We went to Singapore again the first week of March. Didn’t have any plans, just wanted to see a bit more of Singapore City and have a city vacation. We booked a room at Fort Canning Lodge (YWCA), mostly for its location and price. Being Singapore, hotels are never cheap but this one is not too overpriced. There is a pool, but when we were there they had swim school for young children so it was pretty crowded and we felt out of place. The wifi was good though, fast and included in the room price. No breakfast but there is a Kopitiam nearby where you can get coffee and toast for 2.50 dollars. Or you can order breakfast at the hotel, prices start at 6 dollars. We chose to go to the Kopitiam, the coffee is really good there.
We changed hotel for our second night as the Lodge was fully booked and we decided pretty late that we wanted to stay one more night. Ended up at The Strand, on Bencoolen Street, right next to a huge building site for a new tube station. We thought we would have a really bad night’s sleep due to the noise from the building site (in Asia they usually work 24/7) but we heard nothing due to good and thick windows. The Strand is old and worn but it was one of the cleanest hotel rooms I have stayed in. The bathroom was spotless, nice and fluffy towels and the room had everything we needed. And the hotel staff was super friendly and helpful, especially towards our children. The breakfast was good, one of the best hotel ones we’ve had on this trip actually. Even the coffee was good.
I wanted to visit the zoo, we went there in 2010 and I really liked it. Normally I don’t care much for zoos, animals in cages stresses me and I usually end up feeling sad that I went there. But Singapore Zoo is well kept and the animals have large enclosures to wander around in. It is pretty expensive, children over 3 years of age is 21 dollars and 32 for adults. There are quite a few restaurants at the entrance and they are all expensive and rather dull. The funny thing is that there are two KFC restaurants, one at the entrance and one inside the zoo. I myself don’t like their food but after eating a very limp and tasteless salad for 6.90 dollar I have to say that you can get worse than KFC at Singapore Zoo. But if you want good and inexpensive food, make sure to eat before you get there. Even the drinks and snacks are overpriced, even by Singapore standards. But I know it is the same in almost every zoo, amusement park, theme park and such, you pay double for everything in those places, at least in every country I have been to.
A funny thing happened as we were looking at the otters. Our youngest daughter was walking around and her shoes made the usual “peep peep” noise. Most shoes for toddlers have that sound effect here in Malaysia, it is both adorable and annoying as hell. Anyway, three young women were standing next to us and, in Swedish, said: I don’t understand why people buy that kind of shoes to their children!?! That noise!
Imagine their surprise when I turned around and spoke to them in Swedish… The looks on their, now a bit reddish, faces made my day!
If you want to see everything you will have to plan for a whole day at the zoo. We aimed to see most of it but not all and stayed for about 4 hours. March is still not the hottest month but it can get really warm and humid anyway and we were so tired when we got back to the hotel. And our oldest daughter had a sore throat that turned into fever and coughing so our last day in Singapore ended up being a late check out from The Strand and then we drove home to rest and recover.