"Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things you didn't do than by the ones you did do... Explore. Dream. Discover."~ Mark Twain

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Singapore Day 1: Arrival and Marina Bay Tour

Merlion at Night

     We were planning to go to Singapore for a long time now and were just waiting for promo fares. We were able to book our 50% off tickets from Cebu Pacific last July. We then researched about where and when to go, how to get there and where to stay. Finding the most affordable yet comfortable and nice hotel was the hardest -- they were all expensive! And speaking of expensive, fixing our budget was the last. Hehe! :p

     We arrived at the airport about 2-3 hours before our flight. We paid the Airport Tax (1650php) then checked-in our baggage. We passed through immigration after paying the Terminal Fee (750php) then it was time to wait for boarding. 

Dark skies

     After 3 hours in the air, we landed at Changi Airport, Budget Terminal. Dark, cloudy skies greeted us but that didn't dampen our moods! We're excited to see what Singapore has in store for us! :)

Just landed :)

     Sir Markie greeted us and went with us to our hotel. It was raining hard when we got out and were deciding whether to take a cab or the MRT. We chose to take the MRT so we could learn and get used to it. We didn't get the EZlink Card considering the 5sgd non-refundable fee.
    Their MRT consisted of 4 lines with easy to find interchanges. Going around was easy thanks to the efficient train lines. 

South East Asia Hotel

     From the airport, we took the MRT from Changi MRT Station to Tanah Merah and went down Bugis Station. We then walked  to get to South East Asia Hotel at Waterloo Street. Checking-in was a breeze. We just showed the receipt (Sir Markie paid for the down payment for our rooms) and the kind and accommodating receptionist gave us the keys to our rooms.

     The rooms were clean and had comfortable beds. There were clean towels for each guest, a water heater, some toiletries and a hair dryer borrowed from the reception. The bathroom is also spacious and had a hot/cold shower.

     Tap water in Singapore is potable so we just drink straight from the faucet. Haha! :D

Triple occupancy room

Toilet & Bath

     We were already hungry. It was about 4pm when we got to the hotel and we last ate at around 9am, before boarding. Good thing there was a money changer near our hotel. We then headed to the hawker center located at Albert Center across our hotel for our late lunch. We noticed that the stalls had letters posted or hanged at the sides -- we learned that they were ratings for the stalls' cleanliness. 

Hawker stall

     We had a hard time choosing what to get since there were a lot of choices! We decided to get Set 2 (chicken curry with veggies on the side) for 2.80sgd. We also got avocado shake for 2sgd and a mixed fruit juice for 1sgd.

Set 2

First Singapore Food

     Everything in Singapore (well almost) is spicy! Good for those who love spicy dishes -- not for us though. Hehe! But getting a taste of their delicacies was a nice experience (more about food on future posts).

     First on our itinerary was to explore Little India or Chinatown but it was raining hard so we opted to wait for it to stop. It was already 7 in the evening when it did so we decided to follow the next destination in our itinerary: Marina Bay Sands to witness the glory of Singapore at night. :p

     From Bugis MRT Station, we alighted at City Hall interchange to transfer to the red line. We went down Marina Bay MRT Station and walked our way around the place. 

Marina Bay Area

     We walked along Fullerton Road to get to the Merlion Park. It was a really nice sight! We can now appreciate better what we only saw in books. Hehe! :)

With Merlion ^_^

     There were a lot of tourists then wanting to get the perfect shot with the Merlion - including us. Haha! It was a breathtaking sight so we decided to come back during the day. 

     From the Merlion Park, we walked along Esplanade Drive to get to the side of Marina Bay Sands. We were lucky to witness the lights and sands show from our side of the bay! It was like the Symphony of Lights in Hong Kong! The show was amazing! complete with bright, colorful lights, booming sounds and bursts of fire!

Amazing show of lights

With a different hue

     The Esplanade greeted us once we've crossed the bridge (Esplanade drive). This architectural beauty houses a concert hall and a theater for the performing arts. Locals call it "The Durian" since the shades/roof look like the spikes of the well-known fruit. 

The Esplanade

     We were supposed to go on the Singapore Flyer but it was already late and we didn't want to miss the MRT and ride the taxi which is more expensive especially after 12midnight (an extra 30% will be charged on top of the fare).

Singapore Flyer

     We then headed to the south side of Marina Bay via the Helix Bridge. Interesting fact: Pairs of coloured letters c and g, as well as a and t on the bridge which are lit up at night in red and green represent cytosine, guanine, adenine and thymine the four bases of DNA. (from Wikipedia)

Helix bridge

Another angle of the Helix Bridge (photo by Princess Arga)

     It has been a long and tiring walk so we decided to call it a day. Going back to Marina Bay Station was too far so we took the MRT from Raffles Station instead. Thanks to our friend Juls who gladly showed us around.

Happy tourists :)

     Marina Bay at night was an awesome sight! Everything was just a feast for the eyes! It was a great way to end the day! More to come on days 2 to 6! :)


  1. Love the photos! This made me miss Singapore more.. Hope to pay SG a visit next year.. :) Btw, I didn't find Singaporean food spicy though (and I'm not a fan of spicy foods too.) We'd usually eat at Vivo's Food Republic, or at any food court inside the malls.. haha.. :) Love how 2-3SGD is already enough to eat good food there.

  2. We didn't visit malls much hehe! We only dropped by Vivo City for the Sentosa Express :)
    and we kinda got tired of chicken haha!

  3. ang ganda sa helix!
    swerte nyo nga sa lights ng marina, nice! =)

    how much yung room nyo sa SEA hotel?

  4. the bridge and the light show were awesome! nakakawala ng pagod..konti haha!

    130sgd for triple occupancy rooms, 110sgd for double.. pricey :(

  5. i love reading your blogs.,makes me want to save more to be able to go there in the near future.,

  6. thanks for reading.. hope you could visit SG soon.. :)

  7. Wow, ang ganda ng photos especially the night shots! :) Anong camera gamit nyo? Hindi kasi kaya ng camera ko ang night shots, hehe. Ganda ng helix bridge. Tinamad na kami pumunta dun.

    By the way, thanks for featuring South East Asia Hotel. We were supposed to check in there dati. Maganda pala ang rooms. Next time dun na talaga kami magbook. :)

  8. @Karla: our one and only Canon hehe! at steady hands/ tripod =p cool yun helix bridge! kahit pagod na go pa din :D

    SEA Hotel's simple but nice. Helpful din ang staff :)

  9. did you booked your hotel online?