Sports in Singapore

Have a lifetime’s fun

For people who love adventure, recreational activities and extreme sports, Singapore is a paradise.  If you want a little respite from the boring schedule of work, you can program a trip to Singapore, which I think is the world’s leading destination, when it comes to unwinding yourself.  Whether, it is skyrocketing, extreme sports for your adrenaline rush, or simple rope gliding in Sentosa Island, Singapore is fun to explore.

Singaporeans are not only the fastest walkers on the planet, but they are also sports lovers and adventure freaks. There are countless world class facilities and places where you can enjoy these sports. You can also ski in the “Snow City” in Singapore, which is an artificially made ice-skating rink in the hot tropical island state.

Adrenaline rush for thrill seekers

There are lots of exhilarating opportunities in Singapore for the people, who would like to get their adrenaline rushing, which include skateboarding, rock climbing, gliding on an aerial rope course in Sentosa, and enjoying a freefall simulator. 

Sports and adventure at Sentosa Island

Sentosa Island is the hub of such activities. It’s just five minutes drive from the downtown area and can be reached through cable car from a station at Harbourfront Tower II and it’s the most fun way to reach this island. You can reach the island on foot through boardwalk enjoying lush green landscapes and natural beauty.  You can also take public transport such as MRT (rapid metro service), Sentosa Express monorail or a public bus. You can also drive a car or taxi to the island of Sentosa.

Sentosa offers you plethora of activities related to sports, which are meant for every age group. Imbiah is also such an attraction that is full of thrill, where you can enjoy a ride on Skyline Luge Sentosa. Sentosa is a treasure house of nature, where Insect Kingdom and Butterfly Park are rich with lush green nature and you will certainly enjoy walking the trails over here. You can also take a guided tour of Sentosa Nature Discovery. If you love beach volleyball, then Siloso Beach is your ideal destination. If you love water sports and playing with the waves, then you can head towards the Wave House Sentosa, which becomes even more spectacular at night, when you will enjoy the melody of the ocean and dancing waves.

Ski off

SKI 360° is the cable Ski Park of Singapore, where fun is not restricted to age. You can enjoy various water sports over here, which are adventurous as well as recreational. These water sports include water skiing, surfing and wakeboarding. The other facilities available at SKI 360° are cable wakeboarding and cable skiing. In this wonderful sport, you will ride the waves using an overhead cable rather a boat. The maximum attainable speed through the cable is 60kmph, which is nearly equal to the fastest boat. This sport does not require paying a boat rental and you won’t have to wait in the queue. The other sports in this arena are trick-skiing and kneeboarding.  In kneeboarding you float on a board, whereas in trick-skiing, you would have to perform tricks.

Singapore-One of the Cleanest Cities in The World

If you’re told to pinpoint Singapore on the world map, you’d really have a hard time locating this tiny island nation. After questing relentlessly for a while, you bump on a tiny, microscopic dot between Indonesia and Malaysia with Singapore written all over it. Although more than 5 million people are squeezed into a total land of area of approximately 274 sq miles, Singapore is billed as one of the cleanest cities in the world.

According to many travel and tourism websites, Singapore ranks amongst the top five spotless cities in the world. Successive governments in Singapore have upheld the commitment to keeping the city clean and Singaporeans have well adapted to the government’s cleanliness policies and are very particular about not transgressing the laws that are nothing short of Draconian.

You could be fined on the spot for spitting or littering or even chewing gum and spitting it out in a public place by plainclothes policemen who appear out of nowhere! So before you can plan a trip to Singapore, apprise yourself of all the strictures on dos’ and don’ts to save your skin in public as many tourists traveling to the city-state for the first time end up paying hefty fines for as mundane an act as chomping on a stick of chewing gum and then spewing it out.

You’re constantly under surveillance

Once you head to the metropolis from the Changi International Airport which keeps on winning numerous awards and accolades for being one of the swankiest and tidiest airports in the world, you enter a high surveillance region. When you step out of the hotel for sampling the local cuisines on the streets or taking a walk through any of the numerous boulevards, you’re constantly being watched by policemen dressed in civil clothes.

You’ll not be able to spot them as they’re intermingled with the crowd and keep moving from one spot to another but nobody knows better than Singaporeans that they can catch you unawares if you happen to spit or litter. Apart from the numerous epithets that Singapore has earned (‘Lion City’, ‘Garden City’, ‘Little Red Dot’, and so on), it won’t at all be out of place to add one more-‘Police-State’.

Orchard Road which is the most bustling shopping district in Singapore has close to 700 police officers in plainclothes from the National Environment Agency that have a knack for swooping down on people committing even the smallest of misdeeds.

Fines are quite hefty

Just try dropping a cigarette stub on the elevator of a supermarket or discarding an empty soda can on the street pavement. From nowhere a policeman will appear and hand you a penalty ticket. It could be anything in the range of $700-1000 Singapore dollars that is equivalent to $600-800 USD which is quite a sum. So now you why Singapore is able to keep itself clinically clean. You’ll come across many billboards and hoardings that list the guidelines for keeping the city spotless. Although it is not illegal to chew gum in Singapore but importing the same in bulk, and then peddling it is. Refrain from jay-walking, littering or spitting as long as you’re on the streets.

Singapore is almost crime free

Singapore is so safe that even a heavily bejewelled lady can move around in the streets late at night without the fear of being mugged or molested. And contrary to what you may think, policing is not very strong at night to nab you red-handed. Singaporeans have ingrained it into their psyche that it‘s not only illegal but also immoral to waylay un-chaperoned women or even men for that matter.

The public toilets in Singapore are so clean that you won’t feel like urinating or emptying your bowels that might mar the sparkle. The first prime of the country, Lee Kwan Yew was the pioneer who set down stringent rules for growth and development and his policies have transformed Singapore in a manner that has caught the attention of the entire world!   

Rise in Population in Singapore

Singapore is definitely one of the most urbanized countries in the world with a population of 5.18 million people, according to 2011 census. By 2010, Singapore had crossed the 5 million mark for the first time. In 2012, the government of Singapore announced that the country aims at having a population of 6.5 million within the next two decades. So, while the planners of the country are busy reviewing and drawing up new plans to accommodate this expected hike in population, there is a need to introspect the entire population scenario of Singapore and where it is heading to.

When it comes to considering the actual statistics of citizens, permanent residents and foreigners in the country, there is a vast disparity. Out of the total population, nearly 40% of people who reside in Singapore are foreigners. Furthermore, out of the 60% population which comprises of citizens, 23% are born outside the country. So, they fall under the category of foreign born citizens. As far as the permanent citizens are concerned, there are just half a million of them. Besides all these people, Singapore witnesses a transient population of 11 million people comprising of tourists.

In the beginning of the 20th century, the population of Singapore consisted largely of adult male immigrants. In the following two decades, there was an increase in number of women and Singapore-born population. The ratio of men and women improved in the next 20 years and by 1947, the census recorded 1217 men for every 1000 women. The total population was on a healthy increase. However, immigrant population increased immensely. In 1965, when Singapore gained independence, the government tightened immigration rules. Unskilled foreign labor was discouraged from settling down in the country and permissions for permanent residency were granted only to the skilled labor. Acquiring citizenship was made very tough.

Alarmed at the growing rate of population in the country due to falling death rates and increasing birth rates, the government began enforcing population control policies. Family planning board was formulated in 1966. By 1970, birthrates fell. But soon after, owing to the postwar scenario, the population began to grow. The government tightened family planning measures and sterilization and abortions were made legal. By 1975, fertility rates were at an all time low of 1.005 per woman and then, it plummeted further, which was when the government began to get alarmed at the falling population. Reversing its previous stance, it offered incentives for bearing more children.

In 1989, Singapore recorded a population of 2,674,362 with almost equal men to women ratio and a significant 78% Singapore born population. By 2000, the population had reached just over 4 million with 3.2 million citizens and over the next decade, the population hit 5 million. In 2010, the population of the country grew by just 1.8%.

There are two important factors to consider here. Firstly, according to 2011 survey, there is an alarming drop in the fertility level of people in Singapore, which can cause a reduction in population growth rate over the following years. As per the last statistics, average family size in Singapore is 3.5 and average fertility rate is just over 1 per woman. Over the years, despite a fall in fertility and childbirths, the population of Singapore had managed to sustain due to the huge amount of immigrant population, which unfortunately, is the other cause of concern. Surveys have shown that there is a reduction in the number of immigrants moving into the country. With the two major sources of population growth dangling on the edge, what is the future of Singapore population? Will the country be left with enough youth population to sustain the astronomical growth obtained over the past many decades? That is something which time will tell.

Singapore Laws – Myth and Truth

Singapore is a great place to be. When you hear about Singapore being the cleanest city in the world with lowest crime rates, you sure feel like settling down in such a haven. But would you like to make Singapore your home if you knew that spitting here can put you in prison? Would Singapore still be so attractive if you were grabbed for chewing gum? Well, do not worry, Singapore is not that bad, although the laws here stricter than the laws in many other countries in the world. Read on below to find out which laws of Singapore actually exist and those which are utter rubbish.

Prison for chewing gum

Well, you will not actually be jailed for eating gum, although you will have to shell out some money as fine. There are several places in Singapore where there are signs specifically asking people not to eat gum. There are certain rules. You cannot carry large quantities of gum, cannot sell it on the streets or stick the chewed gum in public places. You are also not allowed to spit gum on the street. Breaking these rules results in a penalty and it is not jail.

Fine for jaywalking

This one is true. If you jaywalk, you are fined. Although there are a lot of rumors about jaywalkers getting a jail term, that is a gross exaggeration. You might be fined up to $1000 for jaywalking.

Drugs will take you to the death chamber

Drugs can take you to the death chamber in Singapore. However, not all drug users who are caught get the chair, although they do land up in jail. A person caught in the possession of drugs which he intends to sell gets the noose. The punishment also depends on the kind and quantity of drugs that a person is caught with.

If you do not flush after using the toilet, you are banned from using public washrooms

If you need an example of how a fact can be twisted, you should read the above sentence again. In Singapore, if you do not flush the toilet after use, you are fined and the penalty can be up to $200. The police here are not so heartless as to ban you from using public toilets. The smart and tech savvy government of Singapore has now installed sensor flushes which automatically flush the contents in the toilet bowl. Before the sensors were installed, police actually checked public restrooms!

If you are convicted of littering the roads three times, you have to clean roads on a Sunday wearing a T-shirt which reads “I am a litter lout”

Hilarious, but this law is very much true. Although you do not find a lot of people wearing the “I am a littering lout” T shirt in Singapore, the law does exist. Some people claim that the litter louts are forecasted on the evening news in the television. Now, that is stretching the truth a bit too much. You will not come on the television but you have to pay monetary penalty.

There are several other funny laws in Singapore, which are not myths. For example, you cannot walk around your own home in the nude. It carries a fine. Also, if you pee in the elevator, you pay a fine. Some laws make sense. Pornographic stuff is banned. Smoking in public places is illegal. No vehicle is allowed to come within 50 meters of pedestrian crossing on the road.

It is probably due to these seemingly silly laws that a lot of myths have come up. The funniest one which takes the cake and which is taken seriously by a lot of people is this – Farting in public carries a fine of $500! This one is really a myth.

What are the Ideal Places to Shop in Singapore?

Singapore is a shopping haven for all those who are interested in spending their money and pampering their consumerist appetite. The new economic boom of this South-East Asian country has led to the development of a number of shopping malls with countless brands, products and goods.
What are the Ideal Places to Shop in Singapore?

Apart from having food from a number of delicacies, shopping is taken very seriously and considered to be the favorite pastime in the island. Apart from the roadside stalls and local markets, Singapore has developed itself as the warehouse of some of the most charismatic goods found all over the world.
The malls that are known to be the best in Asia and among the top in the world and will definitely attract your attention with their breathtaking beauty are. Best places to shop in Singapore are:

Vivo City in HarbourFront Precinct – home to the biggest cinema hall, biggest toy store and ampetheater. It is an entertainment, shopping, and lifestyle destination rolled into one.

Ngee Ann City Of Orchard Road – A beautifully decorated mall with all the best brands in the world, it boasts an art and aesthetic section especially at the
Takashimaya department store which stands over seven levels

Knightsbridge Mall of Orchard Road
– Brilliant architecture with the best of retail stores

Mustafa Centre in Little India – Almost with all the leading brands, this mall remains open for 24 hours

Far East Plaza in Orchard Road – Belonging to the older generation of malls and flocked by the young crowd, this is a heaven for bargaining.

Mandarin Gallery in Orchard Road – Previously known as the Meritus Mandarin Shopping Arcade, this is a house of all the international designers

Suntec City in Marina Bay – Constructed as office blocks, it is a centre of exhibition and conference.

Sim Lim Square in Little India – This is the biggest IT mall of the country

Paragon Shopping Centre in Orchard Road – It is a high-end mall and has won a number of awards.

ION Orchard in Orchard Road – Glowing like a futuristic beacon, it is a glowing architectural wonder.

Orchard Road has been ranked as the numero uno shopping place in the whole world. Chosen to be the best shopping mall region, it is special for its wide and clean pavements and extensive varieties of shops and products. This place has more than 22 world class shopping malls and six departmental stores.

More shopping malls in Singapore.

Enjoy the mesmerizing Singapore beaches

Singapore is essentially an island country with a list of beaches. Despite land reclamation and urbanization, miles of natural beaches continue to entertain tourists and locals. The longest beach is that of the East Coast Park and Changi Beach is another popular place. There are beaches in the main island also on the offshore islands. The man-made artificial beaches are heaven for turtle cultivation.

Popular main island Singapore Beaches

East Coast Park beach – Situated in the southeastern part of Singapore, this beach park is a retreat for honeymoon couples. The beautiful sand line stretches from the East Coast Park neighborhood. There are hotels, resorts, golf courses and seafood centre here for entertainment and relaxation.

Sembawang Beach – Covering 15 acre, this park is located in Sembawang Beach. The sandy beach has a number of places of interest such as the Navy Museum and colonial era houses.

Changi Beach – Changi Beach Park is another bach hideout in Singapore around 4 km long. Family picnics, night stroll and fishing are some of the prominent activities here.

West Coast Park Beach – An important fun and entertainment center, the beach park here covers around 50 acres. It is also considered one of the largest in Singapore.

Offshore Singapore beaches

  • Sentosa Island has three beaches
  • Palawan Beach
  • Siloso Beach
  • Tanjong Beach

Other beaches include:

  • Pasir Ris Park beach
  • Pulau Ubin beach
  • Kusu Island beach

How various places in Singapore got their names?

  • Pickering Street- Named after William Pickering- foremost protector of Chinese, who was first European to speak and read Chinese at that time.
  • Kim Seng Road-Named after Tan Kim Seng who was a local philanthropist for his contributions to society
  • Hill Street-Named so due to its location at the foot of Canning Hill.
  • High Street- As it was built on higher ground
  • Chinatown-In 1819 when Singapore was first founded by Sir Stamford Raffles, the very first immigrants arrived at the mouth of the Singapore River in 1821 from Xiamen, in Fujian province, China. Raffles set aside Chinatown for the Chinese Community in his Singapore Town Plan in 1842. Thus Chinatown which was rich in Chinese culture became a place of interest both for Chinese and tourists.
  • Telok Ayer Street-In malay, ‘Telok Ayer’ means ‘Street by the bay”. It was South-east shoreline of Singapore at once point of time.
  • Pagoda Street-Named after Sri Mariamman Temple located on the corner of the street. The Gopuram -high tower of the temple was found familiar to a pagoda and hence the name of the road.
  • Sago Street-There were plenty of sago factories in the area, hence it was named sago street.