Universal Studio Singapore

My company decided that we'll go to Universal Studio Singapore for company day-out this year. At this point, the theme park isn't in full operations yet. The Battlestar Galactica hasn't reopen since its shutdown due to safety issue, and Transformers and Madagascar Crate Adventure aren't ready too.

Tickets to the park and SGD 25 RWS voucher

We set off from our company in Science Park after lunch. The weather was bright and sunny... and hot and humid... I wishes so much that Singapore can be just a little bit cooler. First stop: Revenge of the Mummy (indoor roller-coaster).

Statues outside the Revenge of the Mummy

Next, we move on to the next zone, the Lost World. The Jurassic Park Rapids Adventure seems to be the most popular; the waiting time was 90 minutes!

Entrance to the Lost World

So, we moved on to Far Far Away, which actually isn't very far away. We queued to watch the Shrek 4-D Adventure. I always love 3D/4D shows in theme parks. This one didn't disappoint me too. Then, we took the rather kiddish Enchanted Airways roller-coaster.

Entrance to Far Far Away

Waiting to board the Enchanted Airways roller-coaster

The statue of Donkey and his kids from the Shrek movie.

Our last ride for today: King Julien's Beach Party-Go-Round in Madagascar zone.

My favourite Gloria the hippo from Madagascar movie.

It a pity that towards the evening, the sky started pouring... sigh... and so, most of us didn't manage to catch the WaterWorld show.

Ngong Ping

From our hotel in the Yau Ma Tei (油麻地) vicinity, we took the MTR from Jordan station to Tung Chung (東涌) station.

Cute cartoon on the MTR train doors to remind passengers to "mind the gap".

Then, we joined the super long queue to board the bus that will take us up the mountain to Ngong Ping (昂坪).

Directions and distances of famous landmarks around the world

Arch, near the bus-stop, which is the entrance of the path leading to the Big Buddha.

We're almost reaching the top!

View of the village from the mountain top

Statues in front of Big Buddha

After coming down the hill from the Big Buddha, we walked over to Ngong Ping Village for our lunch break and to hide from the hot summer weather.

Entrance to Ngong Ping Village (昂坪市集)

Wishing for good things in life

While we took the bus up the mountain, we took the cable car back down to Tung Chung.

It's a long way down the mountain and over the sea.

Garden Restaurant (花園酒家)

During my first trip to Hong Kong in 2007, my friend brought us to Garden Restaurant (花園酒家). And in this trip with another ground of friends, I found myself here again. This restaurant is located along Nathan Road (彌敦道) and the nearest MTR station is Yau Ma Tei (油麻地).

pan-fried carrot cake (煎芋頭糕)

rice noodle roll (腸粉)

shrimp dumpling (蝦餃)

steamed barbecue pork bun (叉燒包)

steamed chicken feet (鳳爪)

dumplings (小籠包)

Hotel Kapok Beijing (北京木棉花酒店)

Hotel Kapok Beijing (北京木棉花酒店) is a boutique hotel located within walking distance to the Forbidden City (故宫) and the Wangfujing Steet (王府井大街) shopping area.



Restaurant in the hotel

Corridor to our rooms

Bathrode and mini bar enclosed in the closets



The weather Beijing in July is way too hot and humid. It's rather unbearable being soaked in perspiration once we step out to the outdoors. And perhaps it's the summer vacation, the Forbidden City (故宫) and Tiananmen (天安门) were super crowded.

QingHai Lake (青海湖)

According to Wikipedia, Qinghai Lake (青海湖) is the largest lake in China. It's so big that it looks like sea (海), rather than a lake (湖).

Our guide took us up to the hillside for a view of the enormous lake.

Along the roadsides, there are plenty of yellow fields of rapeseed flower (油菜花).

This is the most rural experience I ever had. Check out the "toilet" in middle of the field!

Don't even try to rely on those in the "restaurant". The public pay toilet has proper cubicles, but no doors. The only proper toilet, which has a door and a working flush, is the one at the petrol station.

On the way back to civilisation, we stopped by a family of beekeepers. My friends took the rare opportunity to watch the owners harvest honey (while I am too chicken to even go near).

Zürich City

Our 8D7N Switzerland tour with Cosmos started in Zürich. We went clockwise around the country and ended up back in Zürich. While in this city, we stayed at Novotel Zürich City West. During the free and easy times, we took tram no. 4 to the city center.

The cyclist lane

The tram stop

A tram passing by

Zürich's tram system can be considered sophisticated. The stops are installed with digital panels to show the arrival times of the next tram. Inside the tram, the next few stop locations are displayed (see photo above) together with the estimated time to each destination.

Water fountain in Lake Zürich

It relaxing to sit by the river / lake to watch the swans and ducks.

Loving pair of swans