2009 - Backpacking to Singapore

Backpacking Adventure
8 days to Uniquely Singapore
17 Mar <> 24 Mar 2009
(L-R) Val Allan, Pauline Toh, Catherine Oon, Ching Neng Bin, Betty Ching, Lim Kee Moon

Day 01 (17.03.09) Sitiawan > Singapore

Six of us got into Grassland Express bus @ 7.30pm Seri Manjung. The bus fare is RM65 per person. Thanks to Joyce and Dr.Diong for sending us to the station. Mr.Allan was a retired Warden in Outward Bound School, Lumut and Lim Kee Moon was a retired engineer in the Lumut Naval Base.

Day 02 (18.03.09) Sengkang > Little India > NUS

After 12 hours, we arrived 7.30am at Golden Mile Complex, Beach Road, Singapore. We took two taxi to Allan's daughter apartment at Block 269D, No.2-79 Compassvale Link, Sengkang and had breakfast prepared by the Indonesian maid . Nearest MRT is Buangkok. After refreshing ourselves we took the Compassvale LRT to Sengkang. Here we visited the shopping complex - Compass Point. Had lunch here and then by MRT to Little India. We walked along Serangoon Road to Mustafa Shopping Complex and later took the Farrer Park MRT to Clementi Station. We took bus 95 to National University of Singapore visiting Kee Moon's son who is studying there.

New township - Compassvale
We stayed here at Compassvale Link apartment
North Vista primary school nearby
Compass Point shopping complex

Beautiful community library at Compass Point

National University of Singapore
Had fantastic dinner at home and the special Smirnoff Vodka with coffee.

Roasted chicken, sambal prawns, vegetable and soup
Day 03 (19.03.09) Chinatown >Golden Mile Complex

We had the longest walk The Walk on day 3, walking approximately 15km from Chinatown all the way to Golden Mile Complex along Beach Road. First we took the MRT at Buangkok station to Chinatown. Walking through Chinatown: Pagoda St, Temple St. Smith St. Maxwell Rd, South Bridge Rd, Ann Siang Rd, Amoy St, China St. to Far East Square.
Breakfast time
Chinatown MRT station
South Bridge Road
Allan says this is cheap cheap
Walking along Pagoda Street
Beans with messages
Information centre - Chinatown
Sago street - Chinatown

Sri Mariamman Temple at Temple St.
Buddha Tooth Relic Temple and Museum - Sago Lane

South Bridge Road
Maxwell Road Food Centre
Had very good lunch here
Street musician Ah Beng
Ann Siang Road

Amoy Street

Thiam Hock Kong Temple

Best coffee at this Killiney Kopitiam, Amoy St.
Designed and built according to the Chinese concept of geomancy, Far East Square reconstructs Chinatown the way it was in the old days. The streets are lined with shop-houses bearing architecture dating back to 1840. The structural details and motifs reflect traditional Chinese beliefs, superstitions and values. A stroll along the Heritage Trail and a visit to the Fuk Tak Chi Museum offer a glimpse into the lives of early immigrants.
Typical ancient Chinese house
Covered street walk at Far East Square

Best teh tarik

Walking through River Area: Church St, Philip St, Chulia St, Bonham St, Boat Quay Promenade to Merlion Park, Esplanade Drive to Esplanade Theatres, Stamford Rd, North Bridge Rd. to Bugis Junction, Rochor Rd, Beach Rd to Golden Mile Complex. Here we bought our Seri Maju bus ticket to Sitiawan at S$38 per person. Walked to Lavender MRT station to get home.

Singapore River
Anderson Bridge
Cavenagh Bridge
Walking the walk along Singapore River Promenade

Fullerton Hotel
The Merlion designed by Mr Fraser Brunner, a curator of the Van Kleef Aquarium, the lion head represents the lion spotted by Prince Sang Nila Utama when he re-discovered Singapura in 11 AD, as recorded in the "Malay Annals". The fish tail of the Merlion symbolises the ancient city of Temasek (meaning “sea” in Javanese) by which Singapore was known before the Prince named it “Singapura” (meaning “lion” (singa) “city” (pura) in Sanskrit).

At the Esplanade Bridge
Esplanade Bridge & Theater
Singapore River Bay
Esplanade Theaters on the Bay is Singapore's busiest performing arts centre situated along Esplanade Drive fronting the Marina Bay and Elizabeth Walk, near the mouth of the Singapore River. The Esplanade is a purpose-built performing arts centre.
Ruth Ling in concert

Day 04 (20.03.09) Bugis Street > Suntec City

In the morning we took the MRT to Bugis Street. Here we walked through Singapore’s largest street shopping location with about 600 concept stores offering a wide variety of quality trendy selections at competitive prices, a popular hot spot for tourists and locals alike. Strategically positioned, Bugis Street stands in the heart that links Bugis Junction, the Mass Rapid Transit (SMRT) and the famous Kwan Im Tong Hood Che Temple.

Bugis Street the largest street shopping
Kwan Im Tong Hood Che Temple - Bugis Street
Surprise No. 1 is meeting our friends from Penang; Eric Chong and family at Bugis Street.
Big trees along the road to Suntec City
At Suntec City

This feng shui Fountain of Wealth is the largest fountain in the world. The Fountain of Wealth is located at the centre of a traffic roundabout within the Suntec City commercial complex. It is made of bronze and comprises a circular ring with a circumference of 66 meters held up by four slanted columns. The base of the fountain is located below ground, on the level of the restaurant base of Suntec City. At times, the main fountain is turned off so that visitors can walk around the smaller fountain at the center of the fountain's base, again in adherence to feng shui, for good luck. There is a small laser show at the Fountain of Wealth at night. We had lunch at the food court.
Came back to apartment for dinner and waited for the return of Jacqueline and family holidaying in Abu Dabi.

Day 05 (21.03.09) Changi Airport > Singapore Expo

After breakfast Rashid, Allan and I drove to pick up Nelson at his hotel. We later took bus 27 straight to Changi Airport Terminal 3. Walked around and took the train to Terminal 2 and 1. Had the best coffee and kaya toast for lunch at Ya Kun Kaya Toast @ http://www.yakun.com.

We then continue our visit to the Singapore Expo. It has a exhibition space of 100,000 sqm. 10 halls each with 10,000sqm of column free space means you can sell the perfect floorplan, ensuring maximum benefits for your exhibitors and visitors. The 10 halls are also all located on ground level for easy access and are suitable for very large and heavy exhibits.

We then came back for dinner and had good fellowship with Allan's relatives. Drinking all night through with Nelson and slept at 3.30am.

The train between airport terminals

Changi Airport - car park
Changi Airport - Terminal 1
Changi Airport - Terminal 2
Changi Airport - Terminal 3

The best coffee at Airport
Surprise No.2 is meeting Betty's aunt at the Changi Airport.
The best kaya toast at airport

Free drawing for children at airport
Patricia & V.A.Allan (Uncle Rudy)
Rosalind, Monica & Patricia
Pauline & daughter Jacky
Allan's relatives
The Allans

Day 06 (22.03.09) Birthday Party at Chevrons Hotel

Looking forward to see my long lost cousin Ching Neng Hau in the morning who works in Freescale Singapore as an E&E engineer. I last met him was about 15 years ago in Sitiawan. He came to pick us up at Buangkok MRT station and then showed us around the north-central area of Singapore. We had lunch at a food court and later visited his home at Ang Mo Kio to meet his family.

At 5.30pm we guys took a taxi while the ladies took the car to The Chevrons Hotel at Jurong East for Allan's brother birthday. It was a very grand party dinner with all his relatives as far as Australia and his colleagues from the armed forces. We came back by MRT from Jurong East station.

Ching Neng Bin & Ching Neng Hau (cousin brother)
Allan's nieces and nephews - Chevrons Hotel
Allan's nieces and nephews
Happy 70th birthday to R.M.Allan the younger brother of V. A.Allan
Day 07 (23.03.09) Orchard Road > Sentosa Island

After breakfast we took the MRT to Orchard Road. From here we slowly walked all the way to Somerset than to Dhoby Ghaut. On the way to Harbour Front we drop by at Chinatown to do some shopping.

Orchard Road got its name from the orchards and plantations that existed in the area until the turn of the 20th century. In the 1970s, pioneering landmarks like C. K. Tangs, Plaza Singapura and the Mandarin Hotel came up and led the way for entertainment complexes. Towers of glass and steel lined what used to be mud-tracks to make Orchard Road the premier shopping belt today. Some of the shopping centres that we visited were: Shaw House, Paragon Centre, Plaza Singapura, Centre Point and OG Point.

Orchard Road
Visitors Centre at Orchard Road - this is the place to get all information
China Town again to buy more souvenirs. This is the best place to buy cheap and beautiful souvenirs.
The Harbour Front

Vivocity is set in the heart of the sprawling 24-hectare Harbour Front , and is perfectly placed to tap business from tourist attractions, commercial centers and residential properties nearby. These include Sentosa, the Singapore Cruise Centre, Caribbean by the Bay and Sentosa Cove. Visitors from the numerous office buildings and institutions of learning at Alexandra Road and Shenton Way are also expected.
At VivoCity - the Sentosa Express train ticket for a day ride to the Island is S$3 per person. It includes the bus services within the island. There are three bus services to get around Imbiah, Siloso Point and Siloso Beach. We took the Siloso Beach Tram from Beach Terminal to Beach Station and then walked through the Merlion Walk to Imbiah train station for VivoCity.

Allan said "I never give up walking, and I am following Ching wherever he goes"

Tiger Sky Tower
Beautiful sun-set at Siloso Beach
Siloso Beach, Sentosa Island

Notice the color changes all the time on the Merlion Walk

The Merlion standing at 37 metres high, this half-lion, half-fish creature brings you to the depth of the sea as you walk side-by-side with legendary sea dragons and mythical mermaids.
Betty & Kee Moon at VivoCity
Pauline & Allan
Catherine & Ching at VivoCity

Day 08 (24.03.09) Singapore > Sitiawan

This was our last day in Singapore. We spend the morning and afternoon - last minute shopping at Compass Point in Sengkang before we got back to our apartment for dinner together with our host, Jackqueline and Rashid. We bought birthday presents for Dayang. At about 7pm we took the MRT to Lavender station and walked to the bus station at Golden Mile Complex along Beach Street. The ladies traveled by car. Our Seri Maju bus departed at 9pm. Bus fare is S$38 per person.
Ching, Rashid, Jackqueline, Allan, Pauline, Betty, Catherine Children: Irwan & Dayang
at Bus station at Golden Mile Complex

Our sincere thanks to Jacqueline and Rashid
for the 7 days accommodation

1 comment:

  1. Good afternoon Mr Ching
    Someone posted me your blog on backing to Singapore and before I know it I spent a few hours reading your blog. A very good blog and you even have a better life! This is what life is about..Enjoy to the fullest and I always preach that you do not need a lot of money to have a good life but you must KNOW how to have a good life! well done and you are certainly my type..I back pack, cycle, canoe and enjoy back to nature trips. I am staying in Chukai, Terengganu and you are welcome to make a trip over here. Just let me know the dates. Meanwhile, continue your good life.

    Capt Wong