Singapore Travel Blog› entry 4 of 32 › view all entries
Interesting day today, we went over to the Changi Chapel Museum. Got the bus from our hostel so got a view of a different side of Singapore, much more residential with tall apartment buildings. The actul museum is much smaller than we thought, but very interesting with lots of displays, although many of the "artefacts" are actually replicas rather than the real thing. The chapel is a reconstruction, as are the murals - the originals are in Block 151 in the original chapel at the prison. It is difficult to get into the original chapel because it is still a working prison so you need a good reason to view them. They were painted over for many years, but the original artist came back several times to renovate them, which is great. Apparently the first visit back for him was quite traumatic, but it's wonderful that he could overcome the horrific memories to do it.
AFter the museum, we hopped back on the bus and went on to Changi Village. This area appears to have been developed as a holiday destination, with lots of chalets and villas and a "Civil Service Club" which looks very nice! We wandered through the wet/dry food market and then got on a bumboat across to Pulau Ubin, an undeveloped island just 10 minutes off the main island. It has been kept as a nature reserve (on the whole) and you can walk or hire a bike around lots of tracks. We followed the Sensory Track and got great little signed descriptions of many of the plants and trees we were passing. Also saw a couple of monitor lizards scooting across the path and into the mangroves. Heaps of coconuts lying on the ground, and when one falls off the tree you don't want to be under it! The crash is very loud so can imagine what it would do to your head! Also a good idea to take mozzie repellant because there are a few bugs floating around. We had a delicious lunch overlooking the sea, which also had a nice breeze so very comfortable.
Headed back on the bumboat late afternoon (the pilot was incredible, quite old and craggy with a leathery old face and bony hands. He even backed the boat exactly into the dock without his hands on the wheel - he just put it in position and turned around to watch!). Had a bit of a rest this afternoon, before getting our favourite hokkien mee from across the road then going to sleep. Had a big rainstorm during the night, so glad we were nice and dry inside.