Gardens by the Bay
This is the name given to the sprawling 100+ hectare park where you will find a grove of Supertrees behind the Marina Bay Sands hotel as well as the Cloud Forest and Flower Dome. What is a Supertree? They are 25-50 meter tall structures covered in plants and other vegetation – essentially a vertical garden. There is a Skywalk that connects two of the Supertrees that gives you a bird’s eye view of the gardens as well as a great vantage point of the barrage and the port. The Flower Dome is a conservatory with several different gardens and the Cloud Forest boasts a 35-meter waterfall and plants that would live in the ensuing various ecosystems. Entrance to the park itself is free, however, there is a fee for the Flower Dome, Cloud Forest and Skywalk. Gardens by the Bay hosts an incredible range of events throughout the year from the St Jerome’s Laneway music festival to actual snow play areas during the Christmas holidays.
18 Marina Gardens Dr, Singapore 018953 +6420 6848
Singapore Botanic Gardens
The Singapore Botanic Gardens, one of Singapore’s oldest parks first founded in 1859, covers an impressive 82 hectares of land right in the heart of the city. A stone’s throw from the Orchard Road shopping belt, these gardens are home to over 10,000 species of flora not to mention a fair number of gigantic monitor lizards and other jungle creatures. In 2015, the Gardens earned the distinction of being one of only three gardens to earn UNESCO World Heritage Site status. One of the major highlights of the park is the Orchid Garden, which is home to over 2,000 species of orchids as well as a revolutionary breeding program for the plant (leading it to become the national plant). Other highlights include the Bandstand which has become the icon for the park, Swan Lake, the epic Tembusu tree (emblazoned on the back of Singapore’s $5 note) and many more attractions. The Singapore Botanic Gardens is open from 5am to 12am daily, and admission to the park is free.
1 Cluny Rd, Singapore 259569 +6471 7138
The MacRitchie Reservoir is the large body of water located very near the geographic center of the island. One of the major points of interest here is the TreeTop Walk, a 250 meter suspension bridge over the forest canopy that connects the park’s two highest points. MacRitchie is equally popular with exercise enthusiasts and nature lovers. The boardwalk is home to various types of monkeys (be careful if you get too close, they like to steal things!). There are different trails such as the three – and eleven kilometer Nature Trails, as well as kayaking, canoeing and fishing at the reservoir. Along with monkeys, keep an eye out for other exciting wildlife like monitor lizards, owls and even flying lemurs.
When was the last time you spent some time in nature? Just took a walk in Macritchie Park in Singapore. Hardly a person there. No phone connection. Just fresh air, dirt tracks, cicadas, butterflies, the occasional monkey and lizard, and my thoughts. Remember to spend some time in nature and to connect to the earth and be thankful for the trees and the fact that they sustain our lives. #gratitude #nature #macritchie #singapore
East Coast Park
East Coast Park is next to fifteen kilometers of beach and covers 185 hectares making it Singapore’s largest park. Although the beach doesn’t stand up compared to others in the region, the park itself is beautiful. A great way to explore all of it is by renting a bicycle (also available are hilarious looking tandem bicycles and even those quad bikes that four people can sit in) and cycling the entire thing. The park is also furnished with barbeque pits, various restaurants ranging from hawker centers to a couple great restaurants to eat chilli crab.
East Coast Park East Coast Park Service Rd, Singapore 449876 +1800 471 7300
Haw Par Villa
Haw Par Villa has to be on the list because, although it is an unconventional park, it is the most unique and absurd park you will ever encounter. The park was built by the makers of Tiger Balm to teach about Buddhist, Confucian and Taoist mythology. It does so by displaying over 1,000 statues in all the blood and gore that were part of the original myths. The highlight to the park is definitely the Ten Courts of Hell which graphically depict the punishment for crimes of increasing severity (at least according to Chinese and Buddhist mythology) from cheating on an exam to a lack of filial piety. It can be a bit much for young children, but Haw Par Villa is well worth the surreal experience. Admission to the park is free and it is open daily 9am-6pm.
262 Pasir Panjang Road, 118628 +6736 6622