July 13, 2012
Hong Kong - Singapore
Metropark Causeway Bay - Grand Mercure Roxy (Singapore)
The earliest flight of the trip was scheduled for a 8:50am departure which meant I had a 5:45am wake up call to answer. One of the great things about Hong Kong is the ease in which one can travel on public transportation. I was able to leave the hotel at 6:00am and I was at the airport counter at 7:00am. In between was a short walk, a 10 minute metro ride and 25 minutes on the Airport Express.
Today's flight was my first of the trip with Cathay Pacific. Cathay is one of my favorite airlines as their service an attention to detail is unrivaled. Today was no exception. Greeting each passenger in business class by their name is an excellent touch and they were voted best Business Class product by SkyTrax just two days ago.
The three hour flight to Singapore was uneventful and we touched down at Changi Airport in Singapore just a bit after noon. After finding the complimentary hotel shuttle I arrived at my hotel close to 1:30 and was eager to check in and enjoy the mid-afternoon tropical sunshine.
I had less than 24 hours in Singapore and thus I booked an afternoon city tour and Night Safari. Prior to the safari I had a quick afternoon meal at the noodle shop adjacent to the hotel... possibly the best meal of the trip as I ordered the honey pork with noodles!
The city tour drove through most of the tourist spots and then we headed to the Night Safari located about 25 minutes from the city center. The Night Safari is an interesting concept in that it's basically a zoo for all of the nocturnal creatures. It sits adjacent to the Singapore Zoo and is open from 7:30pm - Midnight.
The Safari takes it's guests through 7 distinct regions of the world and the animals that are found in each. Most guests travel the park via the tram which covers the area in about 60 minutes, while some visitors choose to go on the walking paths... being that I've already walked too much this trip, I chose the tram.
Using a lighting system that resembles that of a full moon, the animals are illuminated just enough for the human eye to see, but not enough for the non-human i-phone to capture. Thus... no photos of animals, but I much prefer the animals that I'll see on my "real" safari in South Africa at the end of the trip.
The Night Safari was indeed very interesting and one could even get an ice cream at the park's Ben & Jerry's stand. Just $11 for a milkshake and $9 for a double scoop. Singapore is definitely not cheap!
After dropping off several of the other people in our tour at their various hotels, I finally reached my place at 11:30pm... exhausted!
So to recap... I flew to Singapore to eat 1 meal and go to the zoo!