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Marina Bay Sands Singapore

Day view of Marina Bay Sands

Day view of Marina Bay Sands

Night view of Marina Bay Sands

Night view of Marina Bay Sands

Aside from the Merlion, Marina Bay Sands (MBS) is probably the second most prominent tourist spot in Singapore. My skype picture has the MBS as its background and most of my students easily recognized the place as Singapore.

Towering above buildings nearby, MBS looks like a ship on top of three huge poles. One cannot miss this beautiful architechture as it is seen across the Singapore river, from Clarke Quay to Esplanade.

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Singapore: Second Time Around

Singapore with my friends Melvin and Dan

Singapore with my friends Melvin and Dan

“Love is sweeter the second time around”, a quotation that sums up my love affair with Singapore.

I never thought that I would come back to the Lion City only a year after my last visit. It was an unplanned trip that turned out to be one of the most memorable. I got to experience the country and its culture more and most importantly I was able to mingle with tourists and locals.

DAY 1 Part 1: Changi Airport, Tampines, Clarke Quay & Chinatown

Our flight from NAIA T3 left Manila at 5:40AM. After 3 hrs and 25 minutes our plane landed at the Terminal 2 of Singapore Changi International Airport. The airport in itself is something every tourist should experience since it is one of the busiest hubs in Asia – not to mention the numerous perks for passengers like free movies while waiting for your flight. It is has a mini garden in the middle, shops, money changers and restaurants.

Changi International Airport

Changi International Airport

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Crossing Borders

I’ve been meaning to finish this post while my memory is still fresh – considering that it has been three months since this happened. Good thing I found the time and inspiration to do so. So here it goes…

Going through the immigration is probably one of the most nerve-wracking parts of every trip I’ve experienced so far. I actually have no idea how it started. Maybe because of watching too much shows on NatGeo like To Catch A Smuggler and Locked Up Abroad. Those scenes where the airport guards or immigration officers will ask you to open your bags and scan all your things; when they will ask you to strip down to check for smuggled goods or just deport you because of lack of travel documents. I also read real stories from two of my favorite bloggers when they were accused as smugglers and were almost denied of entry to another country. I mean, everything is set and then all of a sudden the trip won’t push through just because of a trouble at the immigration, here or in another country.

My own share of immigration misfortunes:

On some of my trips, I was asked by the immigration officers at NAIA to show my company ID and return ticket. Melvin, on our last trip to Singapore was even asked to show our hotel booking. Different requirements asked by different immigration officers. Depende yata sa mood nila. Haha!

On my first visit to Malaysia (and was also the first time I experienced going through a foreign immigration), all Filipinos were called by the airport officer. She looked at all of us then called the OFWs – maybe to check special documents. I was so scared because they might take all of us to their office for interrogation. We sighed deeply after we were all cleared. After this experience, we went through the Malaysian Immigration swiftly.

Shiela and Melvin - Crossing Singapore and Malaysia

Shiela and Melvin – Crossing Singapore and Malaysia

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Backpacking Singapore and Malaysia Itinerary

Here’s my 5D4N Singapore (with 1 day Malaysia) Itinerary. I hope this helps!

EXPENSES:

Peso: PHP2,725.00

Singaporean Dollar: SGD384.30 = PHP12,835.62 (August Conversion Rate – SGD1:PHP33.40)

Total Expenses in Peso (excluding pasalubong/souvenirs): =PHP15,560.62

*Please note that we visited 2 Theme Parks (which are expensive) that’s why the budget was a little higher than the usual. đŸ˜€

5D4N Singapore Itinerary

5D4N Singapore Itinerary

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Universal Studios Singapore

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The Theme Park Addict

Contributor: Melvin Corales

Having been able to visit the Happiest Place on Earth last year, it is a no brainer to visit its rival theme park – The Universal Studios. Our trip to Singapore last August 15th-19th won’t be complete without paying a visit to this world class theme park.

Having the tagline “Ride the Movies”, Universal Studios will take you on a journey behind movie magic. Coming from a person working in a Broadcasting Company and very much familiar with all the “behind the scenes”, this is pretty awesome.

Singapore’s Universal Studios occupies 20 hectares, 8 hectares smaller than that of Hong Kong Disneyland. Universal Studios has seven themed lands – Hollywood, New York, Sci-Fi City, Ancient Egypt, The Lost World, Far Far Away, and Madagascar.

At the Gate

At the Gate

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Day 4: Marina Bay Sands and Bugis Street

Backpacking Malaysia and Singapore

Day 1: Kuala Lumpur/Petronas Towers

Day 2: Batu Caves and KL Sentral

Day 3: Universal Studios Singapore and SG Flyer

Enjoying the serene MBS

Enjoying the serene MBS

My last day in Singapore was the one Ruby and I were so excited about. That was the day we visited the Harry Potter Exhibition at the ArtScience Museum. The exhibition was brought only to selected countries and they chose Singapore as the destination in Asia. Other cities that the exhibition visited were New York and Australia. To read more about my experience at the exhibition, kindly visit my separate review.

Okay, so back to my story. We woke up late on our last day in SG since we were so tired from all the walking the other day. We shared the usual breakfast served at River CIty Inn. During our stay at River City, we paid 26SGD per person/night at the mixed dorm room. The rooms were very clean. I really liked the bathroom and the pleasant ambiance of the common area. We also rented lockers to store our valuables but everything else, we left in our beds. The tourists were nice and most of them return late at night. Aside from renting lockers, you can also rent towels. They also sell some beverage and noodles if you are so tired to go out. River City Inn is located at 33C Hong Kong Street Singapore 059672.

We asked one of the staff if we can leave our things after our check out time because we still plan to visit more places. The lady was kind enough to assist us with our bags. We told her that we will get our bags in the afternoon.

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River City Inn’s signage

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Day 3: Universal Studios Singapore and SG Flyer

Backpacking Malaysia and Singapore

Day 1: Kuala Lumpur/Petronas Towers

Day 2: Batu Caves and KL Sentral

July 29, 2012

Universal Studios Singapore

Universal Studios Singapore

Day 3 of our Backpacking Malaysia and Singapore.

Our flight left Malaysia LCCT Terminal at 9:30PM and arrived at Singapore Changi Airport at 10:30PM. I was really excited to see Changi since it is one of the best international airports – one of the reasons why it is one of the main hubs in Asia.

After collecting our bags, we followed the crowd going to the immigration counter. Upon entering the airport, it already boasted its extravagance with the walkalator and carpeted floors. We were able so see a lot of shops. It was well lighted and the ambiance was relaxing.

When we reached the immigration counter, the officer asked for my immigration card. And I was like, what’s that? @_@ lagot na! Then the officer instructed me to return to the hallway and fill out the immigration cards there. Ayun naman pala eh. I saw the FA of Airasia handling a card to some passengers, I thought those were only for Singaporeans or with special requests. I did not experience that in Malaysia so I was completely unaware when we entered SG. Lesson learned. Good thing there were free fox candies at the counter. Pampalubag loob. Chos!

Singapore Arrival via Changi Terminal 1

Singapore Arrival via Changi Terminal 1

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