APEC delegate deals and tours
Not on the APEC VIP list? Don't worry. Your delegate's card opens up a world of deals. Here's a rundown of the free attractions and other deals available to card holders.
The Singapore Flyer
Standing at 165 meters, the Singapore Flyer is the world's largest observation wheel. The half-hour ride gives the best panoramic views of the area. It's a short walk from Suntec City Convention Centre, but expect queues at peak hours. APEC delegates who visit Singapore Flyer with their official delegate passes are entitled to a 50 percent discount on the purchase of a second ticket. They are also entitled to two Signature Cocktail flights for the price of one.
DUCKtours offers hour-long amphibious tours on an authentic Vietnam War amphibious craft. The bus-boat circles Singapore's civic district before waddling into the sea for a riverfront ride across the Marina Bay waterfront. Chinese, Japanese and Korean delegates can follow the English commentary with voiced narratives in their native languages. Book early because seats are limited.
Hippotours are open-top double decker bus tours from the same operators of DUCKtours. Two kinds of HiPPOtours are available during daylight -- City HiPPOtours cover major hotels and shopping malls along Orchard, attractions such as the Botanic gardens, Esplanade, Raffles Landing Site and Merlion Park. Heritage HiPPOtours loop around Singapore cultural areas, such as Chinatown, Little India, Kampong Glam and the historic district. The Moonlight Adventure HiPPOtour begins every evening at 6:30pm. It combines the City tour with a visit to Sentosa's musical fountains.
The Rhino is not some strange contraption, but a fully tricked-out monster coach equipped with laptop, projector, LCD display screens, five-foot drop screen and theater-like seating. The two Rhino coaches, nicknamed "Vader" and "Blubee," connect hourly between the city and Sentosa.
Two cultural tours are available to APEC delegate-card holders -- one to Chinatown and the other to the Malay district of Arab Street and Kampong Glam. The Chinatown Heritage Centre houses exhibits and information on Singapore's forefathers and early days. The Malay Heritage Centre is located in the heart of the original settlement of Malay people in Singapore.
Singapore Botanic Gardens and National Orchid Garden
The Singapore Botanic Gardens turn 150 years old this year. To mark the milestone, it is teaming with Korea Festival 2009 to spruce up the gardens with an eight-week exhibition called "Nature Borne," featuring works by 10 artists from Singapore and South Korea.
To book complimentary tours, head to the Singapore Visitors Centre on Level 1 of Suntec City Convention Centre.