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Published: April 17th 2015
The bus from Melaka pulled into the Queen Street Bus Terminal in Singapore 4 hours after departure, and right on time. There is a motorway between KL and Singapore, with regular toll booth stops, so the trip was a breeze, in another comfortable bus.
I had no Singapore dollars on me, and I was hoping there would be an exchange booth at the bus terminal, but no such luck. So, I was directed to a shop across the street where I was able to exchange the last of my Malaysian ringgits for Singapore dollars. Bugis MRT station was 300 meters away, so the idea of getting a taxi to my accommodation was scrapped, I would take the train instead.
Once again I’m staying at the Wink Hostel in Chinatown. The price has risen in the 2 years since my last visit, it’s now $50 per night for a bed in an all female room, including a light breakfast. It’s familiar territory for me and I had no problems finding my way there once I left the MRT station in Chinatown. This is my third visit to Singapore, so I’ve already seen most of the attractions. I had no plan
Looking up one of the super trees
Covered in plants growing without soil
of attack and decided to revisit the Gardens by the Bay. So, back to the MRT, this time alighting at Bayfront Station, where I could walk through the underground linkway from Exit B, and access the gardens via the Dragonfly Bridge.
The supertrees were definitely worth a second look but I haven’t been inside the two huge cooled conservatories, Flower Dome and Cloud Forest, so will visit them today. But first of all, I decided to visit the OCBC Skyway, suspended 22 meters above the ground and running between the vertical gardens of the supertrees. A great view across the gardens and Singapore’s skyline for just $5.
I queued and bought my ticket for the conservatories, $28 admission to visit both. First stop was Cloud Forest where the world’s highest indoor waterfall, at 35 metres, is located. It was cool and misty in there and the plants were simply amazing. Never have I seen such lush growth growing in gardens, up walls and tumbling out of huge pots. So many orchids, ferns, pitcher plants, greenery and flowers everywhere. You can walk up behind the waterfall, almost to the soaring rooftop and look down. You can reach out and
Dragonfly sculptures at Gardens by the Bay. Taken from Dragonfly Bridge
touch the flowers and plants, a lovely place to get close to nature in.
Flower Dome was completely different. It replicated a cool, dry Mediterranean climate and featured nine different types of gardens from around the world, including an Australian, Peruvian, South African and succulent garden. They have a changing flower field display which was full of tulips during my visit. Nice in it’s own way but my favourite would definitely be Cloud Forest.
After leaving the Gardens I headed to Marina Bay on the MRT. As I wanted to see the Garden Rhapsody light and sound show in Gardens by the Bay at 7.45pm and needed to stay in the city, I decided to treat myself to a meal at one of the eateries along the promenade at Marina Bay, as it was technically, my last night. Tomorrow night I would be eating at the airport. So, I settled in at the South Coast Bistro & Bar at The Shoppes at Marina Bay Sands overlooking the ocean, and enjoyed a grilled wagyu steak with cafe de Paris butter, frisee salad and fries, washed down with a pint of Pure Blonde. Thankfully I had a credit card on
me, as this was going to be expensive and certainly not something I can enjoy every night.
After finishing my very enjoyable meal I headed back to Gardens by the Bay in time to watch the light and sound show. It was worth the wait and would be something I would go and see again should I find myself with a night to spare in Singapore. The next day (Sunday) and the last day of my trip I drifted around Chinatown and basically passed the entire day doing nothing much at all. I had paid for Sunday night at the Wink Hostel even though my flight was at 10.30pm that evening, so I would keep my bed and have full use of facilities until I left for the airport.
I decided to take the MRT to Changi Airport, instead of calling a taxi, as I had plenty of time. A sensible decision as the train fare was only $2.50 compared to $30 for a cab. I arrived at the airport without any problems and in plenty of time to catch my flight. Another trip almost over and certainly no regrets, despite several bouts of sickness and the iPad/camera
Cloud Forest Waterfall
The highest indoor waterfall in the world
theft in Phnom Penh. As the saying goes “if it doesn’t kill you, it makes you stronger” and this is certainly a motto I live by when on the road.
So, until next time…...
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