My Five Week Gap Year: Part 2
Arriving in Singapore was quite funny as we must have looked quite a sight. We had managed to book a really lovely hotel in advance through an offer that was on months prior to the trip. Stumbling out of the taxi looking like pair of hot messes, we walked through lavish glass doors to a very fancy looking hotel lobby and we couldn’t believe our luck. We had an inkling it was going to be quite nice but we did not expect such a gorgeous hotel as the weeks leading up to going away were focused on planning the itinerary of our trip as opposed to the details of our accomodation. I dread to think of what the hotel staff saw as our bumbling selves approached the check in desk. Within minutes of arrival it was apparent this was another world we’d stepped into after the craziness from the colourful city of Bangkok
Incredible hotel – We stayed at the Orchard Hotel Singapore and I just cannot say a bad thing about it. It was a real luxurious treat being there. Everything from the outdoor pool, to the excellent service they gave, to the decor and our hotel room, all the little touches given. The location was just perfect and you felt well looked after being there.
‘Handsy’ – So this hotel, it had not only a pool, gym, beautiful interiors, a brilliant location and so on, but it had a PHONE that they gave you to go around Singapore with during your stay?! What?! It even had on the go wifi and google maps you could use, plus discounts on local attractions you could book through the device and the option to call on it. It was actually called handy but I ended up calling it ‘handsy’ for half of the trip, just because. I’ve honestly never seen anything like it and looking back I’m re-astonished at the memory of it, I think I’m still in shock and it’s been a whole year.
Food – On the first night we went to a lovely restaurant and the meal was delicious, although at this point we had discovered that it was very cold indoors from the air con in all rooms everywhere being cranked up to the highest which made going places a bit problematic as you’d have to go back outside again to warm up.
Shopping – One of the first stops we naturally made was Victoria’s Secret. We hadn’t walked far exploring and along came the big pink stripes and delicate lace garments, our eyes lit up and we marched on in. This is the kind of city that makes you contemplate how ridiculous of a concept it would be to simply throw the idea of a ‘clothes and spending budget’ completely out the window.
Cable cars fun and boat trip – We managed to travel on a various array of transport types throughout the weeks including cable cars, river boats, planes, taxis and more. In Singapore we took a lovely boat trip through the city looking up at the impressive skyline. We also took cable cars from Mount Faber on the main island to the resort island of Sentosa across the Keppel Harbour. Who doesn’t love a good alternative transport link?!
Gardens by the Bay – This is the arguably most well known, obviously popular attraction in Singapore containing the incredibly photogenic lit up Super Tree areas, Cloud Forrest and every florists dream, the florally beautiful Flower garden. The evening that we walked around these architecturally remarkable domes, we embarked upon a spontaneous photoshoot, crying with laughter at each level of the domes taking pictures and having a ball. This was such a highlight of Singapore and purely happy memory of the trip altogether, nothing beats true idiocy of running round a flower garden with your best friend taking increasingly daft and outrageously extra photos of each other. On this evening we also did the skywalk amongst the super trees, which was an allocated time for each group to go up and walk across the high bridge, the view as the night sky had fallen was as always, stunning.
The Movie Set Story – After walking through the Gardens by the Bay, we’d seen a light show advertised which was going to take place in the trees and it sounded fun so along we went to find the show. Whilst trying to find this show we somehow stumbled across what seemed to be some kind of filming set, with equipment everywhere and leads and cameras all around. Expecting to be asked to leave, we contemplated what to do next. Next thing we know, people on golf carts drove through and more people surrounded us in the little cove between bushes and super trees that we were standing in. The set we’d stumbled upon was some kind of large dinner set up with many tables and as more and more people turned up one person from the general group that seemed to be part of the film set approached us to ask if we were actors in the apparent movie that was currently being filmed. He explained that he was an actor who was a part of the scene being filmed in a new movie called Crazy Rich Asians. How on earth he thought two girls who looked the most stereotypically tourist anyone has ever looked in history were actually actors who were going to be in a film called Crazy Rich Asians, I will forever be baffled by. I presume he was being polite as he was wondering why we were there and we clearly looked out of place, so to the random actor guy on this set, thanks for speaking to us, you were sweet and I’ve just watched the trailer for your new movie, it looks very funny and I hope to go and see it when it comes out in the UK. Here’s the trailer if you’re wandering, and it’s the lit up trees dining scene I’m talking about.
Travel thoughts and my take from three days spent in Singapore
The places we went were outstandingly clear to get around. It was very well marked and we didn’t find that getting lost was an issue there. Everything was laid out in a thought out, meticulously designed manner, very pleasing to the eye. The spaces in Singapore were easy to be in, not uncomfortable and even though we did stay very much in the centre or the main ‘tourist’ parts of Singapore, this is my take from the places we did go to.
I’d read that Singapore is extremely clean and my god this was so true. This list of laws make so much sense as to why it was completely immaculate on the streets and throughout the city.
We did not find it to be a cheap place to go, however we did stay on Orchard Street which was within minutes of a walk to all the high end designers stores. Being two students half way through our degrees, we clearly did not enter these shops no matter how tempting the magnificently designed shop windows looked.
The limited time we had meant that our stay only lasted three days. This is a very short amount of time to stay and I for one felt very sad to be leaving. It’s a city of super tree dreams with fabulous places to dine and shop and much much more and the several days stay did not last as long as we wished. I’d advise a longer stay than three days if you’re ever lucky enough to travel this place of stunning skyline cityscape views.
We did not try a Singapore Sling, I’m not sure if I wished I had or not, as they weren’t cheap but I cant imagine myself being in any kind of financial position to be visiting again soon, so I’m not sure but please let me know if they were worth if you’ve ever been. I’m low key curious.
Lastly, I would a thousand percent go back, I would however love it if they did firstly decriminalise homosexuality and put in place LGBT rights because its 2018 and I just will never see how it’s a legal matter, love wins.
Next stop… Destination #3 – Taiwan!