Asia | Destination Guides

Exploring the Best Green Spaces in Singapore

Recently updated on July 27th, 2023 at 04:42 pm

Dubbed the ‘Garden City’, Singapore has an abundance of cultivated outdoor spaces, wildlife-rich reservoirs and wetlands, and verdant primary rainforest. As well as offering a gateway to Singapore’s natural riches, these parks and gardens reflect the island-nation’s culture, heritage and vibrant local life. We take a look at the best green spaces in Singapore for a real taste of the island.

Gardens by the Bay

Green Spaces in Singapore

Garnering international attention for its cutting edge design and tropical flora, Gardens by the Bay proudly displays both the lush vegetation that makes this city-state so green, and its ever-evolving cityscape. Spread across more than 100 hectares, the cultivated space encompasses a futuristic Supertree Grove, which is especially impressive lit up at night, and an indoor Cloud Forest and Flower Dome, as well as a series of individual gardens.

Singapore Botanic Gardens

Green Spaces in Singapore

Founded in 1859, Singapore Botanic Gardens is an integral part of outdoor life in Singapore, attracting both visitors and locals year-round to wander through the lush surroundings, picnic on the grass and catch live outdoor performances on the Shaw Foundation Symphony Stage. One of the most popular green spaces in Singapore, the National Orchid Garden is a particular draw.

Bukit Timah Nature Reserve

Green Spaces in Singapore

It’s not just Singapore’s parks that provide an oasis within the city; the island also has patches of untamed wilderness, including the primary rainforest of Bukit Timah Nature Reserve. A series of winding trails from the visitor centre lead hikers and cyclists through the forest, where more than 800 flowering plants grow.

MacRitchie Reservoir Park

Green Spaces in Singapore

As Singapore’s oldest reservoir (established in 1868), MacRitchie is another park to have become firmly established in the community. As a gateway to the surrounding forest, the park attracts plenty of nature enthusiasts, with many people kayaking on the lake or strolling along the boardwalks and TreeTop Walk.

Fort Canning

Green Spaces in Singapore

Rich in history as well as greenery, Fort Canning Park is a worthwhile visit for the insight it gives into Singapore’s past. Established back in 1859 as an army barracks, the hilltop park now displays its history through a number of memorials, which sit amidst cultivated gardens and tropical vegetation. Outdoor concerts and theatrical performances are regularly held on the lawns.

Sungei Buloh Wetland Reserve

Green Spaces in Singapore

The wetland and mangrove of Sungei Buloh Wetland Reserve is so rich in biodiversity, it was named Singapore’s first ASEAN Heritage Park, with migratory birdlife that’s revered among ornithologists worldwide. A visitor centre and walking trails make the reserve easy to explore.

The Southern Ridges

Green Spaces in Singapore

This 10-kilometre treetop walk along the southern ridge of Singapore is popular among walkers and joggers as it winds through lush forest connecting a number of parks, with panoramic views across the city, forest and harbour. The most architecturally impressive section of The Southern Ridges is the undulating structure of Henderson Waves.

Pulau Ubin

Green Spaces in Singapore

Situated off the northeast coast of Singapore’s mainland, Pulau Ubin offers visitors a taste of Singapore in the 1960s. By taking a 10-minute boat ride from Changi Point Ferry Terminal, visitors can explore the forest, wetlands and coast by bicycle – the most popular way to get around, with a number of bicycle hire shops close to the pier – before tucking into seafood in the island’s village.

East Coast Park

Green Spaces in Singapore

This narrow strip of parkland along the southeast coast is undoubtedly one of the most popular green spaces in Singapore. A 15-kilometre stretch of beach is backed by swaying palms and greenery, with seafood restaurants and cafes dotted all the way along. Cyclists and rollerbladers make the most of the open stretch, with picnickers beneath the trees.

Chinese and Japanese Gardens

Green Spaces in Singapore

Tucked into west Singapore, the Chinese and Japanese Gardens are characterized by the stone bridges and pagodas that sit amidst the manicured lawns and flourishing trees. For cultural festivities, Chinese New Year and the Mid-Autumn Festival are the most rewarding times to stop by.

Image credits: Cover photo © iStock / franckreporter. Gardens by the Bay © iStock / sencd. Singapore Botanic Gardens © iStock / yuriz. Bukit Timah © iStock / olyniteowl. MacRitchie © iStock / olyniteowl. Fort Canning © iStock / Stephane Jaquemet. Sungei Buloh Wetland © iStock / Stephane Jaquemet. Southern Ridges © Flickr / Gramicidin. Pulau Ubin © iStock / chrishowey. East Coast Park © Flickr / Qinrong Lim. Chinese and Japanese Gardens © iStock / Nikada.

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