Lifestyle & Travel

Dec 1, 2016

ASIAN GLAMOUR

If you were thinking Singapore is likewise as the countries surrounding it, forget it. Instead of the caos, poverty and disorganization of neighbour countries, Singapore is an example of cosmopolitanism and of the very first world. And, being one of the three city-states of the world, along with Vatican and Monaco, it is equally a very rich country.

It is one of the most modern, civilized and evolved nations of southeast Asia. The streets are clean and organized, with good urban planning that allows plenty of green spaces, the public transport system is highly efficient and the buildings architecture doesn't behind from Tokyo or New York. Much on the contrary, what immediately comes up is the wealth, the style, the design and good taste these buildings bare.

Singapore is an insular country, composed by 63 islands, placed on the Malayan Peninsula, separated only from Malaysia by the Johor Straight (by north), and from Indonesia by the Riau Islands and Singapore's Straight, by south.

The country is highly urbanized, but almost half of its area remains green. The expansion of its area is done essentially through sea embankments, thus conquering space from the sea.

It has four legal languages: English, Chinese, Malayan and Tamil (this last one, much used in south India and Sri Lanka). The official currency is the Singapore dollar.

In 2013, the population was short over five million inhabitants (half of them immigrants), composed specially by Chinese, Malayans and Indians. It's not rare, however, to spot some accidentals which found in this country, their place to work. It is the greatest Human Development Index country of all Asia.

Such a culture diversity, does not stop, anyway, its inhabitants to live among the others in a peaceful and orderly way, even though sometimes, it looks like we're in three different countries simultaneously.

The fourth biggest financial centre of the world is located at 137 kilometres north of the Equator and, that's why, its climate is warm and wet throughout the year. The average annual temperature goes from 19 to 36 degrees, which makes this a rather attractive country to visit at any time of the year.

Essentials

Singapore is a "meca" for those interested in shopping. The biggest and most important brands from all the world are represented in stores, scattered through all the shopping centres. And, such as New York has its "5th Avenue", or Paris its Champs Élysées, this "Asian tiger" has its "Orchard Road". It is sided by huge boardwalks and the only house which is not at commercial activity in this avenue, it is the Embassy of Thailand. As to the others, the uncountable shopping centres are even connected between them, to protect us from the high temperatures at some times of the year.

Another mandatory point of passage and visit is the impressive "Marina Bay Sands Hotel". Laying a mark on the city skyline since 2010, the imposing hotel has the inevitable shopping centre, a casino and even a museum dedicated to arts and science. In addition, you should not fail to visit the largest and highest infinity pool in the world.

Right on the side, you'll find another emblematic spot of the city-state: "Gardens By the Bay". It is a park, over one of the sea embankments of the city, with one hundred acres and species of plants from various parts of the world. In this park, you can also find two gigantic greenhouses ("Flower Dome" and "Cloud Forest"), which recreate different climates and the futuristic "supertrees", with the impressive height of 16 floors, which are connected by a suspended boardwalk. This group of "supertrees", becomes even more fantastic with the night lighting.

You should not miss the opportunity to walk along the Henderson Waves Bridge. Its 274 metres length, 36 metres above the ground and connects three of the greatest city parks: Kent Ridge Park, Telok Park, and Mount Faber Park. Its wavy structure reminds the sea waves surrounding the all city. Once again, night lighting turns this walk into something even more spectacular.

The last highlight goes to "Reflections" building. It is a residential condominium, unmistakable for curves and forms, which bears on the top of its towers, elegant gardens, which allow us a free sight towards the sea and the famous island of Sentosa. Much more remains to be told about this fantastic destiny in southeast Asia, one more reason to visit it and see it with your own eyes.

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