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The BIG way to shop at Warehouse Club, Singapore

With so much news coverage and social media going on about the latest retail format in Singapore, it will be hard to miss the news on Singapore’s first membership-only retail warehouse – Warehouse Club – right next to Joo Koon MRT!

I remember visiting Costco in Sydney and Melbourne during our incentive trips, buying lots of stuffs and envying that they have a place to buy items in bulk which has great savings and random and exciting items! I remember buying big bags of chocolates, a set of Sharpie markers and a big owl soft toy at great prices!

When I visited Warehouse Club today, it really resembles Costco in Australia! There are many bulk-sized groceries and brands which we’ve not seen elsewhere. Also, there are many limited stocks items where it is mainly a hit and run! Items with shorter shelf life going for a steal, limited stocks with great offers!

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Cute and colourful Heinz bottled sauces!

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Hor Fun Party anyone? Plenty of green chili here!

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Any serious chefs out there? Lots of herbs and spices!

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1 kg Japanese curry sauce! Wow!

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1 kg Korean chili paste!

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Anything with mustards!

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Everyone loves Nutella!

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Hellooooo Panda!

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Cheap butter and huge tub of cocoas, in time for festive baking!

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This is something I’ve been hunting down for the longest time and I’m surprised the price is similar to the one in New York! Peanut Butter & Co! OMG. *hyperventilating*

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50 cents a bottle snapple anyone? What you see is what is left.

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In the end, I resisted all temptation and got these for my friends. A friend told me “A moment on the lips. Forever on the hips.” Oh gosh, the harsh reality and especially when you are inching towards the big 30. Yikes.

I wish they had greater and more exciting and impulsive non-food items like Sharpies, cosmetics/health and beauty items and stationaries! Till then, you really should pop by just for fun! A lot of determination to say no to those snacks!

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S.E.A Aquarium, Singapore

Ok, so I’ve been playing tourist in my own country for the past few months. First Kusu Island, then Trickeye Museum and now S.E.A Aquarium! There were many fascinating exhibits and most of them were well maintained. The aquarium is also a lot bigger than Underwater World. But I was also disturbed by the poorly maintained and small exhibit for the dolphins. These highly intelligent animals should be swimming freely in the ocean!

Thankfully I got the tickets for free as the tickets are really pricey considering that you can probably finish viewing the aquarium in an hour. But it is a nice place to spend with your little ones. I bet they will surely enjoy themselves in there.

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Here are some of my favourites.

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Sharks in “Shipwreck”

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Pretty yellow seahorses

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These jellyfish looks so mysterious.

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Electric eels. Don’t you dare provoke them.

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Hammerhead sharks!

Trickeye Museum, Singapore

It has been a month since I last blogged (OMG) and I’ve been overwhelmed with work and yoga as the festive draws near. But today, I was homebound with a massive cramp and I thought what better way to clear some backlog while trying to distract myself from the cringing pain. Boo.

A while back, we went to the Trickeye Museum in Sentosa and yes, the novelty of this place has probably worn off especially in the blogosphere but I didn’t expect all of us to enjoy ourselves this much! This place can be completed in under 2 hours and it is suited for people of all ages! An advice, do head there in the early evening, a few hours before closing to avoid the crowd.

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Here are some pictures of myself taking silly pictures while I grin like a teen. Heh.

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I need to try this for real!

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“Look at this stuff
Isn’t it neat?
Wouldn’t you think my collection’s complete?
Wouldn’t you think I’m the girl
The girl who has everything?”

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Weee

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Ohmmmm….?

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Strong arms. Suck in my tummy yo.

Kusu Island Tour with National Heritage Board

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I love being a tourist in my own country! Having lived in Singapore for almost 30 years (minus a few months, GASPS!), there are still many point of interests yet to be visited! Thankfully, we have the good people from National Heritage Board who organize interesting and insightful tours around the island during Singapore Heritage Festival!

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Last weekend, we had a chance to visit Kusu Island on a free tour and seen some interesting sights on the small and tranquil island. Kusu Island is said to be a holy island where many devotees visit once a year. There are 2 places for worship on the island where one belongs to Malay and the other Chinese. There are stories which passed down by both Malays and Chinese in Singapore which shared that a magical tortoise turned itself into an island to save two shipwrecked sailors who is a Malay and a Chinese.

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Some of the devotees after receiving blessing, in the form of a protection ribbons , can choose to tie the ribbons to the tree instead of bringing it home.

“At the top of the rugged hillock on Kusu Island stands three kramats (or holy shrines of Malay saints) to commemorate a pious man (Syed Abdul Rahman), his mother (Nenek Ghalib) and sister (Puteri Fatimah) who lived in the 19th century. Many devotees will climb the 152 steps leading to the kramats to pray for wealth, good marriage, good health and harmony. The shrines are also popular with childless couples who would pray for children. Despite misconceptions, they do not pray to the kramats.”

Source: Wikipedia

This is rather interesting to me as even though it seems like the shrines is devoted to the Malay saints, the religious practices seems like practises from the Taoist culture.

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“Also located on Kusu island is the popular Chinese temple – Da Bo Gong 大伯公 or Tua Pek Kong (Grand Uncle). Built in 1923 by a wealthy businessman, the temple houses two main deities – the Da Bo Gong and Guan Yin 观音 (Goddess of Mercy). The former is highly regarded as having the power to confer prosperity, cure diseases, calm the sea and avert danger, while Guan Yin is known as the ‘giver of sons’.

Source: Wikipedia

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Other than the two main sights above, Kusu Island is also popular for its lagoons and clean beaches. Visitors are allowed to go swimming and sunbathing at these lagoons. Picnics are also allowed on this island.

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There is also wishing well and tortoise sanctuary which are managed by the Sentosa group.

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Guess who we met while on the way back? Stephanie! She is on her way to the island in the later tour group.

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You can visit Kusu Island by taking a ferry at Marina South Pier! Tickets are priced at SGD 18 for adult/two way and SGD 12 for children below 12. You can check out the ferry schedule here!

Guide to Surviving Night Safari, Singapore

Last year during my birthday, I celebrated at the Singapore Zoo and River Safari with free admission for birthday girl! This year, we celebrated his birthday at the Night Safari! I realized that many of my friends do not know of this awesome promotion when I shared some pictures online! So here’s any shout out! For all Singaporean and Permanent Resident of Singapore, on your actual birthday, you will be entitled to free admission to all 4 major parks; Singapore Zoo, River Safari, Night Safari and Jurong Bird Park! If you have the strength and stamina, you can visit all of them in one day for Free! Haha. You can read more in my old post here.

In this post, because I have insider information (birthday boy used to work in Night Safari during his school days), I’m going to share a simple and insider guide to survive the Night Safari while it is still fresh in my head! We went on a Wednesday night and even though it is a weekday and non school holiday, it is crowded with throngs of tourists and tourists who came via tour group! If you choose to visit on a Friday or Weekend evening, there are additional Tiger / Lion feeding show which we missed out on. But nevertheless, it will be a great guide to share over here! Our trip was seamless and we went through the entire park smoothly without any frustration! Night safari is definitely recommended to visitors who want family friendly night activities!

So here goes!

(1) Aim to reach the park around 7 – 7.15pm
On a less busy day compared to weekends, this will give you ample of time to grab your tickets and go for the first animal show! On a weekend evening, you may want to reach even earlier to beat the crowd! The park opens at 7.30pm but the ticketing booth opens at 5.30pm!

(2) Go straight for the 7.30pm Animal Show

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If you happen to reach earlier, you will then grab a good seat at the animal show! We got there at around 7.30pm and all that is left are front row seats which is fine by us! What’s not to like when you get great view of the animals and for kids, you get a better chance to be picked to go on stage!

(3) Immediately exit the park and go back to the entrance near ticketing counters to watch the Thumbuakar Performance at 8pm

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Not sure why, our performance was only a quick 10 minutes show. Perhaps only on Friday, Saturday and Sunday, will they show the full performance. Do remember to keep your tickets as you need them to enter the park after the show!

(4) Go for the walking trails

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Ok, it is at this point where people gets all frustrated. Usually most people will go for their tram ride first and the queue to the ride is really long! That’s because most of the tour groups will only go for the animal show followed by the tram ride, and that can be really frustrating for the rest of the free and easy visitors! So my advice is, go for the walking trails where it is extremely peaceful (at some point it is so dark it can be creepy) and get up close and personal with those nocturnal animals! My favourite would be the newly added Wallaby Trail where we get to get really close to the Wallabies! To walk the entire walking trail, it will take about an hour or two, depending on your pace!

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Fishing cat!

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Wallaby!

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The romantic and breathtaking night view you will get while walking the trail.

(5) Take the tram!

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After you have completed the entire walking trail, it will bring you back to the entrance plaza and here’s when you can relax and rest your feet on the tram! During the tram ride, you get to see some animals which are off limits to visitors who are walking the trail!

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(6) Complete your night with some sweet treats!

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We had to reward ourselves with some ice creams at Ben & Jerry’s as the birthday boy gets a 10% discount and after surviving through the walk and heat, we had to enjoy some ice cold sweet treats!

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Haw Par Villa: Cultured Leopard, Rising Tiger Tour, Singapore

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A few weeks back, Singapore Tourism Board organized some free heritage walk in Haw Park Villa for the public and a friend of the bride I met at Langkawi asked me out to this tour! I said yes and never regretted it! Even though the sun was blazing hot, it was an interesting and informative tour! They now have the same tour for a fee here. At SGD 35 per adult and SG 15 per child, I’m glad I enjoyed the tour free! But if you just want a walk in the park, the entrance is free! So if you have a lazy weekend afternoon with no way to go, drop by for an interesting sight!

Haw Par Villa is a park created by the Aw Family behind the famous Tiger Balm Ointment. It is a park in front of their residential villa (which was destroyed during World War II) and what is left are all the figurines of various Confusion teaching and Chinese fables. Through the tour, we learnt the story between the Aw Boon Haw and Aw Boon Paw, the two brothers who created this garden. Boon Par is the brainy one, who has pharmaceutical knowledge and is well educated. He created figurines to share with his brother on the importance of filial piety and dangers of temptation etc. Boon Haw on the other hand is the marketing genius and the entrepreneur, though he has a huge love for women (he has got 4 wives), himself (ego) and enjoyment, his love for his brother is strong as well. Together, they created this park and successfully expanded their business across Southeast Asia, Hong Kong and China in the early 1920s.

It is interesting to learn the story about the two brothers through the walking tour, as most tourist walking around the park will not learn about the two brothers. Instead, they will be wowed by the Chinese fables and the figurines which looks like the Eastern Alice in the Wonderland. The tours will be available soon

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The entrance to the rabbit hole.

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The children enjoyed the tour most as the guide is engaging with quizzes and gifts for the little ones.

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Go To HELL! Haha, yes, that’s the entrance to hell – The Ten Courts of Hell!

In traditional Chinese belief (or rather a mixture of Buddhism, Confucianist and Taoism beliefs), the realm of the dead is a state of limbo or purgatory and is believed to last three long years. Souls are dragged by the fearsome pair of underwater guardians – Ox Head and Horse Face – to purgatory after death, to atone for the sins they committed when they were alive. – Extracted from the memorabilia book given to participants of the tour.

Upside Down at Xcape Singapore, Bugis

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This was taken before the game.You will notice the board which I picked after the game is very different. Haha. My outfit blended well with the background! Haha.

You will noticed that I am flooding my blog with lots of posts today because I had a fun and exciting weekend! Last weekend, we went to Xcape Singapore with his friends at Bugis. This is the first photo that I am sharing of him, but without his face to protect our privacy. It is not the right time yet and we do not want this blog to affect our personal life. When it is time, I will surely share with you! It is not that I am not proud of him, on the contrary, I am extremely proud of him! Will share about it in another posts!

So back to Xcape Singapore, we picked Upside Down and it was our first time playing 5D Real Room Escape Game! Upside Down is largely related to Harry Potter. We are disappointed that we couldn’t pick a scarier room as it was really popular. For Upside Down, our brainy group of 6 came together in an attempt to complete the puzzle but only managed to complete 90% of the game! Gosh! This game is most suitable for Harry Porter’s fans as you will be shocked by how much trivial information you need to know to solve the puzzles! We are shocked that some of us can rattle on the names of potions and spells! I didn’t read any of the Harry Potter books and only contributed with one eureka moment where I spotted the link.

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Will I go back again? Maybe, but it is really expensive! We paid SGD 28 per hour per pax and the next time if we do go back, we would go for the scarier rooms for the thrills and excitements! Haha.

Wedding at The Chambers, The Art House

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We just attended Lydia and Keng Moh’s wedding last weekend, and being the first wedding that I’ve attended in 2014, it can easily be the wedding of the year! It is beautiful and the lovely bride put in great effort in personalizing and having many DIYs in her wedding. The best part? Her wedding is in The Chamber Room at The Art House! I’ve never attended a wedding there before and was really looking forward! Here are some pictures for you to feast on! Enjoy!

The Reception

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The Program Card

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The Chamber

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The Dessert Table

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The desserts were all baked by Lydia’s talented sister! You can check out her work at Instagram: @peace2cheris!

The Dining Table Setting

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The History

I’m like a tourist wandering around while waiting for the wedding to begin!

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Spot Senior Lee!

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Valentine’s at Tree Top Walk

This weekend was awesome! We went for Tree Top Walk on Valentine’s Day, spent our saturday with friends at Escape Singapore and today, went to Lydia’s wedding at Art House.

So, here are the pictures for the Tree Top Walk.

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This Valentine’s Day, we both agree to not spend on flowers, chocolates or expensive dinners. Instead, we took leave, hiked from Ang Mo Kio up to Venus Entrance near Thomson area, and hiked up to Tree Top Walk, hiked down and back. Gosh, it took us close to four hours, a burnt shoulder and a whole bunch of happy time. Wee! It’s a weekend and it’s the perfect time for the visit! There aren’t many people except a few tourists and retires and we had the whole place to ourselves!

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Don’t this look like the Hobbit Town. Haha.

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Pretty red leaves.

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Local residents.

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I expected it to be higher and more wobbly. But it was perfectly safe even for people who has fear for height.

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View from the top!

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Red fungus.

Birthday at River Safari

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So with my free admission on my birthday, I visited River Safari with great excitement!

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It is after all a relatively new tourist attraction in Singapore and it is my first visit there! It is a small park as almost half of the area is still not ready! It will be ready at the end of the year though!

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Here are some of my favourite sights in River Safari!

Amazon Flooded River

This was breathtaking and really magical! My favourite of it all!

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Spider Monkey Enclosure

They are really cheeky and some guests got harassed by these cheeky ones.

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Red Pandas and Giant Pandas

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Red pandas are really cute too! Look at their face.

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I’m not sure which is Kai Kai or Jia Jia, but one is sleepy and one is hungry. Haha.

Mekong River Giant Catfish

The Giant Catfish was a little disappointing though. I was expecting national geographic like two metres giant catfish!

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Birthday at Singapore Zoo

I’ve never celebrated my birthday in the Singapore Zoo and I’m thrilled to visit the Zoo on my birthday! Upon searching online to see if there are any ongoing discounts, I found out that the Zoo gives out free admission to birthday girl and boy, in my case, birthday lady! Weee!

The best part of this treat? It is free admission to all four parks (Bird Park, Singapore Zoo, River Safari and Night Safari) for all Singaporeans and permanent residents on their actual birthday! I didn’t have the energy to tour all parks in the same day, so I picked Singapore Zoo and River Safari and save myself S$39!

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To top it off, I was given a birthday badge and 10% discount at all F&B! I was also given free ice cream but the queue in the restaurant was too long, so I skipped it.

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It was all fun but the queue at the ticket booth was horrible, it was after all a public holiday and the zoo was thronging with tourists and families! They should have allowed me to get my free admission at the priority queue to make me feel extra special! Haha. After all, it is my day!

I will share some of my favourite sights of Singapore Zoo in this post and the River Safari in another post.

I love our Zoo and am very proud of it. It is definitely the best zoo I’ve ever visited and it is indeed a world class zoo! The animals look happy, the habitat looks close to their natural habitat and there were many areas for animal interaction.

Elephant of Asia

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The elephants are so smart and cute! Raising National Flag in commemorating National Day!

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Free Range Orang Utans

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Frozen Tundra

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Fragile Forest

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Getting up close and personal with some animals!

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Children Little Museum at Kampong Glam

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To continue on my adventure in Haji Lane and Kampung Glam area, we explored Children Little Museum! This tiny privately owned museum sits in one of those two levels shophouses among restaurants and a hostel at 42 Bussorah Street.

It is right smack in front of the Sultan Mosque with an adult-sized robot luring curious tourists! For a token sum of SGD 2 to view the second level of the premises, it is a museum of love and years of collection by the owner! It showcases vintage collections of toys and past memories of your childhood with lots of interactive displays!

It is definitely a fun place for photo taking! If you visit as a couple during non peak period, you can also asked the friendly owner to take pictures for you! He will eagerly assist to take over your camera, guide you to pose around the store, and ask if you want to hire him as your pre-wedding photographer! I heard you can take your pre-wedding pictures there for a fee of SGD 50 per hour to use his premises! Haha.

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Sister, do you remember this? I think we use to own one of these!

Cycling at Punggol Promenade

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I’ve never been to Punggol Promenade but I’ve heard a lot about it! So when my friends suggested cycling over there, I was raising all fours with a loud yes to join them!

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There is a bicycle rental station near the entrance of the Promenade and it is operating out of tents and containers! It is a little pricey though as they are the only station around the vicinity. I heard there is another rental station within the park but we can’t seem to find it.

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The slower folks! Haha.

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One would have never guessed that in Punggol where they are famous for nothing but public housings, there is this beautiful cycling path next to the waterways. At one part of the track, I can’t believe I’m in Singapore! We even spotted an eagle soaring around while we cycle! An evidence of the great eco system here!

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The toughest part of the track! Especially when it gets all wet and muddy! Yikes.

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As we approached the end of the track, it started drizzling! That’s when we turned back and took shelter at Popeyes for some fried chicken. Haha.

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The path back turned all foggy and part of it turned muddy too. Yikes!

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We will be back to explore more of this part of Punggol! We saw a horse riding stable at the side and a bistro bar too!