I bang about how much I love Singapore on such a frequent occasion that Ewan, my boyfriend, decided he wanted to visit for his 30th birthday trip. We also decided to tag Kuala Lumpur and Bangkok on to the holiday to make it extra special/to tick off as many countries visited as possible. (I have recently downloaded an app called Hello World and am a bit obsessed with it).
The week leading up to our flight to Singapore saw ‘the beast from the east’ hit the UK, cause havoc and subsequently SO many flights were cancelled. Honestly, until our flight actually lifted off the ground, I wasn’t sure if we were going to get to go!
Thankfully though, all worked out fine and the flight itself was a dream.. or as much of a dream as a 13 hour economy flight can be. Hot towels, freshly made Singapore Sling Cocktails, fantastic gluten free food and the hilarious movie Happy Death Day made the time fly by.
We landed at Singapore Changi airport at 7pm, took the super cheap MRT into town and after a scenic walk along Boat Quay, checked in to our hotel and went to bed.
The morning after, I felt fresh and ready to go out exploring. Ewan, however, had barely slept due to jet lag and was a grumpy bastard. Regardless, he still got up, dressed and we ventured out to find breakfast. Let me start by saying that finding gluten free breakfast in Singapore is an ABSOLUTE BALL-ACHE because Singaporeans either like to eat toast with random toppings (one place was selling toast with a butter and sugar mixture spread on top, advertised as ‘butter with a crunch’) or soy sauce covered noodle dishes. I ended up having a fried egg, a ‘fish ball’ and a super sweet iced coffee. Weird… but I actually kind of enjoyed it.
We headed to check out the Merlion and get some gorgeous views of Marina Bay Sands before walking around the harbour to explore Gardens by the Bay. These Gardens are like none other; lush greenery mixed with enormous sculptures of all different shapes and colours, huge futuristic ‘trees’ and a sky-walk that connects them all together. To top it all off, Cloud Gate in the Gardens is home to the worlds largest indoor waterfall. Gorge.
We took a break from the heat and stopped off at a cafe inside the gardens for a drink. I was seduced by a photo of a bright pink drink on the menu and ordered it without a second thought. This was a mistake. It turns out I had ordered a concoction of whole milk, sugar and rose flavoured syrup. Grim grim grim. Looks nice in the picture though, doesn’t it?
Next stop was Chinatown and we had fun walking around all the stalls, checking out the gorgeous lantern lined streets and year of the dog decorations. It was a roasting 34 degrees so we headed into Chinatown Complex Food Centre for some lunch and air conditioning. There are an insane number of stalls in there selling all manner of delicious looking things, but eventually I went for the Carrot Cake as I knew it was gluten free. Carrot cake isn’t what you think… it’s a dish made out of rice flour and white radish mixed with eggs and garlic. They sell it in black or white varieties, but if you’re gluten free make sure to get the white version as the black one has soy sauce in it! It was really yummy and weirdly tasted like a seafood omelette even though it’s just veggies!
We headed back to the hotel for a swim, sunbathe and nap. The hotel pool was beautiful and it was crazy hot which was a nice change from the freezing temps back home!
Post-nap, with rumbling tummies, we wandered out to take in some more stunning views of Marina Bay and grab some dinner at my favourite Hawker Market in Singapore – Gluttons Bay. We feasted on a huge platter of chicken, mutton and beef satay and washed it down with tiger beer (Ewan) and iced tea (me). We wanted to get a chilli crab too but we were stuffed, so we have vowed to come back next week when we’re in Singapore again.
We watched the light show (every night at 8 and 9pm) at the Marina Bay Sands before going to Clarke Quay for a drink. Ewan had a sampler of beers, all of which he sadly described as average, and I of course went for a Singapore Sling.
We’re now in Kuala Lumpur for 3 nights before heading to Bangkok, then back to Singapore! Plus, just to add this in because I am a smug cow, and also to excuse the state of my hair/outfit/general appearance in all the photos, I am doing this entire 12 day trip with nothing but a 7kg hand luggage bag. So smug.