Travelogue: Shiok in Singapore

By Emma Douma and Rosalie Fidder

Singapore isn’t just a great holiday destination, but also a fantastic place for an exchange. For this first travelogue, we interviewed Singaporean Pranav Sethaputra, who shared some of his perspectives on the Asian city-state with the Boomerang.

Singapore is well-known for being clean, safe and sterile – though this image might be a bit exaggerated. The island is a mishmash of Asian and western influences, which are visible in the blend of languages that the Singaporeans speak.

According to Pranav, Singaporeans, much like the Dutch, have a very direct approach in conversations. “If you compliment someone on their shirt, they always give an answer like ‘Thanks, it was only five euros!’ People always need a specific reason.”

DO:
– Visit the renowned tourist attractions: Universal Studios at the island Sentosa; the Underwater World; and the world’s most expensive casino at Marina Bay resort.
– Go to the bird park. As Pranav explains: “You get a bowl of honey with some food in it, and then the birds sit on your head and shoulders. You actually feed them out of your cup – it’s wonderful.”
– Explore other districts, such as China Town, Little India and Arab Street (great for shopping!). Singapore’s multicultural atmosphere makes walking through its diverse cultural hotspots a great experience.
– For the shopaholics, there is a huge Louis Vuitton store.

– Eat. A lot. Singapore is a culinary paradise. Roti Prata (delicious Indian pancakes) and noodles, which taste better in Asia than on any other continent, are just two of the many delights that can be found in Singapore.

– If you have some money to spend, stay at the Marina Bay hotel. The hotel consists of three towers, which are connected by swimming pools. At night it is an amazing experience to go into one of the swimming pools and look out upon the Singaporean skyline.
– Party! Clark Quay is the party district in Singapore. Its fancy restaurants and bars will ensure an unforgettable experience for visitors.

DON’T:
– Smoke. It’s difficult and expensive to smoke in Singapore. Aside from the yellow boxes, the entire island is basically a non-smoking area.

– Chew gum. You can’t buy gum anywhere in Singapore. This is because people would stick their eaten gum into train doors, which after a while would no longer open.
– Bring drugs (or any kind of decorative bullets and other weapons into the country).

– Eat durian (a fruit with a very particular flavor) in a train, because of its very strong smell. Also, while on the subject of trains: don’t go looking for a dustbin – there are none in the stations and trains, because it’s feared that people will put bombs in them.

 

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