Wednesday, May 8, 2013

Singapore : Connexxions (Pt.1)

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Singapore : Connexxions (Pt.1)
Happy Cyclist at The Marina Barrage with the Marina Sands Hotel & the Singapore Flyer in the background.
Singapore City : 27th April 2013
A small group of us went on  ride to explore the Inter-park Connectors
Our route : F1 Pit Building>Gardens In The Bay>Marina Barrage>Paya Lebar>Punggol Park Connector>Punggol>Bishan
Distance covered : approx. 28.02 km.
Time : 10:45 am - 5:45 pm
Time Taken : approx. 7 hrs. (including stops for lunch, drinks, rest, rendering first aid, photo shoots, etc.)

Route Recommendations :
1. Riding along Marina Bay and the Marina Barrage is full of photo opportunities; so do take your time there and stop to enjoy the scenery.
2. Part of the ride is along busy Singapore roads, do be careful there. When crossing busy junctions, it will be safer to use the pedestrian crossings.
3. The Park Connector Network (PCN) is shared with pedestrians, joggers. Do give way to these people, it's biking courtesy.
4. The PCN is devoid of traffic, but do be careful it rains, take shelter at the provided shelter to avoid being strike by lightning.
5. Other than that, riding along the PCN is an experience. It is nicely landscaped with riverside views, etc.

This is a two page blog, for other page click - Singapore Connexxions (Pt.2)


PRE-RIDE

Night Reflections Of Marina Sands Hotel & the Greenhouse.
The previous day I had arrived from Malaysia and had gone for a night ride with my cousin-in-law Thomas. The night ride around the Lion City had opened my eyes to the beauty of Singapore (... see more at Knight Riders In The Lion City).

Today, is the eve of the OCBC Cycle Singapore 2013 event, and I have rode down from Siglap to meet my friends at the F1 Pit Building  Unfortunately, there was a light shower in the morning, my ride from Siglap took me an hour instead of the normal thirty minutes. Fortunately, my friends were patient and waited for me.

We also took this opportunity to go collect our cylce pack of goodies.

The goodies Cycle Pack held a nice sling bag, the official cycle jersey, number tags, timing chip (part of the jersey tag) and discount coupons.

We also took this opportunity to shop around at the many different stall offering bicycles and accessories.

There were many nice and beautiful things on offer. Heh! Heh!

Shopping time"s over.
It's time
TO RIDE!


THE RIDE

Cycling Route : F1 Pit>Marina Barrage>Paya Lebar>Punggol Connector>Bishan.
Starting from the F1 Pit Building, half of our ride will be along the busy roads of Singapore before we enter the Park Connector Network (PCN) at the Serangoon entrance. From there we will cycle up north to Punggol and then down south to exit the PCN; and it's back to the roads again where we will end our ride at Bishan. Singapore have an extensive Park Connector Network that let cyclist literally cycle all over the island almost without going onto the main roads.


Group Photo at F1 Pit start; L-R : Kevin, Kenny, Tailim, SuiT, Tan, Kellie, Patrick & me.
Eight of us will be having this riding adventure; including our two Singapore hosts, Tan and Patrick.

Leaving the F1 Pit Building, the big red "CYCLISTS RULE!" signboard is not a call for cyclist to rule the road, but more a call to be proud to cycle.


While crossing Republic Avenue, a red Singapore City Sightseeing Bus drove pass us.


We are cycling along the pavements, passing by the Singapore Flyer entrance.


Riding below the Benjamin Shears Bridge, the Marina Bay Sands Hotel to our right.


On the track behind the Flyer, we were stopped by security personnel. Seems like the area beyond that is out of bounds, probably for security of the OCBC Cycle Singapore 2013 event.
Fortunately they did let us pass through, but only after checking through the contents of our bags.


Further down, we stopped to take a group photo.
Patrick had this unique camera stand, I will call it a octopus-camera stand. See, the legs are flexible and can clamp down onto the bicycle seat. Nifty!


Our group photo with the Green House and Super Trees Park of the Gardens by the Bay in the background.


Riding back out, we could see the Singapore Flyer to our right ...


At Bayfront Avenue, with the ship-like roof platform of the Marina Bay Sands Hotel looming over us.


Turning left, we are now on the cycling tracks of the Gardens by the Bay.


This place is just so well done up and so relaxingly beautiful. It's full of photo opportunities.
Like this one of Kenny with the Sands Hotel  behind him.


Cycling at the Gardens is nice with it's landscaped cycling/pedestrian boulevards. And we were further blessed with an overcast sky.


Riding pass the greenhouses of the Garden, it's arches making the route more interesting.


Approaching the Marina Barrage...


... And riding along the Barrage.
Kevin took a video of our ride here an posted on YouTube ( .... see video)


From here the view of Marina Bay and the buildings at it's edges is picturesque.


At the Marina East side of the Barrage, we stopped to take a nice group photo.


A happy TaiLim, posing with the Sands Hotel and Singapore Flyer in the background. He's also a blogger, read his blogs at hApPy HaPpY.


We are just at the start of our Singapore adventure, and we are already having so much fun. Yes, cycling is indeed interesting!
We exited Marina Bay at Tanjong Rhu, an up market residential area.


We are still around the residential areas, and the traffic was fairly light, making cycling easy.


But further along, the traffic got heavier and we had to cycle with more care.


The traffic at the junctions were fast and horrendous. To be safe we took to crossing these junctions using the pedestrian crossings - from one crossing to the opposite one, then diagonally across to the next one. It was like playing hop-scotch on bicycles.


Cycling along these main roads were not as much fun; a bored, yawning Kevin expressed this.


But no fear! We are at Paya Lebar now; and will be having lunch soon.


Getting off the main roads, we cycled along the back lanes. Singapore is a very clean place, even its back lanes are devoid of rubbish.


We parked our bicycles at the back lane behind one of the coffee shops and headed for lunch there.


Lunch for most of us were this "Chap Fun" mixed rice. Our Singapore hosts had wanted to take us to a nicer place to eat, but then it was getting late and that place was much further away.

Well, it has been an interesting morning, but then half the day had past and we are still not cycling along the Park Connector Network.

After lunch, will be another cycling adventure over there!
(... see more)


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