This trip wouldn’t have pushed through if not for the dogged insistence of my sister to go so she could visit Universal Studios SG. First, there was a major boo-boo with our flight booking; then the hotel reservation almost got cancelled; and then the foul weather late last week was a true cause for concern. Nobody wants to fly during stormy weather, and even if one does fly in the middle of a storm, the flight could prove to be bumpy one.
So instead of flying Cebu Pacific from Clark, we opted for Tiger Airways from NAIA 1 (which is my least favorite airport) at the break of stormy dawn last Saturday. The moments after take-off were nothing but frightening–think of it as, you were riding in jeep on an unpaved, pockmarked road. But instead of being on a somewhat level ground, you were climbing thousands of feet above sea level.

NAIA1, Airport, Tiger Airways

We stayed at Temple Inn on Chinatown and spent most of our time window-shopping, riding trains, visiting malls, taking pictures, buying knick-knacks. To be honest, I sort of missed all the walking that we had on our first trip last year. Apart from the Universal Studios trip, we especially enjoyed a visit to a local grocery, of all places and things to do!, to purchase food items that we couldn’t find anywhere in Manila, such as our favorite brand of milk tea, instant noodles, chips, biscuits, etc. 
When I first visited Universal Studios last year with friends, the park was still in its soft launch, so a lot of attractions were not yet available. As my sister and I were were such scardy cats who also hated lining up for hours, we ended up watching a lot of musical shows and indoor attractions. 

Two scary/exciting rides, depending on how you look at them: Battlestar Galactica and The Revenge of the Mummy roller coasters.

Waterworld…a.k.a., prepared to get drenched!

The only ride that I tricked the sister into taking LOL!

Abs, pare! 

Although it was still the “great sale” season, most of the items that we checked were a lot more expensive than the ones sold in Manila, so we thought we might as well look for things that we couldn’t find in our local malls or supermarkets, i.e., food items sold only in either Singapore or Malaysia. 

I have a feeling that two of the guys from this group are Pinoys.

Some field of dreams installation by the Universal Studios’ entrance

I’m not so brave to get onto this ride. It’s fun to take pictures, though.

Where not to sleep

BTW, our verdict on The Inn at Temple Street: never again. Worst. Inn. Ever. I have never been at a place that had more molds than this inn. I thought that we were the only ones who were unlucky enough to be assigned to a windowless, smelly, moldy room, but the next morning, I heard another guest complain about his room to the front desk officer. The front desk officer at this place was very nice and accommodating, but apart from her  the only thing that was going for this hostel was its location. Nice furniture, though.

Nope, the inn doesn’t have elevators.
You wouldn’t know that this room was crazy damp like crazy from the pictures except for the mould stains on the walls. Yuck!

Eats Singapore

If you are a budget traveler, you will save a lot from dining on dimsums on Chinatown. Smith Street has the most number of dimsum joints at super affordable prices…as long as you don’t convert them into Philippine pesos.

Around Chinatown

Building facades around the district seem to have been made to look really pretty on photos.

Chinatown, Singapore, Facade

Chinatown, Singapore, Facade

Chinatown, Singapore, Facade

Chinatown, Singapore, Facade, Ye Olde Cuban, Pub

Chinatown, Singapore, Facade

Chinatown, Singapore, Facade
On Smith Street in Chinatown, Singapore