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SINGAPORE DAY 6 (SENTOSA)

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We deposited our baggage at Festive Hotel, before we began touring Sentosa.

A day in Sentosa is not enough to go visit it's multitude of attractions.  There were really just so many to choose from.  

We decided to buy the Sentosa 1 Day Pass online via the Sentosa website and hoped we can get the most out of the ticket cost by visiting as much attractions as we can.

The Sentosa 1 Day Pass allows you one time access 20 attractions.






Our Sentosa itinerary:
10am - Trick Eye Museum. My boys love this one and we had so much fun posing and interacting with the exhibits.   12am - Lunch at Malaysian Food Street. Located right next to the Trick Eye Museum. It is actually a food court. There are plenty of food options with prices not far from the ones outside Sentosa. We took the Sentosa Express from Waterfront Station to reach the Imbiah Station for the next agenda. 1pm - Images of Singapore Live (IOSL).  Entering IOSL was like being transported back to Singapore's history.  Unlike regular ex…

Museums - We Love!

We love museums,  I was reading through my blog and realized that we have a lot of museum posts to date:

PHILIPPINES
The Mind Museum at BGC Taguig CityScience Park, Mind MuseumBen Cab Museum in Baguio CityPMA Museum in Baguio CityMuseo Pambata in ManilaExploreum at SM Mall of AsiaDinosaur Land Museum in Clark Pampanga
SINGAPORE
Madame TussaudScience Center MuseumTrick Eye Museum
HONGKONG
HongKong Museum of HistoryMadame Tussaud Wax Museum

SINGAPORE DAY 5 (Singapore Zoo)

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Warning:  This place is huge.  It is so expansive, a day is not enough to get the most out of Singapore Zoo.


Note: If zoos are in your itinerary, I suggest getting park hopper tickets online via the Singapore Zoo website for purchase discounts. We saved the confirmation vouchers on our phone, which we used to enter the zoo.  The ticket came with unlimited tram ride.

8am -We left the hotel early via taxi (SGD25) for the 9am Breakfast with the Orangutans at Ah Meng Restaurant (Note: If you intend to avail of the Breakfast with the Orangutan, please reserve online. Payments are made direct at the restaurant prior to seating).9am - Arrived at the Singapore Zoo and hurried to Ah Meng.  (Note: It is still about 2-3 minutes walk from the main entrance, so please come early to avoid rushing).
We skipped lunch and instead had ice cream at Ben and Jerry's.

4pm - Left the zoo and went back to base to rest our tired feet.6pm - Pizza Hut, Lucky Plaza for Christmas Dinner. Lucky Plaza is short 5-8 …

SINGAPORE DAY 4 (Jurong Bird Park and Science Center with side trip to the Transformers Exhibit)

Singapore has numerous zoo parks that vies for the title best zoo in Asia, if not of the world.  Their zoos mimic the animals original environment, that somehow creates an impression of freedom.  I was glad we had this in our itinerary. 

730am - Breakfast at the Carousel Restaurant, Royal Plaza on Scotts.830am - Left for Jurong Bird Park via taxi (SGD30)9am - Arrive at the Jurong Bird Park. 12nn - Lunch at Birds at Play, Jurong Bird Park. Food was surprisingly very good and tasty.  130pm - Left the zoo via a limousine taxi (SGD20). This was more expensive, but realized after that the difference was merely SGD3-4. It was very nice and the ride was so smooth.2pm - Arrived at the Science Center. It is just a short distance away Jurong Bird Park. The Science Center is huge complex that houses numerous exhibits.  My boys love museums and if we have more time, we could easily spend an entire day touring this center.

430pm - Transferred to the Transformers' Exhibit. We just had to see the…

SINGAPORE-MALAYSIA DAY 2 & 3 (LEGOLAND)

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My boys are Lego fanatics.  LEGOLAND Malaysia, which is located at Johor Bahru, which is about 1 hour travel by land from Singapore was an obvious must in our itinerary. 

Although Legoland is just an hour away from Singapore, clearing immigration and  the volume of travelers going to and fro Singapore and Malaysia can be a nightmare at times, which can easily add another hour or so to your travel time.

We have 3 travel options in getting to Malaysia from Singapore: public SG-MY cab, bus or private transfers.  Again we opted for convenience and booked a door-to-door transfer from Singapore to Malaysia and back.




DAY 2 (LEGOLAND PARK)

Our Day 2 starts with an early check-out from Royal Plaza on Scotts (RPoS). We deposited our luggage and brought only our Malaysia bags (Note: I packed a separate bag for Malaysia, so we do not have to bring everything back and forth).

7am - Check-out at RPoS. Check out was a breeze. Before leaving I informed reception that we would be returning late the follow…

SINGAPORE DAY 1 (Singapore Flyer, DUCKtour and Gardens by the Bay)

We had an early first day kick off in Singapore.
6am - flight out Manila via PAL.  My husband and I had 3 options in going to the airport: park and fly, rent an airport transfer or ask a friend to bring us to the airport.  For safety reasons we opted for park and fly (will write a detailed review on this later).
PAL left Manila on time and we arrived in Singapore 3 hours and 40 minutes after. 10am - Arrived at Changi airport Singapore. It took us less than an hour to clear immigration and collect our baggage; Bought Singtel's Hi! SIM Card at Changi Recommends outlets. 1030am - Left Changi via taxi (SGD25) and arrived at Royal Plaza on Scotts (RPoS), Orchard 20 minutes later.  11am - It was real nice of RPoS to accommodate our request for an early check-in. We were able to freshen up before heading to our next agenda.
Note:  I bought the Singapore Flyer, DUCKtour and Gardens by the Bay tickets through Asia Travel.  You can get these tickets cheaper at travel and tour agencies at Lucky P…

SINGAPORE - MALAYSIA Itinerary and Tips (8D/7N)

Singapore never runs out of things to do for everyone. This particular itinerary was tailor fitted for families travelling with young children (mine are ages 6 and 10).

The plan was 1 day Singapore City tour, then an overnight at LEGOLAND Malaysia, before returning again to Singapore to finish the remaining days of our vacation.

Our mode of transportation in Singapore is via taxi, which proved to be more convenient and faster for a family of 4.  Travel by taxi was a bit expensive, but it saved us some walking time and energy to enjoy the attractions more.  Remember we were travelling with children and the attractions are NOT really right next to the MRT.  It would take another 8-10 minutes of walking .  Under Singapore's humid weather - walking is an absolute punishment to the young kiddos. 

Here is our 8D/7N itinerary (will add links and details as I finish writing them).

Day 1 - Singapore City
Day 2 and 3 - LEGOLAND Malaysia
Day 4 - Jurong Bird Park and Science Center
Day 5 - Singapo…

Relaxing Stay at 8 Suites Tagaytay

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It was a busy work week for me and hubby and needed a quick get-away haven to relax and unwind.

So we got ourselves, what seemed to be a perfect deal from a group buying site and before we knew it: our bags were packed and we were dragging the kids off to 8 Suites by Fat Jimmy in Tagaytay.

Traffic was light and we reached our destination just in time for the 2pm check-in.  There were no visitors when we came in and for a moment it felt like being welcomed to our own vacation home (libre mangarap).



8 Suites is a bit far-off Tagaytay City proper. It is difficult to reach without your own transportation, which also meant it was heavenly peaceful and tranquil. 

We were pleasantly surprised at how beautiful 8 Suites is. 


And its location overlooking Taal Lake was enough reason to choose this place and stay.


As the name suggests, this bed and breakfast place only has 8 rooms. There are 3 room types: deluxe, superior and premier. 

We were ushered to a deluxe room, with 2 queen sized bed that can…

Exploreum... where SCIENCE becomes FUN

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Worthwhile family activities is become more and more difficult to find.   I was excited to hear that the SM through its lifestyle and entertainment arm, has recently undertaken a revamp of the SM Science Center into the Exploreum. The Exploreum houses eight (8) main galleries, covering vast range of topics and interests. Connect showcases various communication equipment.  It has an exhibit of old computer, television, cellular phone, which were amusing conversational pieces to tell your kids how communication evolved as we know it today.

Cyberville is a hands-on-gallery featuring various inventions.  My kids grew a liking to the solar powered car that actually moves and took turns running it.

Human Adventure provides visitors an in-depth view of the human body.
The Living Earth shows the origin of the planet.
Natural World showcases flora and fauna.
ZoomGallery explores automobiles and planes at work. Space Camp, meanwhile shows visitors a peep of life in space. 
The SM Planetarium is a 180 d…

Stay, Eat and be Merry at New World Hotel Makati

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Our latest staycation was at the New World Hotel Makati.  My husband had to work overnight on his birthday and I can't bear the thought of him spending his special day alone, so we decided to hang around. Since he would be working at New World Hotel tonight (all smiles), we were able to get special rates.  Our package included welcome drinks and noon tea buffet.  Our receptionist personally seated us at the lobby lounge as we were served welcome drinks. Since our room was not yet available, we decided to take the noon tea as well. This is the good life!
My kids went gaga over the sweet deserts and pastries.   They easily filled their plates with baked goodies they can eat ~ a real sugar overload!
After we finished and the kids had their fill, a bellboy took our bags and helped us to our room. 
We stayed in a superior room with a king size bed, plus a complimentary extra bed to fit us (2 adults and 2 kids) comfortably.
The room was quite small (made smaller with the additional bed set-up…

PMA Museum

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Have you been to the PMA Museum?  Well it was a must go, during our last Baguio vacation for our military wannabes kiddos. The museum is small and outdated.  There is a video presentation in the entrance gallery and mannequins in PMA cadet uniforms from yesteryears. There is model cadet room on display, but that is just about it.  About 85% of the exhibit are photos.  Not very enticing.  My boys love  museums here and abroad, and so I was not surprised to hear my youngest quipped, "..so Ma, what happened to the rest of museum?"  We were literally finished 10 minutes, right after paying the P10 entrance fee. The place needs major revamp.

Our PMA Fieldtrip

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My boys have always been fascinated with men in uniform, with my youngest wanting to be a soldier.  What better way to fuel their dreams but by bringing them to the primary military institution in the country. So in our last Baguio vacation, we found ourselves on a field trip with the kiddos to the Philippine Military Academy (PMA). PMA grounds has been kept pristine clean and refreshing. Picture perfect playground with the most relaxing of atmosphere. One of the highlights of our PMA trip are the model tanks and helicopters.

I was a bit saddened my boys did not get to see marching cadets. Although we did manage to take glimpses of cadets walking in unison - good enough, hopefully next time we will strike lucky.  TIPS: (a) Drop by the souvenir shops and buy PMA shirts and PMA trinkets for cool "pasalubong". (b) Visit the PMA webpage and read its history to get better appreciation of your trip. (c) Head off and check the PMA Museum, it may be small, but still worth the visit.  (d) PMA …

Forest House Bistro and Cafe Baguio

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I had to make sure, that we get in, the famous Forest House Bistro and Café this time!  The last uneventful visit, when we were refused entry (since I underestimated the place and forego reservations) - was truly a bad experience.  I called up Forest House and confirmed a dinner table for four.  We came a little early for dinner and it was a good thing, since parking is limited and could be a nightmare if we came a little later. The place was half full when we came in.  The place is intimate and nicely decorated in cottage-country home motif and lovely eye candy trinkets all over.  There is a small veranda outside, but view wasn't as terrific as I thought.  

Revisiting Azalea Residences

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We were so pleased with our previous stay at Azalea, so a repeat stay was an obvious no brainer.  We were back for the 2nd time for a quick last minute vacation before school officially opens. I got a 1 bedroom loft via Agoda.com.  I think it was a very good deal that came with buffet breakfast.  I was half-awed to see how spacious the room is.   The room is 45sq m.  It has a bedroom with a queen size bed and a sofa bed in the living room (sleeps 4 comfortably). The place is so big it can fit probably another 2-3 single beds more. The room also came with 2 LCD TVs with cable (however, I find the channels were very limited) and DVD players.  Like the previous room we stayed in the last time, there is a working kitchen and dining area with full size refrigerator, microwave oven.  Unfortunately, the 1 bedroom loft does not offer a view.  The windows were small and too high.  Not much natural lights comes into the room. I actually find it too dimmed.  Would have loved to get a view and some…