Singapore gardens and holidays

"Green" Singapore

Singapore is one of those few cities on earth who have increased the “green” land mass in last few years. List of Singapore gardens has extended now much beyond Singapore Botanic Gardens. For nature lovers, there are so many places of interest, nature reserves, nature parks, tropical gardens, historical places, coastal parks. Below are best of the lot, which should not miss on your Singapore vacation

Map of Singapore gardens and park connectors

Holiday activities

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Singapore botanic gardens

Situated very close to Orchard road, Singapore Botanic Garden is a great place to start your day. Tall trees, birds singing, nice scenery around lakes, many of the Singapore Heritage trees, aroma around the ginger gardens, groups practicing Yoga, newly wed couples posing for snaps next to the waterfall, other couples having romantic breakfast, and countless number of amateur photographers trying to catch the dew drops on tropical trees & orchids, there is everything you can wish on a beautiful morning


Orchid garden

National orchid garden is a place by itself in Singapore Botanic Gardens, hosting some of the best orchids in South East Asia. They continue to change the settings all the time and you always feel like you are visiting for first time. Please ensure you have plenty of time to enjoy every bit of color and its combinations in Orchid garden


East coast

East coast park covers more than half distance in every Singapore Marathon. It has everything for everyone. Long coast line, separate tracks for walking & running, cycling, skating, recreation options like tennis courts, bowling alleys, pool tables, water boarding, kayaking, barbeque pits, chalets, camping options, there is plenty to do. Even if you choose not to do much, you can just sit next to the beach for hours day in and out, looking at the majestic array of moving ships & boats, and landing aeroplanes, it gets particularly nice after sunset. Recently the beach has been cleaned and sort of prepared properly, so that you can enjoy some time in water and with sand. I would say more for walking around the beach, but not great for swimming yet

East coast hosts some of the best food in Singapore, including the Singapore chilli crabs, local seafood chains, all kinds of cuisines around the world, fast food chains, good food courts. East coast is pretty long stretch, so things are arranged in pockets, best way to move around is either drive or take cabs from one point to another


MacRitchie

MacRitchie reservoir park offers about 4 long walking trails including the HSBC Tree Top walk. It is important to reach the right place to start your walk, as each trail is about 12-13 km long. It has scenic board walks, good views from top of Jelutong Tower, walk around the golf course, along with recently included kayaking options. If you have only one day for your scenic walks, MacRitchie should come next after Botanic Gardens

Tips :

1. MacRitchie HSBC Tree Top walk opens late in the morning, please read the National parks website before you visit

You can walk from MacRitchie to Bukit Timah on a 12 km trail, it is best thing to do if you want to cover both these Singapore attractions in one day


Bukit Timah nature reserve

Bukit Timah nature reserve gives a quick feel of rain forests in South East Asia. You can reach the highest point in Singapore in Bukit Timah. It is a good place for climbers, has short but challenging trails and we can see mountaineers practicing up and down the hill all the time. You can see lots of snakes along the way if it has rained after a while, but there is no cause for concern

There is a good mountain biking trail in Bukit Timah, and also if you are after long walks, you can walk from Bukit Timah to MacRitchie (12 km trail)


Pulau ubin

In Malay, Pulau means island and ubin means Granite. Ubin pulau takes its name from the old granite quarries there. It is a village like place, long mountain biking trails going up & down. You need to take a ferry from Changi Jetty to reach to Pulau Ubin. This is a perfect place to hide for a day with a big group of friends, all on bikes and almost all island prepared for you. There is only local food available, but you get such a nice reception every time you visit there


Sentosa Singapore

Sentosa appears on everyone’s itinerary. If you head to Sentosa early in morning, there is so much to do along the beaches, on the nature trails. It is quite bigger than we expect, but there are always shuttle buses to get you back to transportation points back to city. Earlier Sentosa used to be isolated and used to take even a day to go around, now with new public transport options from Harbourfront, it is even good for your early morning run. It is definitely a place to be in, if you just cover all the beaches and nature trails without visiting any advertised outfits or restaurants in Sentosa Island


Fort canning Singapore

Situated close to Orchard Road and city downtown area, Fort Canning park is regular venue for big cultural events. It is very lush and scenic place, another place to find newly wed couples posing for good snaps. Battle box at the Fort Canning has a good history tour, giving exact account of historic event of handover of Singapore by British forces to Japanese in 1942


Sungai Buloh wetland reserve

Sungai Buloh gives a taste of mangroves in South East Asia. It has a long board walk, good flora and fauna, home on the way to migratory birds, it is a quite place when you have lots of time on hand as it is quite away from the city (even in small city like Singapore)


Bintan

Bintan in Indonesia is a short boat ride away from Singapore. You take a ferry from Tanah Marah Ferry Terminal and reach Bintan in less than an hour. Bintan is a nice weekend destination, good resorts, recreation options. It has many day tours for nature lovers to explore the rain forests and river rides


Desaru beach in Malaysia

Another weekend destination away by a boat ride from Singapore. More of a family place, and holiday activities along with beach and some short nature walks


Bukit Batok Nature Park

Bukit Batok nature park is more of a family picnic place. It is small, scenic, and quiet. It is a good treat for most as the trails are shorter, you can cover the whole park in like 30-45 min, it gives good challenge for runners if you are running uphill, plenty of place for picnic goers, families. It is a good place to sit quietly beside the lake and finish on your favourite book


Mount Faber

Mount Faber hill is connected to Sentosa, via Harbourfront Cable Car, and also via walking trail. This is nice little hill with good views from top. This then leads to Hendersen waves, connecting to Telok Blangah hill and then to Kent Ridge park

It is good to be on top of Mount Faber park and watch the Singapore National Day preparations, as the jet show and other aerial attractions look nicer from here. Good place to see the sun set too


Kent Ridge Park

Situated next to National University of Singapore (NUS) campus, is a green, quiet, lonely place. It has long trails, some boardwalks, tree top walk, scenic views. If you are in with a big group you can have a great time here. Kent ridge gets very nice around the sunset, you can then go to Pasir Panjang and have good dinner, some decent options there


Labrador park

Labrador park is short and sweet, gives good views of Sentosa and coast line from the beach and also from top of a small hill. It is good if you walk or run to Labrador park from some nearer place like Harbourfront


Chinese garden

Located near Chinese Garden MRT, this is a long park with a lake. It has a few Chinese temples, but are not so frequently visited during the year. Place is really lit up for Lantern Festival around Sep-Oct for about a month and is definitely a place to visit during that time


Parks for couples in Singapore

If you are after quiet & romantic time & set up, you should head to these parks

  • Botanical gardens, this is definitely number one place
  • MacRitchie - near the golf course, it is very scenic
  • Labrador park - mornings are great. It is a bit difficult to get there, and also avoid late evenings
  • Kent Ridge Park - very nice views from the top, also cover the Bukit Chandu & board walk
  • Fort canning - this is a good place, you can see the museums around, spend time in the park and then move on for nice coffee and dinner. You can also walk from city hall to boat quay, keeping the Singapore skyline in background

Picnic places in Singapore

Here are picnic ideas in Singapore, in order of popularity

1. East Coast Park : spend a day or even weekend, lazing around ECP, cycling, walking the ships & landing airplanes, swimming, walking, running, inline-skating, bowling, snookering, pooling. It is also a great place for food lovers, food from all over the world is available, but the seafood definitely is the best there. You can also book the BBQ pits online or book into the chalets, and have good time in a group

2. Sentosa : Sentosa is so big and full of fun in the sun, plan your day (& night) well. There are not many options for camping, but plenty of day time options, like beach volleyball, beach sports

3. Changi beach : everything similar to ECP, but a bit quieter. It is good if you book into the Chalets, and have fun overnight

4. Singapore zoo : this is a great place for families with kids to have fun all day long

5. Singapore botanical gardens : It is big and scenic, good for big groups, and particularly with families. They also have performances on weekend evenings, which are good

See the map of Singapore gardens and park connectors

See your detailed guide on day trips from Singapore here

See your detailed guide on newly opened Singapore Casinos and Integrated Resorts here

See your guide on Indian food in Singapore here

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