Traveling is life-changing. Traveling with kids though means extra work. Tom and I are always on our toes when it comes to looking after our active 6-year old son. As parents, his well-being is our priority. The great thing about going on a trip to a beautiful and organized country like Singapore is that it made us feel at ease and safe as we toured the city with Dylan.
It also made me realize that letting go of my worries and allowing my son to discover new places, food and culture made him a more independent, resilient and a happier child.
Since it was my first trip to Singapore with just my boys, it was important that Tom and Dylan got to see, taste and experience the City in a Garden. It didn’t matter if our schedule was jam-packed—eating in new restaurants, visiting museums, or discovering the new places; we were together, having fun, and dare I use a couple of the most over-used terms in parenting today?—bonding with some good, old-fashioned quality time.
Plus, family trips help create wonderful memories. Years and even decades after family vacations, your children will still be able to tell funny stories like when Mom freaked out going down the River Safari or when Dad ran barefoot in Keppel Centre at the National Gallery.
Day 3 in Singapore:
We started Day 3 with a trip to Singapore Zoo. It’s an award-winning wildlife park, where animals can roam freely in their natural habitats. We also got to experience the Jungle Breakfast with Wildlife at Ah Meng Restaurant, a yummy western-style, al fresco breakfast in the good company of our jungle friends.
Dylan happily took the responsibility of touring Tom and me. He literally took the map and became our guide in the zoo. What’s more fun than a 6-year old kid giving his parents the tour of a lifetime? Singapore Zoo truly brings out the adventure spirit in everyone.
One of the highlights of our trip to Singapore was when Dylan got a chance to feed the giraffes! The zoo keepers provided an informative and entertaining live commentary of the chow-time frenzy. My son also learned fascinating facts about the animals in the zoo.
Next adventure: River Safari! It is the newest addition to Wildlife Reserves Singapore’s portfolio of award-winning parks. Nestled between Singapore’s two award-winning wildlife parks – Singapore Zoo and Night Safari – River Safari offers an unforgettable adventure inspired by the world’s most iconic rivers with state-of-the-art exhibit design as well as the world’s largest freshwater aquarium. Housing one of the world’s largest collections of freshwater fauna, the park features over 6,000 animals including 40 threatened species. And that includes Singapore’s resident giant pandas, Kai and Jia.
We took a leisurely stroll through the park on an exploratory river adventure of the Mississippi, Congo, Nile, Ganges, Mekong and Yangtze rivers. The River Safari is also home to the Giant Panda Forest, Squirrel Monkey Forest and the enchanting Amazon Flooded Forest.
After all the walking and adventure-hunting we’re ready for a panda-rific meal at Mama Panda Kitchen. Decked out in bamboo and all things panda, this is one dining spot you should not miss. A feast of Chinese dishes and panda-themed bites. With signature delights such as Panda Pau, Bamboo Rice and more, Mama Panda Kitchen is a fun dining experience for the whole family.
For as much as our family loves adventures, we also look forward to some museum time. It’s important that Tom and I expose our children to the arts and culture as it promotes creativity and food for the soul. We visited the National Gallery Singapore, a new visual arts institution which oversees the largest public collection of modern art in Singapore and Southeast Asia. The Gallery is housed in two national monuments—former Supreme Court and City Hall—that have been beautifully restored and transformed into this exciting venue in the heart of the Civic District.
The roof top garden offers interesting views (a number of up market eating places on the roof terrace too). Lots of walking but some wonderful artworks, a pleasant gift shop, children’ spaces and cafes. Definitely worth visiting when in Singapore.
We began our tour at the Kepple Centre For Art Education where children can discover art through imaginative play. It features a changing series of special displays and an interactive area for children to explore their creativity.
Museums offer a dynamic opportunity to expose children to experiences and explore new things in a rich and educational environment. Through interactive exhibits and hands-on play, children have the ability to take ownership of their own learning and develop and explore their own curiosities. This unique exposure provides the foundation for creativity, critical thinking, and connection to the world around them.
Tom and I try to expose our children to art and culture and visiting museums like the National Gallery Singapore as it provides memorable, immersive learning experiences, provoke imagination, introduce unknown worlds and subject matter, and offer unique environments for quality time with family.
Tom and I believe that early exposure to museums fosters curiosity in our children. During our visit to the National Gallery Singapore, we realized that Dylan’s curiosity about the world around him, and the people and things that make up our world is in part due to exploring museums and exhibits like this one. It’s a good foundation for intellectual growth and development.
Day 3 was eventful to say the least and what better way to cap our night than by having dinner at National Kitchen located inside the museum? Helmed by local celebrity chef Violet Oon, National Kitchen is a celebration of fine local flavors reflecting Singapore’s culinary heritage through Peranakan cuisine. We dined indoors in an elegant dining hall.
Watch our Singapore snaps: