Distance: 18 440 km – the finish!
I’m writing this a day after my arrival – some time to decompress from the ups and downs of train travel. I know that not everyone loves the manic sense of order in Singapore, but I love it – more and more every time that I visit. If you know me you will perhaps understand why I like such a well planned and organised place.
Things go from one extreme to the other on this trip. I hopped off a dirty train yesterday at Woodlands, and one hour later I was sat in one of the most lovely suites I have ever stayed in. The shower room is the same size as we had in my dormitory at school (for 50), and the rose scented soap far nicer. Thank you Fairmont.
Technically there is another rail opportunity to travel further South than Singapore Woodlands, so I thought I had better do it in case someone else points this out – it’s the monorail link across to Sentosa, the party island South of Singapore. So I took the MRT down to the Harbourfront station and purchased a SGD 4 ticket (£1.90). Maybe I got about 2km further South in a pink train that travels at 20kmh and where the staff on the platform are trained to wave at you as you come and go. Its a stark contrast to the Cambodian Express!
This gives me an excuse to go and poke around the remains of Fort Siloso – the well preserved British gun battery overlooking the island from the 1880’s up until the end of WW2.
To travel any further you need a ship. I guess this is fair game though, as I did take one to cross the North Sea in December.. If I had another 6 weeks I could cross the Indonesian archipelago via PNG to Australia..
My plan from here on in involves no further train travel. I’m going to fly back to KL then hop on another flight to London, so I’m home for the weekend. Its strange that I’m flying (in just an hour) back to KL and that my flight from KL to London is actually quicker than my train from Butterworth to Singapore. But you don’t take a train trip like this if you are in a hurry.
I will write a few trailing posts on the trip – planning, travel agents, resources etc.
Time to start planning the next one.. Kasakstan? Vladivostok? Harbin? Lhasa? Not sure where to yet. Any suggestions welcome!
I hope you enjoyed reading my blog. Off now for an icy Tiger by the pool..