After escaping to the East (ie Changi) recently, we discovered that journeying to the West can be just as fun. It has been some time since we brought Ethan out, and we thought that it would be fun to go somewhere different from his usual Northern exposure at Lim Chu Kang. Besides, I didn’t want to risk the Chikungunya virus floating around those parts!
Here’s a short photo essay of our family frolicks.
First stop, Jurong Bird Park, where dinosaur descendents come alive.
One of the day trips which we took recently at Melbourne brought us to Philip Island, which is one of Australia’s most well known penguin lookout. En route to the nursing grounds of those cute tuxedo-ed birds, we stopped by a koala conservatory and had a glance at an island full of seals (supposedly). While the service standards of that particular trip wasn’t great, it did bring us to a few interesting spots – including Warrook Cattle Farm which my son loved.
Regular readers of this blog would probably know by now that my kid Ethan loves the rural life. This was why we had to make a farm stop during our recent Melbourne trip, at the widely acclaimed Warrook Cattle Farm. A charming 100 year old homestead located South East from Melbourne City, the rural attraction conducts regular tours for “city tortoises” like us. The sprawling estate boasted of many different farmyard residents and is a real life working farm yielding animal products like milk, meat and wool.
A metal crafted signboard at the cattle yards. Reminds me of Charlotte’s Web somehow.
Almost everybody we spoke to about Melbourne gushed about the Great Ocean Road. Stretching over more than 400 kilometres, it was widely regarded as one of the world’s most scenic drives. Famous landmarks (for those who went all the way) include the Twelve Apostles, Otways Rainforest, Bells Beach and Skenes Creek. Naturally, we had to give it a try during our recent vacation there, and it was certainly fun (albeit a little tiring).
Here are some pictorial highlights of our journey along the Ocean.
The first stop at Torquay, which is regarded by some as the centre of the surf world and the official start of the Great Ocean Road.
To satisfy my child Ethan’s creature cravings, we decided to drive up to nearby Werribee at Melbourne to check out their famous Werribee Open Range Zoo. Modelled after an African-styled savanna grassland, it offered a different wildlife experience for those keen to see more animals in a natural habitat beyond your usual marsupial suspects.
One of Melbourne’s foremost cultural destination, the Melbourne Museum is both an architectural icon and a wonderful repository of natural history. Located next to the Royal Exhibition Building in Carlton Gardens, the museum is part of Museum Victoria which is Australia’s largest public museum organisation. Touted as the biggest museum in the Southern Hemisphere, the museum was housed in a modern monolith of massive proportions.
Can Whiskers (Wai Wai) take the mickey out of Mickey Mouse? (source of image)
What do you do when an 800 pound gorilla arrives at your door step?
Well, you differentiate, innovate and fight back with all you’ve got. Especially if you are an incumbent home-grown player in your local market.
One of the things which I love about Jewel Box at Mount Faber (where you can take the cable car) is its decor. There are probably few leisure attractions in Singapore which pay as much attention or fervour to creating thematic zones as the Jewel Box. This is probably one of the reasons why they have been voted so frequently as one of the top attractions in Singapore.
While there recently to catch a cable car ride, I managed to shoot some photos of its golden brown splendour.
Perched high atop Mount Faber, the Jewel Box is a restaurant, cable car station, and pristine function venue all rolled into one. Here, you can see golden yellow and red leaves decking its facade.
If you are a fan of heritage-worthy brews, you should check out TigerLIVE. Recently opened at the ultra-hip heritage clubbing venue St James Power House, TigerLIVE opens from 11 am to 8 pm daily and charges an admission fee of S$18 for adults and S$12 for those below 18. Now, before you go “So expensive!”, do note that this includes a glass of Tiger beer (what else?) plus an exclusive limited edition Tiger souvenir per person. Minors will receive a soft drink (of course).
Offering a “multi-sensorial journey into Tiger Beer’s rish past all the way to its innovative present”, TigerLIVE marries state-of-the-art technology, vintage beer bottles, local celebrities and a whimsical twist to provide an alcoholic buzz. Here’s some photos from my recent visit there as a member of the Association of Singapore Attractions.
By now, almost everybody in the world would be familiar with how it reinvented itself to attract some close to 40 million visitors a year.