Anna Lisa Stone is completing her BUCKiTLIST #Dreamchallenge, and here is her narrative accompanied by images of her trip to Singapore. Singapore is the world’s only island city-state that lies one degree north of the equator, and is at the southernmost tip of continental Asia and peninsular Malaysia.
STEP BACK TO THE FUTURE: VISIT SINGAPORE
If you want to know what the future feels like, you don’t have to fork out for a ticket to the moon. Just book a flight to Singapore. Singapore really does feel like a city from centuries to come. The entire country (less than 300mi²) seems to be welded out of concrete, metal and glass. It’s a clean and cultivated kind of beauty. From the sky deck of Marina Bay Sands resort – a gargantuan silver ship supported by three 55 story hotel towers – you’ll see rivulet roads run through forests of skyscrapers by day, and by night hundred of boats glow on the black sea like fireflies.
But lift the polished pyrex lid on this city and you’ll find the sticky residue of history that no chewing-gum-blasting apparatus can erase. For a true Singaporean flavour, you need to taste both sides. Here are some suggestions for Eating, Drinking and Nature in the “new” and “old” Singapore with the big fat disclaimer that two halves make a whole (lotta awesome).
1. Gordon Ramsay’s Bread Street Kitchen, Marina Bay Sands”
New- Gordon Ramsay’s Singapore hub offers pub classics served with an inimitably tasty twist: slow roast pork belly, charcoal blackened cod and finish of with a smorgasbord of terrific and horrifically calorific desserts including indecently delicious sticky toffee pudding with clotted cream.
2. Tiong Baruh Hawker
Old- At the top of an nondescript escalator on a rather worn corner of the Singapore’s hipster neighbourhood Tiong Baruh, is culinary wonderland. Welcome to one of Singapore’s famous “hawkers” – giant food falls, lined with cooked-food booths, neon signs, and juice containers, like many food trucks built into the walls. At Tiong Baruh you’ll find more than 80 cooked food stands and eat local delicacies off paper plates on plastic tables. Classics include Hui Ji Fish Ball Noodle at the Yong Tau Fu stall, or the Koh Brother’s Pig’s Organ Soup. Wash it down with a cup of fresh, iced watermelon, juiced before your eyes. Better still, you can pick up a roasted chicken head to go.
3. Flight Bar, Marina Bay Sands
New- If sipping a cocktail over the Singapore city skyline at sunset isn’t on your bucket list already then it should be. And there’s no better place to do it than the Flight Bar on the 57th floor of Marina Bay Sands. Enjoy the sexy and sophisticated open air bar offering unbeatable views of the glittering city while Flight’s friendly bar staff mix you creative twists on classics; the famous (but syrupy) Singapore Sling will transforming into a tongue-tingling elixir at their hands.
4. Parkview Square, Downtown Core
Old- Get ready to step back in time…. To the roaring 20s to be exact. The ParkView Square is kitted out in stunning 1920s Art Deco decor, from two free-standing bass-plated bars to an eye-bendlingly intricate ceiling. Now housing a clutch of exotic embassies, the ground floor bar is still open to the public. Try and make it on Tuesday night when live jazz plays from an indoor veranda above the bar. Our barmaid, Cha-Cha, moonlights as the Wine Fairy. If you order a bottle of wine that’s expensive enough she flies up on a harness from the well stocked shelves that go up to dizzying heights.
5. Cloud Forest, Gardens By The Bay
New- The “Supertree Gove” at the entrance of the Gardens by the Bay sets the tone for this incredible 250 acre nature park. The gigantic tree-shape structures (actually vertical gardens) embody Singapore’s futuristic re-imaging of the natural world. Any plant you can think of seems to have its home in this botanical paradise. Walk among the fountains and grounds for free, or pay a fee to enter one of the giant glass domes. The “Cloud Forest” is a leafy labyrinth of elevated mesh walkways, weaving in and out of a 138ft cascading waterfall. Climb (or take the elevator) to top of this transparent dome for 360degree treetop views, not only of the plant-life below but also of the surrounding city.
6. Pulau Ubin
Old- If you’re looking for uncultivated plant life, you actually have to leave Singapore proper. Pulau Ubin is a tiny island is only 10 minutes chuggity boat ride away from the city. Its ramshackle houses, scattered among the dense rainforest, are home to only about 100 villagers today. Rent one of the thousand bicycles offered at the dock and explore the island on two wheels, whizzing past the great sugar cane plains and the mangrove swamps. It’s a fully immersive experience, complete with wild boar, lizards and a cacophony of unseen beasties in the canopy above. Prepare to get your sweat on.
7. Infinity pool, Marina Bay Sands
Add Singapore to your bucket list today by downloading the BUCKiTDREAM app on iOS or Android from .
You can follow more of Anna Lisa’s #Dreamchallenge on the BUCKiTDREAM TV youtube page and by following her on the Dream app @ALS