When you think of Singapore as a tourist destination what comes to mind is a vibrant, bustling city that offers a unique experience for all kinds of travelers. Whether you are looking for a cultural experience or an adventurous journey that sets your adrenalin racing or a more metropolitan one with loads of hip shopping destinations and modern attractions, it’s all here in Singapore. Since I am more of a nature lover, I’ve put together some experiences that fellow enthusiasts will find appealing, interesting, and enticing. So, here goes.
Bukit Timah Nature Reserve
There are only two cities in the world that can claim to have a primary rainforest within its boundaries. One is Rio de Janeiro and the other is, of course, Singapore. This reserve spans a little over 160 hectares and is located just 12 kilometers from the city centre. What is interesting about this reserve is that it has more species of trees than the entire continent of North America. At the heart of this paradise for hikers is the Bukit Timah Hill, the highest point of Singapore at 164 meters above sea level. While walking through the well-marked paths that snake through the jungle, be sure to carry your camera so you can take shots of exotic birds, flying lemurs, butterflies, and squirrels.
Jurong Reptile Par & Bird Park
The largest collection of reptiles in South East Asia can be found in the Jurong Reptile Park. It has more than 50 different species of reptiles from varying habitats. Just for kicks, you can walk across a track near which you’ll find reptiles roaming lazily and freely. For the more conservative minded individuals, there are reptile shows conducted under professional supervision.
If your idea of a holiday doesn’t involve staring at creepy crawlies of all shapes and sizes from all over the continent, you could make your way to the more colorful Jurong Bird Park. It is the largest bird park in South-East Asia and home to more than 8000 birds. The high point of the park is the Jurong Bird Park All-Star Bird Show starring parrots, flamingos, and various others of our feathered friends.
The Night Safari
If you are a die-hard wildlife enthusiast, you cannot afford to miss out on the Night Safari. Come twilight and the zoo seems to spring to life as various animals go about their nocturnal activities unmindful of the tourists clicking away eagerly at their cameras. All the animals you may have only seen on National Geographic or Animal Planet can be seen from a (safe) distance, going about their daily duties. It’s an animal lovers’ wild dream come true!
The National Orchid Garden
After so much wild excitement, if you need a tamer experience around living things that don’t bare their teeth or hiss or threaten to spring at you, head towards the National Orchid Garden. This is among the more recent attractions of Singapore, since it opened in 1995. Spread over three hectares, the distinctive feature of this garden is its design concept where it has been divided into four color zones. Spring Zone has lively shades of creams, yellows and gold, while the Summer Zone makes use of stronger and deeper shades of pinks and reds; the Autumn Zone has more mature colors and finally the winter zone uses cool blues and whites.