Friday, February 28, 2014

Gardens by The Bay, Singapore

Another stop we made in Singapore was the Gardens by the Bay located on Marina Gardens Drive. Upon arriving, we headed straight for the audio tour around the gardens using a medium sized open air buggy and costs $5 per person. The audio tour gave us sometime to rest, listen, understand, take cover from the sun and soak in the beauty of the garden. The garden is divided into various parts. The highlight for me would be the 2 dome shaped conservatories "Flower Dome" and "Cloud Forest", the Supertree Grove and the Web of Life.

Web of Life - Really love the animal shaped bushes or hedges.

The Supertrees!. Standing tall at a height of 25-50 metres, the trunk of the trees are planted with real living plants, while the unique branches branching out from the trunk actually helps harvest solar energy. Awesome! At night, there is a Garden Rhapsody at 745pm and 845pm where the trees come alive with a colourful display of lights. Sadly, we missed the show as we were headed for shopping by then :D. We spent around 3 hours at the Gardens exploring.

The OCBC Skyway $5 admission, we didn't get to try this, but it is said from the skyway the view is spectacular.

Marc Quinn's Planet- Floating baby sculpture which looks hugely heavy, yet appears weightless. Stares in awe! Read more here.

There are 2 dome shaped conservatories the " Flower Dome" and the "Cloud Forest". We went for the Flower Dome first. The Cloud Forest was smaller than the Flower Dome and and can get very chilly at times. I enjoyed the cool weather in the conservatories unlike the burning heat outside, thus, spending extra time in both. :D Entrance fee for both conservatories is $28.

Dome shaped conservatory
The Flower Dome was filled with plants from all over the World. At one corner you see palms, another would consist of cactus and bulbous plants, there were so many types of beautiful flowers. It was a magnificent hideaway. I just stood at a corner of the conservatory and enjoyed the view. To capture the moment, i felt like a professional photographer?, trying to get the best shot, taking almost 100 photos just in this conservatory. haha! Never thought i had a thing for plants photography :P

The view 

Various types of Cactus

Bulbous plants or were they trees?

Owls ( my current interest)

the view from a different angle :)

The year of the Horse. neyyy~

Here a unique 3 petal flower :) reminded me of a 3 leaved clover. Hopefully it brings goodluck too!

The 1000 year old olive tree

Plenty of colorful magical flowers :)

Horses made of wood can be seen decorating the whole conservatory in conjunction with the Year of the Horse.

The second conservatory the Cloud Forest. Its main attraction would be the indoor waterfall and the cloud walk.

Indoor waterfall :)

The multilevel walk where you can enjoy the scenery

Lost World at the topmost floor

The secret garden snails :)
Before entering the secret garden, there was a short video about how humans have changed the balance in nature (changes in weather). It was a wake up call. They also have a presentation on how Gardens by the Bay actually use green technology  to function, from the rain water collected to water the plants, the solar energy to light up the super trees, the leaves as manure or burnt to create energy.

Overall, i enjoyed the Gardens very much, as it was just a stress free, peaceful place to soak in the beauty, away from the bustling rush in the city. It was my cup of tea, hopefully its yours too. :)

Tuesday, February 25, 2014

One Day Trip to Universal Studios, Singapore 2014

We reached Singapore 7.05am, bright and early! Got our luggage and headed to the hotel to drop it off, as check in was only at 2pm, took the airport shuttle which costs $9 per person, picks up from the terminal and straight to the doorstep of the hotel, the shuttle is shared, so if your rushing for time, taking a taxi is better, as they will send passengers to the hotels that are nearby first and continue from there.  There are other options which are cheaper such as the bus or MRT, but as we had luggage, we didn't want the hassle.

After leaving our luggage at the hotel, we were staying on East Coast Road. Headed by bus to Vivocity. The buses are very efficient, since we didn't have an EZ link Card, we paid by cash to driver, a ticket will pop out just behind the drivers seat, keep it well as it is proof of payment. Bus drivers do not provide change, so have the right amount ready.Slight problem i faced when boarding the bus, was where do i alight? The bus drivers are helpful, but sometimes at peak hours, its inconvenient to stand in front, try using this app Singapore bus routes. Another awesome app to download if heading to Singapore is which helps navigate around Singapore. 

Upon reaching Vivocity at around 9am (USS opens at 10am), we had a few choices to go to Sentosa Island. There is the cable car, free bus ride to Resorts World Sentosa, Sentosa Express $2 one way and the Sentosa Boardwalk $1 one way. The Boardwalk for me! There are signs in Vivocity Mall which leads you to the Boardwalk.

The view from the boardwalk

Besides walking, there are travelators too, for one's that don't like walking.

Tickets to USS is $74/adult. We went on a weekday, thus not able to watch the Hollywood Dream Parade and Lake Hollywood Spectacular which are only on weekends and public holidays, the plus point was the queues were short :) The Battle Galactica rollercoaster is closed till not too sure when. 

the iconic universal earth!

Hugssss :)

Shrek and Fiona :) love the show!

Marilyn dazzling as usual!

this is how you extract teeth from a T-REX with barehands :P

The view!

After all the games and shows, we were super tired but still eager to explore. We had our dinner at the Malaysian Food Street. Then headed, for the free bus rides around Sentosa, there is also the tram, since it was dark we didn't get to explore the 3 beaches offered and the other attraction except the Merlion Park. We took a bus to the Giant Merlion and walked to Beach Station from there passing quirky and unique sculptures on the way. We ended our day by taking the Sentosa express to Vivocity which was complementary after we bought the Boardwalk tickets.
Giant Merlion!

The walk down from Imbiah lookout to Beach Station, It was like a ramp from top to bottom. :)
1) Sunglasses and Umbrella as the sun was glaring, the time i went.
2) Poncho for the jurassic park games that gets you wet
3) Bring a bottle to fill up water, at their drinking stations to save money :)

Chinoz on the Park, KLCC

Not long a go, in conjunction with Chinese New Year, we had a school mates meet up at KLCC's Chinoz on the Park, which is situated by the KLCC park and in front of Dome. This place has a modern feel to it, has a bar lounge, and an indoor or outdoor seating. The evening chit chat session lasted till 10pm, Chinoz closes at 12 midnight though. Was really excited to be able to catch up on the latest gossips  updates :) Reminded me of how much i miss those times in school and it brought back  all those nostalgic memories. 

As for the food, the food presentation was tip top, taste of food was overall good..the spaghetti laksa is a non spicy version though. The price of the food is slightly on the higher end :)

Since I'm Malaysian, i tend to over-look that one of the tallest building in the world, the Petronas Twin Towers is in Malaysia, the star attraction, and i don't have a picture of it? Thus, tadaaaaa!! I'll get a better one next time :)

Set of Small Bites and 2 glass of wine or beer - RM49.90

Grilled Snapper RM42

Fetucini Marinara RM 48

Seafood Laksa RM48

Tuna RM35

Chinoz Burger RM 38

Water fountain light show at KLCC park. we were watching at around 10pm

 p/s: Loike this performance!