Saturday, August 16, 2014

A Ride Down Singapore River...


The Raffles Trail led us on the river that was the lifeline of the early colonial settlement here in Singapore. We boarded a boat that took along the Singapore River passing by key landmarks in the colonial district. The boat ride gave Neeti and me an interesting perspective of Singapore grew from a mosquito-infested sleepy village of Kampongs on stilts to a jungle of skyscrapers....


Warehouses of the 1800s that laid the foundation of modern Singapore have made way for trendy bars and lounges of today's Clarke Quay...



Crossing the Read Bridge.... 
Built in the 1880s, the Read Bridge was named after William Henry Macleod Read, who was a prominent resident in the city between 1841 and 1887 and was the Consul for the Netherlands between 1857 and 1885. Th
The locals called the bridge Malacca Bridge, given its proximity to Kampong Malacca at Merchant Road. 
The Hokkiens refer the bridge as kam kong ma lah kah kio (Kampong Malacca Bridge). It was also known as Green Bridge because of the colour of the bridge during the period of time. 
In the past, labourers and tongkang (boat) rowers gathered there to listen to Teochew storytellers. 
The area around the bridge used to jetties that unloaded firewood from Indonesia - cha chun tau.


Clarke Quay Central - a prominent commercial and residential building 


Neeti recommended Jumbo Seafood for a Singaporean speciality - Chilli Crab.... but I reminded myself of my budget, and I was proud I resisted all temptation gorge on the creepy-crawlies! 


We approached the very elegant Elgin Bridge named after  Lord Elgin, the Governor-General of India in the 1860s. As this was the first bridge across the river, the two roads leading to it were named North Bridge Road and South Bridge Road accordingly.
Initially built in 1840s as a wooden bridge for pedestrians, it was replaced by an iron bridge in the 1860s and then in the 1920s, by the present concrete bridge...


Elgin Bridge is living proof of how Singapore has changed over the years...


Empress Place which houses the Asian Civilisation Museum...


Crossing the Asian Civilisation Museum... The museum has an insightful gallery on the River...


The Fullerton Hotel... again this building tells you how Singapore has evolved - this building was home to Singapore main post office - the GPO, before it was restored and converted into a heritage hotel....


Another boat passes by us....


Headed to the Cavenagh Bridge....



Sculptures of kids diving into the river....


The splendour of the past....


The roots of the banyan....


They skyline of Downtown....



The blue sky looked lovely, but it became too humid as we approached the Durian!


Headed to the Esplanade Bridge...


Interesting views under the Esplanade Bridge... 
This is a recent bridge, it was built in the 1990s!


Esplanade – Theatres on the Bay affectionately called the Durian!



The enduring symbol of the city, the mythical creature that gave this city its name - the Merlion!





Different perspectives of the Merlion....




I loved the view of the towering skyscrapers...
Did Raffles ever imagine Singapore would look like this?




Ahhh, well... Marina Bay Sands...


The architecture of the ArtScience Museum is said be a form reminiscent of a lotus flower. Designed by the Israeli architect,  Moshe Safdie, its distinct design has earned it the epithet "The Welcoming Hand of Singapore"




As we headed back, we passed by the Raffles landing site - it was here on January 29, 1819, Sir Stamford Raffles alighted from his boat.
The Plaque at the landing site reads "On this historic site, Sir Thomas Stamford Raffles first landed in Singapore on 29th January 1819, and with genius and perception changed the destiny of Singapore from an obscure fishing village to a great seaport and modern metropolis."


As we headed back to the Quay, we passed by the fascinating MICA building... the erstwhile police barracks...


1 comment:

wanderingjatin said...

Interesting sights from the ride! I loved the sculptures diving into the river... :D

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