07.12.2012 - 07.12.2012 38 °C
Last night we decided (Chelsea decided) we should swap bunks because of the air con blowing directly on the bed so last night Liam nearly caught hyperthermia.... Chelsea turned it off at one point but an old asian man just got up and turned it back on.
We decided to go and see China Town today. On the way we had a walk around Fort Canning Park, a park in central Singapore that used to be used as a fort. It was the hottest day today and walking around the park was hard. It is like a small area of rainforrest in the middle of the city. A relief from the traffic but not the heat. The park is full of weird and wonderfull plants and trees, some of the trees are huge and look like they are out of Jungle Book with big vines hanging from them.
We really loved Chinatown. It is full of small shops and pedestrianised streets lined with shop keepers selling souvenirs, lanterns, jewellery, trinkets and resteraunts and eateries. We had a walk around and stopped off at a shop selling iced fruit juices. I had mango and Liam had apple and they were freshly juiced and delicious in the heat. All the shops have traditional shop fronts with shutters and are really colourful and old.
After our drinks we walked on to the Buddha Tooth Relic Temple which was absolutely amazing, the highlight of the day. The temple is a huge red building with several stories and is ornately decorated. When you walk inside there are several gold Buddhist figures at the front with masses of people worshiping. Monks sing into microphones along with repetitive bells and people chant along with them. The room is vast and the walls are decorated with thousands of small Buddhas. Each Buddha is devoted to someone and there family. Within the temple there is a roof garden, a worship room as well as a museum explaining Buddha and displaying relics. Round the corner we also visited Thian Hock keng temple which was not as vast but equally ornate. It was green with beautiful carvings of dragons. Inside there were shrines to different Buddhist figures where people left insense sticks.
At the night we decided to visit the Singapore Museum which was really interesting. It had several works by contemporary South East Asian artists. We then went back to the hawker market (yes we have been every night) to try a different dish. Liam had Laska a spicy noodle soup which had tofu and cockles in it. Chelsea had some Ho Fan noodles with pork, mushrooms and crispy wontons. We both agreed it was the best meal we had eaten so far.
Tomorrow we are crossing over to Malaysia on the bus. We have really enjoyed Singapore but are tired out and ready for something a little slower paced.