Finding my Freedom...

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Singapore: The Essence of Today's New Asia

The muti-cultural and sophisticated city-state of Singapore, officially called “Republic of Singapore,” lies in the South-Eastern of the Philippines. It has a total land area of 660 sq km. Most of its citizens are known to be living at their public housing under the Housing and Development Board (HDB). Majority numbers of the population are English speaking, aside from other local language such as Malay, Mandarin and Hinduism.
Over the years, this city-state has grown into a center of industry and commerce. Singapore is my first outside the country travel. I was surprised to discover that Singapore is not just one island. The mainland is surrounded with about 60 islets.

Getting There
Basically, you arrived via airplane and will land at their only airpot Changi Airport. With the new card “EZ-Link that are available at any Transitlink Ticket office, you can travel on all trains and buses in Singapore. So before hopping in the train or bus, get this card first. After securing one card for yourself, you can then either take a bus, or a train. I highly recommend train because its cheaper. Its the most affordable and convenient way of traveling in Singapore. When you ran out of credits all you have to do is go to the nearest top-up station to buy or fill in more credits. How to use this card? Better be observant, but its easy. All you have to do is tap it at the gate. Then you can pass once the way is open. The same when you go out from the station once you arrived in your destination. Warning! Do not seat on the seats provided for the elderly and handicapped. Do not hand-carry a drink or a food and munch it inside the station or inside the train. You will definitely get a punishment.

No other Asian country that is safer, reliable and convenient transport system than Singapore. Their transportation system is considered to be well established. With integrated fare, information and networks of their Singapore Mass Rapid Transport (SMRT) and their buses that makes everyone easy to travel.

Housing and Accommodations
When I visit Singapore for an educational tour back in July 2011, we stayed at a very low cost accommodation. Being a develop country, it is expected that the standard of living will go up in parallel. Though, hotels in this country is expensive, there are still low cost and budget dorms type accommodation that you can find as long as you are an intelligent traveler. During our visit we stayed at Urban Hostel Backpacker. However, if you can afford such luxurious hotel, why not! After all a vacation is really worth the spent!

During my visit, I had this chance of meeting my long time and best friend working in Singapore. My group that I travel along with went home one day and night ahead of me. I had this chance of staying in my friend’s place. One friend told me that housing in Singapore is pretty much different from the Philippines.


During our stay in Singapore, we ventured and walked a lot, but food is not a problem when you get hungry. There are lots of local restaurant who are more willing to serve you. If you don’t like the local food, there are also popular fast food chains across the country like Jollibee, McDonals and etc.

Since, it was my first step in Singapore. I made sure that I shall have the taste of their flavor. The next morning we hurried to the local restaurant and had a chance to discover what great food they have. “Lo mai kai” is a local recipe which I deliberately like after tasting it. There are still several Singaporean cuisines that I am sure you will surely love. How about drinks? Well, they got a lot of drinks which are fruit flavored. I was kind of interested to try Singaporean Sling. It’s a cocktail drink which is developed through the long years of history before the year 1915. Someone told me it’s really worth the try. It’s sad that I was with a group of students…No alcoholic drink is allowed throughout the travel. Its recipe includes a gin, benedictine, fresh pine apple juice and cherry heering. Next visit I will plunge myself with this drink!
Traveling in Singapore is very easy, of course it is made easy because of their healthy economy, developed infrastructure, strict and well implemented laws. Its just sad to know that many of their citizens are lonely. More and more of their citizens got bored that eventually commit suicide. It is in this fact that I was caught into thinking. Happiness can never be guaranteed and fostered by development. It is subjective in the sense that. One can never tell what makes a person happy. This will make us realized that the happiness of one person is always relative. Anyone can be happy with a small amount of money despite lacking the luxury of life. Money is not a guarantee for happiness, perfect and harmonious life.


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