singapore

Botanical Gardens, Singapore

The Botanic Gardens are impressive and extensive. After seeing Gardens by the Bay, all artificially implanted with random varieties mixed together, it’s rather refreshing to see a natural progression of acclimated plants I’m their element. The orchid section is stunning and the grounds are huge. It’s not immediately in the city, so plan how you get there and back. We’ll worth it for the old, traditional collection of botanical specimens.

Disclaimer: This review was also posted on TripAdvisor. This blog has no affiliation with TripAdvisor. I just share my experiences to spread the love to fellow travelers.

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Cloud Forest, Singapore

The Cloud Forest is impressive. It’s a tall dome that regulates alpine temperatures to support mountain-top flora. It’s a welcome respite to the equatorial heat, and it boasts an excellent range of plants. Pitchers, orchids, ferns; not any that I expected to see in Singapore! 

It seems to be wheelchair accessible, with ramps and elevators. However it’s a huge area, as you spiral up through different altitudes to see the plants that grow there. Take your walking shoes and a bottle of water for sure.

All man-made, it’s wonderfully curated with sculptures dotted throughout. A brilliant day out in Gardens by the Bay.

Disclaimer: This review was also posted on TripAdvisor. This blog has no affiliation with TripAdvisor. I just share my experiences to spread the love to fellow travelers.

Gardens By The Bay, Singapore

Gardens by the Bay is worth a day trip. See the Cloud Forest and the Flower Dome if you want to see specialised flowers in climate controlled domes (which I highly recommend). Otherwise, the Gardens are a huge park, perfect for families, for picnics and for a day out. Often they’ll host events, like festivals, concerts or Christmas markets. It’s well cared for and iconic Singapore. 

Suggested itinery; train to Marina Bay Sands, grab a bite to eat in the shopping and food precinct therein. Maybe go ice skating too! Hit Gardens by the Bay, perhaps prebuy tickets to the Flower Dome and Cloud Forest to avoid the queues. Definitely wear your walking shoes and stay hydrated, you’ll cover a lot of land today. Finish off at the Marina Bay Sands skypark  (heads up,  there’s an entry fee) and catch the sunset over Singapore. 

Disclaimer: This review was also posted on TripAdvisor. This blog has no affiliation with TripAdvisor. I just share my experiences to spread the love to fellow travelers.

Night Safari, Singapore

The Singapore Night Safari is fantastic! We used RMG Tours to get there (hotel pick-up and drop off included) so the night was hassle-free. The safari is brilliant, we skipped the queues and got onto a bus that looped around the park explaining all the enclosures. It’s really well run, newly renovated and an impressive layout.

I was hesitant at first because I naively wondered how different it would be from a generic zoo. Was I wrong! I was just so excited to see nocturnal animals out and about. Animals I’ve never seen before we’re active and lively in the dim lights of the park. Fishing cats, African hyenas, night birds, pangolins, mouse deer, wild pigs; a whole set of animals you’re aware of but haven’t seen in a daytime zoo. Bring your walking shoes and water, you’ll be running from enclosure to enclosure. 

Disclaimer: This review was also posted on TripAdvisor. This blog has no affiliation with TripAdvisor. I just share my experiences to spread the love to fellow travelers.

Marina Bay Sands Skypark, Singapore

The Marina Bay Sands Skypark is a must do in Singapore.  You’ll get unparalleled views of the Harbour and surrounds- the sea, the port, gardens by the bay, the central business district, the suburbs. 

I highly recommend you time your trip to be at the Skypark at sunset. That’s when you get majestic skies and the city lights twinkle and awaken. If you wait even longer, you’ll get a light show on the Harbour (but I disappeared before then to grab a bit to eat). 

The Skypark itself runs like a machine. It costs about $26SGD per person to get to the top, and you’ll find it can get very crowded up there. There are trinkets and food/drinks available up there but if you don’t want to be hit by tourist prices for a meager hot dog, then eat before you go. 

There’s always the option of having dinner up there, but reserve a place as I don’t think they take walk ins and it gets filled pretty quickly. Also, don’t expect to be anywhere near the famed infinity pool. Lastly, the queues to leave are long and windy as there are only 2 lifts available up to the SkyPark, so leave yourself a loose schedule because you could be waiting a while to get down. 

All in all, the experience is worth it. The panoramic views are breathtaking and the rest of the experience is just incidental.

Disclaimer: This review was also posted on TripAdvisor. This blog has no affiliation with TripAdvisor. I just share my experiences to spread the love to fellow travelers.

High Tea at the Raffles Hotel, Singapore

High Tea at the Raffles is a quintessential experience that is a must-do for travelers through Singapore. It’s the epitome of High Tea and a history of being the best. 

We booked through our hotel concierge- they don’t take walk ins for High Tea- and we arrived early. Such an beautiful hotel with collonades and lazy fans. We explored the Writer’s Bar and the spied the famous Singapore Sling. It was Christmas, so the hotel was adorned with tinsel and mistletoe. 

The High Tea was pricey, as one would expect. To be honest, I thought the price went towards the novelty of the experience, rather than the food itself. 

Western delights like cucumber sandwiches and curried egg were a highlight. Assorted traditional teas, both iced and hot, to refresh any guest. The real winner for me was the selection of Asian morsels- tasty dim sims, dumplings among the like. The English cakes such as fruit cake, madelines, citrus tarts and praline slices were proclaimed “just right” by my partner. 

Book ahead and go for the experience.

Disclaimer: This review was also posted on TripAdvisor. This blog has no affiliation with TripAdvisor. I just share my experiences to spread the love to fellow travelers.

RMG Tours, Singapore

For the most part, RMG tours are excellent. Reasonably priced, hotel pick up/drop off, local insights. 

I recommend the city tour. We were shown around Little India, Chinatown and major landmarks. This helped us scope the area and gave us a little bit of historical background on our first day in Singapore.  The Night Safari is also an excellent option. The tour allows you to skip the massive queues and is enough time to see what you want. 

We were quite disappointed with the Jurong Bird Park tour. We spent more time in transit picking up people from hotels and stuck in traffic than actually at the park.  Although traffic can’t be helped, it should be factored in and the tour extended to create a better experience when at the venue. I really wanted more time at Jurong, but sadly we had to prioritize what we wanted, then sprint for the minibus “else be left there, we’ll leave without you”.

I also wanted to join the advertised tour to Malacca, but was told it only runs subject to numbers, which was disappointing again.

Seems RMG  tours can be hit and miss. 

Disclaimer: This review was also posted on TripAdvisor. This blog has no affiliation with TripAdvisor. I just share my experiences to spread the love to fellow travelers.