Thailand & Vietnam Voyage
Thursday November 21 to Monday November 25, 2013

Lion City

We left Toronto on November 19 to fly the long trip to Singapore via Hong Kong on Cathay Pacific. On the leg from Toronto to Hong Kong we were very pleased that we had chosen to fly premium economy - from the look of things once on the plane it would have been an uncomfortable flight in the regular economy section. It was definitely worth the upgrade. It was an early morning layover in Hong Kong and we arrived in Singapore around midday to begin a few days in this wonderful city before the cruise started.

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  • Thursday November 21, 2013

    Arrival in Singapore and first walking tour of Marina Bay area

    We booked our stay at the Fairmont Singapore and opted for one of the Executive Club rooms to get a high room with a view and access to the lounge. We were placed on the 24th floor and there was a nice view from the balcony, but with the orientation of the room, from inside we mostly saw the ongoing construction of two large towers being built to the south-east of the Fairmont Singapore. That was a bit unfortunate, but the room and hotel was nice.

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      Once we got settled in at the hotel we had about half of the day to spend in the city, so we made our way towards the Marina Bay area.

      Our first real stop was checking out the Formula One track and pit lane (one of those things Gary MUST do if we go to a Grand Prix city). After that we decided to take a ride on Singapore Flyer to get a nice view of the city in the late afternoon. It gave us a nice perspective on Singapore. We were still a bit tired from the travel, so we didn’t plan on venturing too far or doing too much this day. We settled on a nice restaurant in the Esplanade and had a nice dinner to conclude our evening. As always happens, as soon as we started to relax the tiredness of the long trip really began to set in, so after dinner we took a stroll along the bay then made our way back to our hotel - talking through our plans for the next day - which would be our first full day in Singapore.

  • Friday November 22, 2013

    First full day in Singapore

    Our second day started with a very nice breakfast in the Executive Club lounge, which was just one floor below our room. We found the staff to be very attentive, and the Executive Club lounge was probably the best we’ve sampled so far at any Fairmont Hotel.

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      We had picked up some brochures for boat tours in Singapore and had settled on the one we thought looked best for a scenic cruise around Marina Bay and then a portion of the Singapore River, so after breakfast we went back down to Marina bay to the spot where we’d be able to catch that tour. It wasn’t a busy time, so we nearly had the boat to ourselves. The tour was pleasant enough and gave us a different perspective of the area. When the tour concluded we continued with our own our own walking tour along the Singapore River and a bit of the history of the development of the city from Trading post for the East India Company to the commercial hub it is today. We also got to scope out prospective places to eat and made plans to come back to this are in the evening for dinner. We concluded the evening back at Marina Bay to watch Wonder Full - the multimedia laser light show set to music that runs nightly in Singapore.

  • Saturday November 23, 2013

    Gardens by the Bay and Marina Bay Sands

    Our focus for day three was Gardens by the Bay - including tours of the Cloud Forest and Flower Dome.

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      To get to Gardens by the Bay, our route took us through Marina Bay Sands - so we checked out some of the high end shopping there and also made the 57 level elevator trip up to the open Sky Park observation deck at the top of Marina Bay Sands for the view. We could have planned that a bit better - we were high up and outside on the observation deck at midday in Singapore during November - with its oppressive heat and sunlight. It was a great view, but very uncomfortable. It was almost as if there was no breathable air to be found. In hindsight it would have been much better for us to have gone up to the observation deck later in the day. Lesson learned.

  • Sunday November 24, 2013

    Chinatown and Little India

    Day four took us to Chinatown and Little India for two very different sides of Singapore via a hop-on hop-off bus that turned out to be an effective way for us to get around Singapore.

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      We also got to see some of the high end shops as we toured around the city. Our touring started with Chinatown in the morning and made our way to Little India by early afternoon. Heavy rain in the afternoon put a slight damper on outside touring, which wasn’t too bad at this point in our time in Singapore. We made our way back to the hotel and ended up choosing to the restaurant in the hotel for dinner. It turned out that a number of restaurants in Singapore are closed on Sundays - including some that interested us.

  • Monday November 25, 2013

    Last morning in Singapore and heading to Azamara Journey

    We took things easy to start day five - a leisurely breakfast time in the Executive Club lounge before packing up ready to head to the cruise ship terminal to board Azamara Journey for our cruise that would leave later that day.

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      The cruise terminal wasn’t too far away, but wasn’t the closest terminal to where we were staying. It was located near Sentosa - a popular Singapore resort island. The cruise terminal was large and busy and operated more like an airport with a dose of bus terminal than other cruise terminals we had embarked on our previous cruises. With that, it was a less personal welcome than we were accustomed to receive - until, of course, we made to the ship. At that point all was good.

Singapore Image Gallery

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About WHITEonline

WHITEonline is the digital home of Gary & Linda White. We’ve been married since 1980 and live just outside Toronto in Ontario, Canada. Linda was born and raised in Toronto while Gary was born in London, England and moved to Canada at the age of 11. We enjoy travelling and taking photos while we travel. WHITEonline provides the opportunity to share some of our photos & experiences.

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