Whether it be rocketing down the alpine coaster, gazing in awe at the thousands of ocean creatures on display or simply lazing by the pool, Vinpearl Land Amusement Park in Nah Trang, Vietnam, has something for everyone...Waking up to four grown men bouncing on my bed screaming “Happy Birthday!” while laughing like a bunch of drunken 8 year olds, was the start of one of the best days I’ve ever had. Waking up with my usual Oscar-The-Grouch impersonation, I let my friend know just how excited I was - by rolling over to go back to sleep. ...That was until I heard the words “It’s time to get up, the rollercoaster's open in half an hour!”. Yes, my very adult friends had booked tickets to Vinpearl Land Amusement Park.
Priced at 500,000VND (Approx $25 USD) per person, this ticket gets you access to one of the greatest attractions in Vietnam. Starting with the world’s longest sea-crossing cable-cart from the mainland Nha Trang to Vinpearl Island, you get to admire jaw dropping landscape with iconic white sandy beache and rolling vistas on display. You can end the day here, and still be happy with your purchase but I think this cart ride is barley the beginning of your adventure. The island is also home to a water park, mega arcade and roller coaster rides. As if that weren’t enough, Vinpearl also boasts Vietnam’s first 4D theatre; a 5000 seat amphitheatre, and the largest aquarium in the country.
While clinking over on the cable cart 60 meters above the ocean waves watching the Hollywood style Vinpearl sign approach, I was hard pressed to ignore my inner-child excitement. By the time I had reached the mega-arcade and strapped myself into the bumper cars, my friends and I had well and truly let our Inner Child completely take over. That is to say - if we had then given that Inner Child six bags of sugar washed down with four energy drinks. Yes, we were giggling like school kids, while slipping down water slides, and screaming higher than the small girls behind us on the roller coaster. I can safely say - it was one of the best birthdays I have ever had. Truly the only complaint I have about is place? There is simply too much to do in one day. I thoroughly recommend planning how you're going to tackle the day at the park before you arrive, or rather, just organize two days of fun to get the full Vinpearl Land Amusemement Park experience.
For those nights when you can't decide to go out and sip cocktails under the stars or sit on the sofa with a good movie, The Screening Room has the answer. Both! Located on downtown club street, the heart of Singapore's trendy nightspot area, The screening Room brings together four floors of something to do.
Bikram Yoga is the hottest weight loss trend to hit the tropical island of Singapore. You can register for a free class on any holiday and discover it's a great therapeutic activity to wind down from Singapore's retail therapy, before you indulge more in Singapore's infamous food therapy! Located in the middle of shoppers' delight near Singapore's Orchard Road, at Pacific Plaza on Scotts Rd, Bikram Original Hot Yoga is a heated yogic activity where 26 Hatha postures, and two breathing exercises, are twice performed under remedial temperatures of 41 degrees. Hot? Yes. Benefits? Plenty. In a 90-minute class you will burn approx 900 calories by working on strength, balance, flexibility, and definitely on focus. Forget issues of bad flexibility, this is a beginner class. Bendy or not, Bikram yoga is an activity that will help everyone remember they are alive.
Walking in to the Pacific Plaza studio it's hard not to be drawn to a large wall adorned with pictures of the inventor of Bikram style yoga, Bikram Choudry, greeting international celebs (watch out for my fave David Beckham.) The pamphlet handed to you by friendly reception staff also highlights a strong celebrity following: Madonna, Julia Roberts, Jessica Simpson, Sharon Stone, Matthew Mcconaughey, Elle Macpherson, George Clooney...Google this and the list goes on.
There's good reason celebs are into Bikram yoga - the results of regular classes give you an incredibly toned body - just take a look at any instructor if you're in doubt of its effectiveness. Throw a few classes into your holiday schedule and devouring that extra Singaporean chili crab is a guilt-free luxury.
During class, instructors recite consistent dialogue of the poses, peppered with details of the multiple health benefits. Rapid weight loss, body toning, and strengthening of muscles are yours in the making. Spine strengthening is benefitting muscular and skeletal problems. Your body is helped to regulate diabetes, heart disease, asthma, insomnia, chronic indigestion, blood pressure, and the benefits go on. This is the kind of practice that will keep you healthy well into old age. A class worth trying...
The Bikram Original Hot Yoga studio at Pacific Plaza makes it easy to pop in for a class, then shower, change and continue your tourist day. No need to take a towel or mat, these are provided. Just turn up with water bottle (or buy one there) and clothes easy to move and sweat in. Don't eat food at least three hours prior, or your tummy may feel funny when stretching.
If you arrive early, the studio boasts a chill-out lounge to relax in with mags and international articles on all things Bikram. With two studios, Bikram Original Hot Yoga offer up to 70 classes a week. The huge locker rooms are quite deluxe for a fitness centre and the lockers generously-sized. There are large private showers, with complementary shampoos and soaps, to complete the rejuvenation feeling after class. Plenty of mirrors and the use of hair dryers ensure you leave in as good a condition as when you arrived.
On my visits I liked to arrive early to allow time to meditate in the heat and let my body acclimatize - not hard when it‘s hotter outdoors. As I waited for the evening class to begin, watching the amazing sunset filtering through skyscrapers, I considered stressed-out workers nearby who could truly do with a dose of this ‘escapism' yoga - it really does take your mind somewhere else completely - out of the city and into you!