Monday, April 20, 2015

Reunited with Singapore, Three Years Later

I'm here to finally blog about our Singapore vacation which happened weeks ago (holy week weekend to be exact) but haven't been getting to write as I had a lot of things happening when I got back. It was an awesome weekend, and I had a marvelous time. The best part, was that my spending really behaved. The last time I was in Singapore was 2011 and like I said earlier, it took me 3 years before I started travelling again (the most are just day trips, which can be really pretty exhausting) since I became a cat mum. Thankfully, I found an awesome place to board my kittehs where I can have peace of mind in my vacation and I could continually check on them. 

What I loved about the place is that how it was super clean and orderly.  Almost everywhere was walking distance (added exercise) and it's a melting pot of a lot of cultures. Transportation was very efficient and self-explanatory. Just be sure to wear comfy shoes for walking and commuting and bring a foldable umbrella in case it rains. 

I needed a photo of the iconic Merlion in Sentosa as I didn't have one during the last time I was there.

A view of Sentosa, To do this is a feat for me, as I was riding a cable car and I'm deathly afraid of heights. 

Universal Studios was decked with Easter theme, as it was going to be an Easter weekend.

we are the kittykets
even grouchies like Oscar sport Bunny Ears

Another bucketlist checked when I rode my first-ever roller coaster since 2002, the Revenge of the Mummy, which was scary beyond my brains. I'm not particularly fond of roller coasters since I get a lot of motion sickness with fast vehicles and reckless driving but in this roller coaster, I was able to hold myself together and popped a ginger sweet on my mouth right after the ride. I was thankful too that I rode it on an empty stomach. When I read about the Revenge of The Mummy Ride in Wikipedia though, the speed was just 64 kph. Seriously, the effects, sharp turns, and dark tunnels made it seem to be 100 or more. No regrets riding it though, but I wouldn't repeat another roller coaster ride in a million years or so.

Of course I needed to have an obligatory splitty/flexi yogi pose somewhere, and I did my Nataranjasana by one of the Godfather alleys. 

The city's buildings and architecture are artforms too

Tucked in the city is this small artsy community near Arab St. with very quaint little shops selling souvenirs, textiles, food, etc.

I saw shops selling one-of-a-kind items and art. I was able to score some souvenirs here to give friends and got myself a skirt on sale for SGD 10 (on sale) from Utopia Apparels that fit me perfectly. 

Of course the highlight of the vacation was food. During travel, I have this rule to eat at local establishments, and to avoid popular food chains as much as possible (no fast food, popular coffee shops, or Western food in this case) or establishments we have here in Manila. 

Hello Yong Tao Foo

I was able to have my share of Indian food at Little India in this restaurant called Banana Leaf Apollo. Buttered chicken, lassi, naan, palak paneer, biryani, and I was in spice heaven. 

What is Singapore breakfast without Ya Kun Kaya Toast? Soft boiled eggs, steamed bread with kaya butter downed with a glass of hot teh tarik

I look forward to anything with sambal in my meal, so I had sambal shrimp and kangkong in Ion Orchard

Plus I downed my spicy food with Yeo teas. I do not forget my Yeo tea drinks in lychee, chrysanthemum, and wintermelon. Anyone from SG who would want to give me pasalubong, I am happy with Yeo tea and sambal sauce.

A must-have is the dollar ice cream on wafer along Orchard Road. 

This ice cream is chocolate flavored. Some people swear by durian, but I'm not that fond of durian so chocolate it is.

Arab St. had this pretty Turkish restaurant called Sufi, which serves really good food to share. Get the kebab and appetizer platters and a pitcher of iced tea and you'll be set for life. 

Morrocan Mint Iced Tea

Appetizers! I love the hummus! I love hummus

Kebab platter
Ending our vacation with a visit to Newton Hawker Center for more local cuisine where I had sambal stingray, satay, and fresh sugarcane juice with lemon.

As for shopping, I was pretty proud of myself for not going overboard with shopping and shopped for essentials, most especially yoga things. I got a travel yoga mat from Lululemon, a bandeau top, a yoga mat bag to place my new yoga mat in, and also I got myself a singing bowl.

I've been teaching private classes lately and since some of them aren't in yoga studios, I don't have singing bowls with me. I was able to get one in this tiny shop near the Buddhist temple. This one sort of "called" to me since the modulation was right and I was able to make this bowl "sing" better than the other ones I tried. 

I definitely have a lot of reason to go back to Singapore for a weekend or weeklong vacation when the time and money allows me to. It really was an awesome trip and next time, it won't take me three years to go back. Maybe this time, I go home with more Lululemon or yoga things, and probably a certificate from Cosmoprof and more yummy food in my belly. 

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