Sentosa Island, Singapore

Sentosa is a small island with theme park-like attractions that boasts a number of resorts, five star hotels, golf courses, the Underwater world, a butterfly park, dolphin shows, Fort Siloso, sheltered beach, Resorts World Sentosa and in 2010 will say 'oi oi oi' to the Universal Studios Singapore.

Going to Sentosa Island we took an MRT train that led us to VivoCity - a row of shopping malls located along a scenic harbor. From VivoCity we took a cable car from HarbourFront which also passes through Mount Farber with the whole ride taking less than 5 minutes. Inside the cable car I saw the bustling port with many ships lined up entering and exiting Singapore and also a wonderful view of the interchanging highways and towering skyscrapers around VivoCity.

"Sentosa" - a malay word which means "tranquility" or "peace". During world war II, Sentosa Island was a fortress abode of the British Army, it proved ineffective against the onslaught of rampaging Japanese Imperial forces that it became under the Japanese rule on February 15, 1942. The island then became a prisoner of war camp housing British and Australian POWs. The Pulau Blakang Mati beach then became the site of a horrendous killing fields where mostly Chinese and a some Malay and Singaporean men suspected of having anti-Japanese leanings were executed during the infamous 'Sook Ching Operation'  perpetrated by the Japanese Army.

After the war, the island became a military and training base of the British Royal Military until it was turned over to the Government of Singapore upon gaining its independence in 1967. In 1970's the Government decided to transform Sentosa island into a haven of tourism and commerce by constructing resorts to attract foreign and local tourists.
We first visited the Underwater World - an oceanarium that shelters more than 250 different species from different marine regions of the world. Here, I saw an abundance of marine life that includes, stingrays, sharks, eels, turtles and vibrant shaped coral reefs as well.

I've always thought that Singapore is a family oriented destination where one will enjoy a holiday in Singapore in the company of the whole family, children most specially. The attractions at Sentosa will definitely please young kids from the Underwater World to the Butterfly Park and the Dolphin Lagoon - where we watched a duo of 'pink dolphin' or the Indo-Pacific humpback dolphins presented a well choreographed dolphin show.

To go around the island is very easy, there's a shuttle bus to take you around and cable cars that will take you to the other side of the island. We also took a ride in the open air cable car which was more exciting compared to the normal closed cable car we took from VivoCity to Sentosa.

The ride here was awesome as I was able to further see a 360 degree view of the scenery around Sentosa, from the beachside to the towering trees to a nearby park where visitors could also opt to ride a luge going on a downhill path.

We dropped by the three beaches around Sentosa; the Palawan Beach, Siloso Beach and the Tanjong Beach. The landscape and formation of these beaches were man-made to further attract appeal, however its ordinary for my taste, not the kind of beach you'd want to swim and lie around all day - There are a lot of more attractive beaches in the Philippines compared to the ones in Sentosa, but over-all the Island was a pleasant destination - and even better as I have mentioned, if you're traveling with your family or with children in tow.

Here are some of the highlights of Sentosa as I've captured on my point and shoot camera. I still eager to buy myself a DSLR camera. A Nikon perhaps.







I'm sure everybody who visit the country of Singapore will somehow by virtue of their curiosity will often lead them to Sentosa Island. It wasn't my ideal set-up of what an island should be. I'm more inclined to enjoy a laid back, sleepy hollow yet with magnificent beaches - kind of island - like the ones we have here in the Philippines.

However, its not something you'll regret visiting as a budding traveler I always try to seek other things to enjoy myself whether the place is in stark contrast to what I search for and in Sentosa there's just an adequate things to really like. I really enjoyed the pink dolphins and the Underwater world and a few other things.