The Gai Gai Tour is a new heritage guided tour around Mount Faber Park to Faber Point, talking about the history of Singapore, Mount Faber, and ending off with a back-of-house tour to the maintenance facility – the most important attraction for me.
Gai Gai Tour Meeting Point
The Gai Gai Tour meeting point is at the Singapore Cable Car Mount Faber Line Faber Peak ticketing counter, 10 minutes prior to your choice of tour slot.
There are ample seats around the waiting area.
If you are not coming by cable car, the entrance is by the back of the parking lots due to SafeEntry requirements.
The tour guide meets up at the meeting point where your temperature is taken and tickets are scanned, followed by a separate contact tracing form to fill up.
At 10am, the tour guide commenced the tour promptly, first heading to the Faber Point Mural Wall.
Along the way, he explained about the coniferous trees found in the park.
Faber Point Mural Wall
The first attraction was the Faber Point Mural Wall, depicting the history and progress of Singapore from the time that it was Temasek. This loops around the Faber Point on the lower level. Reminds of a little bit of the bas reliefs in Angkor Wat, though set in a modern way.
The murals depict a different point of Singapore’s progress as the timeline goes forward.
Oh I miss this Sentosa.
The contrasting view out of Faber Point of housing estates and the city skyline in the background.
The current skyline of downtown Singapore with Guoco Tower the current tallest building in Singapore at a height of 290 meters, being exempted from the height restriction of 280 meters.
Peak of Faber Point & Rain Tree
Faber Point is at the peak of Mount Faber at a height of 106 meters above sea level.
A rain tree planted by the late Dr Goh Keng Swee on the very first Tree Planting Day sits right at the highest point of Faber Point.
The view from Faber Point down to Keppel Bay.
Faber Point Mini Merlion
The mini Merlion at Faber Point is the highest Merlion in Singapore located at 106 meters above sea level.
Once everything on Faber Point has been completed, the tour then goes back to Faber Peak to continue on.
Peek-A-Loo Award-Winning Toilet
After arriving back to Faber Peak, there was a short 5-minute toilet break at Mount Faber’s award-winning Peek-A-Loo under the Best Toilet for the World Toilet Category by French International Website in 2006.
Upon entering the air-conditioned toilet, the view down Mount Faber greets you as cable cars arrive and depart in front of you.
There is a side nappy change table, built over a fish tank.
Too bad some sinks are covered with a trash bag to enforce social distancing.
The view of the Singapore Cable Car Sky Network from the Peek-A-Loo.
Heading up the stairs after the Peek-A-Loo visit.
Poland’s Bells of Happiness
Poland’s Bells of Happiness are two bells on Faber Peak given by Poland to Singapore in 1992 and 2019.
The first Bell of Happiness was given in 1992 from the Dar Pomorza, known also as the White Frigate, is believed to bring good fortune to newlyweds.
The second Bell of Happiness from the Dar Młodzieży was offered to Singapore by Poland in appreciation of its long-lasting friendship and to reflect the maritime traditions of the two nations.
The Dar Młodzieży bell also commemorates the Independence Cruise around the world, including calling at Singapore, to celebrate 100 years of regaining Poland’s Independence.
Many people have also tied bells to the fences for good luck, though this idea seems a little bit like locks at the Notre-Dame Cathedral in Paris.
Back-of-House Access to Cable Car Maintenance Facility
And finally, saving the best for last, is the depot tour around Mount Faber Cable Car Station.
First, the tour guide points out how the station itself will be converted to park cable cars overnight with about half the fleet at both end stations of Mount Faber and Sentosa.
There will be 3 or 4 cable cars parked at Harbourfront overnight for the first staff members to go to work at Mount Faber in the early morning, and they will switch on their own cable car to head over to Mount Faber.
Heading into the maintenance area.
The maintenance gondola along with spare cable cars. Not all cable cars can be loaded on to the system altogether as they would then cause bunching, so spacing them out a little would allow the line to run smoothly without jams.
The main control centre is inside this room, which is out of bounds.
The workshop equipment are nicely and neatly stacked at the end.
There is an overhead maintenance platform for staff to check the top of cable cars.
A closer look at the maintenance gondola.
The seats in the maintenance gondola looked familiar to me, and are from the 2nd Generation cable car, with the tour guide surprised that I could recognise it.
There is a timeline of the cable car history just outside the station.
Swarovski Studded 7-Star VIP Cable Car
Just as the tour was about to conclude, the VIP Cable Car pulled in to the station, and the tour guide allowed a peek into it.
The overall interior of the Swarovski Studded 7-Star VIP Cable Car. This VIP cable car seats just 4 people, as compared to the standard 8 on normal cable cars, taking COVID out of the equation.
The individual seats are positioned sideways to the direction of travel.
Overall, a good experience on the heritage Gai Gai Tour, making me feel like a tourist in my own country with the history lessons, and the rare cable car maintenance area peek definitely made waking up early for the tour worth it.