Singapore today is probably considered one of the most modern, forward-looking countries in the world. Everything always seems to run efficiently, like a well oiled machine. The city is characterized by public transit that is always on time, nightly light shows perfectly choreographed to every changing playlists, video cameras capturing everything, and iPads in airport bathrooms asking for feedback about you experience, to name a few things. But Singapore wasn't always this "perfect".
A mere 50 years ago, Singapore was simply a small Malaysian island full of villages, or kampongs. Though there are little remnants remaining on the main island of these villages, Pulau Ubin is practically untouched. A small island, north east of the main Singapore island, Pulau Ubin is a perfect place to escape the city for the day. It only takes 15 minutes to get to the island but we might as well have jumped in a time machine and gone back 50 years. The island is often referred to the last kampong in Singapore.
It is the perfect place to go for a bike ride and enjoy nature. After exiting the marina, really just a dock where the boat drops you off, you instantly enter the "downtown" area, which is littered with stores renting bikes. I had one objective: rent the cheapest bike possible; I spent $8/day for a rusted, light blue cruiser. Looking back this was not a good plan. The island was full of roads for bikers to use, which is great; however, most of the road was really just compacted dirt and rocks and my $8 cruiser was in no shape for off-roading. Though there were ups and downs (literally! the island is hilly) throughout the day (the bike chain really didn't want to stay on) ultimately, the rusted cruiser worked just fine.
Below are some photos from my island adventure!