Boarding Pass – Notabilia

It’s amazing to me the ways that blogs can help put a place on the map, and in a way guidebooks don’t. Notabilia is just one of those. Run by an American expat who recently moved to Singapore, she’s quickly becoming a valued resource for the arts & cultural scene there. In fact, she’s also started up three weekly columns: Cooking With, Singapore Shopaholic, and My Singapore. It makes me feel like I should move to some more off the track place, instead of competing with a million Paris bloggers. In any case, I like the way this girl thinks! Thanks, Notabilia!
last trip taken: Kochi (Cochin), India

{Synagogue in Kochi}

next trip on deck: Langkawi, Malaysia

one place you would go back to again and again:
Can I say Paris? So cliched, I know. The art, the architecture, the language, the fashion. I love it all.

{Notre Dame- right}

place you’d most likely recommend a friend go visit:
Baltimore, Maryland. Seriously. While a student, I lived in “The City that Reads” and came to love the used book stores, storied row houses, literary pubs, and the historic harbor of this wonderfully eclectic place. It’s a diverse city steeped in American history.

{Peak Tram, Hong Kong}

preferred method of transportation:
Train. Riding the Shinkansen from Tokyo to Kyoto was an experience I will never forget. We hope to ride the rails from Singapore to Kuala Lumpur soon. (More about my fascination with trains here and here).

place you’ve never been but dying to go:
Shanghai, Damascus, Buenos Aires, Vienna.

{Chinese Fishing Nets, Kochi}

place you’d never go back:
I feel blessed to be able to see the world. I am grateful for all my travel experiences.

most memorable trip in 2 sentences or less:
Picture postcard-beautiful Montreux, Switzerland for the 2004 Jazz Festival. It was also our honeymoon, so perhaps I am biased.

{Malayalam Bible, Kochi}

how do you prepare for a trip?
I am such a planner. I create itineraries, lists (shops, restaurants, etc.), and maps. I check out all the books and videos on my destination from the local library. I visit message boards and blogs. I talk to friends who have visited or lived in the places I am about to visit. I look up average temperatures. I monitor exchange rates. I seek out deals. Google Docs is my friend.

how do you record your travels when you’re traveling?
With my camera, of course. I also carry around a small notebook and gather envelopes, menus, business cards, tickets, etc. along the way.
what is your favorite thing to photograph in a new place?
Architecture, street art, and flowers.

{National Orchid Garden, Singapore}

on an average, how many pictures to you take on a trip?
At least 200 a day.

{left: St. Francis Church Kochi; right: Meiji Shrine Tokyo}

what’s in your “designer travel kit” ?
I purchased my DSLR–a Nikon D3000–in 2009 and I am still mastering it. Before that, I used a Canon PowerShot A550. And before that, I used a Canon AE-1. I do carry around a notebook and a fine point ink pen as well.

what do you do after a trip? how long after a trip does this happen?
I send 30 or 50 photos to family and friends as soon as I return. I scrapbook all of my trips within six months of my return.
favorite souvenir/thing to bring back?
Paper, tea, a piece of fabric, a scarf, a dress (especially from fashion-forward cities like Paris and Hong Kong), magnets, a map.

twitter: @notabilia

Search the Boarding Pass archives for more travel inspiration!


  • Thank you so much for this opportunity, Anne. Open invitation to you and your readers to reach out to me in case they are traveling in this part of the world. I may not know all the answers yet, but I am slowly meeting people who do!

  • Oh! I love this one! I’ve just returned to Korea from Singapore (and Malaysia) and fell in love with the city and the people. So many cool expats, so many cool everything! Great one, Anne!

  • How inspiring. Makes me want to move to a lesser-touristed place and blog about it, too. Though, who knew a big city like Singapore is just such a place.

  • Wow, how fun! I came to your blog through notabilia. I enjoyed learning more about her through PretaVoyager! I lived in Singapore when I was in high school with my family, so I have a special place in my heart for Singapore. I love traveling, too, and it’s fascinating to read about places people visit and hear about their experiences. Great idea and blog!!

  • Hi Anne! it has been a long time since I last visited your blog… dont know if you even remember me… Marie living in Bangkok (but now based in Singapore with one more kid on board :)
    It was a great surprise to find out that notabilia was over here for sharing her travel experiences! she is as great in person as she seems to be when you read her post :)
    Happy to “re-discover” your blog!

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