Thursday, September 26, 2013

Singapore by Night

This week, I've checked off another Malaysian expat experience. I've come down with a tropical disease. Yuck. For the last seven days, I've been beset by fever, chills, muscle aches, joint pain, ear pressure, massive headaches, fatigue, red eyes, and after most of that all calmed down, a rash appeared. Dengue was eliminated via a blood test. For a while, the doctor thought it was Leptospirosis which is transmitted by rat urine. Revolting, to say the least. With the onset of the rash, the diagnosis has been changed to Chikugunya which, like Dengue, is transmitted via mosquito bites. Much less revolting. Anyways, things have been getting better, and I'm on the mend.

As long as I'm lying in bed, I'll fondly reminisce about my trip to Singapore almost 2 weeks ago which is the last time I felt in good health. Singapore has a vibrant night life, and we felt perfectly safe walking through the streets after the sun had set.

View from the SkyPark atop the Marina Bay Sands

Last year, we took the fast elevator to the SkyPark at the top of the Marina Bay Sands. This is the Singapore hotel that looks like a cruise ship sitting on top of three skyscrapers. The Observation Deck is only on one end of the building, so don't expect a 360 degree view of the city. Tickets are SGD20 (US$16) per adult and SGD14 (US$11.16) for children ages 2 - 12 years. Some people like to enjoy the bar and restaurant at the top, but my kids are not nearly swanky enough to pull this off.

This is the closest you can get to the infinity pool at the top of the Marina Bay Sands if you are not a hotel guest.

Gardens by the Bay has a light show set to music twice a night in the SuperTree Grove. If you're looking to save some money, this is free to the public. (You must pay admission if you want to enter one of the cooled conservatories or the elevated walkway.) There was quite a crowd enjoying the show the night we were there. The SuperTrees are 25- to 50-meter tall vertical gardens. Over 162,900 plants cover these structures.

Gardens by the Bay SuperTree Grove with the Marina Bay Sands on the left.

One of my favorite areas of Singapore after dark is Clarke Quay and Riverside Point. Both are extremely popular, so this isn't exactly an insider tip. The area is filled with restaurants and bars. Near Halloween last year, it was quite a happening place, especially with the Zombie crowd. Be sure to make reservations at Jumbo Seafood at Riverside Point for some tasty, tantalizing Chilli Crab.

Boat tours cruising in front of Riverside Point (left) and Clarke Quay (right).

The Clarke Quay complex is a group of shophouses painted in vibrant hues with a covering providing shelter over the street area. A brightly colored water fountain danced in the middle. I'm sure my kids would have run right into the middle of it on a hot day.

Fountains at Clarke Quay

For the most part, Singapore has banned street food. One of the remaining hold outs is Ice Cream Carts. I noticed a line at this cart and decided to try this treat for the first time. A man cut slabs of ice cream from a larger block and then literally made an Ice Cream Sandwich by folding a slice of pastel green and pink swirled bread around it.

Chocolate Chip Ice Cream Sandwich

To be honest, I wasn't bowled over by this. The bread, while colorful, tasted like regular ole white bread. The ice cream itself was merely "meh." But if they had used higher quality ice cream and a rich slice of brioche, I may be singing a different tune. Have you tried this treat?

Well, it's back to bed for me for more convalescence. Please remember to wear mosquito repellent when you're in Southeast Asia. Also, avoid rat urine.

This post is part of Travel Photo Thursday on Budget Travelers Sandbox and "Oh the Places I've Been" on The Tablescaper. Check them out for more around-the-world travel inspiration.


  1. Those pesky tropical maladies. We wash every canned and bottled item that we buy at the supermarket as that's where we think they're more likely to come into contact with rat's urine. I don't have a lot of mosquitoes but I have a net that I use just to be on the safe side. Glad you're feeling better, Michele. Thanks for sharing these lovely pictures from Singapore.

  2. wow its so festive and sparkling at the waterfront now, i'll have to visit Singapore again soon and visit those gardens!

  3. What a total bummer feeling as sick as you do. It's so rare that I get sick that when I do it's a wake-up call to appreciate my health.
    I'd love a long weekend in Singapore - and a chance to see the Super Tree Grove is very appealing.

  4. Feel better soon. Your photos are great. I visited the Sands when it was very new, and I'm not sure the observation was open. I also enjoyed Clarke Quay. When I was there they were having a dragon dance competition. Lots of fun!

  5. I've seen Clarke Quay at night (and I agree, it's beautiful and so much fun) but not the others. I'm definitely adding SuperTree Grove to my list of things to see. On our first visit to Singapore (the kids were 1 and 3), we went to a swanky revolving restaurant. Out of all the places we ate during that three week holiday, that was where the children behaved best and ate the most. We were in complete shock.

    Hope you feel better soon. I'm really glad the disease came from a mosquito and not rat pee.

  6. Oh Michelle, I hope you're feeling better by now. I hate tropical diseases, you never really know what it can be. My son had dengue fever when we lived in the Philippines - it was horrid. Well done for managing to write a blog post though, and this one is gorgeous. You make Singapore look so exciting and enticing by night. I think maybe that's the best time to see it perhaps?

  7. Great amazing pictures.for wonderfull Singapore.
    have a nice day!

  8. So glad to hear you're feeling better. I'm bummed to hear they don't sell street food in Singapore anymore. I had some of the best satay there many years ago. Every time I see Gardens on the Bay, it's such great inspiration to revisit Singapore. Thanks for these tips. We're really considering having a long stopover in Singapore next summer. Beautiful night shots! Hope you get back to your normal routine soon.

  9. Did nothing on this post.
    Lol, our Singapore trip was just the Universal Studios one day, Singapore Zoo another and then just relaxing at the hotel pool and doing some walking around in Sentosa for another. We were so pressed for time, that from the hotel, we decided to get our airport taxi to drop us off at the cable car building so we could sneak in an attraction while we were in transit to the hotel. So we dropped into our cable car, complete with our luggage.

    Didn't even get to see the Merlion.

    Maybe you should have some more ice cream sandwiches to get better. My stepdad insists that ice cream can cure everything even a very harsh and dry cough. :P

  10. Fantastic pictures! I hope by now you are feeling better!

  11. Lovely photos! I've done Singapore at night and gone to Orchard Road, and Raffles Plaza. I'd love to do a rinse, repeat and go to Clarke Quay.

  12. I hope you feel better very soon! Your photography is wonderful, I love all the bright lights, what an exciting place you live in! Those big tree-like structures are amazing. Thanks for visiting me. -Dawn @ We Call It

  13. Sometime back I have visit to Singapore and I have glorious moment when I saw this seen, I was enjoyed a lot , I cannot forget that memorable days, when I am in Singapore.


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