Is Singapore really Yokel-town, Asia?

This question has been disturbing me for some time now. And since Barkha Dutt, Rajdeep Sardesai et al have, in their inimitable breathlessness told us that Obama has won & created history, I thought I too must seize the moment and address another one of the burning questions of our times.

The answer, as so often it is, is – yes & no.

Most of Singapore is tarted up to attract the group tourist from across Asia. So, as I wandered across Sentosa, the Zoo and the such, I came across wandering groups of Filipinos, Indonesians, Vietnamese, Chinese and of course, desis. Filipinos, gay and musical. Indonesians mostly led by young mothers with babies. Vietnamese with carefully controlled countenances of less than full comprehension. Indians loud and jumping the queue.

But, surprisingly enough there is another side to this city. Try the Singapore Botanical Gardens for starters. It is 52 hectares of supreme indulgence in the midst of true, tropical gardens. And most certainly check out the Orchid Garden inside it. And for a real Singapore moment, bend down to sniff a rare set of fragrant orchids.

Or of course, try the chilli crab, which I continue to rate as among the top 3 dishes for me & which is really made this well only in Singapore. A new restaurant I discovered this time was ‘Jumbo’ within the 20 kilometers of the massive East Coast Park. incidentally, the East Coast Park is a great place to hire roller-blades or cycles and really get about (or even do a bit of water sports). Which we did, like a lot of the locals over one weekend.

Or just stick your head out of the window for that unique experience you can never get in India – a lungful of clean, city air.

Next time you have a long weekend, try Singapore. Just avoid Sentosa like the plague.


One thought on “Is Singapore really Yokel-town, Asia?

  1. I like Singapore also because it is like a mini asia. You can go to peninsula plaza and pretend you are in Burma, or at Golden Mile and you are in Thailand. For younger readers let me suggest Haji lane near Arab street for the interesting boutiques and street side cafes.

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