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Singapore in four days

Singapore in four days

Singapore is one of the top destinations every Filipino must visit. This bustling city in the heart of Southeast Asia boasts first class airport, fair weather and fun tourist attractions for adults and the little ones. In this five-day trip, I managed to include places I’ve never visited when I first came to Singapore.

Before we depart from Dubai, I have already secured a place for our trip at www.AirBnB.com. I’m not obsessed with splashing my money on hotels so I’ve just booked a two-bedroom condo in Orchard Street. This is a good starting point when you are looking for areas to stay. Orchard Street is right at the centre of Singapore City and most of the tourist attractions are few train stations away. If you are a first-timer in the country and haven’t got no one to stay with, remember Orchard Street.

There are many tourist attractions to choose from in Singapore but since I and the family were on a budget, I looked into online deals offered, here’s one... www.deal.com.sg

You cannot secure payment for the deal unless you have a local contact number or you have a friend who can purchase it for you in advance. That’s all I prepared before boarding on the plane!

Day 1: Arrival, MRT, Marina Bay Sands

Upon arrival at the Changi Airport terminal 1 via Emirates Airlines after a seven-hour flight, the condo we booked offered complimentary pickup. We arrived at the place after 20 minutes’ drive. If you are travelling alone, there are public buses available. Maps are available in the airport for transport information.

After slacking for few hours at the condo, we walked down to the nearest MRT station, Orchard. The online deals I have seen on the website were available to purchase in-store at The Lucky Plaza. The shopping mall is popular among Filipinos in Singapore. Locate the store you want to purchase the deals, we found ours on the 3rd Floor. They were helpful and had given us tips as well. If you have some extra bucks, you can purchase a local sim card as you like.

We hopped into the MRT and headed towards Marina Bay Sands. The MRT links were very accessible. There were Singapore Passes available at the information desk where MRT cards are topped up with S$20. Travel time from Orchard to Marina Bay Sands was quick just off 20 minutes.

The MRT station is connected to the shopping centre that leads to the Marina Bay Sands offering picturesque skyline of Singapore City. Don’t forget to take some photos!

After few hours, we opted to have dinner at a nearby food court. Again, not breaking our pockets.

Day 2: Sentosa Island

Everyone had to wake up early in the morning the next day to travel to Sentosa Island. This island is residence to the Resorts World Sentosa, Universal Studios and so much more. We travelled from Orchard MRT station to Harbour Front station via Dhoby Gout, approximately 16 minutes only.

We already purchased online deals at Sentosa Island in advance so some of the fun activities were available immediately without queueing. Our deal package included Singapore Cable Car, Underwater World Singapore and Dolphin Lagoon, Segway and Skyline Luge Sentosa. If you feel like taking other activities, you can queue at the information desk.

The Segway was up first, it was just a one round, 15 minute ride that included orientation. Not much to enjoy though. Then, we headed towards the Skyline Luge via Singapore Cable Car. This is definitely a fun activity for everyone, the cable car was scary (of course, since I am afraid of heights!) but then as you ride the luge, you just go all the way to the end of the road. Lastly, we visited the Underwater World which features different species living in the waters, must do for kids.

It was time for lunch so we headed to one of the few restaurants serving within Sentosa Island, Tastes of Asia. The menu was extensive and since I’m a foodie, I tried as many dishes as possible. The foods were priced reasonably so you can just fill that belly.

Next up was a stroll down at Universal Studios. We didn’t actually enter Universal Studios but just had some nice photos at the gigantic ball. I made sure to buy a Hard Rock Café t-shirt just off the Universal Studios gate.

We ended the night at Singapore Marina Bay Sands again overlooking the Singapore Merlion.

Day 3: Gardens by the Bay and River Cruise

Who doesn’t love the MRT station in Singapore- it’s just accessible to any place you want to go. Gardens by the Bay presented us a chance to appreciate nature. It took us less than half an hour to travel and it was really a breath of fresh air. The place cannot be compared to the Miracle Garden of Dubai. As much as you love the latter, you will definitely be mesmerized with the first one.

Gardens by the Bay has Flower Dome, Cloud Forest and more. Flower Dome from the name itself is a large dome, A/C cooled place, home to different kinds of flowers. When we visited that day, there was an intimate wedding proceeding. Cloud Forest on the other hand offers huge waterfalls, misty surrounding and hanging walkway.

There were several locations to choose from if you want to experience river cruise in Singapore. This was included in the online deal we purchased. The journey took us an hour only with a bit of historic presentation in the boat while travelling across the Singapore Merlion, Marina Bay Sands and Gardens by the Bay.

As the sun set, we headed to one of Filipinos’ foodie attractions in the city, Makan Sutra. The place is located on the other side of Marina Bay Sands offering different street foods which I definitely enjoyed. It was quite busy in the evening so you have to wait for seats available.

Day 4: Shopping

One of the reasons I went to the city was to shop some items including gadgets and clothes. Firstly, we headed down to Sim Lim Square. This shopping centre is popular among tourists and residents and this is a must-visit if you are looking for iPhone and Android phones at a lower price. As I was haggling around, I just realised the iPhone 6 was 1,000dhs cheaper than in Dubai. Then, I purchased a tiny Bluetooth speaker which is around S$25, still cheaper than in Dubai.

Note: If you are looking for a specific gadget or electronic, try to compare the price to other shops before payment so you can negotiate the best price.

Next up, we went to Mustafa, a place to visit if you are looking for consumable items like chocolates, Malaysian coffee and so on. They’ve also got cheap fashion accessories and bags if you feel like upgrading to a new one. It is located in Little India station.

Note: This is a very busy place so be careful. Also, it is known to be the best place to exchange your foreign currencies to Singapore dollar.

Lastly, we stopped at Bugis Street located on the Bugis MRT Station. The place is one of my favourite spots when visiting Singapore. You can buy souvenirs, affordable garments, bags and all. I had bought a one-button suit, three pairs of casual shorts and then my friends had dresses for a price cheaper than in Dubai.

Note: It is best to walk around and negotiate the price. The friendly sales person will give you the good price if you bargain.

There you go! I hope you learned something in my Singapore trip. I had done my research well before travelling. It is a good practice as a traveler to avoid the hustle and bustle. If you have any comments or questions you want to ask, don’t hesitate to drop me an email.

Thanks for your time.

Written for PinoyinDubai.com
October 2014

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