River Safari

This was actually by fourth trip to the River Safari but the first after the river boat ride is available. Even though it was a Friday, the effect of a school holiday still triumph. I wonder how bad it will be over the weekends. The park was very crowded.

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We had to queue to get the tickets (though we cut short our queue to get the tickets online wow queuing); queue to get make a booking for the boat ride; queue to go into the park; queue to see the Giant panda; queue for lunch and finally queue for the boat ride when it is time to take the boat. As far as the pandas are concerned, they seemed be quite affected by the crowd and never ventured too far out for a good photograph.

 

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The red pandas are more friendly and less affected.

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Actually, most of the nicest animals at River Safari can already be seen on foot and its sheltered all the way for visitors’ comfort (in stark contrast to the other parks). After the seeing the pandas, we break for lunch.

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Having some time before we can board the boat, we went to see the Manatee.

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And after queuing for the last time, we boarded our boat. Most of the creatures are boring compared to those we can see on foot.

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I also took some nice scenery shots of the Upper Seletar Reservoir before I left.

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Product of Snapseed on my Android tablet.

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Product of Photomatix on my computer.

Overall, compared to Birdpark, Zoo and Night Safari, I will rate River safari high for comfort but low for animal variety.

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Children’s Festival at the Gardens

I brought my family down to the Gardens by the Bay to see my masterpiece, my shot of the Flower Dome that got exhibited for the GardenScapes Photography Exhibition. However, when we got there, my kids got attracted to the sound of an outdoor performance instead.

Later, I realised this was part of the Children’s Festival at the Gardens. There were actual a series of performance taking place in various venues. The outdoor ones are free and one will have to pay to catch those in the conservatories.

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The Golden Daisies Story, outside Flower Dome 

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The Sunflower Story, Waterfront Promenade

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The Christmas Rose Story, inside the Flower Dome

Lunch at Hill Street Coffee Shop, Gardens by the Bay

One of my photograph of the Flower dome was selected to be exhibited at the Colonnade, Gardens by the Bay.

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My masterpiece 🙂

I specifically came down just to see my picture and do some food photography of my lunch, and I chose the Hill Street Coffee shop as it fit my photography and budget requirements.

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Their menu was pretty interesting, an old school newspaper that unfold into a menu.

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Since I dine alone, I over ordered two dishes to offer some photographic variety. I didn’t have to worry about over eating as the serving turned out to be quite small (read as expensive).

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Lunch at Nandos

I used to like Kenny Rogers and after trying out Nando’s, there is not turn back for me. I really like the way the chicken is marinated.

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The side dishes are much fewer compared to Kenny Rogers, and that is one of the main limitation.

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On top of the few sides dishes that can be selected with the set meal, I also choose to have my favorite top up, spinach.

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Dinner @ Ding Tai Fung

Ever since I started to use Sony NEX5R with the power zoom kit lens (16-50mm) to do food photography, I didn’t pay much attention to depth of focus (DOF) because its naturally deep for the kit lens (F/5.6 at the tail end of the zoom at 50mm). When I tried using the 50mm F/1.8 prime lens, I forgotten to stop down and end up having too shallow focus to my liking. But nonetheless, I’m pretty happy with this ‘new’ prime lens I’ve gotten at a bargain, $250 for a 6-month old lens.

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Anyway, I had been to this restaurant countless times and this is the first time we could ‘peacefully’ seat through dinner with my restless kids. Thus I’m still grateful for the meal!