You may describe it as a botanical garden and you’re right. You may call it a shopping mall and you wouldn’t be wrong either. You can decide to call it a magnificent edifice intended to indulge and distract travelers in epic proportions and you’re not far from the truth. You may call it an airport however it’s much more than that. Welcome to Changi International Airport. Let me tell you about my experience.
I was on a tour to Singapore, Jakarta and Dubai and the first stop was Singapore. On arrival at Changi, the beautiful, clean and soft carpet that welcomes you won’t escape your notice. Many airports are tiled but Changi takes it a notch higher by welcoming your steps with its beautiful carpets. The first impression is made complete by the welcoming smiles of the immigration officers and the speed at which they process you. Before you exit the airport, you will notice the beautiful plants in the carousel area. You may want to take some pictures before you exit but you will definitely pass through again. The city of Singapore did not disappoint at all and we shall discuss it in later episodes. We were soon to depart to Jakarta and I couldn’t wait to see what more Changi had to offer.
The flight from Singapore to Jakarta and back was a great one filled with many views of beautiful Islands. Although I had seven good hours to wait for the connecting flight to Dubai, I wasn’t perturbed as I knew I was going to have fun. After checking in, I went to the food court to fill my tummy for the adventure that lay ahead. The variety was countless and there were restaurants that catered for all pocket sizes from street food to international chains and specialty restaurants. After eating I heading for the shopping area and it looked more of a shopping mall than an airport. One could do all his shopping here and get luggage full. The terminals had well-manicured flowers and gardens that one could be forgiven he or she is outdoors. There were many artworks that one could feast the eyes on and take wonderful pictures with.
Changi uses technology in a unique way that makes traveling comfortable and easy. There were self-help kiosks which were fitted with interactive machines which gave much-needed information and directions to travelers such as boarding gates and flight times, accessing Wi-Fi and a host of others. The washrooms were very clean and had a touch of modernity with digital screens and flowers all over. There were beautiful Baby Care areas that are specially designed for the comfort of the mother and baby. This is the huge thought the designers put into the airport that even babies were not forgotten. Amazing!!!
We were back at Changi on our flight to Jakarta and I intended to explore even with the two hours’ time I had on hand. I was distracted by the kinetic rain which is made up of over a 1000 copper raindrops that danced gracefully to serenading music depicting rainfall and many other abstract forms. I wanted to find my boarding gate first before I strayed further but I couldn’t resist the free massage chairs available. I sat in one of them for a magical experience and before I realized 30mins was gone. I didn’t regret it at all as it relieved me of all my stress. I headed for the Cactus Garden after locating my boarding gate. It was located at the roof-top where its bathed by pretty sunshine. It had a variety of cacti sourced from the deserts of Africa, Asia, the Americas, etc. It had seats where one could recline and soak in the fresh breeze and perhaps order a chilled drink from the pub right there in the Garden. It was time to go as I spent some time here so I went to my boarding gate with the firm expectation of exploring further on my return from Jakarta.
There was so much to see and do that I lost track of time and couldn’t do all I had intended to do before my time was up. I couldn’t make it to the swimming pool which is open to travelers as well as the cinema. Changi International Airport is absolutely more than an airport. It’s an attraction in its own right.
Upon all this beauty and attractions, there’s been opened a new attraction inside the terminal which and I’m desperate to go and check it out. It’s called The Jewel and it’s a 40m waterfall vortex that combines with lights for wonderful displays. My colleague traveled with a group and shared this video.
The next time you’re planning a vacation, plan to spend more time here and you won’t be disappointed.