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Go-To Hike Trails in Singapore

For a country known for its incredible buildings and urban city life, Singapore actually puts a highlight on its natural attractions as well. That being said, one of the best ways to see the scenic nature is through hike trails. One way or another, these hike trails are also places you shouldn’t miss. The picturesque views invite both locals and tourists alike, whether for early morning jogs or just to bask in the beauty of nature. So, without further ado, here are some of the best hike trails to go to in Singapore.

1. Bukit Timah Nature Reserve

The Bukit Timah Nature Reserve is one of the many hike trails in Singapore known for the richness in plantlife and wildlife. It also has the tallest hill in Singapore. This is why the Bukit Timah Nature Reserve is more ideal for those who like to walk around in nature. Another reason why it’s one of the best to go to is that there are four different trails you can take. One takes you directly to the peak of the hill while the other tree accounts for the scenic views around the nature reserve.

2. Hindhede Nature Park

Right next to the Bukit Timah Nature Park is the Hindhede Nature Park which also has equally great hike trails. The trails here are actually easier to traverse which makes it great for beginners and leisure hiking with kids. This location also houses a variety of animal species so it will be very much worth it take stops and look around. There’s also the incredible Hindhede Quarry towards the end of the park.

3. TreeTop

The TreeTop Walk located at the MacRitchie Reservoir is already a pretty popular hike trail even though it’s also a pretty hard climb. Though there are steep slopes and most of the path is wavy, you’ll find it very much worth the time and effort once you reach the top. At the top of the trail, there’s a long suspension bridge that gives you a view of the whole forest. Again, this is a fairly hard trail for complete beginners, so make sure you have enough water and that you’re fully prepared to make the hike.

4. Pulau Ubin

The Pulau Ubin hike trail is probably one of the best places to go to if you really want to take a break from the city life. This granite island has almost everything that nature lovers look for. There’s an abundance of wildlife, there’s rich greenery, and an overall picturesque view of the island. In addition to that, there’s also a coastal boardwalk which you simply won’t see in many other trails. Another great think about the Pulau Ubin trail is that you can go around in bikes if you get too tired walking!


Making Conversations in Singapore

There is a perfect time and place for everything and despite your innocent intentions of making a new friend or at least a new acquaintance, it might not go so well if you don’t do it right. The western and the Asian style of dating are naturally very different but Singapore on the other hand cannot be categorized as any of these two. The dating game is constantly changing as culture is changing and it is only natural that we adapt to the changes around us to survive.

Here are a few ways to make your approach to Singaporeans a little more effective.

1. Time, place, and person

As the starting of the article says, there is a time and place for everything and this specifically means that there are places wherein interaction just doesn’t work no matter how hard you want it. Like for example, trying to start a conversation at the MRT station at six in the morning would be a terrible idea as everyone is busy getting to work and instead of being able to make a friend.

You might get the cold shoulder or another type of negative response. Approaching people at a social place like a bar or maybe even a park after hours increases your chance of making a friend just because you are inserting yourself when they are unoccupied and available.

2. Friendly but structured

Being friendly is always a good idea but being a bit too friendly might make you come off as a bit of a creep and frankly nobody wants that. Being friendly but structured means that your conversation should be entertaining but your intentions should be clear.

Of course do not come off too hard as it might just give off the creepy vibe even more. Starting with a basic “hi” then later on going to the introduction then making your motive clear that you want to make a friend is a great idea to build a connection as Singaporeans aren’t that big of a fan of overly casual conversations

3. Etiquette

Becoming a friend is quite simple as long as you do not try to push any boundaries and Singaporeans tend to have this sort of conduct wherein it is okay to say this and not okay to say that. Making sure that you keep yourself respectful, polite, but also entertaining is the best way to go. You can always have a little fun as long as you don’t step over any boundaries.

Making a friend in Singapore isn’t that hard if you direct your efforts in the right path. Who knows, you might make a great friend in Singapore today.


Where to Eat Singapore’s Hainanese Chicken Rice

Hainanese Chicken Rice is just one of the many amazing dishes you can find in Singapore and, although not that popular around the world, Hainanese Chicken Rice is a dish you should definitely try at least once in your life. Despite its popularity in Singapore, this dish actually originates in Hong Kong and has slowly been accepted into Singaporean culture. Although trying this dish is important, where to try this dish is another factor you should put in your mind as the taste varies from place to place. This dish is usually found in your local hawker but for this article, we will give you a little more than just the ordinary hawker center chicken rice.

Here are some of the best places to have a taste of Singapore’s Hainanese Chicken Rice

1.  Tian Tian Hainanese Chicken Rice at Maxwell

With a very affordable price of 3.50 Singaporean dollars, you can get yourself the perfect bowl of Hainanese Chicken Rice that’s oily and flavourful just the way that Hainanese Chicken Rice ought to be. You may be shocked of how cheap it is and although there are cheaper prices you can find in Hawker Centers all around, the Tian Tian Hainanese Chicken Rice at Maxwell is definitely a steal.

2.  Boon Tong Kee Chicken Rice at Balestier

Just another mouth-watering addition to this list as their Hainanese Chicken Rice is served. The Boon Tong Kee Chicken Rice at Balestier is best known for their convenience as they are open until 4:30 in the morning, which means that if for some reason you are craving for chicken rice at three in the early morning, it is not impossible to get some!

3.  Wee Nam Kee Hainanese Chicken Rice

The good thing about Hainanese Chicken Rice is although it is but one recipe, the taste may vary a great deal depending on where you are eating. Wee Nam Kee Hainanese Chicken Rice prides itself to have the most colorful and the tastiest dipping sauce around. Oh and by the way, did you know that the chicken can be either served steamed or roasted? Well, now you know. Wee Nam Kee also does an amazing job if you are planning to order your Hainanese Chicken Rice with roasted chicken.

The taste may differ depending on where you plan on eating but one thing is for sure, you can never go wrong with Hainanese Chicken Rice!


What You Need to Know About Owning a Car in Singapore

For those of you who don’t know, Singapore is an extremely difficult place for you to get a car, especially because of the fact that Singapore is a small country, with a small land, not enough roads, and too much vehicles around. Although Singapore is doing a great job in handling traffic, it is definitely not enough because of the amount of vehicles in Singapore. Owning a vehicle in Singapore is incredibly expensive as the tax and certifications are very hard to get. To get a certificate, you would have to pay about $50,000 Singaporean dollars before your vehicle can actually hit the road.

The sad part is that despite paying that amount, your certificate is only good for up to 10 years. The tax on vehicles can be very expensive due to the imports of these vehicles, which could mark up the price of a small SUV by $100,000 Singaporean dollars. If this amount of money doesn’t scare you, then maybe the next paragraph will. Singapore only allows the number of private cars on the road to increase by 0.25% per year, which is very small considering the number of people who want to have a car and maybe even dreamt and already saved up for it.

What makes it even worse is that the government has decided that by February of 2018, they will cease to allow additional cars on the road, which means that if you are desperate to drive, you have to wait for someone to give up their certificates first in order to get permission to drive. Hopefully this is not a permanent case and Singapore would be able to do something about their traffic and increasing vehicle population without the hindrance of people who would love to drive or own a vehicle of their own.

Owning a car may be a dream for some and although it is not impossible to get in Singapore, it can still be very difficult. Aside from the financial struggles a car would put you through, obtaining ownership of a car and getting the certificate could also be another problem. If you really want a car, do not let this stop you and although it can be hard, you have to be diligent enough until you are able to get what you want. The public transportation in Singapore may not be bad at all, but it all depends on you if you want that vehicle. Singapore is a land of opportunity, but you must never forget your competition.


Singaporean Indie Music

What is Indie? Well, this has just recently become a trend. Back in the 2000s, there were so many scenes evolving around the youth that it was just impossible for them to be able to categorize themselves as one. Some of them fit right in while others were caught in between. Back then, there were scenes where people were into hiphop, there were also scenes where people were into punk, there were so many ways for people to associate themselves with a certain scene.

Although there was a wide range of scenes available for people to fit in, some of them just weren’t cut for that scene. Some of them didn’t even want to associate themselves with that specific scene. This is when the hipster phase started to surface. People started to parade how unique they actually were instead of being proud to belong to a certain group, they became proud to stand out. They found beauty in individuality and this is what sort of broke the whole scene format because more and more people started to associate themselves with different things from different scenes.

Hipsters started to put themselves out of the box and would try to stand out as much as possible from the mainstream crowd. Now, what would you listen to if you didn’t want to listen to something mainstream? Well, you would listen to indie music! Most of you still have this huge question stuck in your heads, what is Indie music? To be exact, indie music started when artists felt like they did not belong in the mainstream light and did not want to sign with any labels because of the fear of selling out. Artists wanted to be unique and away from the crowd which is why they wanted their music to be as pure as possible without having to give in to the demands of the public. This is why artists started to publish songs by themselves. You heard me, by themselves!

A huge trend began to emerge. People started using the website Soundcloud or Youtube to easily upload their compositions and slowly but surely, most of them took off. Some artist became instantly recognizable because of their unique style of music and ironically, they became mainstream themselves. They became popular!

Singapore is very involved in social media which is why it is not surprising that a lot of youth like to indulge themselves into indie music trying to find their unique voice in a pile of music from all over the world. This encouraged bands like The Summer State and many others to finally come out without fear to express their own original music.


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