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So, I was watching episode 9 (2013.05.31) of “We Got Married Global” (Korean Variety show), and in this episode, Taecyeon (2PM) and GuiGui visited Jeju for their wedding and honeymoon. On the 2nd day, they visited Hanhwa Aqua Planet Jeju and the show labelled it as “The biggest aquarium in Asia”. And quoting Taecyeon, he said it is “the biggest aquarium screen in Asia”.

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Which got me a little surprised. Because I remember distinctively our very own S.E.A Aquarium being promoted as “World‘s Largest Aquarium” during its opening in end 2012. (Click on the link and it states so in Wikipedia. And if you think Wikipedia’s information may sometimes be wrong, check out Guiness World Records! We hold the Guiness records for both World’s Largest Aquarium and World’s Largest Acrylic Panel.)

The acrylic single viewing panel of Jeju’s aquarium is 73 feet long (23 m) and 26 feet tall (8 m), while Singapore’s is 36-metre (118 ft) wide and 8.3-metre (27 ft) tall. This makes Singapore’s viewing panel significantly longer by 13m. Be it “Aquarium” or “Screen/Panel”, I think SG still wins right? And last time I checked, Singapore belongs to part of Asia, so how could the show (WGM) mislead the audience by calling Aqua Planet Jeju the biggest aquarium in Asia?? Or are we (Singapore) so tiny again, that no one noticed us? :(

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I visited S.E.A Aquarium in December 2012, and the above picture was taken then. It was my favorite part of the entire Aquarium! You might think so what if the panel is huge? But when I walked really close to the panel and with my nose almost touching the glass, it really felt as if I was underwater! My peripheral vision was filled entirely with schools of fish, manta rays and corals. And the best part is, there are big comfy beanbags scattered all over the floor for people to sit/rest on. We spent a relaxing hour lying there, listening to the soothing background music and watching fishes swim by. :)

*Sometimes when I think about it, really have to 佩服 our government… For a country as tiny as us (in terms of size), we actually hold the Guiness World Records for quite a few things. :)

After reading reviews of this succulents garden on Tripadvisor, I made it a point to visit it when I was in the French Rivera. This garden is actually in Eze Village, high up on the mountains and not in Eze town which is down at the base. It was quite hard to get to due to the infrequent bus service in the French Rivera. (Don’t get me started on the transport system in France, that alone would take a few entries! >.<) It is possible to walk up, but I would advise against it unless you are really fit. We walked down the Nietzsche Path to the Mediterranean Sea coast where the Eze-sur-Mer Gare (SNCF train station) is, and it already took us more than an hour! Good hiking shoes and water bottles are strongly advised.

Once you alight the bus from Nice (will explain the bus schedule in Eze Village entry), just keep walking up (5~10mins) and you will find the Jardin (Garden) on top of the mountain. Entrance fee was ~6euros. Good for a 30mins visit as it isn’t very huge, but it does offer an excellent view of Côte d’Azur especially on a clear sunny day.

The Jardin was filled with lotsa cacti and succulents. Maybe due to the high altitude (429m), the plants were able to thrive really well there! *envious* I need to refrigerate my plants in hot humid Singapore. :( As you can see from the photo below, we were almost in the clouds! Needless to say, the air was very fresh and crisp when we went in the morning. :)

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Just reached Paris and finally don’t have to depend on the hotel wifi anymore… (I have a France Orange line with data) So I wanted to show all of you my best buy this trip so far!

This morning I was walking around Amsterdam alone (Linda took the noon flight before me), and my plan was to visit Het Grachtenhuis before I leave for Paris. However I got waylaid by a long string of flower shops somewhere along either Herengracht or Singel. (Asked my hotel reception when I got back for its name, and it’s apparently simply called “the flower market”).

Needless to say, I was in flower heaven again (again, because I was in Keukenhof just yesterday). I went squeezing amongst the locals and tourists, and managed to buy few tulip bulbs and Calla bulbs. When I was choosing them, I felt like I was choosing ginger for cooking in the supermarket, because that is what Calla bulbs look like! Not sure if they will really bloom in Singapore. The shop owners said yes, but they might have underestimated our tropical weather. Oh well, we shall see soon enough. :)

Some shops were selling other variety of plants, including some tropical plants and succulents. I combed the entire flower market and only one shop was selling lithops. And it had only one pot! I held it in my hands and stared intently at it for about five mins before I decided to purchase it. Not because it was expensive (it was incredibly cheap at 2.75 euros for 22 lithops), but because I didn’t know if it would survive the rest of my trip and the flight home. Besides that, my luggage is at bursting point already… But I know I would regret it if I don’t buy, so I decided to adopt this pot as the new addition to my windowsill at home!

I spent the next 3 hours on the train from Amsterdam to Paris admiring and stroking these babies lovingly… The other passengers must think I am crazy. :D

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enjoy succulents

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