I Love Singapore
A whole lot can happen in 1 day… As the journey was a day in Singapore on the way to India, I had printed a list via the internet of attractions of which I wanted to see while there. Arriving within the middle of the night at the Singapore International Changi Airport was what I would certainly call a top rated airport experience. Tired via a long flight of sixteen hours, I made my way to the Ambassador Transit Hotel within the airport. Many international airports have lounges, day hotels as well as shower facilities, although Singapore definitely does of which right. Since of which was 2:00 a.m., I needed a place to shower as well as sleep for a few hours. The shower facility is actually beautifully done in Asian style, simplistic, modern as well as pleasant with bamboo as well as flowers. A simple bed for a nap was perfect, quiet as well as private. What better way to start a day in Singapore- clean, rested as well as ready to visit the City.
I Love Singapore
Simply checking my bag for the day at the airport, I took my light shoulder bag of which I like to use for trekking around town as well as I was ready to go. About 7:00 a.m. I caught the bus into downtown Singapore. As I gazed through the large clean windows, I saw beautifully lined streets of exotic palms as well as blue sky, with buildings of which were two as well as three stories high with unique designs as well as colors. The beauty of Singapore was starting to unfold before me. After a very brief twenty-minute ride to downtown as well as a short walk, I was at my first stop, the truly majestic as well as famous Raffles Hotel, currently a national monument. within the balmy tropical air as well as early morning sunshine, This specific colonial style building sparkled white. I stood there taking of which all in.
I Love Singapore
Raffles Hotel was the place in Singapore I wanted to visit the most, for its architecture as well as its incredible history. of which is actually named after Singapore’s founder Sir Stamford Raffles. Just being there you can start to sense the connection to the past- tremendous history, mystery, romance, times gone by, stories of war as well as political take-over, of English gentlemen in white jackets smoking skinny cigars, of summer nights as well as a flavored drink called the Singapore Sling.
I Love Singapore
Entering the majestic front hall as well as parlor with carpeted stairs leading up to a second level, I felt like I was stepping back in time. The hotel was frequented by well-known writers such as Rudyard Kipling, Ernest Hemingway as well as James Michener; celebrities such as Jean Harlow as well as Elizabeth Taylor; royalty including Queen Elizabeth II. Many have graced its grounds spanning over a century of time since of which was built in 1899.
I Love Singapore
The hotel was under Japanese occupation during World War II as well as of which was even used as a transit camp for prisoners at the end of the war. within the 1990’s the hotel was renovated as well as of which has changed owners a few times along the way, although of which is actually still the same. Service is actually impeccable as well as I’m escorted into the dining hall to a breakfast bar with exotic fruits as well as foods many of which I am unfamiliar. There is actually a large choice of eastern as well as western foods, cappuccino as well as teas, delicious Indian hot dishes, Asian delicacies as well as all served in beautiful sterling service. Breakfast in itself is actually something to see as well as the dining hall a pleasant place to eat, relax as well as read the morning paper. Honestly, the place was “smashing.” I walked the spacious grounds as well as visited the stores, entirely enjoying the whole experience. If I had done nothing else in Singapore, This specific would certainly have been enough.
However, the day awaited me so off I went to Chinatown. My first impression, This specific is actually by far the cleanest, most organized Chinatown I’ve ever seen. Actually, some have criticized Singapore for its super clean demeanor as well as lack of bohemian style environments of which often make things more interesting. although honestly, having trekked the planet, I found the cleanliness of Singapore to be quite refreshing. Chinatown had restored many of its shop houses preserving the history of Chinese in Singapore. creating my way to the Buddhist Tooth Relic Temple, I was able to see the fifteen-foot Maitreya Buddha on the first level floor as well as also visit the Buddhist Cultural Museum. Approximately 40% of Singaporeans practice Buddhism. Interestingly, the Sri Mariamman Hindu Temple is actually also located within the Chinatown area. of which was founded in 1827 eight years after the British East India Company established a trading settlement in Singapore. Both temples are architecturally unique as well as they are active with devotees spending time to pray. I decided to do the same, appreciative to be in Singapore.
via there I made way to the Singapore River to take a “Bumboat Ride.” A bumboat tour on the river is actually stunning as well as of which is actually a very pleasant, relaxing three-hour ride. The Singapore River flows under twelve bridges with close up views of Singapore’s majestic business district as well as numerous historical buildings along its shore. The river snakes in, around as well as through the city as well as of which is actually truly fantastic. You can see so much as well as learn about the city in a very short time. Singapore is actually a city-state as well as is actually the smallest country in SE Asia. of which is actually located at the tip of the Malay Peninsula as well as carries a diverse population of close to 5 million people made up of Chinese, Malays, Indians, Asians of various descents, as well as Caucasians. Almost half of the population is actually foreigners who work as well as study in Singapore. English is actually spoken on the bumboat ride as well as of which is actually very easy to communicate with the locals as English is actually learned within the schools along with the Malay language.
The ride returns back to Boat Quay, which is actually Singapore’s picturesque as well as famous row of shops as well as international restaurants. You can literally walk down the row, shop after shop as well as pick as well as choose cuisine via multiple cultures of the earth. I decided to go Northern India Punjab style. The restaurant was two stories as well as I could sit outside on the balcony having a view over the river as well as admire the city of Singapore enjoying some spicy sag paneer, raita as well as garlic naan bread. The food was excellent with delicious Indian Chai tea.
I also visited the City Hall building where a history of Singapore as well as its political rule were provided. Singapore carries a unitary system of government. of which no longer carries a mayor or a city council, although instead has several Community Development Councils established in 1997. The City Hall along with the neighboring Old Supreme Court Building, will be converted into the National Art Gallery of Singapore by 2013.
Singapore presents itself well, as well as everywhere I went of which was interesting as well as pleasant. Honestly I had no complaints about This specific amazing city, well-known as a major international port as well as financial center. With only a little time left in my day, I stopped in at the large Suntec City Mall sporting 350 retail outlets. Its Fountain of Wealth is actually the largest fountain within the earth. of which was huge, beautifully designed as well as the mall had all the well-known designer department stores with busy shoppers. There are also many beautiful boutique hotels within the City. With great places to stay as well as to shop, Singapore is actually an entertaining as well as pleasant destination.
Catching my bus back to the airport for a night flight to India, I watched the buildings as well as palms go by. Although there is actually no place without problems within the earth, I felt like I had experienced a little bit of what utopia might be. I will always think of my day in Singapore as a perfect day as well as I felt a huge satisfaction with This specific glimpse of such a beautiful as well as successful global city.