporeans live! If lost, always just ask for the nearest MRT station, get directed there and then, ask the officers in the Station Control for directions. Typical Singaporeans will also be able to help. Most of us speak English cos' it's our first language, but are generally shy to offer.

8. Mustaffa Centre in Little India -- Little India is a destination itself,
full of things to intrigue your 5 senses... so go for a visit there and have
banana leaf lunch. Also, visit Mustaffa Centre cos that's the best place to get souvenirs... :)

9. The Singapore Flyer -- It's a really huge Ferris-Wheel which gives you a lovely 360 degree view of Singapore. I absolutely love it!

10. Marina Bay Sands Resort -- The Marina Bay Sands Resort and Casino officially opened 23 Jun 2010! It's stunning... and has such a commanding presence in the Singapore Marina Bay area. A definite must-see!

More Activity Tips! For 3 days!

Activity Tip 2 -- Visit the Asian Civilisations Museum at The Empress Place. It's right next to the Singapore River, across the Cavenagh Bridge from The Fullerton Hotel. A swanky, romantic, atmospheric place for dinner is the Indochine restaurant there, but make sure you have reservations -- it's usually packed!!!

Activity Tip 3: Visit the Singapore Zoological Gardens! One of the Top 5 Zoos in the World! :) We have an Open Concept Zoo and it's really beautiful! A recent trip there has made me want to visit again. Should try to get there early in the morning about 9.30am when it's not too hot yet and leisurely stroll through the Zoo. Just 20 minutes from the City. Take the MRT North line to Ang Mo Kio Station and from there, take bus 138 from the Bus Interchange. Alternatively, a taxi gets you there pretty fast too!

Activity Tip 4: Go on a Duck Tour! :) Yep! It's a boat on wheels and the trip starts from Suntect City and will take you around a city tour of Singapore before a ride on water! Cool eh? If you want a quick introduction to the city area, I think this might be interesting. The customer service desk is on the first floor of Suntec City itself. Take the train to City Hall MRT station and walk through the City Link Mall -- underground mall. Just ask for directions, shouldn't be a problem. Just don't get so caught up shopping in the Mall that you forget about the tour! ;)

More Activity Tips! For a few more days!

Activity Tip 5: Take the MRT train to any station out of the central part of Singapore, ie. Orchard, Somerset, Dhoby Ghaut, City Hall, and Raffles Place. Travel for at least 3 stops in either direction -- to the north, east or west or north-west and you'd find yourself in the "suburbs" of Singapore -- our HDB heartlands.

Should be quite interesting to see our housing estates that is home to the majority of Singaporeans -- blocks and blocks of apartments like pigeon-holes. There'd be a town central where you alight at and you'd get to see the daily life of most Singaporeans -- where we eat and do our grocery shopping and stuff.

Activity Tip 6: Visit our University Campus. There are currently 3 universities in Singapore -- The National University of Singapore, The Nanyang Technological University and The Singapore Management University.

The National University of Singapore (NUS) is the oldest one around. It began in 1823 with an idea of Raffles that there should be a college to provide educational and research facilities. After many transformations -- mergers and name changes, it finally took shape as a university in 1980. Take the train West and alight at Clementi MRT station. Cross the overhead bridge over to the Town Centre and there you'd see the bus interchange. Walk over to Bus No. 96 and hop on it. Just swipe your Transitlink farecard (the same one used for the train ride if you bought a stored-valued one) and it'd take you there! It's quite hard to miss NUS, it's a big imposing building. My suggestion is to stop at the 2nd stop after the bus turns left into the NUS compound itself. :)

The Nanyang Technological University (NTU) was established in 1991, though it had its beginnings in 1981 as Nanyang Technological Institute. NTU is located in the West too, but further up West. Take the train past Clementi all the way to Boon Lay MRT station -- the last stop of the East-West line. From there, you'd find the bus interchange too and hop on board service 179 or 199 to reach the campus.

The Singapore Management University (SMU) is the newest one so far, beginning only in January 2000. It's now located at the Bukit Timah Campus which is it's holding campus while the City Campus is being built. To reach there, it's best to take a train to Newton MRT station and from there, take bus 174. Alight after you have passed by a tall condominium building and a small plant nursery on your left. You should be able to see a sports field and the buildings atop a small knoll. :)

Down Memory Lane -- A boat-ride away at Ubin

If you want to see what Singapore used to be like when it was an undeveloped island, you should take a trip to Pulau Ubin.

Make your way to CHangi Village and from there, find the ferry terminal.

Rides to Ubin are on small boats that will leave once there are about 12 persons heading there -- this is for economic purposes. Each person pays about $2 for a one-way ride.

A great way to see the island is to wander around on your own by renting a bike from one of the many bike rental shops near the jetty. Alternatively, a more fun-filled way to see Ubin would be on a PedalUbin tour.
Check out the link below, if you're interested:

http://habitatnews.nus.edu.sg/activities/pedalubin/

The photo shows Eugene and me on one of these PedalUbin excursions.
It was a real fun day exploring Pulau Ubin, though you have to be careful cycling down slopes...
i did a Jill and tumbled down one with my bicycle and the results weren't exactly pretty... I'm just thankful I didn't break any bones, suffered no major head trauma and my two front teeth, though cracked, are still intact.
hehehehe... :)

Photo images of Singapore

Check out http://rayraytan.com

Ray has got some really nice photos on Thaipusam, Little India, Chinese Opera and even on Melaka...

Visual poetry! :)

  • Intro Updated Apr 2, 2014
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Comments (51)

  • toemayn's Profile Photo
    Mar 6, 2014 at 4:49 AM

    Hope your birthday is filled with all the fun you can handle!

  • planxty's Profile Photo
    Jul 4, 2012 at 4:46 AM

    Interesting London page, Francesca. If you are back, give us a shout on the London-Calling page and we will try to arrange a meet for you. fergy.

  • volarevolare's Profile Photo
    Mar 6, 2012 at 11:13 PM

    Hi :) Thanks for the birthday wishes!

  • sdq's Profile Photo
    Mar 6, 2012 at 12:07 PM

    !!!!! Happy Birthday !!!!!

  • TrendsetterME's Profile Photo
    Mar 5, 2012 at 9:55 PM

    "Happy Birthday", with my best wishes ... :)

  • leics's Profile Photo
    Sep 20, 2011 at 9:50 AM

    Thanks for your visits and comments. I'm sure you'll enjoy Winchester. But do take care when cycling in the UK! :-) J

  • chiabh's Profile Photo
    Mar 6, 2011 at 5:12 AM

    hi francesca... happy birthday to you... may all that your desires come true in the year of the rabbit... ~chia

  • Tasmania's Profile Photo
    Mar 1, 2011 at 2:02 PM

    Hope your trip goes well!

  • ettiewyn's Profile Photo
    Feb 20, 2011 at 1:26 AM

    Hi Francesca, a great homepage with so many useful information on Singapore! Well done, thank you! I hope to visit the city as a stopover when I go to Australia again. Have a great trip to Tasmania, it's so beautiful :-)

  • bharat_tanwar's Profile Photo
    Apr 25, 2010 at 7:37 AM

    such a great saying...with lovely pics....good page...greetings from India....:)

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