Editor’s Note: We’re introducing this new travel series called “How Not to be a Tourist” and for our first entry, we asked Mikael Daez, who plays the mighty Falco in GMA 7’s “Adarna,” to write about his recent trip to Singapore. Here’s what he has to say.


Not surprisingly, there were Pinoys all over Singapore!

With all the opportunity in Singapore, it’s not surprising that our kababayans have flocked to this nearby country in hopes of living a better life. From what I’ve gathered, they earn way more over there but they give up the awesomeness that is the Philippines.

Personally though, I love that I can find Filipinos everywhere. Our hospitality is the best and it always shines through. #PinoyPride


I only started drinking coffee a year and a half ago but I’m in love with it. More so, I appreciate good coffee shops that really get me in the mood to just laze through an afternoon.

In Singapore, Forty Hands, is my idea of a great coffee shop. You can hang out there for hours and the place makes you kind of feel like you’re in a movie.


Have you heard of Blind Pig? That super discreet bar that only accepts reservations and looks as if it came straight out of the prohibition era. It’s the type of place that would seem like it would require passwords and stuff.

Well, in Singapore, I found its counterpart! It’s called Bincho. Hole in the wall Japanese resto by day but great bar full of Sake by night. It’s as discreet as it gets and unless someone tells you exactly where it is, there’s a chance you won’t find it.


Labelled by a very unofficial list for having one of the most interesting libraries in the world, Tiong Bahru’s neighborhood would seem like a surprising setting for such. It’s a very ordinary neighborhood that hides its gems in plain sight.

Aside from the charismatic restos you will find if you look hard enough, the libraries you’ll encounter here are interesting enough to warrant a visit.


My first time in Singapore was for the Formula 1 race. The next time I flew there, which wasn’t race season, I actually found a lonely piece of deserted race track.

Being a former Formula 1 racing fan, it was awesome to be able to stand in the middle of a track. I could just hear the high-pitched engines zooming through. It makes me wonder where else I can find these hallowed racing grounds that are scattered all over the commercial area.


I have a couple of friends who work in Singapore and I was impressed by how nice and spacious their pads looked. To my surprise, all of them were staying in government developed housing! One unit even looked better than the high end condo units we have here.

Now that is how a government should provide for their people.


Who doesn’t like dumplings?! Now imagine a high-end looking resto that serves 10 scrumptious pieces of Xiao Long Bao for 350 pesos (10SGD).

You also have an option to try the full Xiao Long Bao experience. A basket full of different flavored (truffle, cheese, garlic, etc) Xiaos that have to be eaten in a specific order. I love new food experiences and I gush over having to follow eating instructions.

I won’t tell you how it tastes because I suggest you try it yourself. You’ll find the resto along Orchard road.


We have our dirty ice cream but Singapore has their 1 dollar ice cream! It’s a great counterpart and every bit as tasty. I still drool over the idea of being able to buy ice cream wafer sandwiches on the street. Such a simple idea yet so darn tasty! It’s a must-try! If I had more time, I’d even think of bringing it over here to the Philippines.

Have you been to Singapore? What do you love about it? Share your non-touristy experiences in the Comments Section.

Mikael Daez

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