Singapore is a country of high level of development, "Asian Europe - Singapore is unique in many ways. Long as a "bridge" between East and West, Singapore combines the characteristic features of the modern city with well-preserved colonial centre, colorful ethnic neighborhoods, parks and reserves. A harmonious blend of different cultures and religions, traditions and modernity, high level of technological development and childlike simplicity and friendliness of the local residents - all of today's Singapore, the jewel of Southeast Asia.
Singapore is a city - state in Southeast Asia, consisting of the main island, Islands, Pulau Ubin, Pulau-Tekong, Sentosa and more than 60 small Islands. The island of Singapore is separated from the Malay Peninsula narrow by Johore Strait (width of about 1 km), in the Northern part of connecting with Malaysia by a Causeway, which runs a highway. To the South of Indonesia it is separated by the Singapore Strait, which connects the Indian ocean and the South China sea. The total area of the country 692,7 sq. km.
The Capital Of Singapore.
Singapore is one of the most unusual cities in Asia. The largest shopping centre in the region and one of the major ports of Asia, and since its inception has attracted the attention of millions of visitors from all over the world. Old colonial quarters and ultra-modern skyscrapers, temples and green parks, a lively shopping street and one of the largest sea ports in the world - all this is concentrated here in a relatively small area, forming a unique aura of this city-state. The major tourist attractions of Singapore are relatively evenly distributed in three main areas - CBD (Central Business District) or Raffles quay, Sentosa island and Jurong.
The Central part of Singapore established business districts South of the river and the administrative center of the city, its old colonial part located slightly to the North. They say that it preserved the spirit of the city's founder, sir Stamford Raffles, planned and built this part of Singapore almost entirely. Local attractions include the imposing building of the Empress place building (1865) Victorian (now here there is a Museum, art galleries and chic restaurant, Concert hall and theatre Victoria, Parliament house (XIX century), the Supreme court, Municipality and County cricket club, the complex Padang, proverbial for its luxurious finish hotel Raffles Hotel, the Anglican Cathedral. Andrew and the Catholic Cathedral of the good shepherd, the Armenian Church. Gregor-the Saint (the oldest Church in Singapore) and the Christian cemetery on the hill Fort canning hill. Worth a visit is one of the most beautiful buildings of the colonial era - the Institute of St. Joseph, the Singapore art Museum on Bras Basah road, the national Museum at Stamford road, the statue of sir Stamford Raffles, beautiful building, Supreme Court and city Hall, numerous skyscrapers like Singapore Land tower or Art Deco-Caltex house, bridges, Benjamin Schwartz, Elgin bridge and North bridge, MERLION Park, market Heifers-Ayer (Lau-PA), scenic boat areas" Clarke quay and boat quay, turned into the perfect entertainment centers and shopping, as well as the famous street of skyscrapers Orchad road c its palaces Peranakan and Istana or temple Chettiar-Hindu.
Orchad road is the concentration of first-class hotels, shopping malls, night clubs, restaurants, bars and concert halls, a real showcase of the wealth and success of the local elite. In the Western end of Orchad road lies the Botanical garden of Singapore, founded in 1859, is the Oldest Park of the country have kept the last areas of pristine rainforests that once occupied the entire island. Good rosary, many examples of landscape art, fern Conservatory, palm valley and small, but very picturesque lake. One of the jewels of the Botanical garden is a national Park Orchid "Mandy", containing over 60 thousand of these beautiful plants (local craftsmen even make Orchid jewelry, covering with a thin layer of gold flowers).
Chinatown, lying to the West of the CBD, is the cultural heart of Singapore and is still proud of its old Chinese architecture, numerous temples, decorative terraces and enormous accumulation of markets and shops. Unfortunately, most of the Chinese quarter was almost destroyed in the middle of the XX century and heavily restored. Here is an interesting old shops quarter Tanjong of Pagar, temple Thian-Keng (Thian hock-Keng, 1840, one of the most interesting Chinese temples in Singapore), temples HAC Hai-Cheng-Biot, Nagora-Durga-Shreen, Kong-Man-San, Sing-lim and others, as well as one of the most beautiful mosques of the city - al-Abrar and the oldest Hindu temple in the city - the Sri Mariamman (1827).
The "Arab street" Kampong-Glam - Muslim centre Singapore, lying northeast of the colonial city centre. It is a bustling shopping district and traditional textile district, famous for its batik, silk, carpets, producing sarongs and other light clothing. Here are the main city mosque - Masjid Sultan (1925) with a Golden dome, the old market, Serai Palace, Istana Kampong Glam (now it works Malay Museum), a tiny mosque JAMA'at, colorful "Indian mosque, unusual mosque Hajj-Fatima with the leaning minaret, "the complex of the Golden Mile and "Thai village".
The Little India lies to the North of the colonial center. This is a fairly modest but colourful shops, spicy aromas, bright saris, bustling markets, great restaurants and Hindi - a relief from the artsy modern business district of the city. The main attractions of the district Centre Gujiao (Center Tecca, "main market") and the many colorful shops of spices nearby, arcade, little India, a five-metre statue of a sitting Buddha, temple of Veeramakaliamman, the temple of Sri Srinivas-Perumal and charming Temple of 1000 lights" on the race-Course road.
In a huge number of parks that are not only fulfill the role of green space, but also contain a lot of entertainment or sports facilities. The most interesting Heifers-Blangah hill Park, Tiong-Bahru Park, the pearls hill city Park, the Morning Park and mount Faber Park in the southern part of the city, Crawford Park on the North, East coast Park and Marina city Park on the East, and small parks in the historic part of the city - Esplanade Park, War memorial Park, Fort canning Park, the famous Japanese and Chinese gardens, historical and cultural Park "City of the Tang dynasty" (reconstruction of ancient Chinese the capital of Chani) and others.
The Singapore zoo is a very well known part of the tourist image of the city. Its characteristic feature is the complete absence of any grilles and fences around the habitats of animals, and there are more than 2000 species. Planned with great skill, the zoo just shuts one out of the viewer from the animal's natural barriers, it is not conspicuous and provide its inhabitants free existence. Also here is organized night Safari, passing through the most interesting corners of the Park and adjoining forest.
District Jurong, lying South-West of the city centre, is actually more like an independent city. Ultra-modern port, a huge industrial center and one of the largest oil refinery complexes in the world, he is a true powerhouse of the Singapore economy, while remaining surprisingly clean the area where his enormous industrial potential remind only the persistent hum of the port, Yes somewhere visible smokestacks. So here it is freely accommodated by such famous attractions as Villa AU-Pair with the Chinese fleet, the largest in Southeast Asia bird Park with a huge variety of birds (over 600 species, up to the penguins), reptile Park (about 2.5 thousand different reptiles), and center for research and technology discovery.
In the city there is the naval Museum, Museum of fishes, Museum of the air force, world war II memorial (including the part of the Japanese concentration camps), Asian Civilizations Museum, the Museum of Malay culture in Geylang and many small private collections. And, of course, throughout the city you can find statues of the mythical lion-fish "called" a symbol of the island.
In the North-Eastern part of the island built a new "model city of the XXI century". Here will be combined spacious beaches, parks, sports and social clubs, shopping centres and supermarkets, markets, shops, restaurants, cinemas and other entertainment.
Sentosa island is a small (3-square-kilometer) island resort, located South of the main island. Recognized as a center of recreation and entertainment, Sentosa has a huge selection of parks, attractions, sports venues and other entertainment for all ages. Here are the Fort Siloso, amusement Park "Vulkanland", the famous Musical fountains, Museum of the founders of Singapore, the Museum of rare stones, the Maritime Museum, butterfly Park and insect (more than 5.5 thousand species), Floral terrace, and a Garden of Spices, wax Museum, Oceanarium "Underwater world" with a transparent underwater tunnel with a length of 100 m and the lagoon Dolphin "Dolphin Lagoon", cinema virtual reality "Cinemania", ultramodern entertainment complex "Images of Singapore Exhibition", the cultural-historical Park "Village of Tang Dynasty", the Museum of terracotta warriors, the highest in Singapore lookout tower sky tower, numerous gardens with fountains, and more than 3 km of beaches with white sand (here regularly imported from the Islands of Oceania). All vehicular traffic on the Sentosa Smoking, there are only special tourist buses, but there are over 50 km of Hiking and Cycling paths.
The island of Pulau Ubin, which lies approximately North-East coast of the main island, is a haven of peace after constantly bustling Singapore or Calming. Here, among the fishing villages of kalongo and framed by palm trees, desert shores, lies several small temples, the main attractions of the island - lots of colorful restaurants with sea food and sea plantations and the original fauna.
Although many of the southern Islands are used as an industrial base, some of them are of particular interest. Island Sister-Islands good for swimming and have a real coral reef, which makes them attractive for diving. Island, Lazarus island (Pulau Sakijang-Palapa), Pulau Buran-Darat, Terumbu-Retin-Laut and Pulau-Ringgit widely known as active and "wild" holiday. Also here good conditions for swimming, yachting, Windsurfing, especially during monsoons.
Equatorial marine, hot and humid. During the year, the temperature varies little from +26 to +30 ° C all year round. Most cool season is from November to January when the temperature is falling to +24-26 C. Rainfall is 600 to 1300 mm per year, mainly in the period from December to March (northeast monsoon) and from June to September (southwest monsoon). In between seasons of monsoon rainfall is relatively few, but they are usually accompanied by strong thunderstorms and brief, but powerful showers. Relative humidity is kept at 64-96% all year round.
Ahead of Moscow for 4 hours in summer and 5 hours in winter.
Malay and English. Widely used Chinese (Mandarin) and Tamil. Most Singaporeans are bilingual and fluent in English, which is used for business correspondence and administrative matters, as well as in the language of their ethnic group.
The Singapore dollar (S$), equal to 100 cents. In circulation are banknotes 2, 5, 10, 20, 50, 100, 500, 1000 and 10,000 Singapore dollars and coins in denominations of 1, 5, 10, 20, 50 cents and 1 dollar. Also free circulation on the territory of the country is Brunei dollar, equivalent to Singapore.
Citizens of most countries visa in Singapore are not required, including Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania. Unfortunately, the lists of those who need a visa for the country (a total of 35 countries), Russia.
Documents required for visa application:
For visa application should be submitted to the consular Department of the Embassy of the following:
• passport (must be valid at least 6 months after the expiration of the visa);
• 2 of the questionnaire in English with two passport photos
• original invitation
• proof of residence - tour-voucher or hotel reservation (print or Fax fit) in Singapore
• air tickets (original, copy or printout of your booking).
• In the absence of an invitation from the Singapore side, need help to work on company letterhead indicating the position and salary.
The procedure for filing documents and issuing term
The documents are submitted to the same queue without an appointment. The entrance to the Consulate free. Usually missing. The visa processing time is 3 working days. That is, the visa ready on the 3rd working day after filing.
The type and duration of visa
In most cases, the Consulate provides multiple-entry visas for up to 7 weeks from the date of issue.
Visas for children
Children have their own passports, issue a visa on a common basis. Children who are included in parent's passport, a visa is not needed, but must be accompanied by the person in the passport which they are written.
Visa fee is US $ 15. Payment only in cash dollars is made at the moment of submission of documents to the Consulate.
Russian citizens have the right to stay in the country without a visa for not more than 96 hours in the presence of tickets from Singapore with a fixed date and sufficient financial resources. For long stays, you need an entry visa. The final decision on entry into Singapore in case 96-hour transit is accepted by the border guard service.
Entry into the country may be denied to persons whose appearance (long hair, dirty jeans with plenty of "friendship bracelet" and so on) will provide the basis for customs officers to carry them to the category of "hippies".
A vaccination certificate is not required.
Singapore is a very safe place. The General order on the streets even in the most remote areas of the city is very high and is supported by law enforcement. But petty theft, robbery and fraud from time to time occur in the places most visited by tourists. Therefore, you should observe reasonable precautions.
The country is quite expensive. Despite the fantastic local shops and markets, the prices of many food products is very high, and services are only slightly cheaper than in Japan.
When all its external benevolence, Singaporeans in transport and shops behave quite rudely (but without rudeness). The Singapore police, which are easily identified by their dark blue uniforms, quite restrained, polite and correct with respect to any requesting assistance.
The penalty for abandoned on a street stub is 500 Singapore dollars, even if you just missed the urn. Smoking in public places - from 700 to 1000 Singapore dollars, in many places Smoking is permitted only in strictly certain hours. Chewing gum generally outlawed. Profanity in a public place or uttering threats against a person (even rhetorical!) may end up with a fine of up to 3000 Singapore dollars. Drug use is punishable by long imprisonment, and their importation and sale - the death penalty without the right of appeal. Foreigners in most of the cases of violation of local norms are rather condescendingly, but repeated offence or apparent unwillingness to respect local laws can end very badly.
The designation of the floors in the rooms is pretty traditional for the East Asia - they are usually denoted by a double number, the first of which specifies the floor, the second, a hyphen, a room or office (the"ground level" is indicated as 01). In some hotel there are no floors or rooms that contain the designation "bad number" (4, 66, and so on).
Traditional cuisine Singapore
Singaporean cuisine, as such, is a mixture of all the culinary traditions of the world. Here you can enjoy Chinese, Malay, Japanese, Indian, European, Mexican and Thai cuisine, including works of culinary art from all over the world. Self-catering, there are virtually no - all that you can see or try the many restaurants, bars and cafes, is borrowed. What makes this city-state in Paradise for gourmets all over the world.
Political system Singapore
Singapore is a parliamentary Republic. The head of state is the President (elected by universal and secret ballot for a term of six years). The legislative body is the unicameral Parliament (84 seats, members of Parliament are elected by universal and secret ballot for a term of five years). The head of government is the Prime Minister. The Cabinet is appointed by the President in consultation with Parliament. The ruling people's Action Party" (People's Action Party, PAP) dominates in all areas of political and public life over the last 50 years, giving the country some of the features of the one-party system with all the ensuing consequences.
About 4,35 million people (estimates as of July 2004), mainly Chinese, overseas Chinese (77%), Malays (8%) and people from other Asian countries - India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, and Europeans.
Restrictions on the import and export of currency no. Passengers over the age of 18 years imported duty free up to 1 l of wine, up to 1 litre of spirits and 1 litre of beer, cigarettes - 200 PCs, confectionery and chocolate products in the amount of up to 50 Singapore dollars, personal items, and other goods worth 300 Singapore dollars (if tourist stays in the country for less than 48 hours - no more than 150 Singapore dollars). Chewing gum and tobacco products are necessarily the customs authorities.
Prohibited the importation of narcotics and psychotropic drugs, firecrackers, lighters in the form of weapons, drugs in commercial quantities, counterfeit products, toy coins and banknotes, pornographic literature and videotapes, meat and meat products, as well as the animals and plants listed in the Red book, and products from them. For export from the country of weapons, explosives, animals, poisons, medicines, telecommunications equipment, VCD, photo - and videotapes, precious stones and jewelry in excess of personal needs, you need permission.
Medical aid Singapore
Medical services in Singapore are functioning flawlessly. Nurses everywhere speaks English and is highly qualified. Pharmacies are located on almost every corner, but most of the drugs released on the recipe or have unusual for Europeans names. Most hotels have their own doctors.
The ambulance is free and very quick. For all subsequent visits to health care facility will have to pay. The main Singapore hospital accepts patients free of charge only in case of danger for their lives. Services medical services are quite expensive. It is recommended that the insurance certicate.
Working hours Singapore
Banks are open Monday to Friday from 9.30-10.00 to 15.00, Saturday from 9.30-11.00 to 13.00. Many branches of major banks in Orchad road closed on Sundays from 9.30 to 15.00. Exchange offices are located in most shopping centres, but they run from 10.00-11.00 to 17.00, some - 20.00-21.00. So about the currency exchange, you should enquire in advance.
Transport Singapore consists of metro, high-speed trams, buses and cable cars. The metro consists of three lines, one of which starts at the airport. The high-speed tram performs auxiliary functions in remote areas of the island, driving passengers to the metro. The fare on the subway is from 0.8 to 2 Singapore dollars depending on the distance, on the bus from 0.7 to 1.7 dollar (Express routes to 2.35 USD). Light rail is from 0.8 to 1 dollar.
The main vehicle for entertainment Sentosa island - ropeway. She has three stations - mount Faber, the Harbour and Sentosa. Travel one stop is 7.5 dollar, but four is just 8.9 per dollar.
For tourists there are Visitor travel Card . He is 45 Singapore dollars, of which only 10 are disposed on the transport ticket. The rest is a fee for discounts at attractions, restaurants and shops.
Railways and trains
Its network Singapore does not have, but in the country goes down the line Malaysian Railways. Three times a day from Singapore trains in Kuala Lumpur, the journey time for the afternoon train about 6 hours, night - about 8 hours.
Power supply 220 C., 50 Hz, three-prong plugs (English sample). Many hotels provide rooms only 110-volt power.
Officially tipping in restaurants, hotels and the airport is 10-15% and is usually included in the bill. Maid service includes up to 2 Singapore dollars per day, the porter - 1 Singapore dollar per piece of Luggage, the porter - 1 Singapore dollar, room service - 10% of invoice amount.
Helpful information Singapore
Hotline of the Department of Immigration - 391-61-00, 691-27-28, 1800/298-33-79.
Registration branch Department of Immigration - 6391-6100.
The Singapore office of tourism - 1-800/736-20-00, 1-800/332-50-66, 6336-2888.
The Singapore Association of Hotels - 6415-35-88.
The police - 999.
Ambulance and Fire service - 995.