Near the mouth of the Singapore River, the site of Clarke Quay was the center of commerce in the late 19th century. Today, the area is still lively, full of restaurants, wine bars, entertainment and shopping. The Royal Selangor Process Demonstration Tour demontrates the processes involved in making pewter metalware, and the G-Max Reverse Bungy open-air capsule will catapult you from a height of 50 meters at 200km/hr. Bumboat cruises (see Rivercruise) pass old shophouses and godowns along the historic waterways. See listings of stores and restaurants on their website, along with special events and promotions.
The world’s first safari park for nocturnal animals. Walking tours and guided tram ride across 7 geographical zones of the world. From the rugged Himalayan Foothills to the swampy banks of the Asian Riverine Forest and more-- with Malayan tigers, leopards, civets,binturongs, Indian gharials, barking deer, the greater and lesser mouse deer, small-clawed otters, the golden cat, the Sunda pangolin, the slow loris (the only venomous primate), wallabies, babirusa, red river hogs, spotted hyenas, African servals, a Giant Flying Squirrel walk-through habitat, marshlands with pelicans, marsh birds, flying foxes, and more.
Also see the fiery stunts of a talented troupe of tribal warriors in the Thumbuakar Performance and the Creatures of the Night Show. This highly entertaining and interactive 20-minute show highlights the natural abilities of some of the most fascinating nocturnal animals. Stop by the Ulu Ulu Safari Restaurant for buffet and a la carte dining and drinks, plus there are retail shops. Open daily 7:30pm-midnight, at 80 Mandai Lake Road.
The Singapore Zoo has a beautiful setting of 64 acres (26 hectares), where almost 3,000 animals roam freely in open and natural habitats, including lush natural rain forest with giant pandas, Kai Kai & Jia Jia and an Amazonian Squirrel Monkey Forest. The River Safari takes a look at natural habitats of some of the worlds great rivers: Congo, Ganges, Mekong, Mississippi, Murray, Nile, and Yangtze. Jurong Bird Park, one of the world's most renowned bird sanctuaries, has some of the largest free-flying aviaries in the world. The zoo is open daily, 9am-6pm, at 80 Mandai Lake Road.
A sheltered, 1.2 mile (2 km) stretch of sandy beach on Sentosa Island. Also here: the Surrender Chamber wax museum, the Musical Fountain, two golf courses, two five-star hotels, plus Resorts World Sentosa with two gaming casinos.
The Universal Studios Singapore theme park has seven zones, each based on a blockbuster movie or popular television show. Dueling roller coasters, the world’s tallest, are based on Battlestar Galactica, the castle is right out of Shrek, and there's a Transformers 3D thrill ride. Marine Life Park, the largest oceanarium in the world, features the S.E.A. Aquarium and the Adventure Cove Waterpark.
Fort Siloso, now a museum, has the one remaining coastal gun battery of twelve in "Fortress Singapore" at the start of World War II. The Sembawang Naval Base, on the north side of the island was the largest base of the British Navy in Asia, completed in the 1930s. The fort on Siloso was intended to protect from attacks from the south. But the Japanese came overland instead, across Malaya. After taking control the Japanese used Siloso to hold Australian and British POWs. Winston Churchill famously called the fall of Singapore the 'worst disaster' and 'largest capitulation' in British history." See accounts of events fom Singapore military historian Dr. Ong Chit Chung and the History Learning Site.
Eighty one gondolas of the Singapore Cable Car system link Sentosa to Mount Faber, a 344 foot hill (105 metres) in the Central Region with panoramic views of the central business district, with connections to the HarbourFront MRT station (serving both the North East and Circle lines). The full trip takes about 12 minutes. A causeway bridge also connects Sentosa to the mainland.
The world’s largest Observation Wheel, at 165m it is 30m taller than the London Eye. With a 28-person per capsule capacity, it takes about 30-minutes per revolution, with panoramic vistas of Marina Bay, and all the way to Malaysia and Indonesia. Also with shops, restaurants, activities and other facilities.
"Deliciously soft and succulent durian fruit is very popular in its native Southeast Asia for its unique characteristics - widely revered as the king of fruits" - Nutrition-and-you.
In 1856 the British naturalist Alfred Russel Wallace wrote of the taste: "...rich custard highly flavoured with almonds gives the best general idea of it, but there are occasional wafts of flavour that call to mind cream-cheese, onion-sauce, sherry-wine, and other incongruous dishes.... It is neither acid nor sweet nor juicy; yet it wants neither of these qualities, for it is in itself perfect. It produces no nausea or other bad effect, and the more you eat of it the less you feel inclined to stop. In fact, to eat Durians is a new sensation worth a voyage to the East to experience ...."
More recently the Lonely Planet travel writer Richard Sterling expressed another opinion, comparing its odor to “pig-shit, turpentine, and onions, garnished with a gym sock.” The AV Club folks wrap up their amusing taste test review with: "Based on its looks, smell, and feel, durian wants us to leave it alone. We should probably give it what it wants." People love it or hate it, but even in Singapore signs ban the fruit on Metro trains.
Growing up to a foot in length on large trees, the fruit weighs 2-7 lbs. There are around 30 varieties, of which 9 are considered edible, but with the development of numerous cultivars, from China to Indonesia (with 192 in Malaysia alone), there are now hundreds of options on the market. In Singapore, the season for durians is typically from June to August. The thorn covered husks have a strong smell even before being cut open, evoking very different reactions from various people; pleasantly reminiscent of almonds for some, while others experience intense disgust.
There are also wide variations in preference among people throughout the regions where the fruit is grown. Some prefer it young, others like it riper. Cakes, crêpes, gelatos/ice creams, candy, chips and rice flavorings are other ways to explore the taste. Many say it should be eaten fresh within hours of leaving the tree, for full appreciation - so the fruit to be found in Singapore would be very different from that of a Chinatown market in San Francisco, Vancouver or New York.
Southeast Asian and Chinese traditional medicine considers durian fruit to have warming properties and advise the eating of mangosteen fruit at the same time for balance. Drinking coffee or alcohol at the same time is discouraged. The Javanese believe it to have aphrodisiac qualities, saying "the durian falls and the sarong comes up (durian jatuh sarung naik). Standing under trees is not advised, (heavy, with thorns, falling from a great height...) but another Indonesian saying refers to being hit as receiving unexpected luck or good fortune (ketiban durian runtuh), and head wounds tend to be bloody affairs that prevent inflammation. Orang Mawas, the Malaysian version of "Bigfoot," (Orang Pendek in Sumatra), are said in local legends to feast on durians, as do orangutans, elephants, and even carnivorous tigers.