• Menu
  • Menu

Tag - Singapore

March 2022

At last, after nearly 2 years of being in the UK during the Covid-19 pandemic, I have finally been able to get back onto a plane and return to Asia.

It has been a long hard road and for some, it will never be the same again. Losing loved ones, friends and jobs has made the last two years unbearable and will leave indelible scars on families.

However, life must go on and although we may feel guilty about traveling again, I know for a while I did. We must try to lead a normal life. Before Covid I was traveling and working around Asia and whilst this time around it will be slightly different in the way I approach things, I aim to carry on.

First stop, Singapore to see old friends after a transit through Dubai which turned out to be extra long due to misunderstandings with covid restrictions on behalf of Emirates. Then onto the Philippines for much-needed sun and relaxation before finally returning to Cambodia, where I left for a 2-week holiday to England that lasted 2 years.

 

 

2022

March 7th

Almost to the day, I finally can get back onto a plane again and fly to where I like to call home.

Asia, or more to the point southeast Asia. Home to some of the friendliest people I have ever met. I guess that is why I call it home. From my Cambodian sister Kunthea to friends from Singapore, Malaysia, Thailand, and beyond.

To the many fellow travelers that have like me, settled down and forgot the struggles of the west and accepted the beauty of the east.

The first stop will be Singapore to see a friend who has been kind enough to look after one of the bags I left there over 2 years ago.

How do we see time?

Covid has done funny things to confuse your mind about time.

It clearly doesn’t feel like 2 years have gone by since I last visited Singapore, but this coming week I will get to see what has changed in those two years.

I wonder how many local small food places have had to close due to the pandemic?

After that, I planned a holiday in the Philippines for a month so I can acclimatize myself to the heat and food again.

Then back to Cambodia and return to see old friends.

Promising to be a happier year than the last two.

Let us hope my update at the end of the year bears some truth to that statement.

Sentosa Island

Comparisons

One of the things I love about SG is their ability to create something from nothing.  If you look at their history, they became independent from the British empire. They merged with Malaysia in 1963 but due to differences it lasted less than 2 years and it was virtually an island colony left alone.

If you look at the comparisons to the UK today with our venture with Brexit. One wonders if the same feelings that are simmering around Great Britain today aren’t similar to the ones felt by the majority of Singaporeans back in 1965.

Whatever your feelings it was clear back then that the person charged with leading SG from being part of a bigger nation to its independence was one of determination and character.

Starting something special

Having to be reliant on itself was indeed helped by having a more resourceful PM than the ones we have back in the UK.

His ability to see beyond an island with many religious and cultural issues which made it a hotbed of unrest with British troops remaining in situ until the end of the decade adds to my amazement.

It was at this point, that it had huge sanitation issues and didn’t even have its own water supply was incredible,

His willingness to take on the might of the world and build a better future for SG and its people by getting them to work together was a concept we could use in the UK now.

Making them not only proud but to have made the rest of the world envious is also a testament to his resilience and determination.

In less than 30 years he transformed SG into the country it has become today and made it valuable not only in south-east Asia but in the world.

One only hopes that Messrs Johnson, Rabb and Rees-Mogg with all their baloney will hope to achieve similar results. Although I doubt history will be as forgiving.

Creating History

He set out providing everything that a country and its people needed. That included recreational space and natural reserves to benefit wildlife. Also to encourage people to stay within SG and enjoy its natural beauty in many of the islands surrounding it.

One such place is Sentosa Island

A beautiful Man-made creation. Which is a short distance away from the metropolis that is Singapore on the southern side of the island.

A theme park,(universal studios) Casino and luxury hotels, shopping, restaurants. Even a waterpark make this place a great escape for fun and rest accessible by a cable car, road or MRT.

However, the best part is the beach or rather beaches all man-made. Great for you to come and relax and enjoy the coast and of course the sun.

Palawan Beach

You can walk down the rows of stalls serving food. Or even take a walk along the suspension bridge to a more quieter palm-lined beach Tanjong. I highly recommend this as it is quite nice especially if you go late in the afternoon.

Eat some food and rest on the resort that is cool and relaxing. Take a cool swim in the sea which is very refreshing.

For me, one of the highlights of my visit to SG was the Aquarium. Having been a happy fish keeper for many years I love visiting Aquariums. In SEA there are many but SG has one of the biggest.

Great afternoon spent wandering around admiring the big fish watching you.

 

 

Traditional served Singapore food

Singapore Chilli Crab?

Today, much like most big Cities here in South East Asia, there is a fine mix of east meets west in terms of culinary delights but unlike any other is Singapore.

At the heart of this city-state lies food that is so unique and varied and yet so Singapore. From traditional recipes handed down from the first generation settlers to modern-day twists on exotic Asian food, Singapore has it all.

Visit some fine restaurants that may empty your wallet but will leave you feeling satisfied on another level. Michelin star chefs are found in the most unusual places. Hawker Chan is a great story of the first Hawker chef to achieve this anywhere check out his story here

But Singapore doesn’t have to be costly!

Hawker centres and the local food courts around apartment blocks where Singaporeans live will give you  a taste of Traditional Singapore through the ages

For the price of a meal deal in the UK about 3.50 you can eat a delicious fresh meal cooked in front of you and with so many choices to choose from you will be in awe of the smells and tastes

My Favourites

Chinatown

Yue Tow Mai Fun (fish head beehoon soup) visit Chinatown and sample some wonders of Singapore,  some of the first people to arrive in Singapore between the 19th and mid 20th century were Chinese immigrants looking for a better life, coming from many parts of China they bought with them their cooking and traditional foods that are still served today.

Little India

See my post dedicated just to Little India as I think the Indian food there is second to none, but the choice is yours

Salted Egg Crab

Stingray

Marina Bay Sands

Ok, I am on a budget which unfortunately doesn’t extend to stopping here, as the rooms can start from around S$500 per night, but for around S$23 (about £13, book your tickets from the lower level of reception) you can experience the view and at least dream for a while of having the wealth to experience the atmosphere of staying at the Marina Bay Sands Hotel.

It does get busy so pick the right time to go, although they are in no rush to get you to leave, so enjoy the surroundings and you can get a drink for the little counter on the viewing area as well as access to toilets, and if you are lucky (although they say you cannot) you may be asked if you want to get a drink at the bar.

This is apparently only for people who pay to sit there ( book from the main reception) which you pay to redeem against the bar drinks, however when we went my cousin was asked if we wanted to sit in the bar, I assume it will depend on space, so if you really want to experience the seated bar area, you will have to pay the extra to guarantee a place.

coke float available from the viewing 

TIP OF THE POST

“If you are like me and just want to see the view, then go for the cheaper option and stand around the viewing area. still worth it for the view, which is better if you are not afraid of heights and can get close to the edge to get a good photo :)”

September, 2018