Pulau Ubin Island, Singapore

Goodbye Singapore, hello ….well, it’s still Singapore – but one of the 60 islands that technically make up the country. Who knew.

Besides,  anywhere you have to catch a boat to is a fully fledged holiday in my book, even if it is 10 mins across the Johar Strait from Changi Airport.

Only 10 sq Km, Puala Ubin is the Singapore of yester-year: AKA – Rainforest. It’s hard to believe that even up until the  1860’s this was how the CBD looked, pre-skyscrapers. It’s marketed for it’s flora and fauna but at the same time comes across a little rustic & ramshackled. Somewhere between Borneo and Lamma island Hong Kong in vibe.

Tiny ‘Bumboats’ (clue is in the name) depart Chengi Village Ferry Terminal from 8am – 7.30pm ish, leaving whenever there are 12 people, for $2.50 one way.

There are 4 or 5 noodle restaurants by the port to grab lunch, or the famous Singapore black pepper crab. Some optimistic souls had set up a wooden stall selling durian by the roadside, which people physically veered away from. For those not in Asia – it’s THE most potent fruit you will ever smell/taste.

A handful of professionals come kitted out in knee pads & armed with their own mountain bikes . Or like us, you can hire girly ones with bells & baskets for $6 for the day. If anything better epitomizes Asia it’s what I saw earlier this afternoon: A fully grow women in her 20’s using stabilizers! Although if it makes her feel any better we all looked equally as silly, wearing plastic ponchos in the torrential rain.

Pulau Ubin highlights include the Chek Jawa Wetlands, where you can spot the Orient Pied Hornbill. Yes I read that on a sign. They are only so distinctive as they look like the toucans from the Guinness ads.  If you are digging the ornithology, you can spot stalks birds on the old quarry lakes.

Over 100 inhabitants still live on the island, so if you don’t fancy the cycling there are old camper vans acting as tourist shuttle buses. It’s all quite like the TV series LOST when they go back to the 1970’s. There are even wild boar knocking around, and the old Jejawi lookout tower. No time travel though.

An.an.tas.in : The Anantasin is the name of a shipwreck just of the coast of the Sensi Parasise, Mae Haad Bay, Koh Tao, Thailand. It’s one of my many favorite places.

Lit.tle: Just because it’s cute.

Blasts From The Past…

November 2012

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