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Travel Report: Cool Spots Around Singapore.

Five Stones Hostel Beach Road Singapore

Cool Spots Around Singapore.

May 2015. Singapore can certainly present some challenges for the budget conscious traveler. This is especially true when it comes to finding accommodation. After all, not all of us can afford to book into Raffles Hotel

Luckily, Singapore does have a solid hostel scene. After much research, I decided on Five Stones Hostel, right in the heart of the city on Beach Road. In term of location, service and facilities, this was one of the best value hostels at the time. Nevertheless, I still had to shell out 30SGD a night for a bed in an eight person mixed dorm.

Mixed dorm Five Stones Hostel Singapore.

Five Stones Hostel, Singapore.

On arrival, I was pleased to see that the staff were friendly and that for the most part they kept the place clean. The major downside? Sharing my mixed dorm with an Indian family who treated the space as if it were their own private living room.

Cool Spots Around Singapore.

Cool Spots Around Singapore.

Cool Spots Around Singapore.

Aside from accommodation, food and drink costs can also spiral out of control in Singapore. Tiny, overpriced dishes served by someone who can barely hide their contempt for you? No thank you.

One alternative is the city’s excellent array of hawker centres. These often rough and ready buildings feature row after row of food stalls. It’s predominantly Asian fare, with everything from noodles, meat-and-rice combos and Chinese dumplings, to pancakes, stir-fry dishes, fruit shakes and more.

Hawker Centres.

Hawker Center dinner Singapore.

Cool Spots Around Singapore.

Meals are prepared to order, the sellers ooze a no-nonsense friendliness and, above all, the food is good and the price is right. This pork, rice and egg plate, served with tangy soup and an obligatory beer cost me just 6SGD (£3.30/€3.80/$4.60). For an overview of the best hawker centres in Singapore, take a look at this helpful article from The Best Singapore.

Little India.

Little India Singapore.

Little India, Singapore.

Photo courtesy of Ibnuyahya. 

Moreover, a trip to Little India is a great idea for fantastic food at reasonable prices. Indian food is my absolute favourite, hence I was always going to find myself here.

Little India Singapore.

Cool Spots Around Singapore.

Happily, I met an American guy at Five Stones who was also into Indian food. Thus we hit the neighbourhood one night for a grand old feast. It’s very unlike me not to know the name of the place but alas, my usually consistent note-taking has let me down.

What I do remember is that the restaurant we chose was packed with Indian people and that they specialised in the most delicious, giant dosa I’ve ever had.

Cool Spots Around Singapore.

Cool Spots Around Singapore.

Cool Spots Around Singapore.

To narrow down the best restaurant options in Little India, look no further than this solid article from The Culture Trip.

Cool Spots Around Singapore.

Street art on Beach Road, Singapore.

I spent a fair amount of my time in Singapore just wandering around aimlessly. The thing that struck me the most was what a great city it is for street art. In fact, I was regularly surprised by the little explosions of art that hit me when I least expected it.

Take this watchful goddess, for example, peeking through the trees on Beach Road. The work is from the hand of Didier Jaba Mathieu, a Colombian artist who, among other things, specialises in facial cubism.

Haji Lane.

Cool Spots Around Singapore.

Cool Spots Around Singapore.

A great deal of Singapore’s cool street art is concentrated in and around Haji LaneHidden away in the city’s charming Muslim quarter, this is one of the prettiest walking roads in the city. The street art is literally everywhere, including the facades of the restaurants, boutiques and cafes.

Cool Spots Around Singapore.

Piedra Negra Mexican Restaurant, Singapore.

The above shot is of the hugely popular Piedra Negra Mexican Restaurant, championed by many as Singapore’s best value authentic Mexican. Furthermore, its interior is just as gorgeous as its colourful facade. Expect more murals, quaint chandeliers and intricate mosaic tiling. 

Cool Spots Around Singapore.

Street party Haji Lane Singapore.

A street party in Haji Lane.

Time your visit well and Haji Lane bursts into life at night, with live music and dancing right on the street! The drinks here are more than a little pricy, but it was totally worth it on the night of my visit.

There was such a positive atmosphere that night and I got chatting to several locals who wanted to know where I was from and where my travels had taken me. Once this virus madness is all over, I hope Haji Lane can get back to doing what it does best.

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Like this? Then why not check more of my travel reports from around Singapore.

I’ve been living, working and traveling all over the world since 2001. So why not check out my huge library of travel reports from over 30 countries.

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