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October 1, 2013

Day 19: Gardens by the bay, shopping in Singapore and Chili Crab eating

After what was the best sleep of the trip, we decided to start the day with a visit to the infinity pool. Unfortunately, the city was covered in haze due to a fire in Indonesia but, even with this thick gray layer, the views were astonishing. We spent there a good hour, surprised twice by some fighter jets passing only a few meters above our heads at full speed. Adam and his camera was not fast enough to capture the happening, but the three F-15 Eagles causing the 200 meter high triple-towers to tremble is a heart-pumping experience (See something similar on youtube).

But enough of pampering, it was our last day in the city and we had to make the most of it.


Once we checked out we went to visit the gardens behind the hotel called Gardens by the bay. It has lots of giant tree-like structures and three big pavilions with lots of flora inside. We decided to visit two of them. The first one had a “compilation” of plants that grow all over the world and the second one is full of beautiful orchids and has a waterfall inside. Outside the pavilions, between two of the giant tree structures, at about 100m high, there is a walking path we were about to take. Unfortunately, it was closed because of the haze so we had to skip it.

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Following the recommendation of Karyn and Mable, we went to the city with a clear target in mind: Shopping!  Around Bugis Junction there is a commercial center and a big market full of small stands with clothes, accessories, food and lots of local shoppers. The commercial centers are full of known shops like Zara, Pull & Bear and Esprit but they are much more expensive than in Europe due to the import/export taxes. In contrary to that, the markets are quite cheap and you can find all what the cute Singaporean girls are wearing ;) Next to Bugis, in the Kampong Glam area, you can find the Arab neighborhood with two or three nice streets full of shops with pricy clothes from independent designers. On the Arab street there are lots of textile shops and some Muslim clothing stores and in Muskat street you can find the Masjid Sultan, one of the most important Mosques in the city built in 1826.


Despite of the big variety, we didn't buy so much since we only had our backpacks and a plane ticket with hand luggage only. Just one thing more about shopping in Singapore, in the markets and in lots of shops around them, you cannot try anything on before buying! At the beginning it was really annoying for me but after feeling the consequences of heat and humidity myself, I could perfectly understand why it is like this.

Our last dinner in the city couldn't have been more special. We went to have Chili Crab at the No Signboard Seafood Restaurant near Huang´s place. Well, I will just say that after I couldn't feel my mouth for about 15 minutes… just check the pictures ;)


On the way to Huang´s place we bought a “surgical mask”. We just didn’t want to be different from the locals who were really worried about their health because of the haze. Of course, we ended up having fun instead of using it the proper way.

When we got back to Huang´s place, we had the chance to meet his wife, Noah. She is a very friendly Taiwanese, full of energy and happiness. We stayed up until late talking about lots of things and we were so lucky to see Huang´s collection of Absolut Vodka bottles. When we went to sleep and prepare our things for the flight next morning (my backpack was so full ;)), I asked Adam if we could stay longer or maybe for a long period of time. Singapore is a very nice city. We will come back for sure. Thank you guys!


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