Sunday, May 03, 2009

Singapore: Most Liveable City in Asia!

After my recent tour to Hong Kong, I find that the modern metropolis has so much in common with Singapore, be it the city-scaping, transport such as the buses and mass rapid transit and some other modern ways of life.

I was told by the tour guide that while most people know that Hong Kong is twice as big as Singapore, and its population is twice as large as that of Singapore, many people do not know that mountains cover almost three-quarters of the land mass of Hong Kong, so much so that only one-quarter of Hong Kong is for residential and commercial use. Taken this fact into account, we can know see that in actual fact, Hong Kong's residential area can be much lesser than Singapore's and these limited areas have to house twice as many people of Singapore! No wonder residential and commerical property prices in Hong Kong are not cheap at All!

From what I have witnessed in my tour, the housing precincts in Hong Kong are made of very tall buildings like in Singapore, but each of these residential towns does not have a distinct flavour as in Singapore. Most of these are quite cramped and monotonous. Kudos must be given to the Singapore government for ensuring there are lots of parks available in all the housing estates. I can hardly find any parks in Hong Kong that is a stone's throw away from the residential estates. In Singapore, one can just head down to the nearest park located within a stone's throw away for a light-hearted jog.

The air quality in Hong Kong is also not as good as in Singapore. My Dear and I saw many Hong Kongers donning face masks on the streets. The air was also laden with smog as evident in the cityscapes that we have taken photos of.

Some perks Hong Kong offer which Singapore cannot provide is the very vibrant shopping scene. Those shopping districts in Nathan Road, Mong Kok, Jordan, to name a few are buzzing and teeming with residents of all ages and races from morning till late midnight! The streets are really a cacophony of sounds, sights and Great food! In Singapore, as soon as it is 9 am, shops here in Orchard Road and neighbouring estates are already preparing to pack up for the day. This is one aspect of the shopping culture Singapore is not able to provide, compared with its Hong Kong and Taiwan counterparts.

Food in Hong Kong has its own speciality, mainly of Chinese and Western types. Singapore however offers more treats from different cultures, owning to its great advantages of having a multi-racial society. Hong Kongers are food fanatics as Singaporeans, queieng up to eat as early in the morning and till late at night.

Another Great thing I love about Hong Kong are the mountains it offers. I love Tung Chung 360 degree, I mean the mountains there. I love Victoria Peaks. If I could stay longer in Hong Kong, my weekends could be spent climbing these great mountains and spending an afternoon or night there, with nature, and with the clouds.

Climate-wise, pardon my candour, but Singapore has a really very harsh (hot and wet climate) which is not really comfortable especially whenever one is outdoors. Hong Kong offers a seasonal climate from very cool and cold to hot and humid. However for visitors to Hong Kong, it will take at least one month to acclimatize their bodies to the climate of Hong Kong as this is our body's natural responses to sudden changes in the environment.

To summarise, Hong Kong is one destination which Singaporeans and international visitors can revisit over the years. I feel very Great at home to be in Singapore. Though Singapore is not perfect, it makes one of the best homes in the world, and to attest to this, Singapore has clinched the "Most liveable city in Asia"award recently.


Dutchie said...

U forgot to mention the days off when there's a typhoon - hehe.

So, is it true they speak n write in Cantonese ? I heard that they tend to ignore u if u cant speak their lingo. Also, they r very money conscious n talks abt it every waking minute !

Btw, check out mr brown's recent trip to NL.

Singapore Short Stories said...

Hi Dutchie,

Thanks for your post!

Hong Kongers are now very conversant in English, I have no problem communicating in English with Hong Kongers.

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