Roving Report: Spectacular Singapore
Singapore is an island city-state just off southern Malaysia, it's renown for being a global financial centre, its tropical climate and culture. We sent our Roving Reporter Frankie there for a visit to see what you can do, where you can stay and to prove why there's so much more to it than its wealth.
I travelled down to London Heathrow Airport, where you can get daily flight with Qantas, with connecting flights from all other UK airports. The flight is a long 13 hours, but worth it! Once we arrived in Singapore we were taken to our hotel which is The Shangri-La Hotel. This hotel is the first and oldest Shangri-La out of the 95 in the world, it was inspired by author James Hilton from his novel Lost Horizon – now the hotel is connoted with paradise. It might be the oldest hotel out of the chain, but it still has 792 rooms and suites split over three towers. Each tower represents a different style, firstly there is the Tower Wing in which is a stunning centrepiece with a Horizon Club lounge which boasts panoramas of the skyline. The second is the Valley Wing which epitomises luxury and elegance. Then the third is the exotic Garden Wing which faced a 68 Million SGD renovation – which saw warm features like a cascading waterfall and ponds with Koi placed in. This hotel is very well known and is the go to place for many politicians and dignitaries whenever they are visiting the city.
We started the trip with a boat ride to Pulau Ubin where we met a local Singaporean who showed us how to make 'roti jala' and hosted our lunch. We then visited the Gardens by the Bay and Flower Field Hall – both venues can be hired for private events. The Singapore Tourism Board hosted our dinner at the Clifford Pier Restaurant where we were able to view the laser light show across the Singapore River.
On day two we spent most of our time on a tour of the city itself. We were able to see a more historical side of Singapore and experience some of the street food as well as a traditional tea with dumplings. Whilst there we visited the Marina Bay Sands for a cocktail whilst viewing the incredible Singapore skyline as the sun was setting and managed to just avoid the rain.
On our final day we travelled over to Sentosa island where we tried some of the activities at the Mega Adventure Park including zip lining and the Mega Jump. The island is also home to the A J Hackett bungee jump and giant swing. All activities can be included for groups and those that are feeling brave can bungee jump during a cocktail reception (I recommend one for Dutch courage).
Having been in Singapore for a couple of days, I've realised how rare it is to find a city like so, where you can spend a day on a quiet beach and then have a lively evening in the metropolis. Singapore has many hotels and activities on offer – you'll never be bored!
Here are my top 5 tips/must do's that I would give to someone travelling to Singapore:
1. Have dinner or lunch at one of the rooftop restaurants of the Marina Bay Sands
2. Try the cheapest Michelin starred restaurant in the world at a hawker stall Chan Hon Meng's – Hong Kong chicken, rice and noodle for under £2
3. Spend a day in Sentosa at the beach
4. Take a bumboat ride on the Singapore River
5. Try a Singapore Sling at Raffles Hotel
If you want to know more about the trip, or organise one of your own with any of these activities arranging, then please don't hesitate in getting into contact: [email protected]