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Asia Pacific Guides™ Singapore for Families A guide to the city's top family attractions and activities Click here to view all our FREE travel eBooks of Singapore, Hong Kong, Macau and Bangkok

Introduction Singapore is Southeast Asia's most popular city destination and a great city for families with kids, boasting a wide range of attractions and activities that can be enjoyed by kids and teenagers of all ages. This mini-guide will take you to Singapore's best and most popular family attractions, so you can easily plan your itinerary without having to waste precious holiday time. Index 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9. 10. 11. 12.

Rating:

The Singapore River The City Centre Marina Bay Chinatown Little India, Kampong Glam (Arab Street) and Bugis East Coast Changi and Pasir Ris Central and North Singapore Jurong BirdPark, Chinese Gardens and West Singapore Pulau Ubin and the islands of Singapore Sentosa, Universal Studios Singapore and "Resorts World" Other attractions and activities

= Not bad

 = Worth trying

Copyright © 2012 Asia-Pacific Guides Ltd. All rights reserved.

2 3 5 7 8 9 9 10 15 18 21 25

 = A real must try


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Attractions and activities around the Singapore River

Name and details

What is there to be seen

How to get there and what to see next

Asian Civilisations Museum

As its name suggests, this fantastic museum displays the cultures of Asia's tribes and nations, with emphasis on those groups that actually built the city-state.

Address: 1 Empress Place

Rating:   Tuesday – Sunday : 9am-7pm (till 9pm on Friday), Monday : 1pm – 7pm  6332 2982 / 7798 Website English guided tours of the museum are available at the following times: 2 pm on Mondays, 11 am and 2 pm Tuesday - Friday, 7pm on Friday eve, and 11am, 2 and 3pm on Sat and Sun. The guided tours are at no extra cost but you'll better call the museum's front desk in advance 6332 7798 (Information on free guided tours)

Singapore River Bumboat Cruise Rating:   Morning till evening Website: Singapore River Cruises Website: HiPPO River Cruise

Clarke Quay (and G-Max reverse bungee) Rating:   7 days a week, almost 24 hrs a day Information on restaurants, cafés and entertainment venues

Housed within an impressive 19th century Neo-Palladian building, right next to the Singapore River, it displays thousands of rich and fascinating exhibits, including ethnic costumes, traditional jewelries, ancient books, sculptures, religious artifacts, archaeological findings and what not... From China and Southeast Asia, through the Indian subcontinent all the way to the Middle East… The museum is tastefully designed, so the visitor is not 'bombarded' with too much information… Moreover, every gallery has some interactive displays and touch screens that make the whole experience more interesting and tangible (especially for the little ones...)

 Daily, 2pm till late  6338 1766

The entrance to the museum is just a few steps from the bridge. Other nearby attractions: The Merlion, Clarke Quay and a Bumboat cruise on the Singapore River.

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Although it is a tourist cliché, cruising the Singapore River on a bumboat is recommended, as it gives you another angle of the city and makes it easier for you to get from one point to another, without having to sweat.

Both HiPPO River Cruise and Singapore River Cruises operate this service.

Clarke Quay, the middle of the three historic quays along the Singapore River, has been restored quite a few years ago and became one of the city's best Wine and Dine areas… The old godowns have been painted vivaciously and were converted to restaurants, cafés, bars and other night spots.

From Clarke Quay MRT Station: Take exit E, turn left and left again, to the river front. Cross Read Bridge and you are there.

For the young ones, however, the real fun starts at the nearby Gmax (reverse bungee) and GX5 (Giant swing)… If you ever wanted to know what it feels like to be fired from a slingshot, go there… (Or join the "angry birds").

The G-Max Reverse Bungee & GX-5 Extreme Swing are located at the end of Clarke Quay.

No entrance fees G-Max and GX-5

From Raffles Place MRT Station: Take Exit H to Bonham Street and walk to the river bank, turn right and walk along the river for a minute or two, then cross Cavenagh Bridge.

You can find the jetties in central points along the river, such as: Boat Quay, Clarke Quay, Raffles' Landing Site (Asian Civilisations Museum), The Merlion, Robertson Quay and so on…

Take a bumboat from one of the jetties along the river (or walk)

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The Merlion Rating:   24 / 7 No entrance fees

Although Singapore has one of the best public-transport systems in the world, taking the Singapore City Hop-on Hop-off Tour is highly recommended, as it takes you directly to the various attractions and saves you the time and hassle of waiting for a bus or walking…

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Soaring to a height of almost nine metres, right in front of Marina Bay, The statue-fountain of "The Merlion" is one of Singapore's best known landmarks This imaginary creature was invented back in the 1960s, as a logo for the tourism board and has since become a symbol of the city. It incorporates a body of a lion, which signifies the lion from the legend about the founding of Singapore, and a tail of a fish, which signifies the city's relationship with the ocean.

Address: Next to One Fullerton From Raffles Place MRT Station: Take Exit H to Bonham Street and walk to the river bank, turn right and walk along the river for a few minutes, passing under the road, until you reach the open piazza, where the famous statue-fountain stands. Nearby attractions: Asian Civilisations Museum, Clarke Quay and a Bumboat cruise on the Singapore River.

Next to it, there's a "Baby Merlion" statue where kids can take photos, and a wide open space with coffee shops and restaurants, where you can dine 'alfresco' and enjoy the nice view.

Attractions and activities around the city centre

Name and details

What is there to be seen

How to get there and what to see next

Funan DigitalLife Mall

Also known as Funan Centre, this is one of the best places in Singapore to look for newly released electronic gadgets and other IT toys.

From City Hall MRT Station: Take exit B, turn left to North Bridge Road and after crossing Coleman Street you will see the mall on your right.

There are 178 shops here, loaded with whatever you can think about…

Nearby attractions: Singapore Philatelic Museum and Fort Canning Park (The Battle Box)

Housed within the red-bricks building of Singapore's oldest existing fire station, this small museum focuses on the history of firefighting and civil defence in Singapore and has some antique fire engines and other firefighting equipment on display.

Corner of Coleman St. and Hill St. (See instructions on how to get to Singapore Philatelic Museum below).

While it is a "must visit" for stamp collectors, Singapore's Philatelic Museum can also be a nice place to visit for everybody else…

Address: 23-B Coleman Street

Rating:   Daily, 10:30am – 10pm website No entrance fees

Civil Defence Heritage Gallery Rating:   Daily, 10:00am – 5pm No entrance fees

Singapore Philatelic Museum Rating:   Daily, 9am – 7pm (Mon: from 1pm) website Entrance fees apply

Other than international and regional stamp displays, there are some interesting exhibitions here that show how a new stamp is created, A to Z…

From City Hall MRT Station: Take exit B, turn left to North Bridge Road and right to Coleman Street. After crossing Hill Street, you will see the museum on your left.


Fort Canning Park (The Battle Box) Rating:   Daily, all day

Rising high above the city and the Singapore River, Fort Canning Hill is where both ancient and modern Singapore started from… Nowadays, the hill is covered by lovely Fort Canning Park, which boasts quite a number of attractions and historical monuments, as well as some nice and easy nature walks, and other than archaeological sites (which are not of much interest to kids), you can see the remains of the mighty 19th century British Fort and visit the Battle Box, where the bunker of Fort Canning and the headquarters of the British forces was during the Battle of Singapore. You can join a guided tour here and watch an interesting presentation that recaptures the fierce battle against the Japanese during World War II.

Entrance is free

The Battle Box  Daily: 10am – 6pm  6333 0510, Website Entrance fees apply

This fantastic museum emphasizes on the history and the culture of Singapore and its main feature: The Rating:  "Singapore History Gallery", can easily be titled as one of the best  Daily, 10am – 6pm (Singapore Living attractions in town: It is just like a Galleries remain open until 8pm and 'time tunnel' where the visitor walks admission is free during the last two through dozens of beautifully hours). designed life-size displays that replicate scenes from the city's past...  6332 3659 / 5642, Website Many of these "scenes" tell the story of a particular historic event from the Entrance fees apply eyes of an unknown person who happened to live in Singapore at that time. English guided tours of the Singapore Tip: Arm yourself with a bit of patience if History Gallery are held at the you really want to enjoy the visit to the following times: Monday – Friday Singapore History Gallery, as there's a lot (11am and 2pm), Saturday & Sunday to see... (11:30am, 2pm and 3:30pm). These guided tours are at no extra cost Other than the History Gallery, the (Information on free guided tours) museum boasts the four Singapore and you can also take the self-guided Living Galleries, which focus on tour, using your own mobile phone. subjects that shape the daily life of ordinary Singaporeans, like Food, Fashion, entertainment and Photography...

National Museum of Singapore

Getting there: From Bras Basah MRT Station: Cross the open piazza to Singapore Management University (SMU), where you cross Stamford Road and proceed through the garden, to the left of the National Museum of Singapore, and the escalator, to Canning Rise, where the entrance to the park can be found. If coming from City Hall MRT Station: Take exit B and turn left to North Bridge Road, and then right to Coleman Street. Walk straight along Coleman, cross Hill Street, pass by the Philatelic Museum and after a couple of minutes you will see the entrance to the park on your left side… Nearby attractions: Singapore Philatelic Museum, Civil Defence Heritage Gallery and National Museum of Singapore.

Getting there: The National Museum of Singapore is on 93 Stamford Road. From Bras Basah MRT Station: Cross the open piazza towards Stamford Road and you will see the impressive Neo-Palladian building of the museum right in front of you. How to find the best deals in Asia ? Instantly compare the world's leading hotel-websites and get the BEST rates for accommodation in Macau, Hong Kong, Shanghai, Beijing, Bangkok, Singapore, Kuala Lumpur, Seoul, Taipei and elsewhere in Asia!

The See Singapore Attraction Pass can save a lot of money for those of you who wish to make the most of their precious holiday time… You can take a Singapore River Cruise, or ride the world’s largest observation wheel, visit one (or more) of Singapore's fantastic museums, see the world's largest collection of tropical orchids at the National Orchid Garden, visit Jurong's BirdPark and Singapore Zoo, join a guided walking tour and much more…


Mint Museum of Toys

The world's first toys museum is certainly one of the city's must sees…

Rating:   Daily: 9:30am – 6:30pm  6339 0660, Website Entrance fees apply

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Occupying a tall and narrow building of five floors, this fabulous museum It is not overwhelmingly big (Which is good news for those of you who museums are not their cup of tea), but is nonetheless packed with tens of thousands of nostalgic toys… From vintage 19th century toys to "prehistoric" versions of Popeye, Mickey Mouse and Donald Duck, Beatles buttons and what not...

Address: 26 Seah Street From Bras Basah MRT Station: Walk along Bras Basah Road for a few minutes, turn left to North Bridge Road and right to Seah Street, where you will see the entrance to the museum on your left.

Attractions and activities around Marina Bay

Name and details

What is there to be seen

How to get there and what to see next

Singapore Flyer

The world’s current largest Ferris Wheel soars 165 M (550 ft) above the city and affords stunning views of Singapore and its environs…

Promenade MRT Station is a few minutes' walk from the Singapore Flyer (There is a direct link)

Rating:   Daily, 08:30am – 10:30pm Additional info and bookings Entrance fees apply

Flight Experience Rating:   Daily, morning till evening Website Prices are published in their website (and that is also where you can see if they have any special promos)

The Helix Bridge Rating:   24 hours a day / 7 days a week No entrance fees

The best time to board the Singapore Flyer is at around 7pm, which is twilight time in Singapore almost all year around, but make sure visibility is fine, or else you are wasting your time and money. Located at the shopping mall beneath the Singapore Flyer, Flight Experience's simulator is the closest you can get to flying a Boeing jet, without having a pilot's license.

Opt for the Singapore Flyer Sky Dining and enjoy a 'one-of-a-kind' fine-dining experience on the world's largest observation wheel!

Promenade MRT Station is a few minutes' walk from the Singapore Flyer (There is a direct link)

It's not a cheap pleasure, but the experience is hands down unforgettable.

This high-tech looking bridge links Marina Centre with Marina Bay Sands It is 280 M long and offers lovely views of the new city centre.

Promenade MRT Station is a few minutes' walk from the bridge (Through Temasek Avenue)


Marina Bay Sands Rating:   24 hours a day / 7 days a week (lifts to Sands SkyPark run 10am - 10pm) No entrance fees (Unless you take the lift to Sands SkyPark) Info on Sands SkyPark Info on tickets / opening hours

This imposing architectural project houses what is currently Southeast Asia's hottest attraction, including the city's first casino, a glitzy shopping mall and endless dining and entertainment options. The real hoo-ha here is, doubtlessly, the Sands SkyPark: An enormous sky terrace that is perched across the three hotel skyscrapers, at a height of more than 200 metres.

Right next to Bayfront MRT Station Or you can walk from MRT Promenade Station via Helix Bridge (10 minutes or so)

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Information on the casino Directory of restaurants and cafés

The ArtScience Museum Rating:   Daily, 10am to 10pm (Last admission is at 9pm). Tickets are quite expensive for a museum, but then you have to remember it is a privately owned museum that relies mainly on temporary exhibitions (the best of which, to be more precise). What's more, you are allowed to pay only for those exhibitions you intend to see. The ticket also allows you to walk out of the museum and come back later (on the same day), and if you happen to come over the weekend, you can join one of their free guided tours in English (first come first served).

Occupying an architecturally inspiring lotus-shaped building along Marina Bay's waterfront, the world's first ArtScience museum boasts over 50,000 square feet of galleries, where the visitor is supposedly introduced to the meeting points between art and science…

How to get here? The museum is located within the Marina Bay Sands (Bayfront MRT Station is possibly the most straightforward way of getting here)

The museum's only permanent exhibition, ArtScience, spreads across three galleries and is meant to take the visitor to a "Journey Through Creativity" where he can explore the connections between the arts and the sciences, but although it is quite interesting and enchanting, it is actually the temporary exhibitions that make this museum so popular, including some world-class displays, like Genghis Khan, Van Gogh Alive and Dalí: Mind of a Genius, which were all highly praised by visitors and critics.

Visit the ArtScience Museum website

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Attractions and activities around Chinatown

Buddha Tooth Relic Temple and Museum Rating:   The Buddhist Culture Museum and Relic Chamber open daily, 9am – 7pm, while the Emiment Sangha Museum is open daily from 7am – 7pm Website No entrance fees

Maxwell Road Food Centre and Chinatown Complex Food Centre Rating:   Daily, morning till evening

Featuring Tang dynasty architecture, the imposing red Chinese-style building near the corner of Smith Street and South Bridge Road accommodates a Buddhist temple and a museum, where the relic of the tooth of the Buddha is kept, in a gold stupa. The temple is rich in decoration arts and sculpture work, and there is also a Buddhist Culture Museum here, where hundreds of Buddhist artifacts and works of art from all over Asia are on display. Singapore is famous for its outstanding Food centres and Hawker centres, where the whole family can indulge on local favorites that are both delicious and inexpensive… Two of the city's most popular hawker centres can be found in Chinatown: Maxwell Road Food Centre prides itself for housing one of the city's best Chicken Rice stalls : Tian Tian Hainanese Chicken Rice (#10) Chinatown Complex Food Centre on Smith Street (off New Bridge), boasts an excellent selection of Chinese foodstalls and eateries, including China La Mian Steamed Buns (#02-135), where you can enjoy fabulous steamed buns

Singapore City Gallery Rating:   Monday - Saturday, 9am - 5pm Website Entrance is free (Guided English tours are available at a small fee).

Housed within the modern building of the Urban Redevelopment Authority (URA Centre), the City Gallery displays large models of various urban developments across the city-state, including Singapore's Central Area Model, which is one of the largest architectural models in the world. Touch screens and other interactive devices make the visit an interesting experience, especially for the young ones, and for those who architecture and city planning are their thing.

South Bridge Road, near the corner of Sago Street, Chinatown. From MRT Chinatown Station: Walk through Pagoda Street, turn right to South Bridge Road and after 2 – 3 minutes you will see the impressive building on your right.

Click HERE to find some of the best rates for hostels and lowcost accommodations in Singapore and Asia ! To Chinatown Complex Food Centre: Five minutes' walk from MRT-Chinatown (335 Smith Street: From Pagoda, turn right to Trengganu St and right again, to Smith).

To Maxwell Road Food Centre: If coming from MRT Chinatown Station: Walk through Pagoda Street, turn right to South Bridge Road and after 2 – 3 minutes you will see the food-centre on your left hand side (almost opposite the Buddha Tooth Relic Temple and Museum). If coming from MRT Tanjong Pagar: Take exit G, turn left, cross the small garden, turn right to Maxwell Road and after a couple of minutes you will see the Urban Redevelopment Authority (URA) Building on your right. Getting here: The City Gallery is on 45 Maxwell Road, right next to Maxwell Road Food Centre see instructions above).

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Attractions and activities around Little India and Bugis

Name and details

What is there to be seen

How to get there and what to see next

Singapore Crocodile Farm

Although it is not one of the city's leading attractions, Singapore's only crocodile farm is worth knowing about, mainly because it is easy to get to from Little India, but also because it is one of the only places where you can still watch a traditional crocodile farm in action…

No. 790 Upper Serangoon Road

Rating:   Daily (except Public Holiday), 9am - 6pm (till 5:30pm on weekends)  6288 9385, Website Entrance is free

Shopping & Night Market in Bugis Rating:   Morning till night No entrance fee There's a lot more to Chinatown than just souvenir shops and open-late eateries… Join the Trishaw Night Tour, or Chinatown's Night Walking Tour to truly explore Singapore's most characterful area.

From MRT Serangoon Station: Take any of the following bus routes: 80, 81, 136, 153, 107,101 or walk (10-15 minutes)

Other than to see some different (live) crocs, you can visit their small factory, which hardly changed since it was opened in the 1940s, and learn about the history of this fast vanishing industry… You can also purchase crocodile-skin products here. What used to be the stronghold of Singapore's transvestite community between the 1950s and the 1980s is now one of the city's most thriving shopping districts. The historic 'sin street' has become Bugis Junction Mall, after the old shophouses were restored and a massive glass canopy was placed above them. Bugis Street and Bugis Village, on the other side of Victoria Street, boast a wide variety of street stalls that sell everything from cheap clothes and watches to traditional snacks, and there is a night market here too.

Bugis MRT Station is connected directly to Bugis Junction mall To : Take exit-B, turn right to Victoria and after a couple of minutes right again, to Ophir Road (near the entrance to the hospital), from where you turn left to Beach Road (second turn on your left) and after a short stroll you will see the mosque on your left. To Bugis Street and Bugis Village: Walk out from exit-A and cross Rochor Road.

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Attractions and activities around East Coast

East Coast park and SKI360 Rating:   24 hours a day / 7 days a week (SKI360 is open daily, 10am - 10pm and till midnight on Fridays and Saturdays) Website: SKI360 Free entry (unless you go to SKI 360) Other than Chinese temples, great shopping and world-class museums, Singapore is home to some fantastic theme parks and family attractions… Click here for the city's best attractions.

If you visit Singapore with the whole family, it would be a good idea to spend a few hours at the East Coast Park (Especially if you plan to visit Katong) Other than a long sandy strip, wide lawns, dotted with coconut palms, and some kids' activities, the park accommodates two of Singapore's most popular food centres, where you can seat alfresco and indulge on some scrumptious fish or chili crab. The park is also home to the SKI360 : Singapore's Cable-Ski Park, which makes it a great family day out.

From Katong: Walk down to the bottom of Joo Chiat Road, turn left to Marine Parade Road and board any of the following routes: 31, 43, 48, 196, 196-e, 197 or 853-c. Alight at a bus stop called 'Opposite Laguna Park' (also on Marine Parade Road) and walk back a few steps, to the corner, where you turn left to Siglap Link and after 2 – 3 minutes left again, to East Coast. Almost immediately you will see an entrance to an underpass on your left, through which you cross under the road and into the park. From the City: Travel to MRT - Bedok Station. From the adjacent bus Interchange (next to exit B), take No. 197 to Laguna Park and proceed by foot (see instructions above) On Saturdays, Sundays and Public Holidays, you can take line 401 from Bedok Bus Interchange directly to the lagoon and the food centre.

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Attractions and activities around Changi and Pasir Ris

Changi Village & Scenic boardwalk Rating:   Daily, 24 hours Entrance is free

Other than a good food centre at the "village", near the bus terminus, and some lovely alfresco cafés on the other side of Changi Village Road, like popular Jacob's, the main draw here is the Changi Boardwalk, which starts from the Ferry Terminal, just a couple of minutes' walk from the Bus terminus and curves along the coastal cliffs for more than a kilometer, providing some lovely views.

From MRT-Tanah Merah: Take bus No. 2 You can also take bus No. 29 from MRTTampiens. A couple of minutes' walk from Changi Village Bus Terminal, along Lorong Bekukong Street, will bring you to Changi Point Ferry Terminal, where the boardwalk starts from.


Stretching along almost seven kilometers of beach, Pasir Ris Park is one of Singapore's best beach parks, boasting wide lawns, plenty of coconut trees, nice walking trails, picnic sites and recreational facilities.

Pasir Ris Beach Park Rating:   Daily, 24 hours Entrance is free

The main attraction, however, is the Mangroves Forest Reserve, where you can walk on wooden boardwalks and watch this tiny yet magnificent ecosystem. There is also a bird watching tower within the reserve.

Wild Wild Wet and Explorerkid Rating:   Wild Wild Wet is open on Monday, Wednesday, Thursday and Friday, 1 – 7pm and on Saturdays, Sundays and Public holidays, 10am – 7pm (closed on Tuesdays) Wild Wild Wet Explorerkid Entrance fees apply

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Two of Singapore's most popular themed park are just a few minutes' stroll from Pasir Ris Beach Park, and while they have no pretensions to be better than Sentosa, they are well worth visiting… Especially Wild Wild Wet, one of the if not THE best water park in Southeast Asia, which provides a pleasant and cool escape from Singapore's gooey heat… What's more, you can combine them with a visit to the beach park and its mangroves reserve.

5 minutes' walk from Pasir Ris MRT Station: Take exit A, turn left (the shops and the railway bridge should be on your left), cross the bus-interchange and the road behind it and enter the park through the concrete path along (beneath) the railway bridge.

Take exit A of Pasir Ris MRT Station, turn left and cross the bus-interchange and the road behind it (the shops and the railway bridge should be on your left). Turn right after crossing the road and walk for a few minutes… As soon as you have crossed the bridge over the canal, turn left and enter the complex of "Downtown East", where the theme park is located.

Sights and attractions around central and north Singapore

Name and details

What is there to be seen

How to get there and what to see next

Holland Village

The heart of Singapore's expatriates' community (and a popular hangout for many of the city's trendy youngsters) lies within the small enclave of Holland Village, or Holland V, as it is commonly known.

Holland Village MRT Station (on Circle Line) provides direct access to the place.

Rating:   Daily, morning till late at night No entrance fees Wine and Dine Guide to Holland Village and Dempsey Hill

Plenty of sidewalk cafés, good restobars, unique shops that specialize in arts, antiques and knick knacks, and pleasant ambience…

You can get here by bus: SBS 7, or SMRT 77 or 106 can be boarded at the station on Somerset Road (next to Somerset MRT Station and Phoenix), or along Orchard Boulevard (parallel to Orchard Road – Right next to Orchard MRT Station)

It's a nice place to end the day, after visiting the Botanic Gardens.

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Bukit Timah Nature Reserve. Rating:   Visitor's Centre is open daily, 8:30am - 6pm Website

Occupying an area of approximately 400 acres around the slopes of Bukit Timah, Singapore's highest hill, this small reserve forms one of the largest patches of primary rainforest left in Singapore, and gives the visitor an idea of what Singapore looked like two centuries ago...

Entrance is free English guided tours are available every now and again, for more details about the tours and the reserve, call the Visitor Centre on 6468 5736 or visit their Website

Although Singapore has one of the best public-transport systems in the world, taking the Singapore City Hop-on Hop-off Tour is highly recommended, as it takes you directly to the various attractions and saves you the time and hassle of waiting for a bus or walking from the nearest MRT station…

Although it is not particularly large, Bukit Timah Nature Reserve is very rich in species of both plants and animals, with hundreds of different types of tropical plants and plenty of animals... From unique insects and butterflies to reptiles, beautiful forest birds and even mammals, like Flying Lemurs, Plantain Squirrels, Long-tailed Macaques (Cynomolgus Monkey) and Pangolins (ant-eater), just to name a few… There are a few properly marked trails in the reserve and you should make a point to come here early enough, if you want to enjoy the walk before heat and humidity become unbearable Tiny Hindhede Nature Park, on the left side of the Visitor Centre (if coming from the main road) is another place worth visiting. The small park encircles the abandoned granite quarry and, other than its picturesque scenery, offers some adventurous play equipment, rope bridges and other recreational facilities...

Drop off the bus at "Court Bukit Timah", next to an Esso petrol station. Use the pedestrian bridge to cross the road, turn right and walk along the main road for a few minutes (the road should be on your right hand side), turn left to Hindhede Road and climb along it till you get to the nature reserve's gate and the visitor's centre (It is just a ten minutes' walk or so...) Bus No. 170 comes here from Little India (Bukit Timah Road, right next to exit A of Little India MRT Station) SMRT bus No. 171 comes here from the city centre and has stations on Stamford Road (National Museum of Singapore), Penang Road (near Dhoby Ghaut MRT Station), Somerset Road (Parallel to Orchard Road - Near Somerset MRT Station), Orchard Turn (at the back of Ngee Ann City), Orchard Boulevard (near Orchard MRT Station and ION Orchard) and Scotts Road (Near DFS Galleria Opposite Far East Plaza) Bus Nos. 961 and 961-C stop by the Raffles Hotel (Beach Road side), as well as by St. Andrew's Cathedral (North Bridge Road), Boat Quay (Cnr. of North Bridge Road and Circular) and Chinatown (Near the corner of Smith Street and New Bridge Road). If coming from Singapore Botanic Gardens, take SBS No. 170 or SMRT No. 75 or 171

Singapore Botanic Gardens and the National Orchid Garden Rating:   Daily, 5am – 12midnight (The National Orchid Garden is open 8:30am – 7pm) Website Map of the gardens No entrance fees (There is an entrance fee to the National Orchid Garden)

Occupying a relatively large area of almost 160 acres, not far from the city centre, the amazingly beautiful Singapore Botanic Gardens, one of the city's "must sees", boasts a stunning variety of species, including plants, trees, flowers and shrubs... Most of which originated from the tropical regions of Southeast Asia. The gardens' highlights include the Sun Garden where various species of cactus and other plants of arid areas can be seen, the Vanda Miss Joaquim orchid (Singapore's national flower, that can be found not far from the bandstand), the Rainforest area, where you can see an actual "slice" of a genuine rainforest,

Botanic Gardens MRT Station (on Circle Line) provides direct access to the gardens' northern side. If you are not interested in visiting this part of the gardens, you can easily get to the main gate with any of these routes: SBS 7, 123, 174, or SMRT 77, 106 can be boarded at the station on Orchard Boulevard, next to MRT Orchard Station, or from Somerset Road, next to MRT Somerset Station. From Marina Bay Sands: SMRT No. 106 From Scotts Road (Far East Plaza): SBS 105


just like the ones that covered the region more than a century ago, and the Evolution Garden, where you can "travel through time" along the evolution of the plants world… But the real draw is unquestionably the National Orchid Garden (and the Orchidarium), where more than a thousand species and two thousand hybrids can be found, forming the world's largest display of tropical orchids…

MacRitchie Reservoir and HSBC TreeTop Walk Rating:   Daily, morning till evening. Website Free PDF trails-map Entrance is free Visiting Singapore ? Although the city's public-transport system is one of the best on earth, taking a guided tour is strongly recommended, for two reasons: A) A guide can show you all sorts of "hidden gems" you may have never found on your own, and tell you the untold stories behind each of the sites… B) Guided tours take you directly from one spot to the other, saving you the hassle of waiting to public transport, and leaving you with more precious holiday time in your hands… Take a look at our list of recommended guided tours and see which of them suit you best.

Occupying a fairly large area around MacRitchie Reservoir, this fabulous nature reserve is, perhaps, not as rich in species as Bukit Timah, but it is much bigger and provides the visitor a more tangible experience of walking in a "real rainforest"… Other than the lovely lakeside trail, the main attraction here is, obviously, the HSBC TreeTop Walk: A 250 meter long free standing suspension bridge that offers visitors a panoramic view of Upper Peirce Reservoir and the surrounding lush rainforest, and enables them to take a close look at the forest canopy and its dwellers...

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The bus-stop on Lornie Rd. (opp. Mount Alvernia Hospital) is right next to the park: Nos. 130 and 167 can be boarded at Fullerton Square (near the Merlion). 130 also has stops on Victoria Street (opposite CHIJMES) and outside Bugis Junction Mall, while 167 (and also 162) stops on Stamford Road (outside the National Museum), Penang Road (near Dhoby Ghaut MRT Station), Somerset Road (parallel to Orchard Road - Near Somerset MRT Station and Peranakan Place), Orchard Turn (at the back of Ngee Ann City) and Orchard Boulevard (Near Orchard MRT Station and ION Orchard). Bus No. 166 comes here from Chinatown and stops outside People's Park Centre, as well as outside MRTClarke Quay (next to exit-E), MICA Building, Stamford Road (outside the National Museum) and Little India (Bukit Timah Road, right next to exit A of Little India MRT Station). From here, you can continue to the HSBC TreeTop Walk, as follows: Ride a few more stops, to a bus-stop called "Opposite Flame Tree". As soon as you leave the bus turn left and walk along Upper Thomson Road (the road should be on your left), turn right to Venus Drive and after a few minutes left, to the parking lot from which the trail to HSBC TreeTop Walk begins. The following bus routes come here from MacRitchie Reservoir Park: 132, 165, 166, 167, 852, 855 and 980

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Singapore Zoo and Night Safari Rating:   Singapore Zoo: Daily, 8:30am – 6pm Night Safari: 7:30pm – 12 midnight

Website (Zoo) Website (Night Safari) Information about "Park Hopper" (discounted combo tickets) Entrance fees apply

Save your precious holiday time! Book a tour to Singapore Zoo and the Night Safari and explore them with those who know them best!

Neighboring each other on the shores of Upper Seletar Reservoir, right in the middle of Singapore's largest forest, Singapore Zoo and the "Night Safari" are unquestionably among Singapore's best attractions.

BusHub operates a bus service called "SINGAPORE ATTRACTIONS EXPRESS", which takes passengers directly from their town centre hotel, or Little India to Jurong Bird Park and Singapore Zoo / Night Safari.

Singapore Zoo is best known for being the first zoo on earth to implement the "open zoo concept", where animals dwell in open spaces that resemble their natural habitat.

Currently, there are four buses a day to the zoo, at 8am, 10am, 11am and 1pm.

Quite expectedly, it emphasizes on Southeast Asia's fast vanishing species and boasts one of the world's largest groups of Orangutans (Their Jungle Breakfast with Orangutans is one of the zoo's best known attractions), as well as some Komodo Dragons (the world's largest and most fiercefull lizards) and rare species of butterflies, reptiles and insects from Borneo's rainforests. All in all, there are more than 2,500 animals in the zoo, belonging to 315 species, of which at least 50 are rare and threatened, including the White Bengali Tiger, Polar Bears, Elephants (very nice show) and what have you… Night Safari is the world's first "nocturnal zoo"… Similarly to its neighbor, the animals here also live in open spaces, rather than in metal cages, and those spaces are dimly lit, using special lights that allow visitors to watch the animals without disturbing them. Night Safari's most notable tenants include Lions, Tigers, Leopards and various wild cats, alongside Hyenas and other Canids, like Foxes, Jackals and Wolfs. Obviously, there are many other interesting night animals that are not carnivores, from Rhinos and Hippos to Tapirs, Anteaters and giant bats (flying foxes). Tip: Many visitors start their visit at the Singapore Zoo around 2 or 3 pm, so by the time it closes, at 6 pm, they can move almost immediately to the Night Safari (You can kill an hour in one of the eateries outside, while waiting for the "Night Safari" to open).

From Jurong Bird Park, there are two buses a day to the zoo, leaving at 1pm and 2pm Buses depart from the zoo's gate, on their way back town on 12:30pm, 2:30pm, 4:30pm, 5:30pm and 6:30pm Buses to the 'Night Safari' depart from town at 6pm, 7pm and 8pm (From Jurong Bird Park, buses leave at 4:45pm and 5:30pm, on their way to the 'Night Safari') Back to town, buses depart from the 'Night Safari' at 9:30pm, 10pm, 10:30pm, 11pm and 11:30pm For the exact timetable (and list of the stops), please visit Bus Hub website or call them on 6753 0506

You can also use ordinary public transport to get to Singapore Zoo and the Night Safari, although it will probably consume more of your time... From MRT-Ang Mo Kio, take SBS bus No. 138

The "Singapore City Pass" makes a good choice for those who want to explore the city by themselves, with a full day of unlimited Hop On Hop Off Bus sightseeing, as well as well as a trip on an amphibious vehicle.

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Mandai Orchid Garden Rating:   Daily, 8am - 7pm (till 6pm on Monday). Website There is a small entrance fee

Sungei Buloh Wetland Reserve Rating:   Daily, 7:30am - 7pm (From 7am on Sundays & Public Holidays) Website Free PDF brochure Entrance is free (There is a small entrance fee on weekends only) There's a lot more to Chinatown than just souvenir shops and open-late eateries… Join the Trishaw Night Tour, or Chinatown's Night Walking Tour to truly explore Singapore's most characterful area.

Little Guilin Rating:   7 days a week, almost 24 hrs a day No entrance fees

Mandai Orchid Garden, near the Zoo, boasts a variety of hundreds of Orchid species, as well as beautifully groomed water gardens.

Bus Nos. 138, 926 and 927 come here from/to Singapore Zoo and the Night Safari (138 also travels from/to the bus interchange, next to MRT- Ang Mo Kio)

If you love flowers and feel the visit to the National Orchid Garden (at the Botanic Gardens) left you with a taste for more, go for it…

Singapore's only wetland reserve is tucked in one of the city-state's remotest corners, facing Johor Straits, and offers its visitors a true tropical scenery, which is so different from the glass clad skyscrapers of Orchard Road and Raffles Place…

From Kranji MRT Station : Take the "Kranji Express" (a yellow bus that connects the MRT station with several spots around the region). It departs every one and a half hours, from 9am to 4:30pm (Kranji Express Timetable).

On Sundays and public holidays, you can Boardwalks take the visitors through lush also take bus No. 925 (SMRT) MRTvegetation and dense mangrove bush, Kranji, all the way to nature reserve. where they can see a variety of birds, both locals and migratory, as well as mud lobsters, huge monitor lizards and even Smooth Otters There is also a pretty good visitors centre in the reserve, showing nature documantries about the place, as well as about other wetlands around the globe Free guided tours are held every Saturday morning, at 09:30 am, but the groups are limited to 15 participants… First come first served. The scenery of the bush-clad granite cliffs, protruding dramatically from the peaceful lake, resembles very much the scenery of Guilin area in China and that is how this small reserve got its name (although it is also known as Bukit Batok Town Park). The small park around the lake boasts some lovely walking trails, that are lit at night, as well as nice picnic areas and plenty of photo ops… Add to this the fact that the place is only a few minutes' walk from an MRT station and you've got a good reason to come here.

From Bukit Gombak MRT Station: Walk out through exit-B, turn left to Bukit Batok East Avenue 5 and walk along it for a few minutes, until you see the lake and the park on your left hand side.


9

Jurong BirdPark, Chinese Gardens and West Singapore

Name and details

What is there to be seen

How to get there and what to see next

Jurong BirdPark

Jurong BirdPark is possibly the world's best bird-zoo (with the largest number of birds) and undoubtedly one of Singapore's top attractions !

From MRT-Boon Lay: Take SBS bus Nos. 194 or 251

Rating:   Open daily, 8:30am - 6pm Website Info on discounted "Park Hopper" discounted tickets There is entry fee

Save your precious holiday time! Book a tour to Jurong BirdPark and explore them with those who know them best!

Occupying an area of 50 acres, it makes home to almost 10,000 birds, belonging to 600 different species... From the penguins who live in an Antarctica-like area, to the birds of the tropics, who dwell in a zone with manmade 'tropical storms'...

BusHub operates direct buses from the city centre (passing through most major hotels), Little India and Chinatown to the BirdPark (via Harbour Front - link to Sentosa).

Buses depart from either Orchard Hotel, or Golden Mile Complex at 9am and pass through Grand Hyatt, Meritus Mandarin, Concorde Hotel, Little India, Chinatown As you might expect, there are all sorts and some other stations, before of exciting bird shows here, as well as proceeding to the BirdPark. other activities... For more information, you can call 6661 7830 or They also operate a service between the visit the relevant webpage Singapore Zoo/Night safari and Jurong BirdPark (leaving the BirdPark on 2 and 4:45pm daily / Leaving from the Zoo to the BirdPark at 2pm daily). For more information and an up-to-date timetable, call BusHub on: 6753 0506 or, better, visit their website.

The Chinese and Japanese Gardens Rating:   Daily, 6am - 11pm. The entrance to the gardens is free, although there is a small entrance fee to the themed gardens.

Occupying two islands in the middle of Jurong Lake, the Chinese and Japanese gardens form one of the loveliest corners of Singapore. The Chinese Garden was designed by a famous architect from Taiwan and other than manicured lawns and delicate landscaping it boasts elegant fish ponds, magnificent Chinese structures, pavilions, pagodas and statues of Chinese historical heroes and the zodiac animals…

 Daily, 9am - 6pm and you can fetch more info from their website).

Inside the garden, there are a couple of attractions worth knowing about: The small Live Turtle and Tortoise Museum houses a collection of rare turtles and tortoises, some of which really look like prehistoric monsters…

 Daily, 9am - 6pm

The Bonsai Garden displays thousands of well-groomed Bonsai trees, mostly from China, and there are experts on sight, who give helpful tips and advice about those miniature trees.

The Chinese Garden is a couple of minutes' walk from Chinese Garden MRT Station.

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Haw Par Villa and Hua Song Museum (Tiger Balm Garden) Rating:   Daily, 9am - 7pm (Hua Song Museum is open daily, except Monday, from 9am to 6pm). The entrance to the garden is free, although there is a small fee if you wish to visit the Hua Song Museum. More info

Make the most of your trip ! Book a tour to Haw Par Villa and explore it with those who know it best!

Southern Ridges Rating:   All day – Every day. Free entry For more info, you can download this (free) excellent PDF brochure, which contains maps and details about the various walks and what can be seen along every one of them.

The "Singapore City Pass" makes a good choice for those who want to explore the city by themselves, with a full day of unlimited Hop On Hop Off Bus sightseeing, as well as well as a trip on an amphibious vehicle.

Labrador Nature Reserve Rating:   Daily, all day long. Free entry Free PDF brochure with info about walking trails in the park.

Better known by its old name, Tiger Right next to Haw Par Villa MRT Station Balm Garden, Haw Par Villa is a theme (on the Circle Line). park where folktales from the Chinese mythology are presented through nearly a thousand dioramas and life size sculptures, and although many of the exhibits are fairly kitschy, the park is well worth visiting. The garden was originally built in the 1930s by two Chinese brothers, who amassed a fortune thanks to a popular heat rub they introduced (That is the Tiger Balm, after which the garden is named) and there is also a small museum here (quite recommended), which is dedicated to Chinese communities around the world and shows how these communities developed and contributed to their new societies...

This is a series of bridges and nature trails, winding along 9 kilometres, from Mt. Faber westwards, through Telok Blangah Hill and Kent Ridge, all the way to West Coast Park, offering a pleasant stroll in nature, right next to the city centre… Other than beautiful panoramic views, the trails pass through manicured gardens, as well as indigenous forest, just like the one that covered most of Singapore more than a hundred years ago. Long suspended boardwalks that wind between the forest's treetops are, undoubtedly, the main attraction here… Especially the section called "Henderson Waves", which boasts the best vantage points and some pleasant shady corners.

This lovely coastal nature reserve lies west of Singapore Port and offers its visitors a small heaven, integrating nature, beautiful beach, historic sights and even a good restaurant... It is one of the only paces in Singapore where you can see a real rocky shore, with cliffs and familiarize yourself with its unique ecosystem, (continue…)

To start at the top of Mt. Faber, use the Sentosa cable-car: From HarbourFront MRT Station, walk to the bus interchange and onwards, via a long pedestrian bridge, across the main road, to the building next to the cable-car station. To Henderson Waves : Take any of the following buses to the stop on the corner of Henderson Road and Blangah Heights: No. 124 comes here from the city centre and has stops on Scotts Road (next to Far East Plaza) and along Orchard Road (Tangs Plaza, "Paragon", Concorde Hotel and ExitE of MRT-Dhoby Ghaut), as well as on North Bridge Road, near St. Andrew's Cathedral and also near Boat Quay (after the corner of Circular Road - You can also take No. 145 from this bus stop). Bus No. 131 comes from Little India (Sungei Road, near "The Verge" shopping centre and the corner of Serangoon Road) Labrador Park – MRT Station provides direct access to the park.

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especially when the tide is low and the reef is almost entirely exposed… Another notable sight within Labrador Nature Reserve is Fort Pasir Panjang, one of the main coastal forts the Brits built in Singapore… There are also wide lawns here, picnic areas, beautiful vantage points and a good restaurant, where you can dine 'alfresco' and enjoy the seaview. Science Centre Singapore Rating: 

 Tuesday - Sunday, 10am - 6pm, closed on Mondays (unless a Monday falls on a public holiday).  6425 2500, Website, Information about discounted combo-tickets (with Snow City)

As its name suggests, Science Centre Singapore is a science museum, which means it is particularly recommended for families with teenage kids, although it is popular with people of all ages... Spreading over eight galleries, the museum displays every aspect of technology and science, from optical illusions to space science and from kinetic energy to robotics…

Entry fee applies

The Centre also operates an IMAX cinema (the Omni Theatre) where you can watch some excellent 40 minute documentaries on various scientific topics, like research of the deep sea, discovery of Mars and more... The movies play every round hour, from 10 am to 8pm.

Snow City

Snow City, right next to the Science Centre, is Singapore's first indoor snow centre.

Rating:   Daily, 9:45am - 5:15pm Website Entry fee applies

From the Chinese Garden: Walk out of MRT-Chinese Garden through exit-C and proceed straight along Boon Lay Way (The road should be on your left and the park on your right). After less the five minutes, turn right to Jurong Town Hall Road and walk along it for approximately one kilometer, until you will see the Science Centre and Snow City on your right side. From MRT-Jurong East: Walk out of the station through the covered walkway, to Jurong East Street 13, cross it and proceed strait along the covered path, between the buildings (Block No. 135 should be on your right) until you reach a big junction. The Science Centre is on its other side (less than 10 minutes' walk).

Located right next to Science Centre Singapore (see instructions above)

The main draw here is a three-stories high, manmade snow slope where you can sky, snowboard or just play with the snow... Other than the idea of snow in the middle of equatorial Singapore, there is not much interest here (especially if you come from a country where snow falls naturally...)

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10

Pulau Ubin and Singapore's outlying islands

Name and details

What is there to be seen and how to get there

The island of Pulau Ubin

Lying northeast of Singapore, just a couple of kilometres from Changi Beach, Pulau Ubin is the city-state's only "real tropical island" and a great place to spend a day…

Rating:   24 / 7 Free For more info, you can download this free PDF brochure, which also contains info about walking trails on the island.

Occupying an area of slightly more than 10 km², it boasts some fabulous beaches, beautiful nature reserves (Especially Check Jawa, on which you can read in the next page), and peaceful village lifestyle that bears no resemblance to the vibrant pace of life in downtown Singapore. The name Pulau Ubin translates to Granite Island in Malay and granite, indeed, was what attracted the island's first settlers, more than a century ago... a silent witness to that early settlement can be seen in the abandoned granite quarries across the island, most of which have been long filled by water and covered with thick vegetation, which make them a popular (and quite picturesque) tourist attraction. The island's population reached a few thousands, back in the 1960s, when granite quarrying was the main industry. Currently, however, there are just more than one hundred dwellers on Pulau Ubin, living a lifestyle that seems to belong to another era altogether... Water is pumped from wells, electricity comes from generators and traditional "kampong" (villages), with simple wooden houses dominate the scene. This is probably the last place in Singapore where you can still see traditional Kelongs, which are sort of offshore houses on wooden piles, used by fishermen.

See Singapore Attraction Pass can save a lot of money for those of you who wish to make the most of their precious holiday time… You can take a Singapore River Cruise, or ride the world’s largest observation wheel, visit one (or more) of Singapore's fantastic museums, see the world's largest collection of tropical orchids at the National Orchid Garden, visit Jurong's BirdPark and Singapore Zoo, join a guided walking tour and much more…

Your starting point is the 'main village' (Ubin town). Next to the jetty there are some good and inexpensive eateries, as well as some shops where you can get fresh fruits and other groceries, and, of course, bike renting businesses. Prices range around SG$ 5 - 10 a day and you can haggle a bit... You should also take the bikes for a short ride before renting them, just to make sure it's functioning properly... Take a minute to chat with the folks of National Parks Board about the various bike / hiking trails, before you hit the road, as they can be quite helpful (at the information kiosk, in the 'village')... The beaches on the island's northshore are the best, especially Noordin Beach, where you can enjoy white sands and spectacular views across the strait, and Mamam Beach. There are three places where you can camp on Pulau Ubin: On the two beaches, as well as in Jelutong Campsite, not far from the village. Conditions are pretty much basic and you should bring your own tents and food (there is running water in the camp but it's not really adequate for human consumption). There is no need for any camping license or permission as such but, if you do wish to spend the night in any of the campsite, you'll better drop by at the information kiosk and get the necessary info from them. Campers are also advised to report at the small police post, not far from the jetty, just so they'll know where to look for you in case of an emergency... Pulau Ubin is serviced by Bumboats, leaving regularly from Changi Point Ferry Terminal, a minute walk from Changi Village (see instructions below). The trip takes around ten minutes and the boats operate daily, sunrise to sunset. Prices are SG$ 2.5 one way. The boat leaves as soon as there are 12 passengers or if an amount of SG$ 30 is collected (against 12 passengers X SG$ 2.5 each). To get to Changi Village and Changi Point Ferry Terminal: Take bus No. 2 From MRTTanah Merah, or No. 29 from MRT-Tampiens. From Changi Village Bus Terminus, walk a couple of minutes via Lorong Bekukong Street to the Ferry Terminal.


Name and details

What is there to be seen and how to get there

Check Jawa

Check Jawa is probably Pulau Ubin's most popular tourist attractions. Occupying 250 acres of wetland, the nature reserve is home to an extremely unique, rich and diversified ecosystem that comprises of six different habitats, including Rocky Shore, Mangrove Forests and Seagrass Lagoon… The rocky plates are actually ancient coral reefs, covered by shallow water where hundreds of different sea creatures live, including Estuarine Seahorses, Mudskippers, Pipefish, Eel-tail Catfish, Toadfish, Fiddler Crab, Sea Cucumber, starfish, shells, Cuttlefish, Octopus, Sponges and Horseshoe Crabs, just to mention a few...

Rating:   Daily, 8:30am - 6 pm Website

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A kilometer long boardwalk takes visitors through the wetland and makes it possible for everybody to see and appreciate the underwater glamour of this place. The boardwalk also takes the visitors to other parts of the reserve, such as the mangroves forest and the coastal forest... Other than the boardwalk, there is a 21 meters high viewing tower and a good visitors-centre, housed in a charming 1930s Tudor-style cottage, where you can learn more about the place and its unique ecosystem. Nonetheless, guided tours of the National Parks Board are probably the best way to see the wetland. If you do wish to join one of them, make sure to book long time in advance (either by phone, letter or Email) as demand is high and the tours are few and far between... You should also be prepared to walk in the water and bring good, strong shoes (no sandals please...) to protect your foot from sea urchins and scratchy coral rocks. The beauty of Check Jawa is fully unveiled in low tides, when the water is 0.5 meter deep (or less) and the rich marine life can be seen clearly... You can still visit the place when the tides are not low (for the mangroves and the coastal forest), but it's really not the same thing... To get to check Jawa : From the jetty, next to the Pulau Ubin Village Centre, you can either cycle or take a taxi (around SG$ 2 one way). You can also walk, but it takes something like 45 minutes, each way.

Kusu Island Rating:   Daily, all day How to get there: Singapore Island Cruise operates a boat service to Kusu Island (You can combine a visit to neighboring St. John's Island). Boats depart from Marina South Pier every day at 10am and 2pm (9am, 12noon and 3pm on Saturdays and 9am, 11am, 1pm, 3pm and 5pm on Sundays and public holidays). To get to Marina South Pier: Take the MRT to Marina Bay MRT Station and continue with bus No. 402 Click here for timetable and details

Tiny Kusu Island (Literally "Turtle Island") lies six kilometres south of Singapore and although it covers an area of only 25 acres, it has a lot to offer to its visitors… Popular legend tells of a miraculous turtle that saved the passengers of two wrecked ships, one Malay and one Chinese, by turning itself to an island just before they sunk… The grateful survivors thanked their savior by building temples on the island and while the Chinese built a Taoist temple, the Malays erected three keramat shrines at the top of the hill. The Chinese temple was built in the 1920s and is dedicated to Da Bo Gong, the 'Merchant God' of Malaysian Chinese, as well as to Guan Yin, Chinese goddess of mercy and 'calmer of the sea' (who is also famed for her power to 'give sons'). Other than shrines, the temple also boasts a turtle shelter. Other than temples, the island boasts two beautiful lagoons, with sandy beach and pristine turquoise water, as well as some lovely shallow coral reefs, where you can see the rich marine life without having to dive... (Provided it is during low tides).


St. John's Island Rating:   Daily, all day How to get there: Singapore Island Cruise operates a boat service to St. John's Island (You can combine a visit to neighboring Kusu Island). Boats depart from Marina South Pier every day at 10am and 2pm (9am, 12noon and 3pm on Saturdays and 9am, 11am, 1pm, 3pm and 5pm on Sundays and public holidays). To get to Marina South Pier: Take the MRT to Marina Bay MRT Station and continue with bus No. 402

Lying only one kilometer from Kusu Island, St. John's Island occupies an area of more than 100 acres… Unlike its small and better known neighbor, this island's name is not associated with any mythical legends… As a matter of fact, other than serving as Sir Raffles' anchorage, when he came to meet the local sultans in 1819, the island had the dubious honor of housing a quarantine station for leper immigrants, and a rehabilitation centre for drug addicts. Nowadays, however, St. John's is a charming tropical island with white sandy beaches, lapped by blue and turquoise water and fringed with coconut palms. There are also some lovely walking trails on the island, as well as picnic sites and simple sport facilities. Part of the island is still occupied by governmental institutions, such as the Tropical Marine Science Institute, but there is enough left for holidaymakers. For those of you who wish to spend the night on the island, there is one fully furnished bungalow, accommodating up to 10 people. The bungalow has its own equipped kitchen but you'll have to bring your own food. A short holiday here can be very pleasant indeed, especially during the week, when the flow of visitors is quite low. For more information about the bungalow, you can visit their webpage.

Click here for timetable and details

A cruise to Singapore's islands Rating:   Daily, 8:30am - 6 pm Short description + photos of the different cruise-trips Up-to-date schedule and price list Click here to book your cruise on the Cheng Ho… Morning, high tea, or dinner…

Named after a famous 15th century Chinese Admiral-Explorer, the Cheng Ho is a replica of an imperial Ming Dynasty vessel, supposedly similar to the one that was sailed by the legendary admiral who gave it its name. Watertours, the company that operates the Cheng Ho, offers three different "cruises": The Morning Glory and Afternoon High Tea cruises make a Stopover at Kusu Island, where you can visit the ancient Chinese Temple, while the Imperial Dinner Cruise boasts a buffet dinner and stops next to Sentosa's south shore, where passengers can view the fireworks at the "Songs of the Sea" show... 

The Morning Glory Cruise departs from Marina South Pier at 10:30 am and lasts 2:30 hours. It costs SG$ 27/14 for an adult/child (price includes some coffee/tea and light snacks)

The Afternoon High Tea Cruise departs at 3pm from the same place, and the price of SG$ 32/16 for an adult/child includes a High-tea buffet of sweet and savory pastries... It also lasts 2:30 hours

The Imperial Dinner Cruise leaves at 6:30 pm, lasts 2:30 hours and costs SG$ 55/29 for an adult/child

The operator provides a complimentary Pick-Up Service from some hotels in town, as well as from Marina Bay MRT Station. For more details: call Watertours on (+65) 6533 9811 or visit their website, where you can find all the necessary information.

The See Singapore Attraction Pass can save a lot of money for those of you who wish to make the most of their precious holiday time… You can take a Singapore River Cruise, or ride the world’s largest observation wheel, visit one (or more) of Singapore's fantastic museums, see the world's largest collection of tropical orchids at the National Orchid Garden, visit Jurong's BirdPark and Singapore Zoo, join a guided walking tour and much more…


11

Sentosa, Universal Studios Singapore and "Resorts World"

Name and details

How to get to Sentosa and "Resorts World Sentosa" / Universal Studios Singapore

How to get to Sentosa + Practical info

Sentosa Island is Singapore's playground and wonderland, and one of Asia's most popular destinations.

 7am to 12midnight (The island is active 24/7 but transport usually stops around 12midnight) Entrance to Sentosa is SG$ 2 but this fee is included in the ticket cost of the various transport means and does not include entry to the different attractions / themed rides Sentosa Website If you are short in time, or just don't feel like "working hard", you can join one of the day trips to Sentosa, like the Afternoon Trip, which includes a cable car ride, a visit to the Dolphins Lagoon, the Underwater World, Images of Singapore and the "Songs of the Sea" show, or the Morning Trip, which is a bit shorter…

Occupying an area of only 5 km², the small island is packed with tourist attractions and themed rides that appeal to adults and children alike. From MRT-Harbor Front (The last station on the purple marked Southeast Line): A) Sentosa Express monorail departs from neighboring VivoCity Mall (The station is on Level 3 - Lobby L) and has three stops on Sentosa: 1. Waterfront Station, where Resorts World Sentosa, the casino and Universal Studios are located 2. Imbiah Station, in the centre of Sentosa, next to most of the attraction 3. Beach Station, near Palawan Beach. A train leaves every few minutes, from 7am to 12midnight and the journey takes only 10 minutes or so. The "Sentosa daily Pass", which can be bought at the station, costs SG$ 3 and gives you unlimited rides on the monorail, as well as admission fees to the island (not including the different attractions). B) The orange colored Sentosa Bus leaves from Harbour Front Bus Interchange, next to the MRT station, and moves through several stations on the island, in a loop, before returning to its departure point. The bus operates daily, 7am - 10:30pm (until 12midnight on Fridays, Saturdays, and public holiday Eves). Similar to the monorail, the daily pass costs SG$ 3, covers the entrance fee to Sentosa and on your way back, you are free to use either the bus or the monorail... C) The most scenic way to get to Sentosa is with the cable-car. The cable-car station is at Harbour Front - Tower II, just five minutes' walk from HarbourFront MRT station: Walk out of the station to the adjacent bus-interchange and Seah Im Food Centre, from where you proceed along the pedestrian bridge, across the road, and onto the building next to where the cable-car station is located. For more details on the cable-car (including promotions and special packages), call them on 6377 9638. For more information about the "Sky Dining" experience, you can call them on 6377 9688 or visit their website. D) The newly opened Sentosa Boardwalk provides access to the island on foot. It’s a leisurely stroll from VivoCity Shopping Mall’s waterfront promenade, made easy by two-way canopy-covered travellators (The boardwalk is opened 24 hours a day, but the "travellators" run only from 7am to 12 midnight).

Getting to Sentosa from town: Sentosa Rider is a new bus service, which picks up passengers from hotels in town and drops them off in several places across Sentosa. It also passes through Mt. Faber before proceeding to Resorts World Sentosa/Universal Studios, Sentosa's Siloso Point (Underwater World), Imbiah and other places-of-interest... Their daily pass costs SG$ 8 and gives unlimited rides, but they also have "special packages" on the offer... Their buses operate daily, 9am - 10:30pm, from either Orchard Road or Raffles and Marina Bay. For more details, you can take a look at their webpage, or timetable.


The attractions of "Resorts World Sentosa" and Universal Studios

Owned by Sheldon Adelson's Las Vegas Sands Corp., this stately resort heralded the beginning of the gambling era in Southeast Asia…

 7 days a week, almost 24 hrs a day (Universal Studios Singapore is open daily, 10am – 7pm)

Other than a swanky casino, the main draw is the resort's thoroughfare, FestiveWalk, which is lined with fantastic restaurants, cafés and shops, and offers world-class entertainment spectacles like " Lake of Dreams" (integrating sound and light effects, pyrotechnics and water) and the very popular " Cranes Dance", where two colossal crane-shaped robots perform a love dance, with lots of effects, fire, water, lasers and what not…

Resorts World Sentosa FestiveWalk (including "Lake of Dreams" and the "Crane Dance")

The Maritime Experimental Museum & Aquarium

 Daily, 10am - 7pm, (till 9pm on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays).

The two spectacles are free, which in its own is a good reason to come here.

The Maritime Experiential Museum & Aquarium, in Resorts World Sentosa, focuses on the history of ancient maritime trade in Southeast Asia, and tells the story of a 9th century Arab merchant ship which wrecked in the Java Sea, while sailing from China back to the Middle East and became known as the "Belitung shipwreck"… Other than an accurate reproduction of the Arab dhow ship, there are hundreds of artifacts that were salvaged from the shipwreck on display, as well as models of other ancient vessels, and a "Typhoon Theatre" where visitors get the taste of sailing through a storm...

Universal Studios Tickets cost (including information on special promos) Entry to "Resorts World Sentosa" is free, but not to Universal Studios, where you will have to pay to enter.

Main attractions of Sentosa Island Fort Siloso  Daily, 10am – 6pm More info

Universal Studios Singapore hardly needs to be introduced. Occupying an a area of 50 acres, right next to Resort World Sentosa, this outstanding entertainment park boasts seven themed zones, including Far Far Away (Shrek), Madagascar, The Lost World (Jurassic Park, with a nice "Shoot-the-Chute" water ride) and The Sci-Fi City, where the (currently) world's tallest dueling roller coasters can be found… All in all, there are 24 attractions here, of which 18 are unique to this park… Tucked at Sentosa's westernmost corner, mighty Fort Siloso was originally built in 1885 and refortified during the 1930s, as part of the British efforts to prepare Singapore from a Japanese naval attack… Visitors can stroll through the labyrinth of trenches and bunkers, see the old canons and watch life size mannequins of soldiers replicating the battle… It's pretty impressive, especially if military history is your thing.

Admission fees apply

Getting there: Take the internal Red Line or Blue Line from Imbiah Station or Beach Station (See the previous page for instructions how to get to Sentosa)

The underwater world and the Dolphin Lagoon

The Underwater World, one of Sentosa's most recommended attractions, is a "live museum" boasting thousands of fish and marine creatures, belonging to approximately three hundred different species, many of which from the waters around Singapore.

 The underwater World is open daily, 9am - 9pm, and the Dolphin Lagoon 10:30am - 6pm Website Admission fee applies

The main thing is an 83 meters long tunnel passing through a titanic aquarium, with hundreds of fish, sharks, rays, eels and other creatures that swim all around you, but there are more than a few other attractions here, including touch pools and, of course, the Dolphin Lagoon, which is located on Palawan Beach, but included in the ticket price.


Butterfly Park & Insect Kingdom  Daily, 9am - 6:30pm Admission fee applies

Images of Singapore  Daily, 9am - 7pm Admission fee applies

Attractions and activities in the central part of Sentosa, near the cable-car plaza and Imbiah station  Daily, 10am - 9:30pm

 Daily, 9am - 9pm

 Daily, 2pm - 7pm (on Saturdays, Sundays and public holidays, 11am 7pm

 Daily, 10am - 9pm (last show starts at 08:45pm).

 Daily, 10am - 9pm (last show starts at 08:45pm).

Butterfly Park & Insect Kingdom displays thousands of unique butterflies and exotic insects, including real "monsters" from Southeast Asia's jungles. is where you can walk amidst the lush tropical vegetation and see hundreds of species of amazingly beautiful butterflies. Located in the central part of Sentosa, next to Cable Car Plaza and just a few steps from Imbiah Station (Monorail)

This highly recommended museum takes the visitor through the history of Singapore, from the 14th century onwards, through "scenes" where life size tableaus depict major events in the city-state's history, as well as through other multi-media displays that make the visit more interesting and enhance the experience of "being there"... (Near cable-car plaza / Imbiah Station) Some of the best rides in Sentosa are clustered around the cable-car plaza and Imbiah monorail station. Getting here is very easy, from every corner of the island. Sentosa Luge and Skyride is a good fun for kids, as well as for adults... The Luge is a sledge-like cart that runs down the hill, along a 650 meters paved track, specifically built for that purpose, while the Skyride is some sort of a ski-lift that takes those who finished the track, back to the top of the hill. Tiger Sky Tower prides itself for being Asia's tallest free-standing observation tower... Its top elevator-observation deck reaches 110 meters above the ground and 131 meters above sea level, and on a clear day, you can see the islands of Indonesia from here. MegaZip Adventure Park, one of Sentosa's latest and most exciting attractions, is like a huge scouts camp, packed with extreme activities... For more information, including price-chart and special offers, visit their website. The Sentosa CineBlast can be described as a "cinema ride": An adrenaline-boosting experience that combines special photography techniques, special 3D effects and moving seats... Quite recommended! Sentosa 4D Magix is a so-called "4 Dimensional cinema", meaning that on top of the usual 3D effect, there are more features that make the experience even more tangible, like moving chairs, blowing wind, sea spray and more... Desperados is a "virtual reality" type of game, where you have to shoot wild west outlaws with you laser gun

 Daily 10am - 8pm, last admission at 7:30 pm).

Sentosa's Merlion is a colossal replica of Singapore's most-known symbol, the Merlion (on which you can read in the chapter about the Singapore River). Raising to a height of almost 40 meters, the statue has a small gallery inside it, dedicated to mythological sea-creatures, and an observation deck on its head, from where you can enjoy a nice view over the island and Singapore Port.

Continue…


 Nightly at 7:40pm and 8:40pm (and 9:40pm, on Saturdays

Songs of the Sea is a state-of-the-art show, integrating dancers, pyrotechnics, water screens, three dimensional projection, laser effects and what not...

Website

It shows nightly on a small manmade island, just a few steps from Beach Station and Palawan Beach.

 12noon (reptiles), 12:30pm (monkeys), 2pm (parrots), 3pm (monkeys), 3:30 pm (large/mimicking parrots), 4:30pm (close encounters with parrots) and 5pm (last show of the day, with all the animals).

Palawan Amphitheatre, south of the Merlion Statue and next to Palawan Beach, is where you can watch the highly recommended animal & bird encounters. Those "meet-the-animals" shows are usually very good fun (especially for families with kids...). The shows are free and are held several times daily… All interior bus lines arrive at the amphitheatre (Click here for the current timetable of the shows).

Free admission

Attractions and activities around the beaches of Sentosa

Sentosa's southern coast stretches along a few kilometres and boasts three beautiful beaches, namely Siloso Beach, Palawan Beach and Tanjong Beach (which is probably the best of the three), with white sands and coconut palms… The water, however, is not as crystal clear as you would expect to find in a tropical resort and there are dozens of large ships that dot the horizon and spoil the view, but I guess you can't have it all… Beach Station, near Palawan Beach, is serviced by both Sentosa Express monorail and the orange Sentosa Bus and from there you can proceed with one of the free "Beach Trams", which run along the coastline from morning till night and make it easy to move from one point to another…

 Daily 2.30pm - 6pm (till 7pm on Saturdays, Sundays & Public Holidays)

One of Siloso Beach's main attractions is the Flying Trapeze, where you can challenge your fear of height and get your adrenaline pumping, while flying (almost) like the trapeze artists at the circus...

 Daily, 10am – 12midnight (till 1am on Wednesdays, Fridays and Saturdays)

The Wave House, one of Sentosa's newest and most exciting attractions is also located on Siloso Beach and boasts Singapore's first (and currently only) artificial barreling wave, where you can enjoy flowriding, body-boarding and stand-up rides.

 Daily, 10am - 10pm (till 2am on Saturdays, Sundays and public holidays / eve of public holidays)

After the action, you can unwind on a comfy couch at Azzura Beach Club, on Siloso Beach, where they have soft sand, some casual eateries, boats for hire and even a hip nightclub, for those of you who wish to stay until late Siloso Beach Tram travels to both the Wave House and the Flying Trapeze.

 9.30am - 8pm daily If you are short in time, or just don't feel like "working hard", you can join one of the day trips to Sentosa, like the Afternoon Trip, which includes a cable car ride, a visit to the Dolphins Lagoon, the Underwater World, Images of Singapore and the "Songs of the Sea" show, or the Morning Trip, which is shorter…

 24 hours a day / No admission fee

Further south, Go Green Segway® Eco Adventure are located near the Beach Station and, as their name suggest, offer Segway tours of the island, From "funrides" for beginners to "Guided Eco Adventure" for the slightly more experienced. Gogreen Cycle & Island explorer offers a one-hour guided bike tour of Sentosa, although they also allow you to just rent a bike, without participating in the tour (the price is obviously lower) The Dolphin Lagoon, in Palawan beach, is part of the Underwater World and gives visitors an opportunity to have a close encounter with the local Pink Dolphins (IndoPacific Humpback Dolphins), learn about them and play with them.


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Other attractions and activities

Tips to Enjoy Shopping with Kids Quite a few of Singapore's large and glitzy malls offer playgrounds and fun activities for kids. Here are some that are well worth knowing about… Suntec City Mall, one of Singapore's most sought after shopping complexes, boasts plenty of attractions for kids, teenagers and their families… From the Fountain of Wealth, which earned itself a place in the 1998 Guinness book of records as the world's largest fountain, to "Virtual Land" (the virtual games arcade), and from the outdoor children's playground and the "Sky Garden" on the 3rd level of Tropics Zone, to the Japanese-landscaped Koi Pond, where you can feed the fish… Marina Square, between Suntec City and the Singapore Flyer, has a medium-sized indoor playground on the 3rd level (in the atrium near Mothercare and Gain City) which is very quiet during the week... Forum The Shopping Mall, on 583 Orchard Road (just a few minutes' walk from MRT Orchard Station / ION Orchard) is a very family-oriented mall and organizes performances for children every now and again... The toddler-playground at 313@Somerset (Orchard Road, next to MRT Somerset Station) is located at the Sky Terrace, which means you can enjoy the nice views while they play (It is right next to the large Food Republic food court, where you can fetch fairly nice food at a good price)... This is a with a view! Located at 313’s , it is sheltered, has padded flooring, and is situated . Paragon Shopping Centre, on 290 Orchard Road (almost opposite 313@Somerset), has a small indoor playground on level 5, with a mini climbing wall, slides and tunnels. VivoCity, Singapore's largest shopping mall, has both wet and dry playgrounds that can be found in the open-air courtyard on the second floor, as well as a spacious rooftop skypark, which features a wading pool (great choice for those of you who wants to do some shopping on their way back from Sentosa and Universal Studios).

Hop-on, Hop-off bus tour Like any city that respects itself, Singapore has Hop-on, Hop-off double-decker open-top buses that run on several different routes and cover most of the city's tourist attractions (at least the better known ones...), including Chinatown, Little India, the Singapore River, the Botanic Gardens and so on... You can purchase a daily pass that allows you to hop on and off those buses as much as you want, as well as to enjoy some freebies, like guided walking tours in the ethnic quarters, Singapore River cruise and a special kids' tour... As expected, the operator also offer "special passes" for one or two full days, which cost more but give you access to other attractions, like a DUKW (duck) city-and-sea tour in an authentic revamped Vietnam war amphibious vehicle

Singapore Trolley If nostalgic clichés (and photos) are your thing, then you are probably going to like this retro-style sightseeing bus, which runs in circles between key attractions around the city, including Orchard Road, Clarke Quay, Singapore River, Suntec City, Marina, the Esplanade and so on... It is basically just a wannabe of an early 20th century tram, but while it lacks some of the charm of the real thing, it makes up for it with an air condition (that seems to be far more practical in Singapore, than an openwindowed tram...) At the time of writing, a "Trolley Day Tour" ticket goes for SG$ 23 for an adult and SG$ 17 for a kid, and gives you with unlimited rides. For more information, you can visit the Singapore Trolley website.

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Singapore for families with kids  

Singapore is a great city for families with kids, boasting a wide range of attractions and activities that can be enjoyed by kids and teenag...

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