To the land of modern architectural beauty

Travelling is a way of escaping everyday life and going to new places can broaden your imagination, writes Rummana Ferdous Fagun from her travel experience.

Despite planning for months there arose so many last minute obstacles that I was very sceptical about how the trip would pan out, but it turned out to be a trip of a lifetime. Singapore has so many beautiful places that describing it all at once is nearly impossible. I will just describe the must visit places now.

Far-far-awaySo, after many anxious days of planning and a hectic plane ride, we reached our station, Changi Airport. The first thing that struck us was the beauty of the airport. It even had a small orchid garden. Leaving the airport behind on my way to the hotel the landscape is what grabbed my eyes. The huge skyscrapers were so beautifully built that they are bound to grab your attention while strolling around town. The town can be described as a collection of well organised localities with clean roads, friendly people and diverse food selection. It is filled with shopping malls and restaurants serving various types of cuisines, but if you are looking for Bangladeshi restaurants with rice-fish in the menu, Little India is the place to go.

This city-state has an area of 277.6 square metres, a little more than twice of the size of Dhaka, but in that small area they have managed to build so many tourists places, it is beyond imagination. One small tip: buy the entry tickets of the places you’ll visit from the tourist booth at the airport, it is cheaper.

Puss-in-boot's-giant-journeSo, the first place we visited was the ‘Gardens by the Bay’ at the centre of the city. It was unlike anything I have seen, ever. The compound is filled with small sculptures, but the things visible from afar are the three huge tree shaped sculptures covered with small flower plants of different colours. It looked like something straight out of Avatar, but this wasn’t even the main attraction for me. Beside these sculptures there are two exhibits which you shouldn’t miss. One is the ‘Flower Dome’ and the other is the ‘Cloud Forest,’ among everything I saw in Singapore the cloud forest had to be the best thing I have seen, mostly because I am a nature lover.

The flower dome is a sanctuary of flower plants of all kinds. Whereas, the cloud forest is a huge glass dome which looks otherworldly from the inside and out. Once you enter it, you feel a surge of misty air from an artificial waterfall falling from small mountain top. The whole mountain is ornamented with plants of numerous types. You can climb to the top of the mountain using lifts and stairs. The whole place is man-made but it will give you the chills of being in an actual rain forest.

Universal-studio-globeThe second most memorable thing was the Universal studio which is in a small island (Sentosa) not far from the main town. This theme park is so huge that it took us a whole day to see the place and it was time well spent. Each of the rides and exhibits are unique that it would be a shame to miss even one of those. The whole place is divided into seven sections and each of them is built thematically. The first one is Hollywood Boulevard where there is a building showcasing the characters from sesame street. There was also a theatre holding live shows of Sesame Street but sadly it was closed due to renovation.

The next stop was ‘Madagascar’ which had the ship like the one in the movie that carried the animals to Madagascar. A boat ride shows you the whole story of the movie within five minutes using life size puppets of Alex, Gloria, Melman, Marty and other major characters. The sounds and the visuals is what make it the most interesting.

The characters (which are basically people wearing costume) even perform shows for the audience. We were lucky to have been there at the right time and watched them dance to the party tune from ‘Madagascar.’ It seems childish but I found myself enjoying it quite a lot.

After that we went to ‘Far Far Away,’ the third stop. Here there are many activities you can try. The first one is the 4D show of Shrek. Here a new story is told and with 4D animations. It’s most enjoyable for kids especially. After that we went on ‘Puss in boots’ giant journey’ and it was such a thrill. The ride wasn’t too fast and it was quite different from a traditional roller coaster. Each of the rides tells a story relating to the respective movie and this one was no different. The goal was collecting golden eggs for Puss (you won’t actually be collecting any eggs) and the sound effects along with the ride made it even more interesting.

Next, ‘The Lost World’ which features Jurassic Park has a few dinosaur sculptures, water fountains, a river raft ride and a few other things. We missed the raft ride as we didn’t want to get wet and now I am regretting it.

Our next destination was ‘Ancient Egypt’. It had a jeep ride and a high speed roller coaster. The most exciting thing about this part was the aesthetics. There were stone sculptures of Pharaohs, pillars of stone, pyramids and date trees; it actually felt like being inside the movie ‘The Mummy.’

From there we went to the sixth destination, ‘Sci Fi City’ which had suddenly transported us to the future! It had two huge roller coasters; we got scared just by looking at it. Then the last ride of the evening was the Transformers’ ride, which was undoubtedly the best thing I have ever experienced. It was a 3D experience and it will make you feel like you’re actively taking part in the movie yourself.

The last place was ‘New York.’ After a day of rides and adrenaline rushes this presented a calming environment, with people walking through New York’s streets and strolling away lazily the day came to an end.

If you’re planning to visit Singapore be sure to have plenty of time on your hand and you won’t be disappointed. For me, it was a unique experience for sure.


Rummana Ferdous Fagun is a student of Dhaka University.

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