A Week Onboard The Legend

Two weeks ago, we were at sea onboard the Legend of the Seas. It is the smallest ship among the Royal Carribean siblings and it is occasionally sailing in Asia, with Singapore as its current home port.

It was a great experience, being away from all your worries back home. 7 days of TOTAL RELAXATION — just sleeping, eating (a lot!), lounging around staring at the sea and sky, and of course having fun!

Just sharing some photos onboard.

The ship’s own jogging/walking track… the place to be after filling yourself up at the buffet! ;)

..or you can do some rockwall climbing. That is if you can still carry yourself. :D  That’s hubby before dinnertime.. :D

The sunrise.. isn’t it a lovely view?

Lounge chairs are made for daydreaming… with the sea and sky in view. Great spot also to check out the moon and stars at night.

I definitely want to do this again.. with our future kids, or just hubby and me on our second honeymoon. ;)

Fascinating Quarries

Last Saturday was my second Saturday without hubby. He was in Manila to take care of some important matters, more important than attending to the demands of his slightly-bratty wife. :)

Anyway, being a good procrastinator, I have put off doing exercise for a week already, considering that I should be training regularly since about 3 months ago for a marathon this coming Sunday. We signed up for 21km! Good luck that we can finish before the cut off. Maybe a couple of km run and a lot of brisk walking can do the trick. Never mind track records, we just want the medal to add to our collection! :p

Going back to my Saturday, I finally was able to detach myself from the coziness of my bed on a cool Saturday morning. I put on my trainers and grabbed my phone and a small towel, and head out for a jog-slash-brisk-walk. I thought of going to Bukit Batok Nature Park, but remembered that I wanted to see the Hindhede Quarry at Bukit Timah Nature Reserve. Glad that I did, it was such a sight!

Hindhede Quarry

Hindhede Quarry

Facing the Bukit Timah Nature Reserve Visitors’ Centre, to the left is Hindhede Nature Park. The quarry is located at the end of the park, so it is not difficult to find. It took me about an hour walk (.. and a little jog ;)) going here from my place.

The place was packed with photographers, families, students on their team-building, couples relaxing, and people going solo like me. I can just imagine how nice it would be to do some yoga and meditation there.

Since I was awed by Hindhede Quarry, I thought of passing by the two other quarries on my way home.

Bukit Batok Quarry

Bukit Batok Quarry

Aside from the quarry, I took another photo of one of the park’s entrances. Looks inviting, isn’t it?

Bukit Batok Nature Park

Bukit Batok Nature Park

And finally, the quarry at Little Guilin which is nearest my place. My last stop before taking my reward called LUNCH! :D

Little Guilin

Little Guilin

All photos taken with Instagram.

What are you up to during the weekends? :)

Food photography via Instagram

Food is my favorite photo subject, and I love taking Instagram photos of them (and share them via Facebook, Twitter and/or Instagram itself, of course!)

Here are some food photos that I would like to share with you:

Let’s start off with breakfast. I love breakfast buffets!

Breakfast Buffet at Fullerton Hotel, Singapore

Breakfast Buffet (Fullerton Hotel, Singapore)

Breakfast Buffet at Centara Hotel, Manila

Breakfast Buffet (Centara Hotel, Manila)

Filipino food..

Homemade sisig

Homemade Sisig

tuyo and egg

Homemade Pinoy breakfast — Tuyo and egg with kamatis

Stuffed Squid (Wok Inn, Malate, Manila)

Spring Onion Stuffed Squid (Wok Inn, Malate, Manila)

"Sipa" or Wok Inn's version of fried dimsum (Malate, Manila)

“Sipa” or Wok Inn’s version of fried dimsum (Malate, Manila)

Indian cuisine has also become one of my favorites.

Roti Prata at Alif Restaurant, Bukit Batok, Singapore

Roti Prata (Alif Restaurant, Bukit Batok, Singapore)

Naan and Palak Paneer at Banana Leaf Apollo, Little India, Singapore

Naan and Palak Paneer (Banana Leaf Apollo, Little India, Singapore)

Chicken Briyani at Alif Restaurant, Bukit Batok, SIngapore

Chicken Briyani (Alif Restaurant, Bukit Batok, Singapore)

Our alternative to Jollibee’s Chicken Joy, without the gravy (but chilli)…

Ayam Penyet

Ayam Penyet or “smashed” chicken

Nasi Lemak

Nasi Lemak (coconut rice) with chicken wing

Nando's Peri-Peri Chicken

Nando’s Peri-Peri Chicken

Isn’t it obvious that we love chicken? :D

And we do love fried food!

potato overload

potato overload! fries and skins with cheese.

calamari

calamari

Unhealthy, right? We do eat healthy, too! (sometimes.. hihi)

grilled zucchini sandwich (Real Food, Singapore)

grilled zucchini sandwich (Real Food, Singapore)

Beet Burger (Real Food, SIngapore)

Beet Burger (Real Food, Singapore)

Caesar Salad (Soup Spoon)

Caesar Salad (Soup Spoon)

Oriental Salad with Parmesan (Real Food)

Softshell Crab Salad with Parmesan

Thai mango salad

Thai mango salad

Soup and salad (Soup Spoon)

Soup and salad (Soup Spoon)

beef wrap

beef wrap

Beef Pastrami Sub (Subway)

Beef Pastrami Sub (Subway)

Desserts can be healthy, too!

Vegan Mudpie (Real Food)

Vegan Mudpie (Real Food)

But most of the time… ooh! Sugar and calories…

ice cream onboard our flight to Manila

ice cream onboard our flight to Manila

Homemade cheescake by Scott (our German intern)

Homemade cheescake by Scott (our German intern)

Chocolate brownie

Chocolatey goodness.. sinful!

Yummy, aren’t they? Nice to pair up with coffee.. ;)

moccacino

Moccacino (McCafe)

Now I’m hungry. How about you? :D

Singapore Night Festival 2012

Night Festival 2012 in Singapore is only until today (Event dates: 24-25, 31 August and 01 September 2012). Since we were around the city area last night, we went to the National Museum of Singapore, one of the Night Festival’s event venues.

During our last visit there, we were not able to finish the tour at the Singapore History Gallery so we thought of heading straight to that area. We got our “companion” at the entrance and went on our “guided” tour through Singapore’s history.

Our “companion”-slash-tour guide
Photo credit: Cnet Asia

The “companion” is like a big iPod Classic, complete with earphones, and even comes with lanyard so you can use it hands-free. This device allows you to go about the tour at your own pace.

If you follow the tour in detail, a day might not be sufficient. And since we went there at around 11pm (museum was open only until 2am), we just went to areas which we found to be significant, such as, Singapore’s “kampong” (Malay word for “village”) era, their merge with Malaysia, its development through the years, and the leadership of modern Singapore’s founding father and first Prime Minister, Lee Kuan Yew.

Before we got to the exit, we noticed people posing for photos, so we took a peek. There was a 3D pavement art by Joe Hill, right at the lobby of the museum. I have heard about his works at Bugis, and seen some of them on the internet. I thought they are cool.

“If you jump, I jump…” <3
(taken using Instagram, Brannan filter)

Here are some of Joe Hill’s other works:

Amazing, right? To see more of his 3D pavement art, please visit joehill-art.com.

National Museum of Singapore is at 93 Stamford Road Singapore 178897. FREE admission from 6pm to 8pm DAILY. For more visiting information, please visit their website.

It’s Saturday, Take A Walk…

Hello, guys!

Today, I would like to take you around Singapore National Parks. Usually, my Saturday mornings are spent taking a walk in nature parks and breathing in some fresh air. I am not a morning person, but this is one of the few things that breaks the daily routine.

Enjoy the photos!

Alexandra Arch

Southern Ridges – Forest Walk

Southern Ridges – Henderson Waves

Hort Park

Hort Park

Kent Ridge Park

Kent Ridge Park

MacRitchie Reservoir

MacRitchie Reservoir Park

Woodlands Park Connector

Upper Seletar Reservoir

Chek Jawa Wetlands, Pulau Ubin

Ketam Quarry, Pulau Ubin

From lunch in JB to an overnight adventure in KL

How was everyone’s weekend?

Ours was quite an adventure, at least compared to our normal weekends.

Monday is holiday in Singapore (and Malaysia) so 4 friends, hubby and I decided to go out to Johor Bahru for seafood lunch. Of course, lunch does not pass without capturing the food’s sumptuousness!

Lunch is at Bamboo Restaurant 
No. 1 Jalan Sutera Satu, Taman Sentosa, 80150, Johor Bahru, Johor, Malaysia
Tel: +607-3313180
Taxi fare from City Square to Taman Sentosa: RM 12.00, approx. 10 minutes drive

Over lunch, we decided to take the trip further, so we went to Kuala Lumpur. :)

Kranji MRT to Larkin Bus Terminal (by SBS bus no. 170): S$ 1.39, approx. 40 mins. travel time, depending on time spent at Singapore and Malaysia immigration checkpoints. 
(No need to fill up white/embarkation cards at Malaysia checkpoint. They are substituted with stickers printed by the officer after scanning your passport. Thumbs up!) :D

Larkin Bus Terminal, Johor Bahru to Bus Terminal Pudu Sentral, Kuala Lumpur: RM 50.00, approx. 5-6 hours travel time.

Kuala Lumpur (KL) is the capital of Malaysia, and it is known for the iconic Petronas Twin Towers, the tallest twin towers in the world to-date.

Because this trip is unplanned, we do not have any hotel bookings. Did I mention that the holiday this Monday is Hari Raya Aidilfitri? Actually, it’s on Sunday that’s why the hotels and hostels are all full. We went in to every hotel/hostel in Chinatown, hoping that we can find a place to stay for the night. Luckily, we got 2 rooms at D’ Oriental Inn just a few seconds before one backpacker asked for vacant rooms.

Our bus schedule back to Singapore is at 2pm the next day. We finished brunch at 11:30am, so we have more time for wandering around. The boys and I went to Batu Caves. It’s a 20-minute train ride per way, just enough time to see the place and come back to catch our bus.

KTM train from Kuala Lumpur to Batu Caves: RM 1.00 per way

Yes, we went up! :D

On our way back to Kuala Lumpur, the train stopped for 30 minutes. That means, the bus left without us. And that means, more time for more adventure! :D

I have always wanted to ride the train from KL to Singapore, so we took the chance to do that this time. We booked for the 11pm train back to Singapore. It was exciting!

KTM Intercity train from KL to Singapore: RM 35.00 per way, approx. 7.5 hours travel time.

Upon reaching Singapore at 6:30am, we had to rush home and get ready for work.

We had fun and we’re definitely hoping for another adventure soon… :D

Happy 47th, Singapura!

20120809-013928.jpg
Today is Singapore’s 47th year of independence. In my 6 years of residence here, I have witnessed continuous developments with their infrastructures, making their country even more beautiful. Not to mention the sustained cleanliness and discipline for which Singapore is well-known for.

As I was watching the National Day Parade held The Float @ Marina Bay (I watched only on TV for better view of what’s happening ;)), I was amazed (as usual!) by how everyone is united and dedicated to their country. The NDP is a big annual event for all Singaporeans. Representatives from different sectors participate in dances and parades; the national defense team exhibit their skills and passion for protecting their country. There were jet planes and fireworks. As always, it was beautiful!

I wished that someday, my beloved country — the Philippines — can be like that, too. Not in terms of celebrating our Araw ng Kalayaan big time, but more of being better citizens of the country.

Earlier that day, my friends and I went for a 12km walk from Yew Tee (somewhere West of Singapore) to Mandai Road (Northern part, near Singapore Zoo), passing through nature parks and bike trails. This is one of the few signs you can see in their parks:

Have you been to Singapore? It’s one big, beautiful garden. :D

With all the recent flooding in the Philippines caused by habagat, I pray that everyone back home is safe… and when the land dries up, may they reflect on what has happened and try to be more aware of the effects of not caring enough for Mother Nature. Like Singapore, may we, Filipinos, aspire to make our country a clean and beautiful garden… at least for the sake of our children.