Being in a position of having my own family in Switzerland and my roots in Terra Australis. I have the great excuse to explore different parts of the world whenever I fly between the two places. I mean really, who wants to spend nearly 22 hours consecutively flying from point A to B, when you could cut it into 2 parts and stop somewhere exciting inbetween…
One of my favourite stop off points is Singapore. SINGAPORE??? partly because it is convenient as many airlines cruising from Northern to Southern hemisphere and Visca-Versa tend to stop here. Mostly however, it is from my experince that I have found it to be a wonderfully diverse Asian/Western experience. After all it was a British colony and has certainly retained much of this culture.
Singapore is a small island with roughly 5 million people living there and moment that you hit the city streets of course, you feel that. It is hugely populated for its landmass, this however in counterpart, provides a multitude of diversities in a small space. This allows one to explore and feel the many different cultural experiences that this country has to offer.
Little India, Bugis, the jungles of Bukit Timah and the quietude of MacRitchies Reservoir are the main centers that I have placed myself in. Of course that is just a small selection. There is a Malaysia Quarter, beaches to the East and Santosa Island, Singapores famouse Theme Park Island, and many more places to explore on top of that.
Breathe in India in a slighly more sanitary way on the streets of Little India. Sip a chai, eat some Roti Canai and watch life as it just passes by. Plenty of Indian style to buy, silver thali plates, Ayurvedic oils, soaps and medicines, clothes and foods. I would also recommend dropping in at the Brahma Kumaris center for a friendly chat with the local Yoga community members. They have plenty of literature and a collection of Yoga related gear.
Bugis, from what I have explored is the fashion capital with plenty of street food vendors to grab a quick cheap bite to eat. Being a vegetarian I was delighted to find an all vegetarian restaurant that served up all the classical Chinese dishes all with meat substitues, they had even gone to the effort to make the subs looks like the original meats…
The Bugis market pumps from morning to night with the latest techno tracks blarring out from hole in the wall market stands. Each competing for attention and raising the decibels in order to do so So funny! Here you are sure to pick up a bargain on some pretty good quality clothing, trinkets, souvenirs. Oh and don’t mind the colouful eyed teenies, coloured contact lenses are all the trend!
And a small tip for those eco minded folk that might want stop over in Singapore for a short time. Tree In Lodge, run a fantastic hostel in a very central location and the best thing is, is that through all this crazy, wasteful, disregard that one see’s in Singapore a small flower stands strong amongst it all. Top job guys! I will be back.
Take off your shoes and explore the MacRitchies Reservoir when the hustle and bustle of the big smoke gets too much for you. There are walking tracks around the Reservoir that partly dip into the jungle at times. The diversity of plants and animals are reflective of the diversities of the cultures in the city. There are alot of animals! Lizards, snakes, tropical birds including, Kingfisher and various types of eagles, monkey’s galore and alot more. Best to visit early morning or late evening as the sweaty heat of the tropical climate can be overbearing.
The pictures in the galleries pages are a selection of images that I have collected since my first visit in 2008, since then I have visited 4 times and will continue to visit on my inward or outward journey to Australia.
Singapore sings to those that can hear the sound of unity in diversity.
Peace and good night.