A common misconception about Singapore is that we have less interesting travel spots to offer compared to our…larger neighbours. However, what we lack in size, we more than make up for with quirky, fulfilling sites and activities per square metre. At GoBear’s invitation, I’ve set out to prove our humble Little Red Dot is indeed more than shiny new buildings and shopping malls, to bring you 5 snubbed travel wonders to include in your itinerary!
Believe it or not, I am one of a handful of Singaporeans who rarely explores Malaysia as a travel destination; I can count the number of times I’ve travelled across the Causeway on one hand.
Anyway, when Traveloka, an online travel e-commerce site in Southeast Asia, invited me to check out their flights and hotels from Singapore to Malaysia and Indonesia, curiosity got the better of me and I did a quick search on their flights from Singapore to Penang for the month of June. Holy smokes! A one-way airline ticket goes as low as RM 82! What have I been doing all these long weekends?
So, I’ve decided to do something different this time: instead of chronicling all the places I’ve travelled to, I’ve created a travel bucket list of all the things I want to check out if ever I hop on a quick 1.5 hour flight from Singapore to Penang.
Mention cafe hopping in Bali, and Sisterfields is the first name to pop up on many a traveller’s list. The all-day Australian brunch cafe has certainly earned its status as one of the must-visit tourist haunts in Seminyak, since its opening by hospitality hyphenate Adam McAsey.
Any avid cafe hopper worth his or her salt will tell you Bali is the destination for your coffee and brunch fix in Southeast Asia. And having embarked on my first trip ever last month, I can see why!
Tucked away from the bustling Seminyak area, NOOK offers visitors a much needed slice of tranquility, with its laid back vibes, whitewashed interior, and sprawling views of a neighbouring rice paddy field and nary a high rise building in sight (a rare sight for a Singaporean).
Each time I travel to Japan, I make it a point to check off a few more items off my foodie list, as well as bring back my favourite snacks to last me till my next trip.
Thanks to globalisation, though, here are some foods, desserts and snacks we can now enjoy without having to fly out from Singapore (or rely on the goodwill of friends and family to buy for us)!
I hadn’t planned on writing about my weekend trip to Izu Peninsula 伊豆半島, but it left such an impression on me that I decided to share my experience!
Located south of Mt Fuji, Izu is renowned for its breathtaking coastlines and hot springs, surrounded by mountainous terrain that stretches for miles on end. While often overlooked by foreigners in favour of Hakone and the like, it’s rather popular among locals as a weekend destination, thanks to its abundance of hot spring resorts.
After spending the first leg of my trip navigating Tokyo’s dense neighbourhoods and complex subway systems, the serenity of Izu was a welcome change, albeit only for a couple of days.
It’s relatively accessible via train from Tokyo, although getting around will take considerably longer, especially if you’re thinking about visiting the coastal attractions.
Towards the tail end of my Tokyo trip, I was craving for Western food badly enough that I decided to brave the queue at Luke’s Lobster, a seafood franchise located a stone’s throw away from Takeshita Dori in Harajuku.
Contrary to my initial belief, Luke’s Lobster did not originate in Japan; it was brought over from New York some time around 2015. The idea came about when founder Luke Holden and his father set out to make their idea of a perfect lobster roll: chock full of fresh, chunky lobster claws, minus the diluted coleslaw and mayonnaise mix that seemed to plague most restaurants in New York.
As luck would have it, the queue had pretty much dissipated when I joined, although it swelled to about 20 people by the time I reached the front counter. Good timing, or maybe I’m just incredibly lucky when it comes to queueing for food overseas (why the same luck doesn’t apply to my favourite stalls at Amoy during lunchtime is a mystery).