Babboon bums and breakfast

The greatest pleasure of Singapore (and Malaysia) comes from enjoying the local cuisine. We returned to Maxwell Road Food Centre for a breakfast of mee sua, apom balik pancakes from my favourite store, mee siam and a really nice laksa.

Mee is noodles, by the way.

I was planning to take Alex to the science centre, but we changed our mind and chose to visit the River Safari and Zoo instead. We caught a couple of trains up to Chua Cho Kang and changed to a local bus for the zoo.

Unfortunately the Amazon boat ride was out of commission but the rest of the River Safari was very good. Different river systems around the world were represented by tanks of fish and other aquatic wildlife. The signage was really informative. Thanks to the Octonauts Alex was able to provide a running commentary on the attributes of various species.

For most people the two giant pandas are probably the highlight, but after seeing them at play in Chengdu a simple pair of them doesn’t have quite the same impact.

The massive flooded Amazon forest display was spectacular. We watched manatees feasting of cabbage in the giant tank.

After the River Safari we had a rather good lunch at the Ah Meng cafe at the entrance. Their laksa is great. I miss good laksa.

Singapore Zoo is probably the best I’ve visited. It is located in a beautiful tropical jungle setting besides a reservoir, giving it a very exotic feel. The enclosures are designed so that you feel up close to the animals inside. For instance, there were orangutans feeding above our heads.

We saw most animals apart from the Australian section (what’s the point for us?) and the hiding polar bears. Undoubtedly the animal highlight was the Hamadryas Babboons with their bright red buttocks and various lewd and gross behaviours.

Alex, of course, held his highlight to be the water playground in the kids part of the zoo. He also enjoyed some assisted trampolining.

The zoo was closing as we left and there was a long wait for transport. We eventually caught a taxi down to Marine Parade Central as we wanted to get some Mandarin study books from the Popular bookstore and also eat dinner at the East Coast Lagoon Food Centre, a short taxi ride away.

We ordered a chilli crab, grilled stingray and 30 sticks of Haron 30’s excellent satay. For the record, I prefer their beef satay. We were very, very full by the end, yet the price was quite reasonable. Getting a table was the tricky bit.

This trip to Singapore has definitely been too short and rushed. We must stay longer next time.

Filed under: