Thursday, 19 January 2017

Singapore: Marina Bay and the Singapore Flyer

The Singapore Flyer

Having completed our walk around the wonderful Gardens by the Bay, we decided we just had to experience the Singapore Flyer. It is Singapore's answer to the London Eye, which when erected in 1999 was the world's tallest Ferris Wheel. The flyer overtook the Star of Nanchang which had eclipsed the London Eye, but was in turn beaten by the High Roller in Las Vegas. The wheel initially rotated in a counter-clockwise direction when viewed from Marina Centre, but on 4 August 2008 this was reversed on the advice of Feng shui masters (thank you Wikipedia).

As we approached the Singapore River, it became clear that the Flyer sat on top of a three storey building, which presumably helped its claims to be tallest.

The river is crossed by two massive highways, but as we headed along the bank we spotted a footbridge on their far side. This turned out to be the wonderful Helix Bridge completed in 2010 (seen more clearly in an aerial photo later on).

As we walked across there was a fine view across the reservoir to the wonderful Esplanade: Theatres on the Bay (but what a clumsy name!), which we had first seen on our walk around the Colonial District.

As we got further across, there was a great view back towards the extraordinary ArtScience Museum, 2011, by Moshe Safdie. It resembles a lotus flower.

Just beyond it are the towers of the Central Business District (CBD).

On the other side we made our way through the levels and corridors of the Singapore Flyer building - designed presumably to handle great queues of people. Happily, it was not busy so we were soon joining a nearly empty pod.

There was soon as great view out to sea where an astonishing number of ships were moored.

There was a great view down over Esplanade: Theatres on the Bay, with the Colonial District and endless skyscrapers behind. The real Singapore!

Further up, the Art Science Museum and the CBD dominated the view. The current dock area can be seen to the left of the CBD and it is planned for them to be moved to accommodate its expansion.

Finally, there was a great view of the Helix Bridge.

Conditions: hot, humid and quite cloudy. The typical weather we have experienced during our visit.

Distance: perhaps a mile from Gardens by the Bay.

Rating: 5 stars. A great experience, definitely best done at the end of our stay because we understood more about what we were seeing. It made me want to visit the London Eye.

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