Eat, cycle, meet!

22 September – 6 October, 2013 – We took the morning ferry back to mainland Malaysia and other than me getting sea sick the day passed uneventful. We only continued cycling the next day, this time on streets with a shoulder and without much traffic, but mostly through rolling palm-oil plantations. That evening we pitched our tent on the beach, as such very romantic and scenic, however, the soaring heat and no fresh breeze at all left us sleepless most of the night. Temperatures in the tent wouldn’t drop below 30 degrees Celsius all night even though we didn’t bother putting up the outer tent. The next morning we discovered that our kitchen pannier was taken over by hundreds and hundreds of ants. We lost the battle over the muesli but won it over the oats. Thanks goodness for our Tupperware! Bulky but most helpful against nasty insects!

P1190847

After cleaning up the kitchen and killing as many ants as possible we continued on the most boring stretch in weeks. Long straight streets along scrub or palm-oil plantations against the wind and no distractions such as villages or animals for about 50 km, despite the odd tapir warning sign. Of course we wouldn’t spot a single tapir, we wouldn’t even spot monitor lizards anymore, most likely this area is even far too boring for them! By lunchtime we arrived at a village and put up camp at a beach resort. At dusk a wild pig family visited us and the pool and at night the close-by open air karaoke bar would feature the worst singers we’ve ever heard until after midnight!

P1090341

Roadkill

Roadkill

P1190833

P1190845

So does this mean if you enter the plantation you will get shot?????

So does this mean if you enter the plantation you will get shot?????

P1090352 P1090343

Our beach resort camp

Our beach resort camp

Despite another bad night in the tent we had packed up everything by 9am. Thanks goodness as within 10 minutes it started to rain cats and dogs. The rain would become less during the morning but only stopped at around 3pm, exactly when we arrived at the ferry terminal. But we didn’t bother too much as we were looking forward to our next destination: Singapore, country number 17.

At the ferry terminal in Singapore we were welcomed by four keen cyclists: John, who we met in George Town and who organized private accommodation and many other things for us, Matthew, who only works on Tuesdays, Denis, Matthew’s friend who doesn’t work at all anymore and Rahim, another touring cyclist. A great bunch of people with whom we would spend a fantastic time in this country. We cycled into town, mostly through a park and on car free paths, had drinks and some snacks at a hawker center, cycled to the condo of our host Ching-Hua and had dinner with Ching-Hua, John and Thomas, another (motor)cyclist who would later offer his house for Johan’s birthday party. This was day one in Singapore.

Arrived in Singapore!

Arrived in Singapore!

Refreshment break upon arrival

Refreshment break upon arrival

Day two in Singapore: Picked up by Matthew to cycle to a famous breakfast place to eat Roti with Rahim and Denis. We cycled through a beautiful residential area and saw many nicely restored Chinese shophouses. On the way back we took a detour through the coastal park and discovered ‘Brotzeit’, a German restaurant. We spent lunch with John and ate famous chicken rice. In the evening Ching-Hua invited us and her family to eat delicious sea food at another nearby restaurant. We cycled 15km.

Mmmh, don't like!

Mmmh, don’t like!

Day three in Singapore: Johan had a hangover from two beers the evening before (!!!) and we decided to take it easy that day and go to bed early. At lunch John told us that Matthew would like to take us out for dinner at Brotzeit, an irresistible invitation. We spent the afternoon on Arab street and were picked up again by Matthew at 6.30pm.

New and old

New and old Singapore

More of new and old Singapore

More of new and old Singapore

The famous old Mosque on Arab street

The famous old Mosque on Arab street

A fancy bike shop on Arab street

A fancy bike shop on Arab street

Still waiting for our German food

Still waiting for our German food

Finished porc knuckles!

Finished porc knuckles!

Day four in Singapore: Another hangover spent at home until 3.30pm when Matthew and Denis came around for a cycling tour through town. Around 6pm a few more people joined us and we rode along Singapore’s nightly skyline through the financial district and back. Of course there was dinner as well. This time at a hawker center between skyscrapers. We cycled 51km.

P1190963

P1090378

Close-up of Singapore's skyline

Close-up of Singapore’s skyline

Posing in front of Singapore's impressive skyline

Posing in front of Singapore’s impressive skyline

Cycling in front of the same

Cycling in front of the same

Oktoberfest is everywhere

Oktoberfest is everywhere

P1190995 P1200018

Sunset

Sunset

P1200033

Beautiful skyline

Beautiful skyline

Downtown dinner

Downtown dinner

1379426_10152270064324128_1680782964_n

Day five in Singapore: Restday! Desperately needed…. And enjoying the luxury of a kitchen, a sofa, a washing machine and a clean bed without worrying about bed bugs.

Just chillin'

Just chillin’

Day six in Singapore: Picked up by Matthew and Denis, by bike of course. It was slightly raining but as we started the day with a Kaya breakfast and soft boiled eggs it didn’t really matter. By the time we resumed cycling the rain had disappeared. We went criss-cross through town on a so called city off-road ride, within minutes I lost my sense of orientation, but it didn’t matter, we had two great tour guides cycling with us. We had a coffee and snack at a coffee place on Arab street followed by lunch at an Indonesian restaurant. By now you might have noticed that spending time with Matthew and Denis was mostly about riding and eating. They wanted us to try all the delicacies there are in Singapore. We cycled 48km.

Doesn't look like an Asian snack, right?

Doesn’t look like an Asian snack, right?

We really like the skyline as you can tell by now...

We really like the skyline as you can tell by now…

Day seven in Singapore: No cycling, but a lot of talking, for lunch we met two other cyclists from Switzerland who had been cycling for almost two years already.

IMG_0137

Day eight in Singapore: Korean lunch with Matthew and Denis and then cycling through more residential areas, through parks, on undulating roads, to fresh water reservoirs, we walked through a jungle and cycled back through more parks. In between we got to taste yummy desserts. We cycled 61km.

Korean lunch - many small delicacies, the best Asian food ever!

Korean lunch – many small delicacies, the best Asian food ever!

Wild boar in Singapore. Seriously?!?

Wild boar in Singapore. Seriously?!?

One of Singapore's many fresh water reservoirs

One of Singapore’s many fresh water reservoirs

Jungle walk

Jungle walk

Time for desserts

Time for desserts

Group photo, once more ;-)

Group photo, once more😉

Another perspective

Another perspective

Same, same but different

Same, same but different

Day nine in Singapore: It’s Johan’s birthday. German breakfast at home, lunch with John and Thomas, some shopping and chilling before the party begins. And a bottle of red wine for Johan, something he’s been yearning for since we Europe.

Mmmh, pretzels and 50 presents to unpack...what am I doing first?

Mmmh, breakfast with German pretzels and 50 presents to unpack…what am I doing first?

Killing the cake

Killing the cake

Enjoying a glass of wine with the first guests that had already arrived

Enjoying a glass of wine and Dutch Beemster cheese with mustard

Steamboat - delicious and healthy birthday dinner. It's a little bit like fondue using a broth instead of oil

Steamboat – delicious and healthy birthday dinner. It’s a little bit like fondue using a broth instead of oil

Day ten in Singapore: We’re moving to John’s and Mei’s place and rest again together with a grumpy cat. We cycled 5km.

A peaceful home

A peaceful home – if you ignore the cat😉

Day eleven in Singapore: Big plans for a bike tour but it’s heavily raining so we visit the Asian civilisation museum instead. Very nice, but tiresome, we’re still hung over from Johan’s party. In the evening we had our farewell dinner and got to try more unusual but yummy food.

Another view of Singapore's skyline from behind the museum

Another view of Singapore’s skyline from behind the museum

Farewell dinner - having fun part 1

Farewell dinner – having (food) fun part 1

(Food) fun part 2

(Food) fun part 2

After a massive dinner getting to try bean curd pudding - food fun part 3

After a massive dinner getting to try bean curd pudding – food fun part 3

Day twelve in Singapore: Bike tour to Island Ubin, early start and late return. A wonderful day. And yes, we met for breakfast at the ferry, had a big lunch including wild boar and ended the day at another hawker center with desserts and Murtabak. In exactly this order. We cycled 70km.

John explaining where to cycle

John explaining where to cycle

Getting ready to cycle the island

Getting ready to cycle the islandAt the German girl's shrine.  They say that this girl fled from the British in 1914 and fell down a cliff. People who found her later burried her close to this place.At the German girl’s shrine. They say that this girl fled from the British in 1914 and fell down a cliff. People who found her later burried her close to this place.

Taking a photo....

Taking a photo….

...in front of a big tree,...

…in front of a huge tree,…

...before we're all posing.

…before we’re all posing.

Lunchtime

Lunchtime

Still lunchtime

Still lunchtime

And now teatime, right after lunch.

And now teatime, right after lunch.

Two idiots at a British cottage

Two idiots at a British cottage

Boardwalk along the island's shore

Boardwalk along the island’s shore

Nice mangrove forest

Nice mangrove forest

Crab with a fake arm

Crab with a fake arm

Peaceful cycling through a shady forest

Peaceful cycling through a shady forest

You're so cool men ;-)

You’re so cool men😉

Back on the ferry

Back on the ferry

Day thirteen in Singapore: Time to leave! Unfortunately. But not without having had a 7am breakfast with Matthew and Denis. After breakfast Matthew would guide us out of town on quite roads and at the border Thomas on his motorbike would take over to guide us through Johor Bahru! We had such a fantastic and memorable time, met so many and so lovely people.

We put on weight too!

Thank you John! Thank you Mei! Thank you Matthew! Thank you Denis! Thank you Thomas! Thank you Clare! Thank you Ching-Hua! Thank you Johann! Thank you Kian! Thank you Kelvin! See you all in Europe!

Leaving Singapore

Leaving Singapore

P1090580

On the causeway between Singapore and Malaysia

On the causeway between Singapore and Malaysia

Distances cycled:

25 September, Tg. Balau – Singapore: 52km
26 September – 6 October, Singapore: 271km
7 October, Singapore – Pekan Nanas: 79km

Total distance cycled: 16,956km of which 271 in Singapore and 1,408km in Malaysia

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s