travel blog

TripAdvisor review: 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.

TripAdvisor: Or Tor Kor (OTK) Markets, Bangkok

These fresh produce markets are simply wonderful.

They’re a maze of everything food related. There are a few florist stalls to add a subtle fragrance to accompany pin pricks of colour. Their fresh coconuts can be dehusked and grated according to your needs. As you move through these, the fresh fruits and juices offer refreshment for the weary traveler who finds themselves uncomfortable under the blanket of smog that settles over the city.

The markets have an extensive marine section, both alive and otherwise. This doesn’t smell too fishy, though. I believe that those involved in maintaining the markets pride themselves in its cleanliness. I learnt from a stall holder that they don’t have a rodent problem (unlike other areas of the city) because they’ve addressed the issue head on, in a humane way (!).

They also have a section dedicated to dry goods, such as dehydrated fish, jellyfish, abalone, curry powders and more. They’re so pungent, you can really tell that they’ll add depth to whatever dish you decide to cook.

The bags of spice are aromatic and sensual, and at this point, your visit to the markets has become spiritual.

Finally you reach the middle. There are vats of curries and crowds of people. It’s a wonderful place, bustling with life and colour. I recommend you go, buy some produce and make yourself something. Or just go to see the exotic variety.

We bought enough food from these markets to have a feast fit for a king. We had crab, and pomelo salad and we learned how to make Tom kha ghung from scratch.

***click the links for photos!

Haiku #182

And sometimes when I’m
On an underground platform
Like Wynyard, I think

About being in
A subway somewhere else, like
The MRT in

Bangkok and just how
Foreign that felt but how it’s
Essentially the

Same thing. I look at
The passengers and try to
Place them in stifling

Humidity and
Pools of sweat. I imagine
The city laid out

Above us, the street
Food sings and I slip through grit
In gutters of warm

Rain, while trains race and
Weave below. But in Wynyard,
The train crawls up

And vomits glacé
Cherry-eyed people onto
The platform, again.

TripAdvisor: MBK Centre, Bangkok

MBK is jam-packed craziness.  It’s so easy to get lost in the labyrinthine nature of the tech section. There are cheap electronics-landed myself some awesome noise cancelling headphones for a quarter of the western retail price, still brand new. Don’t be afraid to haggle- there are copious amounts of vendors selling the same product and they know it. Beware that what you buy (in terms of gaming) may be geographically restricted and may not work when you take it back to your country. Also, beware of scams and treat this like you would any marketplace. Great fun for a bargain!

TripAdvisor: Pak Klong Talat, Bangkok Flower Markets

I had a night bicycle tour through here and it was absolutely jumping. It’s such a hub of beautiful flowers and colors and it never sleeps. There are showers of flowers.  It’s so easy to get lost in the labyrinthine suburb that is this flower market.  Go at night because although the markets never sleep, there are less tourists and the humidity isn’t as stifling. You’re likely to find some stunning fresh produce so don’t worry about packing your lunch. You’ll also find sweet Portuguese desserts and treats and plenty of exotic fresh fruit. It’s also interesting to see the spiritual elements,  as this is a central depot for sourcing flowers for all the Buddhist shrines in the area. Throughout the night, the flowers just keep coming, in endless supply. Bouquets and decorations, each no different to the stall next door, each uniquely different to the one across the way.

***click the links for my photos! ***