Why are so many people excited about trips? As time goes by, more and more people are getting interested in going on trips. In particular, trips to foreign countries are very popular and almost everyone regardless of age or gender now loves to plan for traveling. Is it because it’s a short break in a busy life? But these trips are not only for vacations. These days, the number of people who quit their job and live a vacation life is growing. It means that you can learn and gain plenty of things from trips. For some people, it will be a meaningful time to render their mental and inner selves more mature. No matter what the purpose of the trip may be, most people will feel the same kinds of things in the process of preparation-trip-return. Like some other people, I was so immersed in my trip that I would even say that once you travel you may never stop travelling. I want to share my fantastic story with all students.
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1. From the start to the end, only by ourselves.
Two years ago in winter, I made a promise with my friends to travel abroad the next year. And in the summer of 2014, we chose to travel to Singapore. It was not easy. We had a hard time buying the airplane tickets because it was our first trip without adults and it was difficult to find a lot of important information. In the end we managed to buy our tickets for Vietnam at a reasonable price. We chose our lodging, which was a famous Korean guest house called, ‘Orchard House’. ‘Orchard House’ is located in ‘Orchard’, which is similar to Korea’s ‘Gangnam’. After we bought the tickets and reserved our lodgings, I really felt that we were going on a trip.
2. The start is never easy.
Finally the departure day arrived. I was up all night because of the early flight departure time. Just in case, I repeatedly checked if I left something behind. We took the airport shuttle bus and arrived at Incheon Airport safely. However, an unexpected thing happened. One of my friends brought her discarded passport. At that moment, we were anxious, thinking that we might not be able to go on a trip together. Fortunately, a quick delivery service brought her new passport from home to the airport on time. I thought that moment was the hardest and the most anxious time during the entire trip. We realized that being sure to bring your passport is the most important part of a trip.
3. Step forward first.
From the start of our first morning in SINGAPORE I was overly excited because of the weather difference between SINGAPORE and KOREA. We ate breakfast at <Toast Box> located in PARAGON shopping center five minutes away from our hotel. <Toast Box> is famous for its toasts with Kaya jam. <Yakun Kaya Toast> is also famous in SINGAPORE. The Kaya jam is never missed out in the ‘shopping list of SINGAPORE’. It has a sweet taste from coconut. After filling our stomach, we went to the City Hall MRT station to visit nana tour (MRT: SINGAPORE’s subway). At Nana tour we could buy SINGAPORE sightseeing tickets at a cheap price. Before the trip, you have to reserve in advance, pay a reservation fee and pay the rest when you arrive in SINGAPORE. It is run by a Korean so we received the tickets without any problem and got lots of simple travelling tips. We purchased the ‘hippo tour’, the ‘night safari’, and a ‘Universal studio and luge’ tickets. Hippo tour is SINGAPORE’s tourist bus. It has three kinds of busses, the City Route, Heritage Route, and Original Tour. If you have a bus ticket, you can go anywhere until 6 o’clock. We took City Route and went to Merlion Park and saw the Merlion bronze statue which is SINGAPORE’s symbol. It was crowded with so many sightseers. In the evening, we went to Night Safari, the world’s first opening at night zoo in SINGAPORE. Each area is divided by natural obstacles instead of artificial structures, so that people could see nocturnal animals clearly. We had a good time on the first day in SINGAPORE. Now I can explain to someone, but at that time I was afraid of the strange surroundings and lost my way.
4. Be crazy about shopping.
Although we worried about SINGAPORE’s rainy weather, the second day’s weather was also bright. Originally, the Hippo Tour ticket could only be used once but on our tickets we didn’t find the purchase date, so we technically could’ve use it one more time. Owing to that, we went to Little India. Little India makes you feel like you’re actually in India. There is a definite contrast to the clean SINGAPORE but I liked their unique atmosphere. Many tourists visited Farrer Park MRT station located near Little India because of Mustafa; the shopping mecca is located there. I spent most of my money at Mustafa. The vital shopping items were coconut scented owl coffee and Himalaya products. Many products were sold cheaply, so it is a good place to go shopping for tourists. Then, we took the Flyer and saw the SINGAPORE landscape. Also in SINGAPORE, you must eat the Chili Crab. Generally, people go to the red house or jumbo house, but we went to the Newton Hawker Center 78 that natives recommended us.
5. Mix-in in SINGAPORE.
The last day arrived. The schedule of that day was busy, from visiting Universal Studio, Palawan beach and the Luge. If you take a cab to Universal Studio, you can conveniently move to other places by using their monorail for free. We were so happy because of Universal’s vivid atmosphere. When I saw a performance by a b-boying team to the song, ‘Gangnam Style’, I not only felt proud of KOREA, but also missed my home country. We also went to Palawan beach. There weren’t a lot of people so we took the Luge through the monorail. The Luge is a ride attraction that sleds along about 1.2km of track. It can be more enjoyable if you control your speed and course, so I wanted to increase the speed twice. Unlike the first day, we asked people to take pictures of us and asked about the route very naturally. Walking towards our hotel felt natural, so we felt sad during the last day.
“A Trip is not always a problem of money, but a problem of courage.” -Paulo Coelho. After the trip, I agreed with those words. Travelling depends on courage. Adults who spent their twenties say, “It changes your attitude and thoughts after your twenties, even if you experience the same thing.” Nowadays, college students live very busily like workers or employees but if they start to enjoy travelling and don’t waste their youth and have long term vacations, they could live with no regrets after their twenties. There are a lot of countries but SINGAPORE has its own attraction. You can see and enjoy many things in a short time. It is a safe country and you can travel with a little money in your pocket. I was impressed with SINGAPORE’s atmosphere. SINGAPORE seemed to be very calm. Also in SINGAPORE, I could not see any trash on the streets. Most SINGAPOREANs use English but they have their own unique pronunciation. So at first, I was confused. I hope that this story can help many people who are planning to travel to SINGAPORE. To all students, youth! Leave when you can!