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Jurong Bird Park  
While there is no shortage of things to do for the visitor in search of culture in Singapore, the Jurong Bird Park stands out as one of the city's most enduringly popular family activities on offer on the island. Since it first opened its doors in 1971, it has been wowing its plethora of daily attendees with some of the world's most famous and largest free-flying aviaries. Housing many exotic, unusual and colourful species of bird, it is a true must-see for anybody with an interest in wildlife.
One of the keys to the Jurong Bird Park's charm is how perfectly its environment reflects the natural environments of its birds. Across its 20.2 hectares, more than 5000 bird of over 400 species live, fly and breed.
Perhaps its most famous exhibit is the Watefall Aviary, where 600 birds live near a staggering 30 metre high waterfall. The landscape is lush, with 100 plant species colouring every corner with plush, vivid colour. For the visitor who wants to get as close to our fine feathered friends as possible, the daily feeding sessions will be of particular interest.
Another sections of Jurong Bird Park that has made it famous is the Lory Loft, a huge, 9 storey Lory Flight Aviary. For the non-bird spotters amongst you, the Lory is an Australian species of bird famous for both its lively colours and its friendly disposition. These little fellows boast a plumage that combines red, blue, green and yellow, and will happily perch upon a stranger's shoulder when the mood takes them.
There's also the Jungle Jewel area, where Toucans fly in a lush South American rain forest, the Penguin Coast, where the titular Antartic natives dive and swim through icy water, Flamingo Lake, Pelican Cove and much, much more.
If you have very young children, you'll also find plenty to keep them entertained. At the fun-filled Birdz of Play section, kids can wile away the hours happily in a bird themed play zone that boasts both water based and dry attractions. Shallow pools and water slides, see-saws and ice cream – every distraction a kid could need can be found here.
The Jurong Bird Park is not, however, just about fun and games. It is also very much committed to breeding, conservation and animal welfare. It houses a Breeding and Research Centre, where abandoned or endangered eggs and chicks are given a chance to live safe and healthy lives. The centre is open for visits and is a great way to improve your understanding of the vital work being done at the park.
To round off your visit, why not enjoy a hearty feed while taking in a thrilling show? The Songbird Terrace offers a daily lunch buffet, where you can dine on superb Asian cuisine. During the service, the Lunch With Parrots show kicks off, allowing you to interact with some very talkative wildlife. Or, at dinner time, you can try Dinner With Penguins, which takes you through an incredible frozen backdrop filled with 5 species of penguin.
All of this adventure can be yours for a very friendly price tag: just $29 for an adult ticket and just $19 for a child ticket (3 – 12 years old). It truly is a great, affordable day our all year round.
Guide to buying cheap electronics in Singapore  
Whether you're in Singapore for business or pleasure, you owe it to yourself to pick up a few electronics while you're in town. Why? Because here, you will find some of the lowest prices on some of the best hardware anywhere in the world. Thanks to its location, the very best and newest makes and models are on sale in Singapore long before they reach Europe or the States, yet they will be available at much lower rates than you will find in Japan.
Where to shop
Funan Digital Life Mall
Funan Digital Life Mall could fairly be described as a Mecca for the tech-head and gadget fiend. More than a hundred shops are crammed inside, all of them selling superb electronic products at rock bottom prices. It is also 100% trustworthy – all merchant abide by strict rules regarding the warranties and newness of their wares, so you don't have to worry about being ripped off. It's also great for video games, toys and anime merchandise.
Harvey Norman
Yes, if you live in the UK you probably have a Harvey Norman less than a mile away from your door already. However, Singapore's branches of the chain store are stocked with a jaw dropping range of cutting edge electronics for very competitive prices. Also, you don't need to worry about haggling with the staff as you might with other sellers on the island.
Challenger
If you want a laptop or PC, it is hard to go wrong with Challenger. A shop entirely dedicated to all things computer, you can find anything you might need on its packed shelves. If you plan to visit regularly, it's well worth signing up for a $30 bi-annual membership, which will entitle you to all kinds of special offers and great deals.
PariSilk
A little different from the major outlets and chain stores already listed, PariSilk is a family run business renowned for excellent, dedicated customer service and great deals. A good place to go for home appliances in particular.
Tips for the buyer
Know the scams
Unfortunately, many local scam artists like to exploit the city's reputation for cheap goods by fooling tourists with pricing cons. The most popular is the GST Scam. In Singapore, products come with a Goods and Services Tax of 7% per item. The thing is, if a store has an annual turnover of less than 1 million dollars, they do not have to pay GST. Less reputable small stores will lump on the charge without saying anything about it and simply pocketing the cash, so always pay attention to your receipts. You might be able to claim back GST in Changi airport while waiting for your plane, so keep receipts.
Don't assume anything about your warranty
You should never buy a product in Singapore that does not offer a warranty, though that does not mean every warranty is equal. In many cases, they will be local as opposed to international. Smaller electronics stores go in and out of business on a weekly basis, so a warranty from one of these may be worthless in a few months' time. If you want to be sure of your warranty, buy only in the larger outlets.
Best Hotels  
If you are in Singapore, whether on business or on holiday, we have some great news for you: this jewel of an island hosts many of the world's most luxurious hotels. Regardless of your budget, you can easily find accommodation that will be infused with typical Singaporean good taste and hospitality. Here are three of our favourites.
The Forest by Wangz
Do you want nothing but the best during your Singapore stay? Then this famous boutique hotel will be the one for you. Ultra sophisticated, chic and cutting edge in its design, The Forest finds its home in the island's most exclusive neighbourhood. The rooms are incredibly plush and luxuriant, while the facilities, which include an infinity pool, a serene rooftop deck and a highly impressive fitness centre, will satisfy even the pickiest of tourists. For the traveller who just wants a moment of solace, The Forest offers a lush, green oasis upon its grounds – perfect if you need to recharge the batteries during a hectic business trip.
Amoy
If you want a truly authentic Singapore experience during your visit, then Amoy should be your top choice. Located in Far East Square, it draws its inspiration from that area's tradition of shophouses that dates back nearly two centuries. This is where tradition and modernity collide, showing off much of the best of what the island has to offer. That, along with friendly staff, a free pickup service, great food and a central location all make this a standout hotel.
The Ritz Carlton Millenia
Few hotels offer the stunning view available from the best rooms in the Ritz Carlton. From its incredible location on Raffles Avenue, guests can see right across the bay, making it both a luxurious and romantic place to stay. Yet there is plenty of other things to recommend this swanky palace: one of the best breakfast buffets in the city, gorgeous design, a very relaxing spa and lots of activities for children are also on offer when you stay at the Ritz Carlton.
Four Seasons
A superb five star hotel located conveniently on Orchard Boulevard, the Four Seasons gives every visitor more than their money's worth. Very plush and very tasteful, it oozes comfort and class at all times. The startling décor mixes the very best traditional Singaporean art and design with cutting edge modern concepts. The One Ninety restaurant is well worth a visit, while the award winning spa offers the tired traveller a whole world of relaxation and pampering.
Mandarin Oriental
An immaculately designed, beautifully presented little gem, located on plush Raffles Avenue, the Mandarin offers true serenity and peace for the tourist who just wants to get away from it all. Typically, its rooms offer guests a soaring view of the cityscape, where greenery and cutting edge architecture work together in aesthetic harmony. The interiors are very comfortable too. Three eateries are available in-house: the superb Italian restaurant Dolce Vita, the excellent Cantonese place Cherry Garden and the Melt World Café. All of that, along with Spa Suites and a huge fitness centre, means the Mandarin hotel offers visitors a package that is hard to match.
Singapore for sport fans  
If you're a sports nut and planning to head to Singapore for either short or long term stay, you'll probably want to know what kind of physical activities the locals like to do. You'll be happy to hear that the Singaporeans love sport and keeping fit, so you have a real plethora of things to choose from. Whether you want to spectate or participate, there's plenty to keep the sports fan entertained. Here are some of the most popular outdoor pursuits and games on the island.
Golf
If you are one of those people who thinks no sunny day is complete unless it's been spent driving balls down the fairway, then Singapore has lots to offer. Over 20 spectacular courses dot the island, and both members and non-members can be accommodated at most. Amongst the most beautiful places to play golf are the Seletar Base club, which was designed by famous architect Christ Pitman, the Laguna National Golf Club, which has won numerous awards and the Sentosa Club, which is one of the most visited in Asia.
Basketball
Since the mid-1920s Singapore has been basketball mad. The national team has competed at 16 Asia Championships, while winning bronze in two Southeast Asian Championships. Though not quite as popular as it was in its 70s and 80s heyday, when the team was one of the continent's best, the game is still played regularly all over the island.
Bodybuilding
As the population is very interested in clean living and physical fitness, it is unsurprising to learn that bodybuilding is amongst Singapore's most popular sports. The country has produced numerous world and Asian champions, most famously Joan Liew, who has NPC Tournament of Champions, Multi Asian Championships and Asian Women's Bodybuilding Championship titles under her belt and is still competing at the top level today. Other notable Singaporean bodybuilders include Abdul Halim bin Haron, Simon Chua and Azman bin Abdullah.
Football
Though they might not be world beaters, the Singaporeans love football and their national side has punched well above its weight considering the, relatively, small population, frequently coming home winners from the ASEAN Football Championships, where they compete against sides such as Thailand, Malaysia and Vietnam. If you fancy checking out a football game while you're in Singapore, the place to be is the Singapore Sports Hub, which was opened in 2010.
Cricket
Like many Asian countries, Singapore take cricket very seriously. The national side has appeared at every International Cricket Council World Cup Qualifier between 1986 and 2005 and, though one of the smaller teams on the world stage, is steadily climbing up the rankings. Since winning the World Cricket League Division Six title back in 2009 they have risen all the way to Division Three, where they finished in 3rd place last year.
Swimming
Given its fine batch of glistening beaches and gorgeous climate, it is no surprise that Singapore is a country that loves its watersports. With so many people spending so much of their time in the ocean, it has produced a number of world class swimmers through the years, including Ang Peng Siong, Joscelin Yeo and Tao li.
 
Last minute holidays to Singapore  
There are good and bad points about last minute holidays to Singapore. Many people like to have their vacations planned well in advance, giving them a chance to organize accommodation, transport and the finance required. It is also useful to have the opportunity to plan the holiday itinerary – particularly when visiting somewhere like Singapore where there is just so much sightseeing to cram into a short space of time.
On the other hand, there is much to be said about traveling at short notice. When you are placed in the position of making last minute travel arrangements, then you can make all sorts of savings to your budget.
When looking for the best deals the optimum place to start is online. There are many websites which offer superb deals to the Far East. Singapore Airlines, the world's most awarded airline, operate a fleet of modern aircraft. These are on hand for anyone looking to book visits to Singapore at short notice. Because Singapore's airport, Changi, is now Asia's leading hub, there will be many opportunities to book yourself aboard cheap flights to this location, particularly when flight organisers find they have spare seats left to fill.
The best place to get up-to-the-minute information is online, but a typical deal between May and November, for a Singapore Airlines flight from London Heathrow to Changi, will come in at between £800 and £900.
Looking for cut-price accommodation in Singapore is similarly straightforward. There are ample websites, such as Trip Advisor, that will highlight all the most economical places to book into. Within each site there are invariably reviews of the hotels written by previous customers. These are always an excellent indicator of the various merits of each hotel, as they are written entirely subjectively.
Hotels are always looking to fill their rooms, so keep an eye out for last minute bargains. Of course, a lot depends on exactly why you are visiting Singapore. If you are arriving on a business trip, then luxurious hotel accommodation is not usually high on your agenda. As long as your room is comfortable and there are contemporary facilities – such as WiFi access – then your stay will be perfectly accommodated. Similarly, if you intend doing a lot of sightseeing, then all you will be looking for is a home base – somewhere to recharge your batteries after a long day taking in the numerous visitor attractions.
Singapore has a longstanding history of welcoming visitors. So even if your last-minute deal is placing you in less than five-star surroundings, you can be assured your stay will still be extremely pleasant.
Songbirds  

On 5th March 2016, a group of volunteers will be contributing their vocal talents at Raffles Institution's Performing Arts Centre to raise funds for a local charity called Daughters Of Tomorrow (DOT), whose founder is an alumni of the Raffles network of educational institutions in Singapore. The charity's name itself was inspired by Raffles Girls' School's motto “Filiae Melioris Aevi” meaning “Daughters Of A Better Age”.

This young upstart charity was set up in 2014 to enable underprivileged women from low-income families with confidence, skills and access to job opportunities. They have built a support network for more than 280 women, impacted more than 40 families and helped 17 women achieve sustained employment in the short time since they started. Carrie Tan, the founder was thanked personally for the work being done at DOT by President Obama himself last November, when she did the opening introduction for POTUS at a Young Southeast Asian Leaders' Town Hall session in Kuala Lumpur.

Songbirds, the concert is testament to the dedication of love amongst the DOT community in Singapore that has made its work possible - people putting their talents, skills and resources together to enable and empower the women of Daughters Of Tomorrow. You can read about the volunteer performers here: www.DaughtersOfTomorrow.org/events
The event targets to raise $25,000 to support 70 women on their back-to-work journey. For a $100 ticket, you will not only be helping to make confidence and a brighter future possible for the women and their families, you will also be bringing a song into the hearts of the volunteers who have worked hard for several months to make this event possible.
The concert will be on 5th March 2016 (Saturday 3pm to 6pm), at Raffles Institution Performing Arts Centre. To purchase tickets, please email Mel@DaughtersOfTomorrow.org
Find out more about Daughters Of Tomorrow at www.DaughtersOfTomorrow.org
Singapore - sunshine and humidity  
If you are new to traveling to the Far East, there may be certain things you would like to find out about Singapore's climate. Singapore lies in a tropical zone, meaning that you can expect to experience heat and humidity throughout the year. The minimum average temperature is 23°Celsius, and the maximum is around 31°. The readings for humidity range between 70 and 80%.
The climate is mostly dry with occasional showers, although you can expect monsoons, the season for which lasts from November through to January. As far as Asian weather is concerned, Singapore's climate is relatively favourable. Many visitors, especially those from colder countries in Northern Europe, are drawn here because of the pleasant heat. The soothing combination of warmth and moisture is ideal for those out and about exploring the attractions the city state has to offer.
Basically, Singapore has the same overall climate as the tropical rainforests in this part of the world. Average daily temperatures do not tend to fluctuate very much, with the region's proximity to the equator meaning heat and humidity remain constant throughout the year. A further part of the equation is the fact that Singapore is an island lying in the South China Sea. This means that cool sea breezes frequently waft inwards, making for a refreshing counterbalance to the heat during the long summer days.
In order to cope with these climate conditions, the ideal fashion decisions for any tourist should include light clothes, with a portable umbrella in case of sudden downpours. During the monsoon season, there maybe three to four days of continuous rainfall. Even as the season begins to peter out towards April, there is still an increased likelihood of tropical showers. Between June and September you may experience the south-west monsoon, driven by southerly winds. The good news is that because Singapore is so dense populated, you are never far from a doorway to shelter under should you be unlucky enough to be caught in the open during one of these cloudbursts!
Especially for travelers from the northern hemisphere, it is a good idea to take adequate precautions against the heat. The combination of warmth and moisture can prove deceptive, with travelers not appreciating how much exposure they have had to direct sunshine until they get back to their hotel and feel sunburned. So a good idea is to have a supply of lotions, moisturizers, sun-blocks and other skin creams.
There is no particular time of year that is more advisable than others for visiting Singapore. Its pleasant climate is ideal for those wishing to experience the heat the Far East offers, tempered with moisture and occasional showers.
Singapore Cruises  
Singapore is the perfect launchpad for exotic and memorable sea voyages. Its location at the southernmost tip of the Asian continent is ideal for cruising. There are numerous cruise lines to choose from, all of which have unique attributes.
Superstar Virgo will transport you to many neighbouring countries. Amongst the interesting destinations on offer are Ho Chi Minh City on the south-eastern coast of Vietnam, Redang and Langkawi, the Malayan resort in the beautiful Andaman Sea.
Legend of the Seas is a towering 70,000-tonnes cruise liner that offers so much more to its customers than just a pleasant form of sea transport. Any jaunt on this majestic ship will be crammed with fun opportunities, superb cuisine, and a fine choice of ultimate locations. Destination include Semerang, Bali, Ko Samui and Lombok, as well as many more.
Costa Classica, another large and superbly-appointed vessel, will take you to such far-flung destinations as Phuket, Penang, Kuantan and Malacca.
Asuka Cruises are ideally suited to Japanese-speakers. Renowned for the sophistication of their vessels, these ships are particularly welllaid out, with superb fittings and furnishings.
Azamara Club Cruises give off an unmistakeable historical ambience. The décor make you feel less as if you're sailing across the Pacific Ocean, more as if you've walked into a tastefully decorated old-world country club.
By complete contrast, Crystal Cruises offer a much more contemporary style. The rooms and leisure facilities are especially geared towards 21st-century travelers.
Fred Olsen cruise ships are renowned for their European look. The overall décor presents an aura of space. The entertainment suite is perfect for western tourists, featuring an array of highly-talented performers, mainly from the UK.
P & O Cruises, one of the world's oldest and most respected, offer the best in traditional British ocean cruising. The facilities are superb, with a diverse range of modern leisure offerings for adult travelers or family groups. The same criteria apply to cruises from Singapore operated by Cunard Lines.
If you are less concerned with plush surroundings or five-star banquets and more focused on a relaxed atmosphere, Oceania Cruises are ideal. The food is always well-prepared, and dining is undertaken against a laid-back atmosphere – perfect for recharging your batteries in-between the bustling stop-off points.
The Singapore Cruise Centre, located on the city state's waterfront, offers a myriad tourist destinations for travelers. Located near Sentosa Island – itself home to a theme park, wildlife reserves, adventure rides and beautiful gardens – you are already close to Changi International Airport. This location is ideal for selecting any of the numerous destinations on offer for the local cruise ships.
Singapore island hopping  
One of the most popular pastimes for visitors to Singapore, combining sightseeing with traveling, is to ‘island-hop'. Singapore itself is surrounded by dozens of idyllic island retreats, each one having its own unique characteristics.
Kusu
An ideal way to escape the hustle and bustle of the metropolis is to head for one of the more tranquil locations, Kusu. Also known colloquially as ‘Tortoise Island', this family-friendly destination is highly recommended for those with an interest in nature, wildlife or history. The island is also the location of the annual Kusu Pilgrimage, between September and November, when thousands of people arrive to pay homage for good luck health and happiness. There is a beautiful lagoon, sandy beaches and a variety of animal life. While the island itself is open to visitors on a daily basis, overnight stays are not allowed.
Sentosa
In contrast to the quiet retreat that is Kusu Island, the much larger Sentosa is known as Singapore's playground. Here there are activities to keep you occupied, no matter what your tastes are. You can find out all about insect life at the colourful Butterfly Park and Insect Kingdom, as well as learning out all about flora and fauna on guided tours of Sentosa Nature Discovery. Lovers of white-knuckle rollercoaster entertainment can take a ride on Skyline Luge Sentosa – a go-kart / toboggan ride that sends you careering downhill on a 650-metre jungle trail.
For those of a sportier disposition, you can play volleyball on Siloso Beach. When the sun sinks over the horizon, you can be transfixed by ‘Songs of the Sea', a multisensory experience.
During your visit to Sentosa you can check into a five-star hotel, relax in a spa, and if you fancy a break from thrill rides there are heritage sites to explore.
Sister's Islands
Sister's Islands lie south of the main island of Singapore. This region is extremely popular with campers and snorkelers, the latter gravitating towards the rich marine life off-shore. A narrow channel separates the islands, and the area is popular for picnics due to the shady palm trees and shelters on the golden beaches. The reefs are home to myriad species of fantastically-colourful tropical fish. Access is gained by chartering a boat from the Marine South Pier - one thing to note is that you require a permit to camp out here.
St. John's Island
St John's Island is a beautiful retreat, close to the thriving streets of Singapore, yet a world away. In days long gone by, this island was a quarantine area for unfortunate leprosy cases as well as a penal colony! Today, thankfully, you are far more likely to be able to observe dolphins frolicking in the surf while you picnic, rather than anything more sinister!
Graduate guide to professional life  

While making the transition from being a student to being a fully-fledged professional is an incredibly exciting time in somebody's life, it can also be a nerve-wracking one. If, however, you prepare correctly for the move, there is nothing to worry about. Here are a few tips to start your professional life on the right foot.
Prepare for a lot more diversity
In university or college, you were most probably surrounded by people who were around your age group and, quite possibly, from very similar backgrounds as yourself. In the workplace, things will not be so uniform.
You are likely to be working at close quarters with people of all sorts of age groups and from all sorts of backgrounds, many of whom will have life experiences and resultant opinions on the world that you had never considered. For anybody who leaves third level education thinking they know it all, the sudden introduction to worldviews that are very distant from their own can be one of the most alarming and unexpected challenges.
Optimise your professional skills
While University is often focussed on the achievements and success of the individual, working environments are more often focussed upon the performance of the team. In order to succeed in such an environment, it is crucial you develop strong business skills.
This is not about getting everybody to see things your way. It is about being sensitive to other people's views on the project at hand. Listen to and learn from the people with more experience than you. Don't be shy about adding your own opinion to the mix, but think hard about it before you do.
Singaporefriendly suggest Singapore University and Colleges Graduates looking for Jobs signup on GradGreenhouse.com, a dedicated recruitment site for graduates based in Singapore, combining the latest technology with state of the art tools, including Video Interviewing.
Get ready for hard work
While beavering away at a degree and putting in long hours in the library, many students think that nobody in the world could possibly be dealing with an assignment the size of theirs or putting such a crazy amount of hours into their work. What they don't realise is that, in the real world, people spend 7 – 9 hours, 5 days a week, working their fingers to the bone in the pursuit of their careers.
The workload does not reduce when you complete your degree and enter the workforce: it either stays the same or enlarges, and you don't get to take a few hours off to watch a box set when you feel burned out. Get ready to push your stamina level to the maximum.
Make sure you get the best possible start to your professional life. Keep in mind these key tips and prepare yourself properly for your career path. 
 

 

  
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