I always love having visitors, but I was a bit nervous about how much we could get done in Nuree’s 48 hours in Singapore. I knew how tiring the flights are from NY are and I wasn’t sure what she would be up for. Luckily, the haze wasn’t too horrible and we were able to pack in a lot in the limited time. So in the two days we had, we accomplished the following:
- Breakfast at the local hawker (Whampoa Market
- Lunch at Din Tai Fung
- Walking the streets of Orchard Road
- Exploring Chinatown
- Church service at RHC
- Visiting Sentosa and going to the southernmost point of continental Asia
- Eating coconut thai ice cream with free coconut water
- Seafood Indian food at the Esplanade
- Walking from Esplanade to MBS, via the double helix bridge
- Cafe hopping on Keong Saik Road
- Enjoying the view and drinks from the top of Marina Bay Sands hotel
- Chili crab at Jumbo Seafood
- Supper at Swee Choon
- Visiting Gardens by the Bay Cloud Forest
- Taking the water taxi from Clarke Quay to MBS
- Visting Mustafa in Little India
- Walking around Haji Lane and stumbling upon the Selfie Coffee cafe.
- Taking the bus, MRT, taxi, rides from friends, and walking as means of transportation!
By the end of those two full days of eating and walking our way through the little red dot, we were ready to board a plane to haze free Thailand and relax on the beach. I forgot how tiring walking around and doing sightseeing in Singapore can be, especially when you are outside in the afternoon. There were a few times, where taxis were necessary. By now, I think I could plan tours for anyone interested in coming to Singapore in my sleep. Also, Nuree needs to come back to Singapore because we didn’t get to try durian. Next time, my friend.
With much anticipation and curiosity, I attended my first secret dining event armed with my camera and an empty stomach. 24 hours before the event, a text arrived giving an address to a secret location, which ended up conveniently being right near my home! When we arrived outside a strange warehouse and saw the blue light coming from a window, we knew we were at the right place. As we walked up the shady flight of stairs, when we saw a guy with a huge afro wig nodding his head like he was sleeping outside a door , it looked like we made it. Did we need a secret password? Was this guy going to wake up all of a sudden? So I made Jenni try to get in first.
Well we ended up waiting for a bit outside then of course waking up Ethan (pronounced Eeeethan), who ended up being our bubbly waiter. They had a bar right at the entrance and we were immediately served yummy welcome drinks. They showed us our tables and were immediately greeted by the various staff members who each had their own persona.
Even though the food wasn’t as futuristic as I was expecting, this was definitely a memorable evening, full of drama (Asian Karl Lagerfeld coming back from the future), an interactive fashion show, and even a birthday song for two of the people at our random table. A special thank you to Jenni for inviting me to attend with her and you can read more about the specific details about the experience in her Sassy Singapore article! :)
I managed to squeeze one more trip before my summer ended with a four day trip to Langkawi, Malaysia. We stayed in this boutique hotel called temple tree. It was only a 10 minute drive from the airport. We loved the unique furniture inside our villa, including a wooden bathtub right in the master bedroom. I would recommend this place, but you will definitely have to rent a car to make it easier to access all the places including the beach and other sites easily. Our trip started off with going parasailing on Cenang beach and getting the local rate to exploring the entire island in our cozy manual rental car by the end of our trip.
Another highlight of the trip was going on the sky tram and crossing the skybridge. It is apparently the longest free span and curve bridge in the world according to their website. The views from above were spectacular. We also hit up the night markets every night which meant incredibly delicious and cheap food (a few ringgits for each dish). My favorite food from the trip was definitely the pisang goreng (banana fritters) from the street stall on our second to last day. We just couldn’t get enough and made Dave keep going back to the stall for me .
In addition to eating really delicious malay food, exploring different beaches, and enjoying scenic rides in our car, it was the down time in our hotel that I enjoyed the best. Whether it was playing games, chilling by the pool, or putting on animal face masks, the company made it all worth it.
Photo cred to dave for taking the parasailing photos! :)
After feeling much anxiety about getting older this year, I decided to embrace it. So I decided that I wanted sparklers. Yes, sparklers because they have an element of danger and fun all at once. Thank you dear friends for bringing more than enough sparklers (over 200???). It was a pretty beautiful sight at East Coast Park with the ocean behind us.
My lovely and introspective friends kept asking me what my goals/wishes are for this new year. And each time I said I don’t know because deep down I wasn’t really ready to get older. But after a week and half, I finally came up with 5 hopefully easy goals and sharing them will make me more likely to achieve them.
1. Get my scuba diving certification.
2. Travel to new places: Beijing (run a race on the great wall), Myanmar (ride a hot air balloon), and New Zealand (climb glaciers or something cool….).
3. Cook more at home and invite people to actually eat my food.
4. Become better at photography. Maybe take a class or just buy a nicer lens… ;)
5. Do something that scares me. (Hopefully, if I achieve #1, then I can cross this one off too.)
I took the first and last photo on my iphone 5s. The rest of the amazing photos are thanks to our resident photo experts: James K. & Tim Ng! TY!
*Check out James’s photos that are selling on visual trooper! You can buy different sizes, and they are all pretty incredible photos of Singapore.
I’ve been attempting to catch up on my summer travels so even though the order is a bit mixed up, next is my trip to my favorite friendly neighboring country, Canada. A wedding is always a good excuse to visit a new place! I was so excited to visit Toronto and of course explore it with Melody. Basically our last minute planning consisted of a combination of messaging our Canadian friends, instagram, and good ol’ Google after landing in Toronto. We only had about 2 days for sight seeing. However, we definitely packed a lot in and crossed off most of the things on our list, except for climbing the top of the CN tower (which I was ok with not doing, especially with the foggy weather on day 2).
Top 10 Highlights of exploring Toronto:
- Walking through Kensington market and seeing an eclectic bunch of things like the car that was turned into a garden on the street.
- Maple bacon macarons from Nadege patisserie while catching up with Steph!
- Staying at this cute boutique-y hotel, the Gladstone that was an art gallery during the day.
- Finding cute stationary and book stores on Queens street west.
- Taking photos of all the fun graffiti and art on the sides of buildings.
- Going down the Frank Gehry stairs at the Art Gallery of Ontario.
- Eating dinner at a random restaurant/pub on Osington, that ended up having the best sweet potato fries. The poutine was just ok.
- Taking a ferry to Toronto island and walking on the boardwalk by the beach with my cousin’s family.
- Watching planes land and lift off from Toronto city airport from a friend’s rooftop.
- Blueberry pancakes from Mildred’s Temple Kitchen. I would definitely go back here anytime.
Photos taken on my iphone 5s.