Singapore 2016

Singapore has been one of my top cities to visit for as long as I can remember. I always had this image of myself walking around the Marina Bay Sands area and having my picture taken in front of the Merlion. However, when my husband and I decided we wanted to plan a trip somewhere this year, Singapore was far from our minds. We have a long list of places we want to check off over the course of our lifetime and we placed our priority on France, Spain or Morocco. Turns out, we couldn't get our visas ready in time for either destination so we racked our brains for more options and came up with Malaysia (which I'll write about in another blog post) and Singapore. We were able to get our visas ready quickly for both countries and without much planning, off we were to a part of the world we weren't expecting to visit for a long time!

We arrived in Singapore quite late at night and we were really exhausted so we decided to go to bed and wake up bright and early the next morning. We only had three days there and a long list of places to see so I was really worried that we wouldn't be able to fit everything in. We were also worried about the weather, and by we I mean mostly me. The forecast was predicting rain for the entirety of our stay and I couldn't bear the thought of our trip going to waste because of rain. There was actually one night a week or so before our trip where I couldn't fall asleep because I was so worried about what the weather would be like! I'm embarrassed to admit all this now because thankfully the weather cooperated with us the whole time we were there.

When we first arrived we were overwhelmed by two things - the humidity, and how clean the city was. We had heard lots of people say that Singapore is hot but coming from Dubai we weren't expecting much of anything but when we got there we realized they were not joking. The humidity levels were incredibly high and even stifling at certain points but we tried to ignore it as much as we could so that it didn't get in the way of our sightseeing. If you are planning a trip to Singapore, make sure to keep the weather in mind. Pack light, airy clothes and little to no makeup because you cant even fathom putting anything on your face with how hot and humid it is. Another thing to keep in mind is that the weather doesn't change at all during the year. It consistently stays hot and humid so it doesn't make a difference what time of year you plan your trip.

Before arriving, my husband and I had made an itinerary that was composed of the following places
1) Marina Bay Sands
2) Gardens by the Bay
3) Little India
4) China Town
5) Arab Street
6) Haji Lane
8) The Raffles Hotel

I can luckily say that we were able to visit all of the places on our list, some of them even multiple times. We used the metro to get to and from everywhere. We always prefer to take public transportation where ever we go because it saves money, and it gives a more authentic experience of the city you are visiting. This post is just an over view of our trip so I wont get into the details of each place we visited (if you'd like more information about a certain place on our list feel free to ask in the comments or send me an email!). However, I will say that our top three favorite places from the list were Haji Lane, The Raffles Hotel, and CHIJMES. We actually had breakfast on Arab Street, right across from Haji Lane all three days while we were there. While I don't remember the exact name of the shop, it was a casual place that served the most amazing anda - parhatas we have ever tasted in our lives. My husband and I were joking that if we lived in Singapore we would have breakfast there every single day. Not only was it delicious, it was incredibly reasonable as well. You'll definitely notice this place if you're on Arab Street because its quite bustling and always packed. We felt really lucky that we came across it while we were there.

There are a few other things to note about Singapore as well. They're not joking when they say they have really strict laws so do be sure to familiarize yourself with them before you arrive. Things that may be second nature to us like chewing gum or jaywalking (come on, admit it, we've all done it before) hold heavy fines and even a risk of jail time in Singapore. As with any country you visit it's important to respect their rules and customs so make sure to read up. After all, they don't call Singapore a fine city for nothing ;) Other than that, our trip to Singapore definitely exceeded our expectations. While we were expecting a typical expat city, we found a hub of culture, history and modernization all in one.



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