Sleep, Eat & Surf in Singapore

Sleep, Eat & Surf in Singapore

By |2016-07-21T23:57:06-04:00March 26th, 2011|Food, Singapore|53 Comments

When I visited Singapore recently, which was the third time that I had traveled to this small city-state over the years, something quite bizarre occurred. I actually enjoyed myself.

During my previous visits, I simply didn’t connect with Singapore at all. I found it to be expensive, culture-less and somewhat boring, three attributes that are not exactly friends of a budget adventure traveler. So when I discovered that I needed to spend a week in Singapore once again, I somewhat unenthusiastically began my search for accommodation.

Hostels in Singapore are pricey in comparison to other Southeast Asian countries as one can easily expect to pay $25 Singaporean Dollars for a dorm bed ($19 US) or around $80 S for a private room, which you can bet will not have a private bathroom and will be the size of a phone booth. I knew all of this ahead of time but instead of settling on some random hostel, I decided to broaden my search to include actual hotels in Singapore. And you can imagine my shock when my first search resulted in what appeared to be the perfect deal:

$80 S for a modern, private double room with private bathroom and free wi-fi

Hotel 81 SingaporeThe name of the hotel was Hotel 81, which appeared to be a somewhat new chain of budget traveler-friendly hotels. With over 20 locations in Singapore, the concept seemed to be taking off, however, the only location offering the $80/night deal happened to be on Dickson Road. Of course, I’m sure that most of you are not too familiar with Dickson Road either, just as I wasn’t familiar with it until I looked at a map and nearly burst into tears of joy upon discovering that it was located in the heart of Singapore’s popular, ideally-situated “Little India” district. (Remember, my addiction to all things India, both the good and the bad, is more intense than my need for oxygen.)

Anyway, (and I am in no way being sponsored to write about Hotel 81) this hotel turned out to be what I will so boldly declare as the best budget accommodation option for travelers visiting Singapore. Okay, it might be a bit expensive if you’re traveling on your own, but if you’re at least two people, you’ll only be paying slightly more than you would for a basic hostel. And when that tiny premium provides you with an ultra-comfortable, clean, well-appointed private room, I certainly would be more than happy to spend those few extra dollars, just as I did on this past visit.

So, that’s the sleeping part of my trip to Singapore.


Wandering around Singapore’s Little India is, as they say, a trip, as in a hallucinogenic journey into a magical land that could only exist in fantasy and never in reality. However, Little India does exist. Basically, it’s an exact replica of an Indian city except that the streets are spotless, the buildings well-built, the population density is about 1/100th the normal density and people actually wait for the little green person to start flashing before crossing the street. Too incredible to believe, I know, but I swear I’m not lying.

And if Indian food is your kind of thing, be warned that you may struggle to eat, not due to a lack of Indian restaurants but rather, an abundance of Indian eateries unlike anywhere else on the planet, including India. You’ll have your choice of South Indian food, such as dosas, uttapams and idlis, North Indian cuisine such as Punjabi curries, Gujarati thalis and tandoori chicken as well as Calcuttan kathi kebabs, Oriyan sweets, stuffed rotis and parathas, biryanis and samosas and pakoras. There are at least two hundred Indian restaurants crammed into Little India, making it nearly impossible to decide where to eat when you’re hungry.

On my first night in Singapore, I ended up roaming the streets of Little India for forty-five minutes before finally forcing myself to choose an eatery. I randomly ended up at Gokul Vegetarian Restaurant.

Gokul Restaurant Singapore

I’ll keep the description of my experience at Gokul’s rather short. In fact, I’ll only use one sentence to tell you how I felt about the vegetarian curries that this place served up. Here it is… “This restaurant was so good that I ended up eating here four of the six nights that I was in Singapore.

Enough said. If you’re in Singapore, and you like Indian food, eat here.

Okay, okay, I’ll tell you a little more. The preparation of the food, from the Navratan korma, to the Dal Makhani, Saag Paneer and Vegetable Jalfrezi resulted in flavors so intense and fresh that my reaction to every bite would have probably made for the perfect television commercial. The naan and rice, the mango lassis and masala chai, and the service as well were all flawless. One of the waiters even befriended me on my first visit, making sure I sat in his section on my subsequent visits while refusing to accept a tip at any time.

So that’s what you can expect at Gokul’s (located on Upper Dickson Road, no website). And the prices were reasonable as well, with samosas, two curries, rice, naan, lassis and chai for two people totaling $30 S ($23 US). And I wasn’t sponsored to write about this restaurant either. I just want to spread the word!


Well, this part may have been a bit misleading. I didn’t exactly surf, as in surf the waves, during my time in Singapore. But I did visit the Sands SkyPark, which sits on top of the three 200m towers that make up the Marina Bay Sands Hotel and resembles one massive surfboard in the sky.

And I must say that this building, and pardon the simple terminology here, is the coolest-looking building I have ever seen. Simple as that. From every angle and at any time of day or night, this structure is mighty impressive, as are the views from the observation deck and park at the top, where I spent a good two hours staring out over Singapore.

I’ll let the photos do the talking with this one…

Marina Sands Singapore

Marina Sands Singapore

Marina Sands Singapore

Marina Sands Singapore

Well, it took me three visits to Singapore to finally connect with this city. And connect I most certainly did, in a way that I never could have expected. On several occasions this time around, as I walked down the road, sat in a park or strolled along the canal, I even began thinking that “I could live here”. But for now, I’m content with just visiting, especially now that I’ve discovered a perfect trio of quality budget accommodation, divine Indian food and a spectacular surfboard in the sky.

Have you been to Singapore or considered visiting?

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  1. Adeline April 1, 2016 at 3:56 am - Reply


    chanced upon your blog as I wanted to find out more about Yemen and Kyrgyzstan. Fantastic read! My small country is indeed expensive, food’s great( you can find almost any cuisine here & gd quality too), everything in tip-top condition but it does have its another side, you just need to know which areas to explore. I suggest Chinatown, Joo Chiat, Katong areas for Peranakan culture, quite unique in this part of South East Asia & even our Bukit Brown cemetery where many of our founders/pioneers are buried. Our nearby islands are also worth exploring like Pulau Ubin and St John’s island. Sadly, the govt is trying to ‘scrape’ the cemetery to make way for public transport/land.Most of our people are friendly too!
    Pls pop by if you are visiting SouthEast Asia! :)))

  2. Rohaizad July 28, 2013 at 12:05 am - Reply

    If you can’t stand the heat, explore the city on foot very late in the night. I had an amazing time looking at my own city at night when my traveling friends come over. I was very happy that they find Singapore very interesting. Best time for night life in Singapore Wednesday to Sunday. 10P.M to 4 A.M. Mondays and Tuesdays are usually preety dead..LOL

  3. Heidi July 9, 2013 at 6:08 am - Reply

    I was perusing your entries about Mexico and stumbled on this post. I lived in Singapore from 2007-2010, and would like to affirm that it does indeed have culture and soul – it’s just behind a veneer which requires some persistence to scratch through. And I do have to agree: some of the best Indian food anywhere is in Singapore!

    As for living there, well it’s easier than many other places (including my current residence of Qatar). And if you’re bored Indonesia and Malaysia are just a hop away…

  4. […] a tip from Wandering Earl, we went to Gokul Vegetarian Restaurant in Little India (19 Upper Dickson Rd).  The menu is […]

  5. Jean October 28, 2012 at 11:51 am - Reply

    When in SG, do venture into our neighbourhoods! Take a pick from any of the ones listed along the train track. Most of us live in public housing flats (HDB blocks). Each estate (I hesitate to use the word ‘town’ because we’re really small…) will have a public swimming pool (entrance fees ranging from S$0.50 – S$2), public gyms S$1.50, basketball courts (play with our teens – they’re a little shy and standoff-ish but will warm up to you if you’re friendly). If you’re game, venture into our community centres to attend pottery classes, karaoke classes (singing in Mandarin though). Little India is fun and colourful, but do visit the other little ethnic ‘towns’ like Geylang Serai (where you find good Malay dishes, fashion treads etc. We do pride ourselves on our ability to live harmoniously with different races and ethnicities. It’s a pity that most travellers are only familiar with Newton Hawker Centre. Food is good there, but pricey. Hawker centres (24 hourly btw) are everywhere in SG. We’re foodies. The weather is humid, that’s why we hang out at shopping malls. Best place to people watch the locals, even if you shun away from shopping.

    Hope you do visit SG again!

    • Earl November 11, 2012 at 12:19 pm - Reply

      Hey Jean – Thank you for all of that great information about Singapore. Very useful!

  6. Willsteed October 18, 2012 at 10:55 am - Reply

    Hotel 81 = rates by the hour

    (I used to liver there).

    • Earl October 18, 2012 at 1:00 pm - Reply

      @Willsteed – Not all of the Hotel 81 locations are like that and in fact, the one I stayed at in Little India was full of tour groups and other travelers.

  7. Richard Crest October 18, 2012 at 2:26 am - Reply

    I once visited Singapore but that was only for 2 nights that’s why I haven’t explore some of the places you’ve been. Sands SkyPark really looks cool and I also enjoyed magnificent attractions there such as Gardens by the Bay and The Southern Ridges.

  8. Willsteed April 20, 2012 at 2:37 pm - Reply

    We were having a discussion about this (falling in love/hate with a place) on a local Singaporean website recently. Consensus is that the attraction of the place soon wears off once you live there. No one said the place grew on them over time.

    p.s. Interesting re: Hotel 81 and that you stayed a whole night. Their popular image is rooms by the hour.

    • Earl April 20, 2012 at 6:36 pm - Reply

      Hey Willsteed – I think that only applies to certain Hotel 81 locations based on my research. The one I stayed in (Little India) was full of foreign tourists, including tour groups. It was quite a nice place I must say.

  9. Joy March 2, 2012 at 11:15 am - Reply

    Great to see it worked out for you. We are actually thinking about moving here in a year or so. It’s great to learn about your experience and see what we have ahead of us!

    • Earl March 3, 2012 at 2:58 pm - Reply

      Hey Joy – I think Singapore would be a great place to live and the more a person stays, the more they tend to fall in love with it. I was just talking with someone today about possibly going back for a visit over the summer!

  10. Leah Downs October 23, 2011 at 5:15 pm - Reply

    OK, this is my 5th comment so I should tell you more about why/how my husband and I travel. My husband is active duty military (REALLY hope you don’t oppose that) so we’ve had the good fortune of being SENT overseas to live (of course he’s also been SENT to places for considerably more stressful reasons than leisure/travel). BK (before kids) we traveled as it sounds you do now, footloose, backpacks, hostels or a cheap “gasthauses”. That’s how we did our time in Europe (which was during 9/11 and the aftermath, including the beginning of the Iraq war…as you know it was very interesting living overseas during a time of initially supportive and then openly hostile feelings towards America(ns). Don Rumsfeld’s comments at the time about the uselessness of Western Europe given our strengthening relationships with Eastern European governments were unwise/untrue, and repeatedly replayed on European news outlets. Those comments and others contributed significantly to the distrust/disrespect many Europeans had (and still have) towards our government.

    (As an aside, we adopted twin 2 years olds from the Republic of Georgia as we were leaving Europe; it was fall of 2003 when their government was in upheaval and less than a month before the “velvet revolution” when Shevardnadze was overthrown. In the middle of our adoption process they outlawed international adoption and we found ourselves in the middle of a cloak/dagger, very stressful experience of getting the children out. My husband says the adoption experience was more stressful than the war)

    By the time we did our 2 years in Asia, we had 3 young children (all under 7) and while we weren’t prepared to give up traveling, doing so unencumbered without considerably more stuff is nearly impossible. Also, considerations must be made re: how much stress the kids can handle.

    I learned this the hard way during a trip we made to Singapore/Malaysia, hence this comment in response to your Singapore post. We hit Singapore first (our youngest HATES cities and couldn’t wait to leave). I thought it was clean with some interesting sections of town (Chinatown and little India), I liked the drag along the water (the OLD side, not the newer “hip” side), but yes, it was relatively similar to modern cities anywhere in the world.

    We planned to wind up on Tiomen island off the east coast of Malaysia; rather than take the 1/2 airplane hop with our clan of 5, I thought it would be more interesting (and educational) to take a bus-ride up the eastern coast of Malaysia from Singapore and hop a ferry from there. Three tots means considerably more bags (did I mention that?) and we got on/off the bus 3 or 4 times leaving/entering Singapore/Malaysia, each time having to take off all the bags and clear customs. This was the beginning of the journey and that effort alone exhausted the kids. The ride was gorgeous (everything I hoped for) but considerably longer than expected. When we arrived at the bus terminal in our ferry town, they sold us a ticket for the 2:30 ferry (leaving in 30 minutes). They assured us it was a scant “75 meters” so we could easily make it in time. I’ll mention for a 3rd time the vast amount of luggage we had and tell you that it was more like 1 1/2 miles to the ferry and that walking 3 young children and all that luggage that distance was considerably more challenging than we imagined (all 3 in tears after we insisted through necessity that they help carry, and that by the end–they run).

    We arrived at the ferry and they told us that though it hadn’t left, there was no room. We showed our tickets and it didn’t matter…I’m sure you’ve experienced similar situations…”rules” are different or there are no rules and so it’s not uncommon to be sold a ticket on a ferry that is already full! The next ferry didn’t leave for 5 hours. Entertaining the children for that amount of time and finding food (there was very little available) was a blood sport. Unknown/possibly unsafe food can present problems with young children. And the “squatty potties” which you don’t think give a second thought about traveling as an adult become more problematic with kids.

    That’s a long way of saying that after an afternoon that seemed to last 24 hours, we were in the middle of a crush of bodies trying to board the ferry when my youngest began to complain of feeling sick. We thought he was just tired from an exhausting journey, and couldn’t move from the center of the throng regardless, so we gave him some water and tried to divert his attention from his stomach.

    Just as we took our seats on the ferry he began (and continued) vomiting throughout the 3 hour ferry ride. I had a roll of toilet paper, but there was nothing else available on the ferry to clean him up and they wouldn’t let us move from our seats. They gave us a couple plastic bags that we used as he continued to vomit, but it was all over him and us by ride’s end and we had to keep the used plastic bags with us, as we couldn’t leave our seats. He was shivering from the cold and from being “wet” (and I felt very sorry for all of the people stuck with us on the lower deck).

    To make a long story longer (I apologize!!!), he vomited for 3 more days (by the end, it was just water and he was severely dehydrated);there was no medical care on the island except a very dicey clinic, which we decided in the end was worth the risk. My husband took him and says it was a good thing I wasn’t there, as the conditions would have freaked me out. The doctor informed my husband that Z would be at risk of dying if we didn’t get the dehydration under control, so the “nurses” gave him an IV, but apparently they weren’t properly trained in the art of IV insertion, because it bubbled up and Mike was told that yes, the bubbles could kill him, but it was more likely than not that he would survive (sigh). I’ve noticed that many other cultures are vastly less dramatic (and understated) than we are !

    I will close this manuscript of a comment by admitting that at the time of the trip in question I was blogging and had allowed the dangle/vanity of a more interesting blog post to influence my decision to choose a more “adventurous” trip, at the expense of my kids. My son survived, but I recall this incident with no small amount of guilt and have since decided (of course) that the welfare of our children and how much they can handle will always trump an adventure that might prove too much for them.

    Enjoy your unencumbered traveling! It sounds divine and exciting and it is truly a pleasure to read about. I enjoyed the time we were able to travel that way, but I now I enjoy getting to travel with our 3 little guys who love to see the world as well. Their worldviews/outlooks on life are vastly richer than many of their peers and we consider them to be children of the world, not just children of America.

  11. Steve April 19, 2011 at 7:27 am - Reply

    Great writeup Earl!

    I’m headed to Singapore tomorrow for a week and had no idea what to do, where to stay, or what to eat…I’m not very good at planning.

    And BAM here’s all three wrapped up in one neat little post. And that skypark building looks ridiculous.

    Were you able to go swimming? Or just see the city? How much did it cost to go up there?


    • Earl April 19, 2011 at 8:28 pm - Reply

      Hey Steve – I’m happy to hear this post proved useful to you. As for the swimming pool at the SkyPark, you can go swimming but it costs $400! So, I chose to skip that activity during my visit 🙂

      Just to visit the SkyPark costs $20 S (about $17 US) and while that still isn’t a bargain, I found it to be money well spent.

      Enjoy your visit and safe travels!

  12. retirebyforty March 28, 2011 at 1:11 pm - Reply

    Sounds like a great trip! That surfboard building is really cool. I haven’t been to Singapore and it’s a bit low on my list, but I’ll definitely try to stop by if I’m in the area. 😉
    I heard food is really good in general.

    • Earl March 28, 2011 at 4:10 pm - Reply

      @retirebyforty: Yeah, Singapore rarely makes it to the top of many people’s travel wish list, but it is a convenient place to enter/exit Southeast Asia, with excellent connections to the rest of the continent. So a few days before or after a trip is always good if you’re headed that way. And the food is more than good, it is unbelievable, with more options than you could possibly even begin to imagine!

  13. Edna March 28, 2011 at 12:40 pm - Reply

    Oh I didn’t know you were in Singapore recently. I love hosting couchsurfers, just had Kate of Adventurous Kate over! if you’re ever back in Singapore shoot me a DM!

    • Earl March 28, 2011 at 4:08 pm - Reply

      Hey Edna – My trip to Singapore was quite a last minute decision so I didn’t have much time to even let people know I was going to be there! But I’ll definitely let you know when I am there again and would love to meet you. I’m sure you had a great time with Kate!

  14. The Dropout March 28, 2011 at 12:11 pm - Reply

    Hey Earl,
    A bit hot and sweaty Singapore welcome to you!
    I first came to Singapore on a work training trip and I vowed I would never live here. But here I am. Planning to head off soon though. It’s just too damn hot.
    Just a bit of a warning on the Hotel 81 chain. Although the pic you posted looked fab, my friends stayed in a Hotel 81 in Joo Chiat (can’t remember which one, there are two in the same street and you can book by the hour) and it was pretty horrible. The room was barely bigger than the bed and it stank of cigarettes and bleach. So choose your Hotel 81 with care!
    And for those who read this hoping for a surf story, I believe there is a water fun park on Sentosa that has a wave that can be surfed. Never been there and it’s probably hideously expensive but … if you’re interested. Apparently there’s also an indoor snow skiing place here too. Singapore is completely whacky, don’t you think?

    • Earl March 28, 2011 at 4:05 pm - Reply

      @The Dropout: Good point about the Hotel 81. I can only recommend the one in Little India on Dickson Road, which to me is in a perfect location and has very impressive rooms. But if anyone wants to stay elsewhere in the city, it does pay to read some reviews as several of the locations are in Red Light districts.

      And Sentosa is one bizarre island. I went one day to have a look around but it wasn’t exactly for me!

  15. Tess March 28, 2011 at 10:51 am - Reply

    I have been to Singapore twice and really like it. I agree with you that Little India is a great place. Last time I stayed at the hostel Footprints in the center of Little India. Also good value!

    I wish I had known about Gokul.. Maybe next time 🙂

    I have also stayed at Betel Box hostel in the Malaysian part of Singapore. Great area too!

    I have some more suggestions on what to do in Singapore in my blog:

    • Earl March 28, 2011 at 11:26 am - Reply

      Hey Tess – Actually, the Hotel 81 where I stayed is located exactly across the street from the Footprints Hostel, which did seem like a place with a great vibe as well. And thank you for sharing that link to your other suggestions!

  16. Bluegreen Kirk March 28, 2011 at 9:01 am - Reply

    I really thought you caught some waves in Singapore but the building was just as wonderful. I havent been to Singapore but would love to visit some of my family members have gone and have the same problem with choosing where to eat.

    • Earl March 28, 2011 at 11:22 am - Reply

      @Bluegreen Kirk: Phew! I’m glad I didn’t disappoint!

  17. david March 28, 2011 at 12:49 am - Reply

    I haven’t been to Singapore in over fifteen years and your post gave me a real flashback. Loaded down with a backpack, wandering around for two hours in the extreme heat and humidity of August looking for the guest house that my partner assured me was “just a bit further”. When we finally got there it was a disaster: mean owner, dirty squat toilets (complete with a big ole rat in the morning) and paper thin walls with open fretwork near the ceilings that allowed us to hear the couple in the next room going at it every night. But hey, it was less than ten dollars a night and if you leaned out the window of our room, and looked down the alley, you could see part of Raffles. We thought that was cool. Especially at night when it was all lit up.

    • Earl March 28, 2011 at 11:21 am - Reply

      Hey David – Seems like quite a good travel memory overall, most likely due to your positive attitude! Spending $10 bucks in an expensive city is a bargain no matter what type of room you end up with. And that whole are by Raffles is more than impressive at night…perhaps it’s time to pay another visit 🙂

      • david March 28, 2011 at 1:31 pm - Reply

        Maybe I will think about another visit…but I think next time I will be looking for something more like your recommendation of Hotel 81. Unless I can get a REALLY good deal at Raffles!

        • Earl March 28, 2011 at 4:12 pm - Reply

          Hey David – If you get such a deal at Raffles, be sure to let me know! The only problem, though, is that a stay at Raffles might spoil you. After that it would be difficult to stay in budget accommodation again!

  18. Yakezie March 27, 2011 at 6:34 am - Reply

    Sands Skypark is sick ain’t it? It’s the most beautiful casino in the world, and they are minting money!

    • Earl March 27, 2011 at 1:28 pm - Reply

      @Yakezie: Yes it is…I had to make sure I caught a glimpse of that building every day that I was in Singapore!

  19. Randall March 26, 2011 at 12:41 pm - Reply

    Ahhh…. At last! A good post about Singapore. This was my first experience in Asia and the place where I met my wife. They call it “Asia 101”. The first place I ate was at Newton Circus, a “hawkers center” where they serve food 24/7. First dish’s were Sotong (some kind of squid dish) and the world famous Chicken Rice.

    You have to really understand about the chicken rice..Earl, just ask someone and you will see how proud Singapore is of this dish!

    I’ve been back one time. Yes it is expensive but very nice and clean. Very easy to get along there if your not a seasoned traveler.

    I did go to little India in Singapore and they have quite a nice wet market.

    China town is nice too!

    • Earl March 27, 2011 at 1:27 pm - Reply

      Hey Randall – So I guess Singapore is quite a special place for you! And unfortunately, I didn’t try the chicken rice on this visit, but no because I didn’t want to. The problem is that every time I walk by an Indian restaurant, I get the urge to eat Indian food, which in this case, happened every day!

      And you are absolutely right about it being an easy place for any traveler to navigate. Just the metro alone is perhaps the easiest one to figure out that I’ve ever come across!

  20. Wee Cheng March 26, 2011 at 12:41 pm - Reply

    Hi Earl,

    Greetings from Singapore! I’m a nomad of sorts from Singapore – check out my website with stories from some of the >100 countries I’ve visited. Have been following your blog for a while. I’m glad that you have enjoyed Singapore. Singapore is one of the best places to eat in the world, and we also have some unusual sights neglected by conventional tourists. Drop me a message the next time you come by Singapore, and I will show you some of our wonderful gastronomical delights and unusual sights.

    Happy Travels!

    Wee Cheng

    • Earl March 27, 2011 at 1:25 pm - Reply

      Thanks for the comment Wee!

  21. Wandering Trader's Travels March 26, 2011 at 10:49 am - Reply

    At least you finally got to enjoy your stay in Singapore 😀 Their “Little India” sounds like a very tempting place to eat, by the way. About Sands SkyPark. Where you there in broad daylight or at night time? 🙂 The pictures confuse me a little bit because you have one night photo taken, and the rest seem to be taken in daylight 🙂

    • Earl March 27, 2011 at 1:25 pm - Reply

      Hey Marcelo – Sorry about the confusion! I first went at night and took some photos from across the small lake in front of the building and then I returned the following afternoon to visit the park at the top. It’s quite visible from many parts of the city so I also found myself snapping photos of it every day from random viewpoints. It’s quite an addicting building to take photos of!

      • Wandering Trader's Travels March 28, 2011 at 6:11 am - Reply

        Oh I see 🙂 I thought of that too – that maybe you returned there twice on different days or separate times of the day. No worries 😉 It’s really beautiful from up there though… based on your pictures. I hope I could go there someday.

  22. Casey OD March 26, 2011 at 4:33 am - Reply

    Plopped down to read my blogs after….a walk around Little India! Am in Singapore for a few weeks for work and have not quite found my groove to be honest, though Little India was a step in the right direction. The climate is not helpful, like wandering in a vast greenhouse all day long.

    • Earl March 27, 2011 at 1:23 pm - Reply

      Hey Casey – What a place to work for a few weeks 🙂 Although, as you’re experiencing, it can take a while (such as three visits for me!) to find that groove. If you focus your visit around food, you may have better success as you have endless food markets, 24-hour cafes, Indian restaurants of course and just about anything else you could possibly want. But the heat doesn’t help, you’re right about that. At least you can duck into a shopping center every now and then for a break as there’s no shortage of those around!

      • Casey OD April 6, 2011 at 11:14 am - Reply

        Decided to pick up your recommendation and have dinner at Gokul’s. There were quite a number of tourist types – I wonder if they all read your blog?? I finished off the meal with a mango kulfi chock full of pistachios that was delicious…and miniscule. The waiter set down a dixie cup in front of me and said proudly, “It’s exactly 90 mL.” Why?! Probably to make you order a second one, which is what I did. In any case, great tip, very much enjoyed the place!

        • Earl April 6, 2011 at 8:37 pm - Reply

          Hey Casey – Glad to hear you enjoyed your meal at Gokuls! That’s interesting that there were tourists there as I only saw locals during all of my visits. Perhaps you’re right and I have a bigger following in Singapore than I thought 🙂

  23. Sabina March 26, 2011 at 1:50 am - Reply

    Gosh, I’ve never nearly burst into tears when discovering the location of an accommodation. 😉 The Indian thing must be extremely powerful for you. If I ever go to Singapore – which I think I won’t – I will definitely read this post again to remind myself of the name of the hotel where you stayed. I am always in search of the perfect place to stay everywhere I travel, and if I go to Singapore, I won’t have to do my usual two to three hours of research.

    • Earl March 27, 2011 at 1:19 pm - Reply

      Hey Sabina – I always welcome as well an opportunity to avoid having to do hotel/guesthouse research when traveling somewhere! As for the India addiction, it is quite powerful. I must have lived on the sub-continent in a previous life as I feel more at home in that country that anywhere else!

  24. Odysseus March 26, 2011 at 1:45 am - Reply

    You’re writing about Singapore, but all I can think about after reading this post is how much I now want Indian food. Mmmm.

    • Earl March 27, 2011 at 1:17 pm - Reply

      Hey Odysseus – Haha…so did you get some Indian food to satisfy your sudden craving?

  25. Ozzy March 26, 2011 at 1:38 am - Reply

    The surfboard in the sky looked amazing. I would probably just hang out there all day having a few drinks and enjoying the sites and of course swimming.

    • Earl March 27, 2011 at 1:17 pm - Reply

      Hey Ozzy – I did forget to mention that it costs $20 Singapore Dollars to visit the SkyPark, which isn’t really that bad at all. However, if you want to take a swim in the pool, that will cost $400!! I was content taking photos from behind the pool 🙂

  26. Olov Lindgren March 26, 2011 at 1:25 am - Reply

    I know where i’ll be staying on the next Singapore trip, thx for the tip;) Beeing vegan travelling around south east Asia I’ve come to love Indian food! Stayed in proximity to little India on our last stay there but didn’t realize it has this much to offer, need to explore it more next time. How was the pricing to go up at the Sands? Very expensive or almost reasonable?:)

    • Earl March 27, 2011 at 1:16 pm - Reply

      Hey Olov – Glad to here you like the tip! Indian food certainly comes to the rescue of vegetarians and vegans all over the world. If you walk down the tiny lanes of Little India in between the main road you’ll find semi-hidden Veg restaurants everywhere. I literally had no idea how to choose as it was a bit overwhelming!

      And the price to visit the SkyPark is approximately $20 Singaporean Dollars, which I feel is quite reasonable considering the experience.

  27. Paddy March 26, 2011 at 1:24 am - Reply

    The first time I visited Singapore, I considered it just as you did: expensive, culture-less, and mostly boring. The second time I visited (recently) I was sick and miserable. I look forward to having an epiphany of enjoyment on my third visit as you did. 🙂

    • Earl March 27, 2011 at 1:12 pm - Reply

      Hey Paddy – Hmmm…that is most unfortunate but hopefully a third visit will change it all (although I’m making no guarantees). It seems that a lot of people have similar experiences with Singapore, which is understandable as it offers an experience for travelers unlike any of its neighbors. Of course, if you’re sick, then you’d probably be miserable anywhere in the world!

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