My recent adventures- Singapore

Hey everyone!  As promised, I’m back to share insight from my recent trips.  Over Spring Break, I was lucky to have the opportunity to travel to Singapore as part of a school trip.  It was an amazing experience, and it marked the first time that I’d traveled to Asia.  Singapore is a very unique place, even for Asia since it’s considered a true melting pot of cultures.  It’s sort of like the USA in that there is a huge range of ethnicities and cuisine.  However, unlike America, its culture is very distinct.  The city (which makes up the whole country) is by far the cleanest place that I’ve very visited.  It might come to a shock at first to find out that chewing gum is illegal, but as soon as you hit the streets, you’ll realize the immense impact of the intense ban.  Everything is spotless and crisp, making it a very refreshing place to travel to.  Here, I’ve complied a list of great things to enjoy in Singapore from my experience.

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This was the view from the Marina Mandarin hotel (the hotel I stayed in).  

Please take time to admire the view- The architecture is incredible as the city truly combines old, new, and futuristic together.  The bay, marina, and skyline are all worthwhile to gaze at.  Many hotels offer views, and the famous Boat Hotel (Marina Bay Sands Hotel) has an observation desk that will blow you away.

 

 


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Go to the Merlion park- The mythical merlon figure is the official symbol of Singapore.  One of the most popular places to visit is a park that has a huge sculpture of a Merlion.  It happens to be the most photographed picture in the city, if that tells you anything about it’s importance.  It’s worth visiting just for a picture.  You can even take a historical bum boat to the park which is a ton of fun!

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Raffles Hotel- This famous hotel was the spot of the first european settlement in Singapore.  It is named after the country’s colonial founder, Sir Stamford Raffles.  The hotel also marks the spot where the Singapore Sling cocktail was invented, among other claim to fames.  The hotel operates as a luxury hotel today, and visitors are welcome for pictures.

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Take a street tour on a traditional trishaw- The streets of Singapore are extremely fascinating.  Everything is so colorful, vivid, and lively.  There is no better way than to tour them then on a trishaw.  The most well known tour is the Trishaw Uncle co.  The uncles are super fun, and really embrace the friendly nature of Singaporean culture.  They play music, crack jokes, and show you around the city they love.

 

 

 

The Singapore Zoo- Thanks to major conservation efforts and state of the art enclosures, the Singapore Zoo has become world renowned.  It’s massive, and believe me, kids and adults alike will enjoy it.  Many exhibits are in open spaces where the animals can roam around without an enclosure.  At night, you can take a safari ride through a separate park showing nocturnal animals.

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The light show at Gardens by the Bay

Gardens by the Bay- This massive park is a wonder to behold filled with futuristic super trees and enclosed landscapes.  You can climb up and around the trees to gaze out at the city, in addition to taking in a magnificent light spectacle at night complete with dinosaurs and music.  Fun fact; the Super Trees are powered by solar electricity, representing the many ways that Singapore is committed to sustainability.

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The fabulous super trees

 

 

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The Orchid garden at the National Botanical gardens- This garden holds one of the best collections of unique and rare orchids in the world.  Orchids, which are native to Southeast Asia, are the national flower of Singapore.  The garden showcases that in an amazing display with some of the most beautiful flowers I have ever seen.

 

Chinatown- One of the many examples of culture displayed in Singapore is the extensive village of Chinatown.  It is full of street bazaars and temples.  The Buddhist temple, located in the heart of the area, is gorgeously decked out in gold and red hues.  It is a great place to visit and learn more about the world’s religions.

 

Hawker’s Markets- These elaborate yet cheap food halls are full of various local and international flavors.  Take some time to look around the many choices of food at the different stalls.  Chicken rice, the national dish, is located at pretty much every one.  This is worth the try, although it wasn’t my favorite due to the fact that I’m not big on chicken.

 

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A dessert of shaved ice, coconut cream, and fruit found at a Hawker’s stand

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Delicious native fruit of Singapore. I loved trying these exotic produces.

Singapore is an amazing place to check out, even if your just stopping through.  I loved the culture and class of the place, making everything super pleasant.  The food is exotic, the architecture unique, the people friendly, and, did I mention, english is the national language, making travel simpler and stressless for American tourists.

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I’m Back!

Hello readers (who probably forgot about me), and non readers who I want to become readers!  I apologize for not writing these last months as I’ve been extremely busy with graduation, senior obligations, college decisions, and travel.  Everything has been a ton of fun, however, and I have now finally found time to share my fun with you!

A lot has been going on in my life recently including 2 big international trips, and myself preparing to move to New York for school.  With summer coming to an end, I’m hoping to share the adventures that I’ve had, and will have before I head out to school.  I’m trying to revamp the blog so that it’s  more of a overall lifestyle blog with me sharing tips and wisdom from my life centered around my favorites hobbies (food, travel, and fashion).

Then, once I move out to New York (and by the way, NY means small college town living, not city that never sleeps), I will focus on trying to live a fulfilled, adventurous, and classy college life.  I will share tidbits on how I’m doing that, in addition to travel.  My college’s location is a tad isolation from city life, but I believe that I’m going to have easy access to cities up and down the east coast, in addition to the atlantic shore and charming small town life.  I cannot wait to hopefully expand this blog while focusing on a more college student targeted audience!

I will try to post more content in the next couple of days, as I attempt to revamp everything!

Thank you, Addie ❤

You better Belize it

Over the course of the last week, I haFullSizeRender-25d the opportunity to travel to the beautiful country of Belize for a mission trip with my church.  Although the trip centered around mission and volunteer work at a local school, we still managed to explore the vast culture of the country while contributing to a great cause.  I hope the experiences that i witnessed stay with me forever and I would like to share them and encourage others to look into traveling to Belize or to participate on mission work.

After arriving at the airport at 3:15 am, my group finally disembarked the plane at what seemed like a late hour (12:00 pm) to suffocating heat that instantaneously brought about extreme perspiration.  Now I know that that does not sound like the most pleasant welcome from a country but it resulted in a greater appreciation for air-conditioning and we knew automatically that we would be experiencing tropical climate and weather at its finest.  Once the initially shock of the heat died down, we made our way through customs and out of the airport to be greeted by a bus that would take us the lunch and the port.  The first meal in Belize that we ate truly embodied the traditional Belizean cuisine with their staples substances of rice and beans.  I will write more about the food in another post.  After lunch, we boarded a boat and traveled to the island of Ambergris Caye and the town of San Pedro.

San Pedro is a lively but quant town, bustling with locals and tourists alike.  The island is very narrow with

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A bustling street of San Pedro

only 4 streets including the beach.  Walking up and down the beach, you find it lined with restaurants and hotels along with more extensive resorts and small little shops.  There are docks extending the town every 100ft or so that offer different water sports and snack stands.  The sea itself is crystal clear.  With the water being only a few feet deep,  swimming and relaxing is easy.  Everyday, after a long morning of work (starting at 5 am), we would all go and relax and swim in the waterfront right outside of our hotel.  Strangely, or maybe not,  the water is warm for the ocean but we weren’t going to complain.  Any water felt good after being drench in sweat all morning long.  As for the shops throughout town, there are many great places for souvenirs and artisan crafts.  One of my favorites is called “12” and it sells all handmade gifts from Belize such as jewelry, spices and clothing.  Another place that is fascinating was the artisan market where there are booths lining a square with all sorts of crafts and souvenirs.  In addition to shopping, we also ate our way through the town by means of fruit and candy stands, ice-cream shops and smoothie shops and my particular favorite, the Belizean Chocolate Company, a local chocolate shop with all sorts of delicious delicacies.  I’ll tell you now that the Belizean people have master the art of sweets but more on that later with my food post.

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Holy Cross Anglican, the school that my church helped out at.

After 5 long days of work and play, in addition to a day filled with snorkeling, our group headed to another island called Caye Caulker.  This particular island is smaller than Ambergris but still filled with culture and charm.
I highly recommend the boutique hotel called “Seaside Cabanas” since it offers great beachside views and comfortable accommodations.  The rooms are decorated in Belizean style and the courtyard is gleaming with a beautiful pool and

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Seaside Cabanas hotel

lounge chairs, exactly what we needed after a long week of work. We spent that last weekend relaxing poolside and on a catamaran sailboat where we swam and snorkeled in the sky blue water.  Caye Caulker didn’t offer as much shopping and recreation as Caye Ambergris did and I would recommend Ambergris over Caulker if you wanted to vacation on a Belize island.

All in all, it was a wonderful experience filled with memories of joy.  Belize is a beautiful countries with a great culture.  Through the work involved with the mission, I am proud to have hopefully made an impact on the kids of San Pedro and Holy Cross Anglican, the school that we worked at.  I hope that the memories and experiences stay with me so I can cherish them forever and fuel my love of travel.

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Sunset over the ocean