Friday, November 30, 2018

3D/3N in Singapore minus the Theme Park (Day 1 ~ China Town)

For my birthday, my Ex and I got a chance to do another out of country gallivanting (without the kids).  I have always wanted to go to Singapore minus the theme park commotion ~ Singapore was perfect for a short vacation; And since this is our 4th (or is it 5th) time there, this visit is more relaxed and carefree.

We took an early flight via Singapore Airlines and arrived at Changi Airport before noon time. 

  • For SGD we exchanged a few USD at the airport and the rest we exchanged at Mustafa. Rates at the airport was surprisingly good (the best rates we have seen though was at Mustafa Shopping Center, which was slightly higher by a few centavos).
  • We bought EZ Link and local sim cards, before taking a taxi to Amara Hotel near Chinatown.   Our taxi ride to Chinatown costs about SGD25.  
Our chosen hotel for our Singapore excursion is Amara Hotel (I will write a separate post about Amara).  It is located at Tanjong Pagar Road. Location is within walking distance form Chinatown.  Nearest MRT is Tanjong Pagar Station (about 300meters) and Chinatown Station (1 km away, about 7-9 minutes walk along scenic charming the Tanjong Pagar Road). 

Day 1 ~ Chinatown 

First stop ~
Singapore Gallery is a perfect way to start ones tour of the city.  It showcases a miniature 3D version of the Singapore on a 1:400 scale.  It was fun looking at the miniature buildings and identifying the streets and landmarks. 

About 3 minutes away is the next item in our agenda ~ Buddha Tooth Relic Temple is a remarkable four-story temple. Be sure to visit all the floors.  We took the elevator to the top floor then walked our way down.  It is really a magnificent temple.  

Then came the China Heritage Center ~ it is a good place to rediscover the life of Singapore's early pioneers and the stories of people who made Chinatown their home.  

Hours (not so sure how long we've been there) at the Chinatown Heritage Center worked up our appetite.  Just across the Center the Chinatown Seafood Restaurant. Food there is really very good and perfect night cap to our Chinatown tour.

Walked back to the hotel with a cup of special Singaporean ice cream on my hand.  It was a nice take-out as we check out Chinatown's many shops.

Look who bid us on our way out of Chinatown... 
"The Buddha of Wealth (Laughing Golden Buddha)”.

  • Bring water and stay hydrated.
  • Spend at least half a day at Chinatown, but if you really want to appreciate this part of Singapore at least a day should be in order.
  • I did not do much shopping here, except for lucky charm bracelets which I gave my husband.
  • For shopping I really recommend going to Mustafa.  They have everything there.  But if it is too far out Chinatown shopping will do. 
  • We were not able to check out the nearby Maxwell Hawker place, but were back on our last night before leaving for Manila.

Follow our Day 2 as we explore Marina Bay Sands,

Palm Beach Resort Laiya Batangas ~ Resort Review

I have been again dreaming of kicking of my high heels to doing some barefoot sand-walking~ I thought some vitamin SEA was timely!

So we hopped on the family car and found ourselves back to one of favorite relaxation scene ~ Laiya Batangas.  

We love that it is barely 3 hours away Manila and the beach stretch is clean and tranquil.

Our latest discovery is Palm Beach Resort

Palm Beach is a bit tucked away from the rest of the Laiya Beaches, which makes it perfect for real time peace and quiet.

Unfortunately the sand was quite coarse (so be sure to wear the right shoes), but water is clear and view is faultless.

We stayed at the ground floor of Casa Blanca.  We could not have chosen a more perfect room.  It is closest to the resort's infinity pool and the dining hall. 

The Casa Blanca is perfectly sized for our family of four.  It is fitted with 2 queen beds and a day bed.  

There is wifi and cable, but never really got to use them much as we were out soaking up the scenery. 

 We slept soundly with the billowing waves outside as background. 

We get to check out the infinity pool, 
which my youngest enjoyed a lot.


  • As expected we had a wonderful family time at Palm Beach ~ it was really rejuvenating and just what our stressed out bodies ordered.  It was one of the most relaxing vacations we have had.
  • The full board (breakfast, lunch, dinner with morning and afternoon snacks) that came with our package was simple yet delectable.  
  • Staff were likewise amazing ~ cordial and cheerful.

Palm Beach Resort is located in Barangay Hugom Laiya, 
San Juan Batangas 

For inquiries and reservation please visit their webpage at 

Holy Land 2019 ~ Saying Goodbye to Jordan (DAY 13 ~ JORDAN)

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