This year’s first international trip is Singapore! I have always wanted to visit eversince I was young. People always say that SG is one (if not the) of the cleanest and most disciplined country in the world.
I was very specific with my travel dates due to a global work event that I wanted to see. I only spent the weekend there because SG is expensive (this was a spontaneous trip) and I was going by myself. The timing was perfect because I got a new job a month later (thereby unpaid leaves!), I was able to use my travel voucher for my accommodation, and I found a companion to join me.
I went straight to the airport after work. I was a little worried because I left almost five PM. Luckily there was no traffic at all, however the line for the check-in was really long. By the time I’m done with everything it was a little past 6:00. I had to rush through dinner because I was expecting a really long line in immigrations but there were no lines! I went to my gate and spent the rest of the hour just waiting for my flight.
My prayers were answered because my flight was not delayed (the horrors of my Bangkok flight delay is traumatic)! Manila to Singapore is a three hour flight which I spent on reading and sleeping. Just as we were about to land, I got a sudden cold and can’t stop sneezing. I had a very nice seatmate who gave me some aromatherapy oil which really helped clear my sinuses.
I followed the people walking and the sign to Arrivals. There were some Filipinos in line which I assumed was for immigration, so I lined up. It was taking forever, and more people were just walking around us so I asked, and it turns out the line is for the x-ray… because this was departure for the flight back to Philippines! I sneakily stepped out of line and walked to the right path. Immigration was a breeze and I was out in less than hour!
It was almost midnight when I landed so I went straight to my hotel, Hotel 81 Hollywood in Geylang. There’s a lot of Hotel81 chains when you check booking.com, but I chose this one because it looked the most decent. Apparently, the hotel was in a red light district, but I had a good stay. The room was cold, everything was clean, and I slept really well. The only downside would probably be the small size of rooms (which isn’t THAT bad) and the room had no windows which I only found out the next day.
The first agenda for the day is checking-in my real hotel. I stayed in Summerview Hotel in Bencoolen St.
From Geylang, the uber was SGD 7 to the hotel. The plan was to drop off my things since it’s not yet check-in, but we were lucky to be granted an early check-in! The room had the same layout as Hotel 81 but this one had much more space and felt bright and airy.
My first stop was a lunch meeting with a friend. She gave me directions to which MRT station I should get off to.
I absolutely hate riding trains because of the awful experiences I’ve had here in Manila. Bangkok trains are all right but they still scare me a little bit especially during the rush hour. Singapore’s MRT is different though. Getting a ticket was easy and there’s no feeling of always being in a rush.
There are times that I’m lost and overwhelmed because some stations had more people and then there’s quite a bit of transfers to do. But the train experience is pleasant overall!
We had lunch in Laurent’s Cafe in Orchard road. The place reminded me a little bit of Wildflour. I ordered the carbonara and tried the strawberry drink recommended to me. The food was a little pricey (it really IS like Wildflour) but I think it’s standard pricing in Singapore.
After that really nice lunch, we headed towards Naiise. A coworker told me about this store and they sell a bunch of really cool and cute stuff. There’s a lot of stuff that I wanted but I ended up getting a Singlish passport.
We decided to just walk around. We ended up in a mall called Suntec City. We walked around kinda to cool off and kinda just see what’s inside.
After about an hour of walking, I saw that Marina Bay Sands wasn’t that far. Google said it was 20 minutes away, which honestly didn’t sound that bad. It was a bit of a mistake though We walked to it, and thanks to my distorted sense of direction, it went a little farther than it’s supposed to.
It was really hot and humid, definitely different from Manila, but as we got nearer Marina Bay it got a little colder!
When we were near Marina Bay Sands, there was some kind of water inflatable exhibit. It looked really fun but also a torture when you go there when the sun is really up.
We walked through the Helix Bridge. It looks cool during the day, but I’ve seen pictures of it at night and it looks more impressive!
At the end of the bridge was the Marina Bay Sands mall and behind it was Gardens by the Bay! I was really excited. There were so many people; probably because it’s a Saturday and one of Singapore’s places to visit.
We chose to go to the Cloud Dome Exhibit, and we went in line for the tickets which was SGD 28 per person. The line was so long but their system was really efficient. Note that Gardens by the Bay is free except for some areas.
The Cloud Dome was beautiful! It was cold and had a lot of beautiful flowers. There was so much to see inside. The cool breeze was such a delight especially after that really hot and humid walking we did. Once you get in, you’ll see a giant waterfall that’s really tall and impressive. It was really amazing to look at as the very first thing you’d see the moment you step in. I felt like I was in a different place!
You take a lift to the 7th floor and from there you go down. Each floor featured something really nice such as stalagmites and stalactites, flowers, a show about climate change, and much more.
I think we spent about a good two hours or so in the place, because it was dinner time when we left.
We headed towards Marina Bay mall for dinner.
The food court was full so we ended up in this Chinese restaurant called 9Goubuli. I really liked the food there but the servings were huge! They forgot to serve one of my orders and after cancelling it, they gave me the food for free! #blessed
When we were done, we went out for the iLight exhibit. I saw it on Instagram and it looked really cool. The exhibit is outside and there were so many people going around.
One of the most featured on Instagram was the white roses. It was on another side of the area. I followed the map which obviously resulted to us getting lost again. 🙂 🙂 🙂
If you enjoy cityscape like me, Singapore is heaven. I truly appreciated Singapore’s beauty when night time came.