Saturday, July 27, 2013

~ Get slime @ Nickelodeon Slimecup! ~

Our children are faithful fans of Nickelodeon through their growing years. Dora, Spongebob, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, Pocoyo, Fairy Oddparents, Digimon are some of their favourite shows. Last weekend, we brought the kids down to Downtown East's D’Marquee to experience Nickelodeon's very first Slime Cup in Singapore and Southeast Asia. The two days event attracted over 7,000 kids and families.

Meet & Greet Session with Dora and Diego.

Sports-oriented activity booths were setup and the children had the opportunity to dribble the ball through the cones, aim for the goal and wave the baseball bat. Completing all six game booths earned them a stamp to redeem a special prize. 
Denver & Gladys aiming to hit the 'floating' ball.

One of the main attraction is the futsal match where eight teams compete for the Nickelodeon Slime Cup trophy. Despite being a girl, Gladys LOVE soccer matches. She was totally mesmerized just looking at the older boys on the field. ^_^

The Slime Cup challenge is never complete without a slime-filled obstacle course and getting SLIMMED! Gladys took up the challenge and made her way through the slime pool cautiously. 

Our little girl waiting to get into the dunking pool and get slimy. It was really messy but the children had a lot of fun. The organizer was very thoughtful to have a water hose ready for the convenience of parents to clean their child. Free towels were given too!

After all the fun and dunk, free popcorn and candy floss for kiddos and families. Yummy!

Apart from the series of events within D’Marquee, our courageous and funny TMNT also arrived to meet their fans. 

It was a fun-filled afternoon and the children were exposed to slime for the very first time. We were impressed with the futsal match which really rally the crowd and supporters. Personally, I thought the baseball and slime booths were very interesting. It would be great if there are similar activities to engage the older kids.

Sunday, July 21, 2013

~ Mangrove Walk @ Sungei Buloh Wetland Reserve ~

Sungei Buloh Wetland Reserve (双溪布洛湿地保护区) is a favourite spot for birdwatchers. The wetland was designated as a nature park in 1989 after a group of avid birdwatchers from the Malayan Nature Society wrote a proposal to the government for conservation. It was officially opened on 6th December 1993 by Prime Minister Goh Chok Tong.

After our mangrove adventures at Pasir Ris and Chek Jawa, we are equally excited to observe the wildlife at Sungei Buloh. There are a couple of walking routes visitors can choose to take and we decided to go for the Mangrove Broadwalk today.

Walking routes:
Mangrove Broadwalk (500m) : 30 minutes walk
Route 1 (3km) : 1-2 hours walk
Route 2 (5km) : 2-3 hours walk
Route 3 (7km) : 4-5 hours walk

Remember to grab a map at the Information Counter

Mangrove Broadwalk - the 500 meters walkway was made of heavy hardwood - Balau and great care was taken to ensure the wildlife and surrounding trees are conserved during its construction.
Map of the Mangrove Broadwalk

It is not the first time our kiddos are taking a walk within the mangrove and they pretty much know what to look out for already. Many times, they are the ones who are spotting the crabs and mudskippers.
Loving the nature surrounding and lustful greenery.

We spotted a lot of crabs at Sungei Buloh! A lot more compared to our visit at Pasir Ris and Chek Jawa. It must be our lucky day. :)

Our Crab Findings - some are in the waters, some are in the mud and some are on the trunk. We even spotted a few having their breakfast!
The bigger crab saying Hello to the smaller one.

This crab was found dragging the green plant. Looks like it is enjoying its food.

Crawling out from its home for a morning walk.

Apart from crabs, another common friend that we would normally see is the mudskippers. We also spotted a couple here and the main difference is they are much bigger in size!

Giant Mudskippers - This is the largest mudskipper that can be found in Singapore's mangroves. Interestingly, it is carnivorous, feeding on small crabs, worms, insects, snails and even their own kind - the smaller mudskippers!

It was a beautiful morning walk at Sungei Buloh and we plan to be back soon to cover the other walking routes. Hopefully instead of crabs and mudskippers, we will be lucky enough to take some photos of the birds in action. ^_^ 

Friday, July 19, 2013

~ Hong Kong Itinerary ~

If you have followed our posts closely on our trip to Hong Kong, this is a summary of our travel itinerary. Hope this will be helpful for those who are keen on travelling to the Pearl of the Orient. :)

Day 1
- SQ Flight from Singapore to Hong Kong
- Airport Express from Chek Lap Kok to City
- Check-in to Chi Residences 279
- Shopping at Langham Place
- Scenic walk along Avenue of Stars, Tsim Sha Tsui Promenade
- Night walk at Temple Street

Day 2
- Morning market walk at Goldfish Market, Fa Yuen Street Market
- Window shopping at Elements
- Panoramic view of Hong Kong from Sky 100 Hong Kong Observation Deck
- Exhibition and Shopping at Habour City
- Night walk at Ladies Street

Day 3
- Theme Park - Ocean Park

Day 4
- Cable car ride to Ngong Ping 360
- Po Lin Monastery
- Scenic view at Wisdom Path
- Vegetarian Lunch at Po Lin Monastery
- Shopping at Citygate Outlet
- Market walk at Apliu Street Flea Market and Cheung Sha Wan Fashion Street
- Night market walk at Yau Ma Tei Market

Day 5
- Theme park - Disneyland

Day 6
- Outlying Island - Lamma Island
   - Hiking trail from Yung Shue Wan to Sok Kwu Wan
   - Lamma Winds
   - Hung Shing Yeh Beach
   - Kamikaze Grottos
   - Seafood lunch at Tai Yuen Shark's Fin Seafood Restaurant
- Toy hunting at Tai Yuen Street

Day 7
- Dim Sum at Tim Ho Wan
- City view from Central-Mid-Levels Escalators
- Leisure walk and drink at Lan Kwai Fong
- Evening walk at Li Yuen Street East and West

Day 8
- Return flight to Singapore

Check out the links below on the other places of interests that we have visited in our previous visits to Hong Kong.

- The Peak
- Madam Tussauds
- Wong Tai Sin Temple

Sunday, July 14, 2013

~ Hong Kong 2012 - Day 7 Lan Kwai Fong ~

Our final league in Hong Kong is visiting Lan Kwai Fong. We made an exit from the Centrals-Mid-Levels Escalator towards D'Aguilar Street. There are restaurants, cafes and bars along the streets and it is most happening when the night falls. 

We had a long walk and needed a quick bite to fill our tummies. Hubby and I rested our feet and had a little chill out drink.
Pizzas for us to share. See how BIG it is for just a single slice. :)

We walked on and passed by Li Yuen Street East & West. It is another popular spot where there are many stalls selling cloth, bags, accessories, souvenirs etc.

Since we didn't manage to grab anything in our last minute shopping, the kids get to have their favourite cooling drink from Gong Cha. Their cup is bigger and cheaper. Definitely worth to try if you are in Hong Kong.

Our dinner is at Jollibee - the famous fastfood chain in Philippines. Jollibee has successfully ventured into Hong Kong and recently even in Singapore. It was very crowded in the restaurant but we managed to get a seat.

Before we end our journey, we brought the kids to Gourmet Desserts Cafe to have some desserts. It is conveniently located near the apartment that we are staying and Yau Ma Tei MTR. You have to order their award winning dessert -  Premium Flaming Snow Mountain. who won the Most Creative Award and Gold Award in the dessert team category.

When the ice-cream was served to our table, they flamed up the snowy mountain. Not only was it entertainment visually, our taste-bud was filled with satisfaction when the melted chocolate immersed in our mouth.

There are also a range of dessert selection we can choose from the menu and each of them have a unique flavour and sweetness.

We finally completed our Hong Kong tour and it has been a journey filled with fun and excitement. We hope to be back soon to shop, eat and explore more outlying islands. ^_^

Places of Interest 
Lan Kwai Fong (蘭桂坊)
Address: D'Aguilar Street, Central, Hong Kong Island 
How to Get there: MTR, Central Station, Exit D2. 

Li Yuen Street (利源)
Address: Li Yuen Street East and West, Central, Hong Kong Island 
How to Get there: MTR, Central Station, Exit C. Walk along Des Voeux Road Central towards Sheung Wan

Big Pizza
Address: G/F, 5, Lan Kwai Fong, Central 

Gourment Desserts Cafe (貴花甜)
Address: G/F, 6 Portland Street, Yau Ma Tei, Kowloon Hong Kong 
How to Get there: MTR, Yau Ma Tei Station, Exit C

Saturday, July 13, 2013

~ Revisiting Chek Jawa Wetlands ~

Last year, we visited the Chek Jawa Wetlands in the rain. This year, we were welcomed by the haze. Luckily, the PSI was within the healthy range and we were able to continue with the low tide guided tour and enjoy some nature walk.

Despite the mild haze condition, the air smelled fresher within the woods. It was a beautiful morning and we are looking forward to make new discovery. :) We were very honoured to have Uncle Joesph, the man who raised the media and public attention through his appeal on the public forums when Chek Jawa was to the rocks to be reclaimed.

During each of our visit, we get to see new species and different coloured crabs. Not forgetting the mudskippers and Nipah palm in the mangrove.

See how they jump!

This blue beauty caught our attention even though it is very small. I wonder if it is poisonous since bright colours creatures normally is an indication that they are pretty venomous.

The next time when you take the climb up to the Jejawi Tower, do stop and take a look at the big tree next to it. If I am not wrong, it is commonly known the Mangrove apple tree (Berembang - Sonneratia caseloaris). The flower is pinkish or red and normally found in the muddy river banks area. It is very rare and listed on the endangered list as one of the threatened plants in Singapore.

At the top of the Jejawi Tower, we spotted the monkeys happily doing their morning stunts involving many climbs and jumps on the trees. 

Looked pretty hazy from afar. 

From the broadwalk, we moved down to the sand bed. Noble volute, sea cucumber, and hermit crabs welcome us back once again. 

Hermit Crabs hiding inside the shell. You can try to hold it if you dare. :)

My favourite - The beautiful Stars. 
Big star for Gladys

Seaweed discovery. Do you know that there are Red, Green and Brown seaweeds? Though not very familiar with their names, the one that caught our attention was a sponge like seaweed which is really spongy and soft. Is that how the creator of Spongebob Square Pants get his inspiration from?

They found a small snake which is not venomous.

Found this beauty attaching itself on the rocks but not exactly sure what it was. Maybe it is a blue sponge coral.

The haze didn't beat us down and once again, we had a very educational walk! Only at Chek Jawa, we can find our very last stretch of green carpet and this is the home of many marine creatures. Natural forestry and wildlife is rarely found in Singapore and we should do our little part to keep it clean and preserve this last piece of land for our children and future generations to embrace.  

Check out the following website if you are interested to take part in the guided tour. Do note that they are very popular and its fully booked very fast!