Day 2 – Gardens, Chinatown, and Slings

On day 2 in Singapore we were up early to enjoy breakfast and plan our day. First item on the itinerary were the Gardens by the Bay. If you have ever seen any pictures of Singapore you have likely seen the iconic “trees”. The trees and elevated walkway are impressive and are surrounded by lush tropical grounds.

One ascends 22 meters, to the treetops by elevator, which does require the visitor to purchase a ticket, you are presented with amazing 360 degree views of the skyline and bay.

After descending from the treetops we headed for the indoor cloud and flower gardens. These spaces are housed in giant glass atriums and can only be accessed by buying a ticket. Once inside you are presented with more lush tropical landscapes and various ecosystems from around the world. A key note for travelers wanting to escape the heat and humidity of Singapore is the interior gardens are air conditioned!

One of the key attractions is the indoor waterfall.

Portions of the flower garden were decked out for the holidays with whimsical displays aimed at children.

Chris is always in the lookout for unique snack foods and beverages. While perusing the garden’s gift shop he emerged with prawn chips and a carbonated Singapore sling flavored energy drink. The chips were interesting in that the first couple tasted nothing like prawns and then suddenly on the third a distinctive nasty prawn flavor began to build and linger on the palate.

Having gotten our fill of the flora and fauna (as my mother would say), we headed for Chinatown via the excellent underground transit system. We stopped for lunch at one of the many street vendors and enjoyed some fantastic duck, bok choy, and noodles.

After taking in the sights and sounds of Chinatown we set off, on foot for the 2 plus mile walk, to the Long Bar at the Raffles Hotel because there is said to be the origin of the Singapore sling. Currently the hotel is undergoing a massive renovation but luckily the bar is open! While somewhat of a tourist setup, the bar is attractive and the slings are delicious and peanuts the perfect accompaniment after our walk.

After our fill of slings we made our way back to the hotel pool for some R&R before preparing for dinner. For dinner, we headed back to the Marina Bay Sands Resort and up to the top floor to Cé La Vi. The restaurant and lounge offers amazing views, very good food, and lousy service. You are of course paying for the view to some degree.

After dinner we returned to the hotel and enjoyed a nightcap at the MO Bar. Tomorrow we pack up, say goodbye to Singapore, and head to sea via Windstar Cruises. The itinerary takes us to sea for a full day before landing in Thailand. See you soon!

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