Closer to home
Trip Start Aug 15, 2006
159Trip End May 27, 2008
Map your own trip!
Show trip route
Where I stayed
I got to my hostel (Sleepy Sams) and was a bit disappointed. Firstly the staff didn't seem too friendly and there wasn't much in the way of a communal area and I didn't find any of the guests there too willing to talk - mostly couples who want to be on their own I think. Spent my first day there wandering around Little India and checking out other hostels I could move to. Had a nice cheap curry at a local side street cafe and didn't do much else. I'd contacted a local couchsurfer in the city and he couldn't give me a place to stay but invited me to meet him and some fellow couchsurfers in a bar that evening so off I headed to the Blue Jazz cafe where I met Thib who is French but has been living and working here a while, his friend Sacha, from the Philipines but now working here, and 4 girls from Kuala Lumpar on a quick trip to Singapore
The next couple of days were spent trying to find another hostel - my dorm was really nice and I had such a great sleep but the breakfast was only toast and a tiny piece of fruit and I would end up paying for more food in town after as I was still hungry! I checked out the main shopping street of Orchard Rd which was mainly very expensive malls with western shops that I couldn't afford but I did find a nice ice-cream place and bakery so I was doing very well with food.
I ended up booking into Hang Out hostel which was sligjhtly more but a lot nicer and a huge buffet breakfast however the day before I was checking out of Sleepy Sams I finally met some friendly people! A PhD student from Bejiing (Simon) and a german guy (Matthias) and we arranged to go to the night safari at the Singapore zoo. To be honest it was a bit lame, quite family orientated and not that exciting but it was nice to see some wildlife.
The next day we planned to go to the Jurong bird park since Simon had some free tickets but we were late leaving as he invited a girl in the hostel who'd only just arrived (Helen) and then I had to move into my new place
That night I met up with the couchsurfer Sacha again. It was her friend's birthday and I met them and a huge group of very friendly people in this really nice bar in the city. Thib was also there and I had such a great night even though I could only afford one cocktail! The music was good, the atmosphere in the bar is nice and they give you free peanuts and encourage you to throw the shells on the floor - littering in Singapore is a serious offence so the locals love this place! I also got chatting to Thib's housemate who's off to live in York for a while so I gave her lots of info on the Yorkshire dales! Around 4am it was time to leave and the birthday boy wanted us to all go with him to a club but myself, Thib, Sacha and his housemate decided to head off to the local 24 hour foot massage place (?). It was a bit pricey so I was just going to wait for the others but Thib was kind enough to offer to treat me - it was very relaxing and I almost fell aslepp, although it was nearly 5am. This was followed by a quick bite to eat at a Roti Prata place (bread pancake type thing served with a bowl of curry sauce) and I was told it was 'THE' roti place to go in the city - bargain at around 2 bucks! I crept back into my dorm and my roommates must have assumed I'd been out getting sloshed and partying hard but actually it had just been a really fun night with lots of dancing!
In my new hostel i met two great guys to spend my next few days with - Matt from Peterborough (who actually knows one of my brother's best mates!) and Jack from the gold coast, Australia
Unfortunately it was raining all day so on our 12km circuit of the reservior we didn't see much more than a turtle so we headed back into the city and I took the guys to the nice bar I'd been to with the couchsurfers at the weekend. On the way back we popped into the local 7eleven as myself and Jack were tempted by the pick and mix - luck was on our side as the shop assistant only charged us 20 cents each for something which should have been $2 so that was my best bargain in Singapore and we ran out of the shop giggling like children!
The following day we all decided to try and see some wildlife at the Sungei wetlands reserve and fortunately the weather had somewhat improved and we were lucky enough to see a purple heron, whte collared kingfisher and huge monitor lizards and mudskippers. Whilst waiting for the bus back to town I almost cried with laughter at the sight of a dog racing down the main road barking, chasing a truck full of barking dogs - weird sight and very amusing
My last day in Singapore was spent at the day zoo which was great - so many amazing animals and different species of monkeys. The only issue I had was that a chimpanzee got really angry at me for taking a photo for some reason; he jumped up and down, ran over to the edge of his island, shouted and threw a rock at me! Luckily it missed but I felt a bit sorry for him being stuck there. In my dorm I met a kiwi girl called Kate who's currently living in Phuket, Thailand and training as an underwater videographer. We got on very well, chatted for hours and swapped e-mail addresses and if I head that way she's offered me a bed for a few nights!
This morning I'm catching a bus across the border into Malaysia at 6am as I've been warned it is a muslim public holiday and it may take hours to clear customs and I risk missing my flight-just hope I make it!.