Sunday, September 19, 2004

Hippotours: Go on a Topless Bus

Readers of my blog: This is a retrospective article, I would say. If you must demand for an answer why I post so many post in a short moment of time, it is all because 6 days of not being quite able to do much things (because of my wisdom teeth removal) has spurred me to possibly misplace my energy in writing.

I shall write about the Moonlight Hippotour that I went on sometime late August with one of my good friends.

To give some background, Hippotours are open-top bus tours. These buses are double decker buses, and they are topless. In Singapore, there is two kinds of HiPPOtours available during the daytime: the City HiPPOtours & the Heritage HiPPOtours. In addition, there is a Moonlight HiPPOtour that is available every evening from 6.30 p.m.

It was quite an experience being on the HiPPOtours. We set off from Suntec City (a shopping mall in Singapore) to the Sentosa Island (an offshore Island that has been linked to the Singapore main island by a bridge) at about 6.40 pm. I was sitting on the top (yes, it's topless) of the bus with my friend, and I have a 360 degree of the views around me.

Excited to see the Esplanade, Theatres on the bay (this is one of the latest performing arts centre in Singapore), I did a quick sketch of it. For the rest of the journey, I was trying hard to find subject matters that appeared interesting to sketch. I am pleased to report that I had completed 7 sketches during the entire journey.

Travelling to the Sentosa Island via the bridge that linked the island with the Singapore main-island has been a fun experience. I could remember the breeze passing by, and how sitting on a topless bus gave me a sense of 'freedom', as if nothing will be blocking me. At the same time, I was trying hard to grab tight of my sketchbook in case it should fly off the bus while I was doing my sketch during this part of the journey. I did a quick sketch of the cable cars, which are one of the other modes of tranport that one could use to travel to the Sentosa Island.

We were told by our tour guide that we should check out the show at the Musical Fountains. So me and my friend did, together with a friendly guy from Mexico whom we had just gotten to know on the tour. Well, the show at the Musical Fountains was so-so. I like the very last part of the show most. The other parts were barely acceptable, but I decided that I should try to enjoy them anyway, perhaps from the perspective of a curious young child, and so I survived the great part of the show.

The bus also took us to places such as Bugis Junction, Chinatown, Clarke Quay and Orchard Road, and it made approximately 20-30 minutes stops each at Bugis Junction and Chinatown. I must take my hats off our newly acquainted friend from Mexico, he requested for a short stop at Clarke Quay, and he tried the reverse bungee!

And when the bus was travelling from Orchard Road back to Suntec City, I remembered I was totally drained...probably from the concentration required to do quick sketches, and from my incessant babbling at the beginning of the tour. (I must have been too excited. Anyway, I am thankful my friend who was with me was still very patient to bear with my initial babbling, and my great contrast in energy level before and after the tour.)

If you were to ask me if the tour was worth going for. I shall leave the final decision to you. At the promotional rate, I felt it was worth going for. Perhaps if it was at its usual rate, I would expect a bit more research to be done in the tour contents. I would prefer to receive more in-depth historical knowledge about the various places (e.g. Chinatown, Bugis Junction). Anyway, if you are willing to be charged for the tour, there's no harm trying the HiPPOtour for its novelty and the fun of going on a topless bus.

So I shall end here with some information about the HiPPOtour:


Contact number: (65) 6-33-86877

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

THIS, obviously deviates from the blogs that have been written thus far. makes easy reading.

also can infer (i may be wrong) that you seem to be in a light hearted mood either during the trip or while writing this blog.