After gambling away our travel funds in Macau's casinos (kidding,) we hopped over to Singapore to visit friends and check out what if this "Asia for beginners" nation is really that
Indeed, Singapore offers a gentle immersion into Southeast Asian culture. Due to the high number of expats who live here, the food scene is one of the best in the world - varied, delicious, and safe (the government strictly regulates "street" vendors here.) English is the common language spoken, and transportation is speedy and reliable. The high number of punishable offenses ensures the city is sparkling clean and safe. You can now bring your own gum into Singapore for personal use, but don't try to sell it! And the zero tolerance for drugs is very real - if you're caught with drugs, you may be executed without trial. Some residents may find these laws restrictive, but those who can make do without free speech against their government will find Singapore a pleasant place to live.
We spent our few days in Singapore catching up with our friends and eating. The food courts sprinkled among the neighborhoods are where many residents and visitors go for a cheap and yummy sampling of the city's best offerings. We also took a day to visit the famed Gardens by the Bay, Singapore's attempt at creating a city within a garden. Parts of the huge nature park are still in progress, but the two domes are worth a visit, particularly the one housing the cloud forest.