Thursday 23 November was our last day at sea on the way to Singapore where we would disembark the ship and enjoy a few days in the city before returning home. We had a leisurely breakfast in our suite supplied by the butler then completed the laundry / packing and lounged around by the pool. We had a late lunch at the Grill then enjoyed the sights as we pulled into Singapore right next to Sentosa Island and under the cable car. There was a lot of ships and again, another very tight manoeuvre into the slip, but it was all done perfectly. Great job!
In the afternoon we had a snooze before getting ready to go ashore for our final excursion. We had to clear immigration first so went quite early to meet our group. We were then taken into the City and did a short river cruise – was lovely to see it all lit up.
After the river cruise we headed back on the coach to the Gardens by the Bay where we were wowed by the music and light show amidst their Supertrees – was absolutely fantastic! Leaving the magical trees behind we headed to the Fullerton Hotel for a Singapore Sling and then taken back to the ship. All the while we were in the coach we were treated to a cultural chat so that was very interesting too to find out how this island nation works.
Back on the ship we found that Christmas had arrived – the staff had obviously been very busy in our absence. We enjoyed a Thanksgiving Buffet dinner in the main restaurant before retiring to the bar to catch up with friends as we would be saying sad farewells to them in the morning.
Back in the cabin with finalised our packing and put our cases out to be collected with the supplied labels – all in different colours – had a final drink on our balcony and retired for the night.
Friday morning we were up very early and headed to the main restaurant for breakfast. All the time we were waiting to be called to disembark – our tags were light blue – and then around 9.00 am it was our turn. We headed off the ship saying goodbye to the staff who had looked after us so well during our time onboard, collected our bags, cleared customs and immigration and got picked up in a very nice Mercedes. We arrived at the hotel and were completely blown away by it – the Parkroyal Collection, Marina Bay. OMG it was just stunning. For those of you that don’t know Singapore is known as the Garden City and, when this hotel had been renovated, they had decided to bring the outside in. It had to be seen to be believed!
We checked in – got an upgrade, an early check in and a late check-out, and went to our room to explore. Very nice it was too with spectacular views over the water.
We then decided to go and explore – not wanting to waste a moment of our time – so walked to the National Museum enjoying being in the sun, although the humidity made the stroll more of a trek LOL. We were lucky that there was going to be an English-speaking tour of the Museum within 10 minutes of our arrival so we waited for that and enjoyed being shown around. This took almost an hour and was very informative.
After the tour we walked to the tube station and picked up our travel cards which you can easily top up in machines at every station. Got a map and worked out how to return to the hotel which happened to be linked to the Marina Mall. In the mall we were tempted by the street food on offer so had a late lunch, and delicious it was too.
Quite tired now we headed back to our room and had a snooze before luxuriating in the fabulous shower and then got ready to go out again. This time we headed over to the Bay Sands area and wandered the crazy mall first – lots of Christmas trees and high-end shops – clearly where the Crazy Rich Asians go to shop LOL. Anyway we wandered down to see Spectra, the light and water show, and thoroughly enjoyed it. Amazing! After the light show we headed off on the tube again to China town and had some dinner before returning to the hotel for a last glass of wine before retiring for the night.
Saturday morning we walked to the Singapore Flyer and purchased tickets. We were then shown into our own pod – totally unexpected – and enjoyed the sights and sounds of the area. And of course we had to get a silly souvenir photo.
Afterwards we walked along the waterfront to Raffles and queued to get into the Long Bar. This had been renovated and wasn’t quite as authentic as before especially with the music being played – who goes to a 1900s colonial bar to listen to Guns and Roses?!? Anyway we enjoyed our Singapore slings and the peanuts were great. There is something very decadent about just dropping all the casings on the table / floor LOL.
After Raffles we walked to Clarke’s Quay and, of course, it started raining, hard! So we popped into an Indian restaurant and sat on the waterfront enjoying a very early supper of curry and Tiger Beers. Very nice it was too. After our time in the Quay, and in a break from the rain, we headed to the nearest tube station and headed back to the mall. We picked up a couple of bottles of wine and returned to our hotel and room where we watched the light show again over the Bay before settling down to a quiet night in with movies and wine.
Sunday morning after a nice hotel breakfast, we got a tube to Chinatown to explore more thoroughly, before then heading onwards to Little India. We enjoyed the sights and sounds very much but again got a bit defeated by the humidity. We then returned to the hotel by tube and spent a few hours by the pool and enjoyed just relaxing inbetween rain showers.
In the evening we headed out again and went to the Marina Bay Sands area – last time we were in Singapore we found a fabulous champagne bar on the top with great views. But, of course, the weather didn’t want to play ball so we just ended up in a top level bar and Richard braved the elements for the required photo!
Afterwards we headed to Satay Street for dinner – but, this time, satay didn’t appeal in the rain so we ate in the attached food hall and had an Indian Thali dinner. Looked great but sadly wasn’t that good…..oh well, never mind.
After dinner we returned to the hotel, had a drink in the lovely bar, and then returned to relax in our room once again before bed.
Monday morning was our last day so we spent the time by the pool relaxing and then returned to the room to finish packing up. We checked out at 3pm then relaxed in the hotel before being picked up to go to the airport for our late evening flight home to London. We had thought we’d return to the Mall for more street food but were completely blown away by the robot deliveries of food so decided to stay put and had our lunch delivered. Such fun!
Later on we headed down to collect our bags from the concierge and waited for our car – the time came and went and no-one was seen. Hmmmm….not what you need….so I decided to go outside and check on a couple of vehicles that were parked up. And, yes, you’ve guessed it, one of them was our transport. Don’t know whey he didn’t let us know he was there but never mind we arrived at the airport in good time. Checking in was a breeze as we had done it on line in advance, bags were deposited, and we took ourselves off to sit and relax in Changi Airport before boarding the plane.
The Singapore Airlines plane turned up promptly, we got a notification that our bags were loaded on (how good is that!), and we boarded. We had lovely seats and great service. What a way to end the most fantastic adventure. Hope you have enoyed travelling along with us.
Our next adventure is to South Africa and Zimbabwe so will blog again after that. So all there is left to say is Happy New Year to you all. Hope it is full of good health, happiness and love. Take care.
Bye for now, Jan