Forest. Cloud forest, that is.
After my amazing tour in a flower dome, I immediately went to the consevatory "next door." The Cloud Forest.
By the entrance of the conservatory is a tall artificial falls which I first belittled with my estimate. I thought it was as high as about three-storey building. I was obviously wrong with the ratio of the size of the people on the photo versus the height of the falls.
Across the falls is a marker with trivia about the clous forest and the plants that are in it. From the marker reads:
Cloud forest occurs generally higher than 750 m above sea level although altitude varies between regions depending on the climate and the presence of clouds.
The falls area was so cool that it feels refreshing to stay there. I can feel tiny sprinkles being blown by the wind and I started to feel moist on my hands. After several shots of the falls, I moved on even if I did not want to.
I saw this wild flower somewhere in the Philippines but i just can't remember where. I also do not know its name and unfortunately, Google image search results are not good enough. If anyone knows the name of this plant or flower, please let me know.
When I first saw these yellow flowers, rose was my initial impression. However, I got doubts as I got closer. It doesn't look like a rose variety. But now that I searched and write about it, I thought that I should have trusted myself. Google results say it is Lady Bank's rose. I wonder what's with the name.
I was struck by these white flowers as I approached them. They may seem artificial but they are natural. It was prohibited to get into the flowet bed so I did not have the chance to have selfie beside them. But what's really striking with them? They look like any other flower of their type, right? No. They are the giant versions. Why, the two at the back are almost as tall as I am! Ooopppsss, don't ask my height. 😄
While I know that the "forest" setup is artificial, it was good to see this slope with different wild plants. This is how a forest looks like, without the landscaping.
I was only expecting to see plants here and there in a forest, but not a mountain that was built artificially. My amusement got to its peak when I saw a marker that shows the lift to the Cloud Walk. There is a cloud walk? I hurried to where the arrow was pointing. I need to get to the top before I ran to the airport for my flight.
I got out of the lift at the sixth level. That was where few people peeking out to the outlet of the falls going down below where I was straining my neck looking up. I did not realize that we can actually reach the source of the falls.
I climb a stairway and came to.more plants. These crafted plant arches made the view artificial. I wished they just let the plants grow wild.
In front of the arches was this flower which I knew its looks from my childhood. However, I don't know its name and I can't find it. Again, if anyone knows the name of this plant, please let me know.
I followed a trail of tourists which I was not expecting. I looked for a way to avoid the crowd but there seem no way. The pathway in between plants was narrow and it looks like it goes around a pond. I stayed with the crown with still the effort to break away.
The pitcher plant made me smile. Memories from childhood days again flashed back. When the pitcher is not yet fully grown, I used to pick then and drink the water inside. That is because it was really fresh and clean with the fact that it is totally enclosed in the pitcher.
While my thoughts of the pitcher plant was as a pitcher, my mother and elder brothers see it more differently. They were saying it can be used aa a pot to cook food in it. It does not get burned easily.
Do you the largest flower in the world in the photo? Yeah, it is hard to spot. I had a hard time waiting for a chance to be in its front but to no avail. Some tourists do not really have the sensitivity that they are not the only ones who want to take photos of their subject. I had to bear with what I can get.
By the way, if you are wondering what is the larget flower, it is called Rafflesia arnoldii. It is that reddish flower in the island, facing around 4 o'clock.
The crowd moved on around the pond and came to a spot where they all stopped and flock in flont of a group of plants. I got so curious of what's in front of them. What's so interesting? The plants in hanging bowls? No, that's shallow. I squeezed myself in and found out what the "controversy" was all about.
These are what the crowd was flocking around for. The carnivorous plants! While the crowd was a little noisy, I was busy taking photos with my beyond imagination of how these plants that look just nothing can be so powerful.
A few from the crowd were gone ahead which gave me way to move forward too. We were approaching what seem to be a door going out of the forest. It was the start of the cloud walk!
I looked down and can't even figure human being below. They look like ants.
The Marina Bay Sands casino look grander from this spot and at this altitude. Again, it grandeur did not does not diminish without the lights at night. It still looks majestic at day time.
I paused for a while before finally "going out" in there. My mind was courageous but my knees trembled. Why can't the brain be in sync with the muscle abd skeletal systems this time? I was on what... I took the lift to the sixth level and took the stairway up to another level. I was on the seventh level and suspended in a narrow and suspended bridge like this.
But I had to do it. I thought this was the highlight of the cloud forest visit so I have to experience it. I finally moved "out" of the door to the open space in the air.
From the bridge, tourists can tower over the bay. "Ah, I'm about to complete the round," I thought. That was because the bay is on the opposit side from the entrance of the dome.
The top of the mountain in the dome is at almost the same level as the cloud walk. It is funny to realize now that the mountain is so pointed. Space should not be an issue because there are still spaces available out there. They couldhave made the dome wider rather than taller.
Few more meters forward on the bridge comes the view of the Singapore Flyer. It was a bit of a challenge to get a good shot of it with the grids of the dome. I zoomed but it wasn't as good as the shot of the casino towers.
I finally completed the round on the bridge. I got out from the bridge and found an exit different from where I came from. I went down two floors and spotted an area where there seem to be students and rocks. I went further down and joined them in a "cave." Cathedral of Stone.
There were so many cave stones that are so big. This was first time to see stalagmites as big as these. I check the marker and I quote:
Caves can be damp. But it is the continuous dripping that lead to these gloriousnatural sculptures.
Each takea a thousand years to grow on the ceiling, walls or floors in caves all over the world.
As the rain makes it way through the rocks, it dissolves minerals like calcium carbonate, that crystalized into fascinating shapes.
These deposits build up overtime . Those growing downwards become icicle type stalactites.
The strange and dramatic formations that you see here come from a variety of caves across the world. They took many thousands of years to form.
That answered my questions. I was wondering where on Earth have these stones come from.
I hasten my rounds when I realized that I was enjoying my walk very much. However, I can not be moving like I am in lover's lane.
On my way out of the Gardens are the sights of the main attractions in the area. See how the Supertress look at day time. They look good but not as lively at night.
And again, the casino still looked grand evem at day time.
Now, I have to run for my flight. Until our next destinations...