In January, I took a solo trip to Singapore, including a random hop up to Malaysia, with the purpose of a little me-time and for planning this new chapter of my life as a freelancer. It seems like a distant memory now. But it honestly took me a while to relieve myself of the travel hangover when I returned to Manila. It wasn’t my first time in Singapore (I had the awesome experience of studying at NUS for a semester back in 2011!) but it was one of those trips that open your eyes to the beauty and vastness of the world – through others too! I was grateful with how God orchestrated every single detail, especially the people He made me encounter along the way. The timing was too perfect.
I also had an amazing time at Laneway. I was looking forward to Angus and Julia Stone and they didn’t disappoint. Dea and I sipped our iced coffees and conversed as the duo performed in the background. Other favorite acts were Jungle, which started a major dancing session at dusk, and Chet Faker, who drew an overflowing crowd to the smaller stage. All I had at the time was my iPhone and Instax camera. I wish I had brought a dslr for proper photos, but these will have to do! (See my list of fav places below)
- Working Title – Definitely my favorite with its rustic laidback vibe; 48 Arab Street (Nearest MRT: Bugis)
- Artistry Café – Hard to miss with its exteriors; 17 Jalan Pinang (Nearest MRT: Bugis)
- Hyde and Co. – Beautiful interiors and friendly staff. Come here for a cup of English tea and crumpets; 785 North Bridge Road (Nearest MRT: Bugis)
- The Monocle Café – The little Monocle shop and cafe literally hidden and tucked in a quiet neighborhood; 74 Jalan Kelabu
- Cat Cafe Neko no Niwa – The first of four cat cafes in Singapore. Miley is the fluffy friendly cat that loves to be brushed. Cuddle charge is S$12 per person for the first hour. Then S$5 for every 30 minutes after; 54A Boat Quay (Nearest MRT: Clarke Quay)
- The common hawkers – The first thing I did after checking in Shophouse was find the nearest hawker place for my chicken rice and milk tea fix! I luckily found one near the Bugis MRT station before the stalls began to close. This was really just my choice for all meals the next few days after craving for so long.
- Plain Vanilla Bakery – 1D Yong Siak Street (Nearest MRT: Tiong Bahru)
- 40 Hands Coffee – 78 Yong Siak Street ((Nearest MRT: Tiong Bahru)
- Shophouse: The Social Hostel – I’ve discovered the beauty of hostels. It’s easy on the wallet and you’re always bound to meet friendly fellow travelers. I stayed here for 4 nights in a 12-person shared room called “The Loft” with industrial decor, brick walls, Edison lights, and Batman posters. Every night was different because of new roommates flowing in and out. It was home (especially with Working Title cafe downstairs); S$22-30 a night. 48 Arab Street (Nearest MRT station: Bugis)
- Singapore Art Museum – Dea and I went here during the APB Foundation Signature Art Prize exhibit featuring contemporary art installations from all over Asia. There were different mediums and subjects, from films to faux books. Especially loved the SAM building itself. The entrance fee is S$10 for an adult; 71 Bras Basah Road (Nearest MRT: Bras Basah)
- Yong Siak Street and the surrounding ones near Seng Poh Road – (Nearest MRT: Tiong Bahru)
- Haji Lane – Most of the shops are open from only 2pm-9pm. (Nearest MRT: Bugis)
- Ann Siang Hill – more boutiques
- East Coast Park – rent rollerblades and bikes along the coast
- Books Actually – I spent a good two hours in this fine independent bookstore and left with two locally published poetry books, a hand-stitched notebook, and a vintage map. They have an intellectual cat too that roams and naps on stacks of books; 9 Yong Siak Street (Nearest MRT: Tiong Bahru)
- Bloesem – 59 Eng Hoon Street (Nearest MRT: Tiong Bahru)
- Mondays Off – 76 Haji Lane (Nearest MRT: Bugis)
- Let the MRT be your primary mode of transportation and purchase an EZ-Link card for the MRT instead of lining up for tickets every time.
- I always use this site/app called gothere.sg which gives not only the directions from one place to another, but also the exact time that the bus or train you need to hop on to will arrive.
- Explore the less touristy places. Walk, walk, walk! 🙂