I stayed in Singapore for a few days on either end of my trip to Indonesia. I arrived early (and I mean early) Sunday morning. Fortunately, a great friend of mine, Fernn, lives in Singapore and her wonderful family was so accommodating and helpful to Katie & I. They picked us up in the airport and gave us the guest room, where we crashed after a long day and a half of travelling from our homes in Japan.
Fernn & her sister took us around Singapore to show us all the sights, and of course, the famous MERLIONS. The things that surprised me most were about the city-state were:
1. Singapore’s architecture. The city has a beautiful cityscape. Each building seems to be specifically designed with beauty in mind. Plus, there are merlions. Enough said.
Merlions take vacations too dontcha know…
2. Another thing that surprised me (I knew very little about Singapore before my arrival) was that Singapore has no natural fresh water supply, so it has to have a well functioning dam and rain water reservoir.
3. Singapore has two types of housing, if I understood correctly: private vs subsidized. In order to qualify for subsidized housing (and private housing is very expensive), you must meet certain requirements such as: be married (Singapore has the lowest total fertility rate in the world), or be within a certain age range, or with a certain income. Subsidized buildings also fulfill a specific racial mixture. Which leads me to my next point…
4. Singapore has such a diverse population! Perhaps it was partly because I was coming from Japan, where foreigners are so obvious, but in Singapore, no one is an outcast. The foreign population is huge and despite being small in area, and with a population of 5.1 million, Singapore has 4 official languages. Forty percent of Singapore’s residents were foreigners, as of 2009. No matter who you are, you fit in in Singapore.
Singapore is grand!
Definitely a place I would like to return to, and worth a visit if you’ve never gone! Especially with its cheap airlines to other places around Asia and Australia, Singapore should be next on your list of places to visit! Be sure to check out all my Singapore photos here!
Stories from Indonesia coming up next. Stay tuned,