25 April 2011

Weekend Tour Guide

During last weekend, a friend of mine who's never been to Singapore before, was staying at my place. I accompanied her walking around this tiny country to the standard tourist places. usually visitors/tourists from Indonesia do not need to be guided anymore, since they must have visited Singapore at least once. Ya, Singapore for Indonesians is like Bandung for Jakartans where you can go there for only short weekend gateaways, especially do shopping. Also, there are too many Indonesians living here in Singapore. If I was not available for guiding some tourists, I am sure they have other relatives here to meet and help them. Moreover, Singapore is the safest, most convenient and most tourist-friendly I've ever known.

I always ask first, "have you been here before?", "where/what did you go/eat in the last visits?" before I babble out about what's good in Singapore, because they might have already known so much about Singapore, might even known better than me. Traveling to Singapore is not so special anymore. That's why having a Singapore-virgin tourist like this friend of mine, brought me a simple joy.

Saturday morning I went to Harbourfront terminal to pick up my friend who crossed the sea from Batam. It supposed to be 45 minutes ferry-ride only, but this time took about 1.5 hour plus 1 hour queuing in immigration, due to heavy traffic tourists in the long weekend. First hour waiting in the arrival hall was not bad since there was a good-looking foreigner guy waiting there also, but when he's gone I got bored easily watching people passing by.

After I met my friend, we had lunch directly in Banquet (halal food court) nearby. I introduced her to Hainanese Chicken Rice. And then we went to Sentosa, walking from Siloso Beach, Merlion to Resort World. We did not enter any attractions, only sightseeing and taking a lot of pictures. Too bad the iconic Universal globe was hidden under maintenance.

In the afternoon I brought her to Raffles Place. The Singapore icon Merlion, which used to have fountain from its mouth, now is hidden inside a red box. It is actually a luxury hotel room with Merlion in it, during Biennale art event. It opens to public until next month. The room is fully booked at $150/night, but free admission during daytime.


Then, we crossed the bridge to Esplanade and Singapore Flyer. I let her take the Flyer alone, since I have tried it twice (day and night). $29 for the 3rd ride in 20 minutes Flyer-ride is definitely not worth it. So I waited her downstairs where Sakura Festival was held.

many interesting cosplays

Walking back to Esplanade to have dinner in my favorite place Makan Sutra (see this post). It was Saturday night in a long weekend, but fortunately we could still get some seats (by sharing table with a couple). We had Cereal Prawn and Sambal Kangkong (my favorite) and Roti Prata since my friend wanted to try Indian food.

The next day was shopping time. After walking around Chinese Garden (see this post) for a while, we went to Orchard to have my favorite Ayam Penyet Ria (haha I always make tourists come to this place! See this post) and do some shoppings. Around 3.30 PM we decided to walk outside the malls. There were so many people, waiting to watch F1 cars passing by Orchard road from Mandarin Gallery to Ion (which was closed for any other vehicles). This was not happening often, so we decided to join the crowd and waited until 4 PM when finally David Coulthard drove his car.

couldn't capture the car, just the crowd

After that, we moved to Bugis, Arab Street and Kampong Glam (see this post). Some replicas in the yard of Malay Heritage Center were gone, they're soon closed for renovation. Then, in the night we went to Chinatown. When we passed by a foot and body massage place, my friend directly asked me to take 15 mins foot massage together for our tiring feet after these 2 days non-stopped walking. It's very relaxing, and making my feet light again.

Around 8 PM, we went to Harbourfront terminal where my friend took the latest ferry back to Batam. I went home and ended my week by watching the latest episode of 1N2D (Korean TV show haha). Argh Monday comes again! I can't wait for next weekend which I will be going to Jakarta to meet the sweetheart(s).

10 comments:

  1. Hy Rika!

    I'm Indonesian but not yet visit Singapore, can u guide me in Singapore? Mybe only 2days.. if u don't mind,,

    Thanks.

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  2. Rika,
    Gw juga suka makan Ayam Penyet Ria tiap kali ke Spore, hahahhaa...Singapore salah satu dream destination gw untuk bekerja nih, cariin kerja donk...(LHO??)

    ReplyDelete
  3. @Vari hahaa embyeerr, kata temen gw bahkan lebih enak Ayam Penyet Ria yang disini daripada yang di Jakarta. Yuk yuk kesini..

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  4. Singapore is one of the most desired tourist destinations from across the globe. Singapore is perfect destination for travelers because of natural beauty, culture and great food and drink. One should not miss out the chances to make your tour en extra special and memorable by visiting Singapore.

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  5. Thank you for sharing this. I didn't know the Merlot hotel was this vast.

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  6. Stayed at the as ascott again after one year and I would say that the standard has remained. The location is excellent for business travelers as it's seated right in the middle of the central business district. The mass rapid transit station is also just a 5-10 minutes walk away. If you are into shopping, you can just take the train from raffles place to the orchard shopping and it's just about 10-15 minutes. However, for locals, the hotel does not have it's own parking facilities and thus, may pose a problem for those who are driving. The nearest car park; and also the cheapest is the golden show carpark which is about 10 minutes walk away.

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  7. They have really managed to keep the old world charm when upgrading this place. The only thing to note is the musky smell of the corridors. It's not unusual, especially coming from Bangkok, but should note as I am a little touchy on the nose when it comes to smoking in hotels etc. But it didn't effect me that much.

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  8. I love Singapore. I visited this country once, and I was amazed of their rich culture. You can really see the innovation of technology in this city. I would love to visit this place again. What I like about this country is the cleanliness that is being imposed in every town in the whole city.

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  9. I just booked flights to Manila last night. I'll be visiting Philippines next week. Next stop is Singapore. It will surely be a very fun and exciting Asian tour. I will definitely visit these places.

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  10. There will be ups and downs, but it is important to remember you're on your own beautiful journey, and once you're on it you have to see it through to it's own conclusion. And try to never be afraid to do anything because what's the worse that can happen?

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