Tag Archives: Marina Bay

Familiar faces. Colourful fish.

A early 7:15am start in Singapore is only 9:15am back in Australia. So it’s not that bad, just waking up when it is still dark is confusing.
We took a multitude of public transport which the aircon must be working very hard to keep up. We visited Republic Polytechnic and caught up with some students that we meet back in Australia when they were visiting. One of the students gave a very good presentation and I have hopefully now made a good international connection, as I can see him going far in the professional world.
We were given a tour around RP and their labs. Their approach to learning is problem based lesions where every day they are given a problem and have to asses, manage, correct, then report back with every day. We then went to their aircraft hanger where they have examples of equipment including a Learjet, a Cessna, and an Ultralight. With facilities to teach students how to work on them. Even having an air traffic control training room which simulates Changi airport. We then rushed back to Utown were we got changed and meet up with a group of international students from all over doing a summer subject at NUS. We all took a charted bus to Sentosa island where we were given a backstage tour of the aquarium. In the aquarium we were able to see the filtration systems they use and how they maintain the aquatic life there.
After the aquarium, I went out for dinner with two of the international students and some of the guys on the study tour with me. It was nice to walk around Sentosa island, also to get to know other students and how they are finding Singapore, and what their home countries are like compared with here.

Morning trains
Morning trains
Its a Jet
Its a Jet
Flight control simulation
Flight control simulation
Changi Airport model
Changi Airport model
Shark
Shark
Too soon?
Watch out Steve Irwin

IMG_0554

Colourful fish
Colourful fish
Jellyfish or Sea jellies because they are not fish.
Jellyfish or Sea jellies because they are not fish.

IMG_0564

Sentosa island including Universal studios.
Sentosa island including Universal studios.

IMG_0575 IMG_0582

Advertisements

Marina Bay

Today we did our first group activity, which was visiting the Marina Bay, and the Gardens by the Bay. The day started for me at 8am, I got up and got dressed and attempted to find something to eat, which was suprisingly difficult. I ended up having spring rolls, there was one breakfast option which was toast with what I thought was raw egg to dip in, which didn’t look very appetising.

After breakfast I met up with the rest of the group and as we were preparing to leave we experienced our first crazy change in wearger as a tropical thunderstorm unleased on Singapore. We caught the shuttle bus to the trainstation, the train ride into the city was pretty uneventful, but the public transport system is amazingly clean and punctual.

We got off at Raffles station and walked along Marina Bay to look across to the Marina Bay Sands, the arcitechture of the building was amazing and it has a very commanding presence amongst the other skyscapers around it, it was very impressive. After we took photos of the bay it was about 12 pm, it was time for lunch, so we headed over to the Shoppes at Marina Bay Sands. I had some beef Singapore fried noodles which were delicious, and then had a wander around the shopping complex which was full of designer shops.

Next on the agenda was to visit the Gardens by the Bay, walking toward the area you are greeted by lushious greenery and huge purple towers that look like they are from a futuristic movie.

image

There are two different domes at Garden by the Bay, one called the Flower dome, which was the first one that the group went in. The Flower Dome was slightly cooler and less humid than outside which was good, the Flower Dome was okay, it was like most other gardens basically. The other garden is called the Cloud Dome, which was much more interesting than the Flower Dome. When entering the Cloud Dome younare greeted by a waterfall/cliff face that is 35 metres high, and covered in tropical plants. There was a skywalk around the top of the waterfall which gave a nice perspective of the whole garden area.

image

After the Cloud Dome we were free to go off on our own, and I went back to the shopping centre and then went back to my room.

Worshipping Nature

The first official day of the tour involved us meeting at 10am. After we meet at Starbucks, we were assaulted by an equatorial thunderstorm. The severity and the speed of the thunderstorm surprised everyone except the local, Dong Chen. The first thing on the agenda was heading to marina bay sands and walking down by the riverfront. Lunch was had at the marina bay sands food court and after everyone was gathered we headed to the biospheres. The biospheres were split up into two sections; Flowering plants and the Cloud biosphere. The Flowering biosphere had an abundance of plants from around the world and featured Australia, South Africa, USA and South America.The cloud biospheres featured a central tower with a waterfall and several levels of observation.The main attraction was the plants that were attached onto the outside of the main tower which varied and beautiful, it was obvious a large amount of time had been spent arranging and collecting these plants.So far in this trip i have the impression that the culture of Singapore is to respect plants.

Singapore so far has given me and impression that they have valued having a large amount of plants incorporated in the city however the amount of time, money and effort that has been spent creating the sanctuary of plants that is the biospheres and surrounding areas reminds me more of a temple. Singapore in a way have created a temple that displays the sanctity and respect that they hold towards nature. The Cloud Biosphere in particular reminds me of the ancient legends of the hanging garden of Babylon and like the fabled garden there are many people who travel around the world and ensure they see this wondrous enclosure. This again can be compared to the main place of worship in a country ie. Mecca, Vatican City. The people of Singapore don’t only respect nature, they give me the impression that they worship it and their scared place is the biospheres. It was definitely worth going and grasping a better understanding of the culture.

Marina Bay and Singaporean Extravagence

Holistically, Marina Bay Sands and the greater Marina Bay area is a true manifestation of the ideals of Singaporean government. In its entirety, the area is a bold, excessive yet utterly spectacular concession of the countries growing prosperity and foreshadows the countries future. In stark contrast to Little India and the country’s more socioeconomically unstable territories Marina Bay is lavish and inherently affluent. Gardens by the Bay in Marina City Park are comprised of two extraordinary observatories, which in conjunction with the surrounding greeneries advertise the flora of global ecosystems. Other than the undeniable revenue created from tourism and the extravagance of the structures, no practical assumption can be made as to why the Singaporean government built the observatories other than “because they can”.

Image

This underlines my view of the city as a whole, and is prevalent in the expenditures and architectural brilliance around each of the city’s corners – albeit these corners are separated by 5-lane, one-way roads. The state executes both public and private transport in style – an impeccably timed MRT system softens the impact of journeys in the seemingly perilous. Privately the consistency of wealth across the population is evident in the quality of their cars. Typically, it is not uncommon to see an array of Mercedes-Benz followed by an Aston Martin, Maserati, Lamborghini or Ferrari. This theme permeates the Marina Bay Sands shopping complex in which the brands of highest quality, and price for that matter, fill the center. 

As an observer, the profligacy of the city’s corporate and commercial architecture and the manner in which the general public approaches it is a testament to the financial status of the nation. It seems, despite the apparent and ubiquitous control and monitoring of the government on the community the nation exists in a state of ever-growing wealth –prompting the assumption that the current parliament are successful in their endeavours. 

Image

 

– Trey Guest