Who needs faraway mountains or ocean shores when we’ve got these?
Although more widely-known for its temples that attract hundreds of thousands of pilgrims (read more about them here), this secret island located only 5.6 kilometers off the main island of Singapore offers tons of sand, sun and sea. The swiming lagoons and beaches are a skip and a hop away, and you’ll even spot fascinating sea creature or five while snorkelling!
NEXT: Chestnut Nature Park →
It might be located right here in Singapore, but you could very well consider this a getaway. Skirting the Central Catchment Nature Reserve, there’s tons to explore in Singapore’s newest and largest nature park. And by “largest”, we mean it spans acrosss 81 hectares – that’s more than 110 soccer fields! It’s got biking and hiking trails, remnants of old kampong (olden day village) dwellings, local bird species to watch and more.
NEXT: Little Guilin →
This charming spot in Bukit Batok Town Park is nicknamed “Little Guilin” for its striking resemblence to the rural landscape of Guilin, China. Take in the splendid view of the tranquil lake against the backdrop of towering granite rock cliffs. Fun fact: It was formerly a granite factory before falling into disuse in the 1980s!
NEXT: St John’s Island →
A few kilometres south of Singapore, St John’s Island is home to mangroves, coastal plants and coral reefs. Guided nature walks are held regularly, and holiday bungalows are available on the island for nature camps, too (find out more here). Bonus for cat lovers (and, really, fans of cute things in general): There’s a HUGE cat cluster on the island, most of which are quite used to and friendly to humans.
NEXT: Lazarus Island →
Laid back Lazarus Island is linked to St John’s Island by a little paved bridge for an easy walk, and it’s home to tranquil beaches with extensive beds of white sand and clear blue waters. The lack of crowd promises serenity and privacy, but that also means fewer amenities are available here, so pack your own snacks and water.
NEXT: Coney Island →
It’s more than half the size of its eponymous New York cousin, but this hipster-beloved destination is completely off-the-grid. Wander amongst casuarina woodlands of tall, skinny trees, mangroves, and unique flora and fauna; earth paths lead you to the beaches, where you’ll even be able to spot Johor Bahru in the distance. An important note: There are no toilets, so remember to empty your bowels beforehand; and exit before dark as there aren’t any lights.
NEXT: Kranji Marshes →
Located along the northwestern shore of Kranji Reservoir, this freshwater marsh lets you take the classroom outdoors, with its educational boards, wildlife watching opportunities and more. make this place worthy of an entire day out. From the Raptor Tower, catch a panoramic view of the blanket of nature. We hear even eagles are common sightings! They also hold a quarterly Kranji Countryside Farmers’ Market (or, check out more farmers’ markets here)!
NEXT: Sentosa →
Of course, this popular tourist destination in Singapore is no stranger. While it tends to be much quieter during the weekdays, the weekend sees leisure-seekers heading to the beach for waterside sit-back or games of beach volleyball or frisbee. The slew of activities don’t just include its beautiful beaches, but also a surfhouse with artificial waves, an indoor skydiving facility, the Trick Eye Museum, Resorts World Sentosa and more.
NEXT: Pulau Semakau →
If you’ve heard of Pulau Semakau at all, you probably know it as Singapore’s offshore landfill site. Here’s a secret: Only the Eastern side of the island are occupied by landfill activities, while the rest of the island is kept clean and green, its mangrove habitats teeming with wildlife, its beaches untouched and pristine. Visiting Pulau Semakau requires a permit, but applying for one isn’t tough – simply book a tour by the NEA or licensed nature societies.
NEXT: Pulau Ubin →
Spend a day walking or cycling through the rustic roads of one of Singapore’s last preserved kampongs on Pulau Ubin. Venture into the famous Chek Jawa wetlands, which boasts one of Singapore’s richest eco-systems, or take it all in from above at the peak of Puaka Hill, a 15-minute climb up a safe public trail. It’s little wonder its last inhabitants harboured such love for the island!
NEXT: Kusu Island →
By Pinky Chng, September 2017
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