Singapore has a large effecient airport. As soon as we exited the airplane we were directed toward a screened carry on bag check and then directed to customs. Everything from the carry on bag check to customs to retrieving our bags was quick and orderly. Taxis are directly outside the airport and we were at our hotel within 15 minutes. Singapore is a small country and the downtown area is very close to the airport which makes for easy transport from airport to hotel. Taxis are surprisingly inexpensive in Singapore and there are taxis queues everywhere.
We were disappointed at the size of our hotel room. It is VERY small. I booked a family room with two single beds and a queen. Other than the beds, there is a small walking space to the bathroom. We are ON TOP of each other to say the least. It’s been our smallest room yet and we feel it. Only one of us can move about the room at a time.
Our hotel is a 7-10 minutes drive from the bustling downtown. We have used taxis to get in and out of the city and it is probably the only inexpensive thing in Singapore. The fee is roughly $5 US dollars each way which feels like a bargain.
The city itself is very clean. It is against the law to litter and it is obviously enforced. I was surprised at how busy the city is at all hours of the day and night. There are areas that are as bustling as Manhattan minus the graffiti, litter, gum stained sidewalks and smells. It feels particularly safe as well. Something that surprised me is the many different cultures that make up Singapore. I knew there would be many Chinese and Expats but was surprised at the melting pot of countries from India, Thailand, Turkey, Lebanon and Japan. Of course, when you include all the tourists visiting from all parts of the world, it’s quite a mix.
The people are polite but not overly friendly. Although, the taxi drivers have been quite chatty and helpful! I feel like they give us a city tour every time we hire a cab. I am big on making human connections and the taxi drivers have made our visit extra special, because of their kindness towards our family.
Singapore is full of gastronomic delicacies and a high end shopping mecca. I’ve never seen so many large shopping malls. Unfortunately, we aren’t big shoppers and we’ll eat pretty much anything and feel content from a Big Mac to filet mignon. Also, the restaurants are ridiculously expensive. They did have a few places that served high tea that would have been fun to try but we didn’t have correct attire to get in so it was a moot point. We felt like the foodie part of Singapore was lost on us, although we did have some delicious baked goods a couple of times.
We’re happy we spent our Christmas in Singapore. It offered a beautiful festive backdrop to our unconventional Christmas.