Singapore’s 63 Islands – Here Are 6 Islands You Can Visit To Get Away From The Crowd!
Singapore is actually made up of 63 offshore islands! 62 surround the main island that we live in. If you’re looking to spend your weekends at somewhere less crowded, you can try island-hopping in Singapore! Yes, time to correct that mindset. Singapore is not just a city of one island. It’s SIXTY THREE!
Besides the main island, these are the largest offshore islands; Sentosa, Pulau Tekong, and Pulau Ubin. The smallest island is Pulau Sejarat Kechil. It has a land area of just 0.1 ha!
With interesting islands you can visit without a passport, you can have more fun in the sun! Why not try something unique during your off-day or weekends? You’ll never imagine Singapore as so alluringly attractive with its many hidden islands.
Here are 6 islands you can visit for a quiet day trip away from the city!
1. Pulau Hantu
Located only 30 minutes away from Singapore by boat, Pulau Hantu is a popular haunt for fishing, swimming, snorkelling, and scuba diving.
Credit: Credit: Mulloway Dive[/caption]
Pulau Hantu is made up of two smaller islets – Pulau Hantu Besar (Big Ghost Island) and the Pulau Hantu Kechil (Little Ghost Island). The name came about because the mid part of the island “disappears” during high tide.
If you’re not into water activities, both islands are great places to settle down for a nice, cosy picnic. It is also popular with campers and day-trippers who enjoy a unique outdoor experience away from the hustle and bustle of the city. If you’d like to camp overnight, a camping permit is required.
How to Get There: There are no scheduled ferries to Pulau Hantu. But you can get there by joining one of the weekend dive trips or by charter boats at the West Coast Ferry Terminal.
2. Kusu Island
Known for its religious Chinese temple and Malay shrines, Kusu Island is packed with people during the ninth lunar month. During this period, Chinese devotees will flock to the island to visit the isolated Chinese temple where Da Bo Gong (God of Prosperity) and Guan Yin (Goddess of Mercy) reside.
Others make the laborious climb up to the top of the hill to pray at the shrines of three Malay saints. If you’re looking for a quiet refuge, visit the island when it’s not pack during the pilgrimage period.[caption id="attachment_12026" align="alignnone" width="1024"] Image credit: Straits Times[/caption] [caption id="attachment_12059" align="alignnone" width="1024"] Image credit: Islandcruise.com.sg[/caption]
There are two lagoons, beach shelters, and barbeque pits for you to laze your day away. Enjoy picturesque views and various aquatic plants and animals. What’s more, you may even get to see countless wild tortoises in the area too! Do note that overnight stays are not permitted.
How to Get There: Ferries depart from Marina South Pier daily. Visit their Image credit: islandcruise.com.sg[/caption]
Despite its dark past, St John’s Island has been transformed into an idyllic getaway with an abundance of outdoor activities suitable for all ages.[caption id="attachment_13024" align="aligncenter" width="780"] Credits: Con Foley[/caption]
Spot dolphins by the water, trek up hills or play a game of soccer in the fields. If you’re tired after a long day under the sun, there are several bungalow chalets and bunks in this island that can accommodate up to 60 people.
Be it a family outing or a get-together trip with friends, you’re bound to enjoy this island and have a comfortable place to stay!
How to Get There: Ferries depart from Marina South Pier daily. Visit their 4. Lazarus Island
If you love the sun and beach is your thing, you’ll adore Lazarus Island. Connected by the short causeway to and from St John’s Island is Lazarus Island, a hidden oasis for beach junkies.
If you love the sun and beach is your thing, you’ll adore Lazarus Island. Connected by the short causeway to and from St John’s Island is Lazarus Island, a hidden oasis for beach junkies.[caption id="attachment_12036" align="alignnone" width="620"] Image credit: tripzilla[/caption]
Compared to Sentosa and East Coast Park, the beach at Lazarus Island is calm and the waters are cleaner.
Since Lazarus Island is undeveloped, it’s perfect for a visit before it gets too crowded or turns into another Singapore resort. Do note that there are no shower points on the island. The nearest ones would be a short walk away at St John’s Island.
How to Get There: Take a ferry from Marina South Pier to St. John’s Island. Lazarus is a jetty-walk away from St. John’s island.
If you intend to stay overnight at these islands, it’s best to pack wisely! Because there are no amenities or shops, you won’t be able to run out to buy facial wash or tissue.
Here are some essentials you’ll need to bring along: all toiletries, wet and dry tissue papers, water and snacks, mosquito repellent and sunblock! If you’re intending to stay overnight with your BF/ GF as a couple retreat, don’t forget to bring along contraception such as Durex! You’re definitely not going to find any store to purchase contraception in these islands. Even if you’ve been with your partner for a long time and STI is not a concern, you still need to prevent against pregnancy if you’re not ready for a family. Always play safe!
5. Sisters’ Island Marine Park
Home to Singapore’s marine biodiversity, the Sisters’ Island is a dedicated site for marine conservation and research. Visitors to the island will be able to observe marine life such as such as sea fans, sponges and sea anemones.[caption id="attachment_12044" align="alignnone" width="1024"] Image credit: NParks[/caption] [caption id="attachment_12242" align="alignnone" width="640"] Image credit: Islandcruise.com.sg[/caption]
With many trees providing shade for a leisurely picnic and BBQ pit around the area, Sisters’ Island is the place to visit for a quiet weekend day-trip or evening camping a night here. Yes, you can camp overnight with an approval obtained from Sentosa!
For a more unique experience, sign up for a guided walk to learn about the Marine Park’s amazing biodiversity. These walks are conducted free of charge! Click here for more information on the schedules. In addition, to encourage a deeper appreciation for Singapore’s marine biodiversity, NParks is organising guided dive trails.
How to Get There: Charter your own boat from West Coast Pier or Marina South Pier. Boats will be chartered for participants of NParks’ guided walks.
Bonus: Pulau Satumu
Tiny in size, Pulau Satumu is Singapore’s most southern island and is surrounded by crystal clear waters and an abundance of marine life. Home to the Raffles Lighthouse, this island is a beauty![caption id="attachment_12050" align="alignnone" width="700"] Image credit: borntobunk.com[/caption]
Unfortunately, this island is not open for public visit. However, there are some golden opportunities at certain times of the year when you can join a guided tour operated by Singapore’s Maritime and Port Authority!
Bored of spending your weekends and free time in the main Singapore island? Call all your kakis and have a fun time out in the sun! It’s time to discover the other side of Singapore you’ve never seen before!
(Header image by mothership.sg, edited by writer)
Also, read Stuck In Singapore? Here Are 10 Uncommon Places To Visit For A Different Kinda Fun!
[GIVEAWAY] Win ONE WEEK’s Worth Of Yoga Classes At Pure Yoga’s Swanky New Outlet
Need a break from work or want to stay fit? Head down to Pure Yoga’s newest outlet at Asia Square! Recently opened on 25 July 2016, this new outlet is located 5 minutes away from Downtown MRT station. Ideal for CBD yogis, the new Asia Square location is the perfect retreat for working professionals.
Whether you are a fitness junkie or a yoga newbie, Pure Yoga offers a variety of classes that caters to all! We bet you’ll love this warm and beautiful place as much as we did!
Pure Yoga kindly hosted our team for a Media Session. We embarked on a 1 hour Dynamic Yoga Session. All of us left feeling refreshed and rejuvenated.
Our Pure Yoga experience was definitely a fun-filled and lighthearted one! The new joint at Asia Square was huge and welcoming with its large lounge areas and paintings on the walls.
At Pure Yoga, every student is able to progress at their own pace. Friendly instructors are specially-trained to lead classes. They helped and taught us to correct our pose and postures during the class.
We like how the curriculum is structured in a way where each student will see a progression in his/ her own practice.
More Than 120 Classes Weekly!
Pure Yoga’s internationally certified instructors lead a diverse range of yoga classes. Classes range from traditional to contemporary styles.
Classes are categorised into 5 different Pillars: Healing, Grounding, Dynamic, Hot and Specialised. A yoga newbie can sign up for the grounding or basic classes such as Hatha.
The advanced yogi looking for a challenge can try their specialty programs such as Aerial and Wall Rope yoga!
With 120 classes weekly, there’ll definitely be a class that will suit your schedule. Pure members can also easily book classes to fit their personal schedules.
Classes start as early at 6.30am on weekdays with classes during lunch hours and after-office hours. Working professionals around CBD will surely find a class that accommodates their schedule.
Wind down at Pure Yoga’s cosy chill-out lounge and surf the net with complimentary wi-fi, along with tablet and phone charging facilities. With a wide range of magazines available, you need not worry about waiting for classes to start.
Pure Yoga’s walls exhibit freehand artworks by Spanish luxe-graffiti artist, Victoriano. It evokes calmness and contemplation. With a modern zen aura emanating from the studios, corridors and lounge, this makes a perfect place for relaxing.
Pure Yoga’s vanity area is designed with earthy tones. You’ll immediately feel cosy and at home! Its large changing area is decked with rainforest showers and complimentary towels and toiletries.
There’s even a spin dryer available. You need not lug your sweaty yoga wear around anymore!
Enjoy Fresh Smoothies And Superfoods At Nood Food
Get healthy at Nood Food juice bar at Pure Yoga’s Asia Square outlet. Organic cold-pressed juices and superfood smoothies, raw snacks, salads, sandwiches and wraps are all available at Nood Food.
You need not worry about the hunger pangs after your workout. Even acai bowls are available! As ingredients are clearly labelled on the items, you can be sure that you’re eating healthy, nutritious, fresh food!
Itching to visit Pure Yoga’s beautiful Asia Square outlet?
WIN A PAIR OF 7-DAY PASSES TO PURE YOGA!
Simply LIKE and SHARE this post on Facebook and stand a chance to be one of our lucky winners!
Winners will win a pair of 7-day complimentary passes (worth $374.50 each!) to Pure Yoga! A total of 10 pairs of passes will be given away!
This pass allows visits to all Pure Yoga locations in Singapore – Ngee Ann City, Chevron House, Asia Square (Pure Yoga and Pure Fitness)
With this pass, you can attend 1 yoga class per day and unlimited visits to the gym. (Aerial and wall rope yoga classes not included)
The giveaway will end on 2 September 2016.
Pure Yoga Asia Square
Address: #06-02 Asia Square Tower 2, 12 Marina View, Singapore 018961
Tel: 65 6100 8866
Opening Hours: Mon & Wed 6.30am – 10.30pm, Tue & Thu 6:15am – 10:30pm, Fri 6:30am – 9:30pm, Sat 8:15am to 7:30pm, Sun & PH 8:30am – 7:30pm
This article is brought to you by Discover SG x Pure Yoga.
Also, read Bounce Your Way To A Stronger Core And Toned Muscles – Trust Us, It’s SUPER Fun
Here’s A Recommended Guide To Help You Conquer Singapore Night Festival!
Acquaint yourself with this map and the zones before heading down this weekend! With everything at your fingertips, you wouldn’t need to spend any time figuring how to get from one point to another.
Tip: Similar to all events, the Singapore Night Festival is going to be crowded. Singapore’s hot and humid weather doesn’t help either. Be armed with your portable fans and bring an umbrella! Let’s get exploring!
Guide to Exploring Singapore Night Festival
1. Zone 2: Armenian Street
Start your evening at Zone 2, at The Bloc Party at Armenian Street. With electrifying programmes ranging from motorcycle convoys to a selection of back-to-back music presented by The Substation, this is a party not-to-be-missed!
Only on 26 and 27 Aug, be treated to a parade of drummers in silver costumes on stilts. Also look out for fire performers bearing hand flares along Armenian street!
If you start your night late, be sure to catch Super Sonic (19 & 26 Aug) and 53A (20 & 27 Aug) at Timbre @ The Substation. They start from 10pm. Groove to live music and enjoy the night with Singapore’s prominent bands!
2. Zone 1: National Museum of Singapore
Head over to Zone 1 at the National Museum as LED figures take over the Museum’s facade! Seat back and relax on the lawn. KEYFRAME will offer narration; the LED figures and their movements will tell of urban stories.
Another not to be missed show is by The Wheel House at National Museum of Singapore. Happening only on the first weekend on 19 and 20 Aug, The Wheel House is a jaw-dropping, rolling acrobatic theatre performance. It’s a story of friendship and survival in a dystopian future. It unfolds inside and around a stunning circular home that’ll move alongside with the audience.
Timings: 8:00pm – 8:25pm, 9:25pm – 9:50pm, 10:50pm – 11:15pm
3. Zone 4: Singapore Management University
Getting the hunger pangs? Indulge in specially curated epicurean and shopping experiences. There are close to 30 flea market, and food and beverage stalls at the Festival Village this year!
4. Zone 3: Cathay Green, School of the Arts, and Prinsep Street
Next, head to Cathay Green to catch a performance by The House of Curiosities. Based on the story The Mechanical Heart, this performance tells of adventure and curious man-made machines. It also captures the wonderful capacity of human mind and spirit to discover and invent. This exhilarating performance is available on both weekends!
Ticket price: $16 (Adults), $13 (Concession*) Inclusive of $1 SISTIC Fee
Timing: 6 – 8pm, 8.30 -10.30pm, 11pm – 1am
Complimentary movie screening will be held at Rendezvous Hotel. With blockbusters screening from 7pm onwards, this is where you should visit! Arrive early to find out what movies they are screening on both weekends.
Timing: 7 – 11pm
5. Zone 5: Singapore Art Museum, Queen Street, Waterloo Street and National Design Centre
Lastly, celebrate Singapore Night Festival at Singapore Art Museum with contemporary art, exciting performances, good music, and delicious food!
Catch a mesmerising light projection-mapping performance on the Singapore Art Museum facade. It is inspired by the world of Victorian novelist Jules Verne and Singapore’s artistic culture.
Or, head to Waterloo Street to enjoy the wonderful feeling of camping. You can even rest on hammocks along the corridors!
Only on 20 Aug from 7PM to 11PM, catch a series of ten-minute short plays. Listen to SEEDY STORIES, EAT MY SHORTS, or laugh out loud at A LITTLE NIGHT MUSIC. All these will be held at the open Courtyard at Centre 42, 42 Waterloo Street.
There’s even more at Zone 5! Enjoy live music by local bands at [email protected], and shop and feast at the SAM X The Local People Art Market! Gallery opening hours will be extended till 1am! Don’t miss this chance to explore ongoing exhibitions at SAM and its annexe, SAM at 8Q.
With over 100 events and exhibitions happening at Singapore Night Festival 2016, this is one festival you must not miss! Book your friends and head down to the festival for a night of fun-filled events!
TIP: Head over to the Singapore Night Festival website to register an account and use their handy planner tool at “My Favourites”. You’ll be able to view all information about the programmes and activities.
Singapore Night Festival 2016
Dates: 19 – 20, 26 – 27 August 2016
Time: 7:30 pm – 2:00 am
Location: Bras Basah.Bugis
Mostly free admission
(All images are by F1 Singapore 2016 – 7 Concerts That Are Wickedly Good, They’re Better Than The Race!
7 Hidden Secrets About Our Singapore Currency That Da Vinci Would Absolutely Approve
From paying for food to taking the public transport, we use our Singapore currency for a multitude of reasons every day. However, many of us are unaware of every minute detail on each banknote – we’re not just talking about legal tender.
Here are some hidden secrets about our Singapore currency that even Da Vinci would approve!
1. The national anthem is printed on the back of the $1000 noteImages credit: tanwj.com[/caption]
If you happen to have a $1,000 note on hand, flip it to the back. Our entire national anthem in printed in microtext, find it if you can!
2. The “line” at the top of every currency is actually micro text[caption id="attachment_11898" align="alignnone" width="600"] Image credit: tourprom.ru[/caption]
Grab a magnifying glass and take a closer look at the top left-hand corner of any note. You will realise that the “line” that you think you see with your naked eye is not actually a line, but microtext that states “MONETARYAUTHORITYOFSINGAPORE”
3. The largest denomination of the Singapore currency was $10,000!!![caption id="attachment_11872" align="alignnone" width="1024"] Image credit: Todayonline[/caption]
Though we often use $50 notes in our day-to-day expenses, $1,000 and $10,000 notes also exist, with the largest being $10,000. However, with effect from 1st October 2014, they had to stop issuing $10,000 notes to lower the risk of money laundering.
4. Polymer (plastic) banknotes are not only for water-proofing purposes[caption id="attachment_11897" align="alignnone" width="900"] Image credit: tanwj.com[/caption]
Not only can polymer notes survive a spin in the washing machine should you forget to empty your pockets – according to MAS, polymer notes last three to four times longer than their paper counterparts. You don’t have to worry about tearing your notes on accident anymore!
One other benefit of polymer notes is the fact that security features can be encrypted in them. Polymer notes are printed on special plastic derived from petroleum, and this material is not available commercially to prevent the reproduction of counterfeit notes.
5. The tree on the $5 note tree is still standing tall[caption id="attachment_11896" align="alignnone" width="678"] Image credit: delcampe.net[/caption] [caption id="attachment_11899" align="alignnone" width="780"] Image credit: Straits Times[/caption]
The Tembusu tree printed on our $5 note is an actual tree in Botanic Gardens! It is said to be at least 200 years old – even older than the 156-year-old garden itself.
6. Visually impaired users differentiate the denominations by the Braille Code[caption id="attachment_11895" align="alignnone" width="862"] Image credit: Mas.gov.sg[/caption]
Ever wonder what the dots on the top right corner in front of our Singapore notes represent? They’re actually the Braille code printed in heavy intaglio ink, so that the visually impaired can tell the different denominations apart.
7. Both the Brunei Dollar and the Singapore Dollar are accepted at either country[caption id="attachment_11901" align="alignnone" width="642"] Image credit: largecollectibles.com[/caption]
In order to facilitate economic and trade relations, Brunei, Malaysia and Singapore adopted a system of free interchangeability of their respective currencies.
This took effect on 12 June 1967. However, Malaysia opted out of it in 1973. Singapore and Brunei decided to continue with the arrangement. Hence, both the Brunei dollar and Singapore dollar are currently accepted for use in either country at a ratio of 1:1.
The next time you pull a banknote out of your wallet, take some time to notice these minute details! A lot of thought goes into the designing of our local currency. Share these hidden secrets with your friends – we’re sure you’ll be able to amaze them!
(Header image by Bloomberg)
Also, read A Test Of Your Eyesight – Can You See The Hidden Words In SG’s Passport?
Makan All Day Long! Singapore’s First Vending Machine Cafe Opens In SengKang
The vending machine culture in Japan has finally arrived in Singapore! With this 24-hour vending machine cafe by VendCafe, you will never have to worry about being hungry in the wee hours of the morning ever again!!
Newly opened in SengKang, VendCafe provides hot food, all readily available within 3 minutes. Think of piping hot seafood hor fun, curry rice or chicken carbonara, this place has it all! OMG, we totally wanna check it out now!
So Much Food & Drinks Available![caption id="attachment_12124" align="alignnone" width="1024"] Image credit: JR Vending[/caption] [caption id="attachment_12142" align="alignnone" width="720"] Image credit: Chef in Box Facebook[/caption]
VendCafe’s menu changes periodically and boasts more than 30 different types of food. The variety of meals includes Western, Chinese, Malay, Indian and Japanese cuisines. They are all priced between $3.50 and $5. Not only does VendCafe serve food, but it also dispenses a whole variety of sandwiches, salads, snacks and cold drinks. Perfect to cool down during warm days!
Cash To Cashless Payments[caption id="attachment_12125" align="alignnone" width="1024"] Image credit: JR Vending[/caption]
Payment is as convenient and easy as getting food. All you need is cash, Nets FlashPay, or your credit card to pay for your almost-instant meal at the “cashier-less” cafe!
Stand-Up Dining Tables To Enjoy Your Meals[caption id="attachment_12126" align="alignnone" width="1024"] Image Credit: JR Vending[/caption]
Meals are made even more convenient when consumers are able to dine at the cafe with stand-up dining tables. Do remember to dispose of your trash after you’re done as the VendCafe is an unmanned cafe without any staff.[caption id="attachment_12136" align="alignnone" width="1024"] Image credit: Chef in Box Facebook[/caption]
VendCafe serves as a good example of how innovation and technology can reduce reliance on labour in Singapore. What a good idea! We address manpower shortage issues, and at the same time, meet the needs of hungry Singaporeans!
If you’re living in the vicinity, drop by VendCafe and have a taste of the food! You’ll be amazed at how delightful the dishes are!
Location: Block 320C Anchorvale Drive (open 24 hours)
(Header image by yahoo.com.sg, edited by writer)
Also, read An Unforgettable 2016 SG Race Experience You’ll Never Forget
Better Safe Than Sorry? But These 10 Hungry Ghost Superstitions Are Unbelievable!
Just as the Americans have Halloween, the Chinese have the Hungry Ghost Festival (also know as Zhong Yuan Jie in Chinese). This is the month where the gates of hell are believed to be opened. This frees hungry ghosts who wander to seek food on Each. According to custom, these ghosts can be up to mischief if ignored.
With the Ghost Festival starting this week till the end of August, here’s a list of uncommon and weird superstitions. Do you believe in them?
1. Touching, Stepping Or Kicking Prayer Items And Offerings[caption id="attachment_11945" align="alignnone" width="1024"] Image credit: Wikipedia[/caption]
During the hungry ghost festival, the sidewalks and pavements transform into a minefield strewn with joss paper, charred offerings, and food. Do watch your step and don’t touch, step or kick these prayer items and offerings. These are offered to the hungry ghosts. You should also refrain from making jokes or complaining about the prayer offerings.
2. Swimming[caption id="attachment_11946" align="alignnone" width="800"] Image credit: alchetron.com[/caption]
Avoid swimming during this ghost festival month. It is believed that vengeful spirits whose death was due to drowning are determined to take the living with them.
3. Staying Out Late At Night[caption id="attachment_11948" align="alignnone" width="1024"] Image credit: sg.style.yahoo.com[/caption]
Children and pregnant women are advised to return home early. They should not wander around at night, especially if they’re alone. It is a belief that children are much more susceptible to being possessed by wandering ghosts. Spirits are also exceptionally attracted to foetuses in the wombs of the pregnant women. Pregnant women are advised not to go out at all.
4. Picking Up Strange Items You Stumble Upon On The Streets, Especially Coins[caption id="attachment_11949" align="alignnone" width="600"] Image credit: says.com[/caption]
Seen some money on the ground or found some unique items on the roadside? These items are apparently for the hungry ones to take, not you! It may very well belong to a ghost!
5. Wearing Black Or Red Clothings And High Heels[caption id="attachment_11962" align="alignnone" width="1024"] Image credit: goodyfeed.com[/caption]
Ghosts are apparently attracted to red and black, so avoid becoming a target board. Ladies are also warned against wearing high heels too. It is a belief that a woman is opening herself to spirit possession if her heels are constantly elevated above the ground.
6. Look Under The Altar, Especially During Prayer Sessions[caption id="attachment_11963" align="alignnone" width="800"] Image credit: says.com[/caption]
Never look under the altar especially during prayer sessions. It is believed that the unseen may be having their feast underneath the altar and they do not like to be disturbed.
7. Whistling At Night[caption id="attachment_11961" align="alignnone" width="759"] Image credit: seoulistic.com[/caption]
It is believed that roaming spirits are attracted to whistling, especially after the sun sets. Whistling attracts the attention of ghosts. These ghosts may decide to follow and stick to you for a long time, giving you long term bad luck. You may even hear someone singing along with you!
8. New Things[caption id="attachment_11957" align="alignnone" width="500"] Image credit: says.com[/caption]
New houses, new businesses, new relationships? Theses are all to be avoided as the hungry ghost month is considered to be highly inauspicious.
9. Hang Your Clothes Outside To Dry[caption id="attachment_11956" align="alignnone" width="500"] Image credit: says.com[/caption]
A wandering ghost may “try on” your clothes at night. Thus, it is best to avoid hanging them out late at night. These ghosts may even enter your house after trying on your clothes!
10. Sitting On The First Row Of Seats At Opera Street Performances And Getais[caption id="attachment_11955" align="alignnone" width="1024"] Image credit: photojournale.com[/caption]
If you see empty seats at opera street performances and getais, don’t sit on them. It is said that the front row seats are reserved for “spiritual visitors”. Even if all the seats behind are taken, you would do better to stand by the side rather than risk offending the spirits.
Regardless, the Chinese in Singapore observe these age-old traditions and beliefs as a form of respect for the dead. Do you abide by any of these superstitions that many believe in?
(Header image by dawn.com)
Also, read Stuck In Singapore? Here Are 10 Uncommon Places To Visit For A Different Kinda Fun!
8 Houses In Singapore So Extravagant, You’ll Wonder What The Owners Do For A Living
Though our Singapore island is tiny, the number of stunning green homes you can find is not small. Whether you’re into lush greenery or the use of natural materials in houses, we have sourced out Singapore’s most beautiful green homes.
1. Centennial Tree House / Wallflower Architecture + DesignImages credit: Wallflower Architecture + Design[/caption]
As the name suggests, the Centennial Tree House features a hundred-year-old frangipani tree. With the intention to create a protective enclosure of solitude, Wallflower Architects designed the house with fixed timber screenings and a lush wall of polyalthia. This combination allows natural breeze to comb through the house, refreshing the sheltered corridors and living spaces.
2. Wall House / FARMImages credit: FARM[/caption]
The Wall House has two blocks – a two-storey block with the main living and master bedroom area, and a single-storey block that houses the entertainment areas. The design and inspiration for this house come from classical Chinese Gardens. Views are borrowed through cutouts and vistas, and sight lines and spaces overlap.
3. Maximum Garden House / Formwerkz ArchitectsImages credit: Formwerkz[/caption]
Building a green home with no compromises in style and comfort is what Formwerkz Architects strives for. As garden spaces are often hard to come by in dense urban places, Formwerkz Architects designed a green curtain wall and green roof.
Not only beautiful and functional, they also serve to improve the building’s performance. The design of the sloping roof is perfect for spending family time outdoors in a creative way. With a design that is both practical and contemporary, Maximum Garden House is a lovely family refuge, where affection and warmth are heavily encouraged.
4. Andrew Road / A D LabImages credit: A D Lab[/caption]
Singapore’s residential architecture can no longer rely on idyllic sites and spectacular views to inform its spaces. This house is a perfect example – it is situated at a major vehicular intersection along a busy and noisy highway.
The architect addressed this matter by lowering the communal facilities around a sunken garden. This focuses the views inward. As you step inside, all interiors are connected to a central courtyard, where inhabitants can relax. Apart from its aesthetic features, its swimming pool cools the atmosphere during warm days.
5. Cluny House / Guz ArchitectsImages credit: Guz Architects[/caption]
This house in Cluny allows inhabitants to live with nature. With lushly planted roof gardens and greenery, Guz Architects creates a space that integrates seamlessly with the surrounding nature.
With its main focus on the central water court, the project sensitively generates a comfortable, luxurious, yet sustainable family home. This house is so huge, you’d feel that you’re living in a holiday villa resort!
6. Winged House / K2LD ArchitectsImages credit: design-milk.com[/caption]
Situated on a uniquely shaped triangular plot, the Winged House frames the site with two prominent forms of trapeziums. The home was built around three existing majestic palm trees of 20-meters high which are located in the centre of the plot.
By using vertical timber screens, the house is easily ventilated yet has privacy and protection.
7. No. 100 / Greg Shand ArchitectsImage credit: Greg Shand Architects[/caption]
Located in Singapore’s luxury seaside residential enclave of Sentosa Cove, this house sits on a double plot facing a lake and an island green of Sentosa Golf Club.
The design is based on emphasising the primary views to the rear while maintaining privacy. To create views over the pool to the golf course, the design is anchored around a double height living room space.
8. Meera Sky Garden House / Guz ArchitectsImage credit: Guz Architects[/caption]
The Meera Sky Garden House is a multi-layered four-storey house with gardens and greenery at all levels. The front and rear of the building terraces allow each storey to have visual or actual access to greenery.
These stunning green homes sure inspires us to work harder and dream big. Even if your goal is a cosy and manageable house, these green homes sure provide some great ideas for decor and style! If you’ve seen other gorgeous green homes in Singapore, do share it with us!
(Header image by Guz Architects)
Also, read Stuck In Singapore? Here Are 10 Uncommon Places To Visit For A Different Kinda Fun!
Photography Spots: Bluff Your Friends With These 6 Places That Just Don’t Look Like Singapore
Singapore may be small. We might not have any seven wonders of the world, but our tiny island has pretty spots too! If you’ve liked our previous post of enchanting and secret photography spots, we have curated another list of beautiful photography spots in Singapore to explore!
1. Raffles MarinaImage credit 500px.com, photo by Edward Tian[/caption]
Sitting at the end of the pier overlooking Raffles Marina stands Johor Straits lighthouse, otherwise known as Raffles Marina lighthouse. The location is about as far West of Singapore as it can get. You can actually bring your passport and cross over to Malaysia! This lighthouse overlooks Tua Second Link and acts as a guide for yachts navigating into and out of the marina.
Visit during sunset and enjoy the fresh air and sea breeze. You might even get a picturesque photo with a backdrop of a pastel-hued sunset with Malaysia in the background! In addition, within its proximity is the Raffles Marina Club. You can even take photos with the backdrop of expensive yachts! This is certainly one of the best photography spots to add to your list!
2. The White Rabbit[caption id="attachment_11543" align="alignnone" width="800"] Image credit: antonchia[/caption]
Located at Dempsey Hill, The White Rabbit is a restaurant housed in the beautifully restored 1930s Ebenezer chapel. It has a charming garden, which is great for an enchanting photo shoot.
This restaurant lends a whimsical touch to those who seek its delightfully themed surroundings. Based on the story of Alice in Wonderland, this one is for those who love a little whimsy and magic with its gorgeous walkways, delightfully-mismatched furniture and well-manicured lawns.
3. Botanic Gardens[caption id="attachment_11526" align="alignnone" width="640"] Image credit: bittersweetbyjoseph[/caption] [caption id="attachment_11528" align="alignnone" width="640"] Image credit: bittersweetbyjoseph[/caption]
Known for its beautiful gardens and structures for wedding pictures, here’s another location to consider for your nature photography spots. Arrive early to avoid the crowd and curious stares of on-lookers at Botanic Gardens. You’ll get to enjoy the beautiful, soft morning glow of the sun and the peaceful atmosphere for being an early bird!
Although Singapore Botanical Gardens is very large, almost every part of the garden serves as a good backdrop for your shoot. Other than popular photography spots such as Healing Garden, Sun Garden, and The Swan Lake, you can also hunt down hidden photography spots around the garden.
You’ll be amazed at the amount of magical and enchanting photography spots you can find in Botanic Gardens!
4. Bukit Timah Saddle Club[caption id="attachment_11518" align="alignnone" width="769"] Image credit: gallerieck.com[/caption] [caption id="attachment_11519" align="alignnone" width="956"] Image credit: gallerieck.com[/caption] [caption id="attachment_11523" align="alignnone" width="900"] Image credit: AndroidsinBoots[/caption]
Come in the morning and spend a day with these lovely horses. You could even bring along rustic props for country-inspired snaps!
Do note that a fee is required to take a photo shoot with the horses. If you’re not in for paying extra, the spot near the hill is also a great place for a nice shoot. Walk up the hill to the other side and you can find beautiful greenery. In addition, have your brunch at the highly raved brunch spot at Riders cafe!
5. Little Guilin[caption id="attachment_11546" align="alignnone" width="1024"] Image credit: Scott KJ Photography[/caption] [caption id="attachment_11539" align="alignnone" width="896"] Image credit: Instagram user @withoutstrings[/caption]
Known as Little Guilin or Xiao Guilin, this park is located at Bukit Batok is similar to Guilin in China as a huge granite rock sits within the lake. The park is beautifully landscaped so you can walk along the banks of the lake and take really pretty shots with the gorgeous landscape backdrop.
In addition, the two dome shaped shelters at Little Guilin can act as a beautiful frame to your photo.
6. Chinese and Japanese Gardens[caption id="attachment_11268" align="alignnone" width="1024"] Image credit: Instagram user @nubusaploy[/caption] [caption id="attachment_11544" align="alignnone" width="536"] Image credit: Instagram user @leahaldous[/caption]
Located just a stone’s throw away from Chinese Garden MRT station, the gardens are picture perfect from every angle. With expansive green lawns, trees, and pagodas, what more can you ask for?
Do visit the gardens in the cooler late afternoon and evening to avoid being scorched under the hot sun.
Spend your next weekend exploring a whole new part of Singapore you’ve never visited. Get your DSLR ready or simply bring your iphone along and visit these beautiful photography spots!
(Header image by Scott KJ Photography)
Also, read Stuck In Singapore? Here Are 10 Uncommon Places To Visit For A Different Kinda Fun!
A Test Of Your Eyesight – Can You See The Hidden Words In SG’s Passport?
For some of us, the Singapore passport may only be a travel document issued by our country’s government. However, do you know that a passport from a country in good standing can be a powerful tool? We already know that our Singapore passport is one of the most widely accepted in the world. Our passport allows us to travel to almost 80% of the countries in the world!
But that’s not all! Besides the widely known facts, do you know that there are also really tiny words in small print, hidden in the Singapore passport? Get your passports out now, because this is going to be a test of your eyesight! Can you see the hidden words?
1. The Singapore Pledge Is Written On The Esplanade Print[caption id="attachment_11614" align="alignnone" width="896"] Image credit: theincentral.com[/caption]
Take a look closer at the Esplanade print on every odd-numbered page. Squint your eyes and you’ll realise our Singapore Pledge is printed at the bottom right-hand corner. It’s so small, it’s unnoticeable unless you’ve been told!
2. There Are Words On Every Page Number[caption id="attachment_11615" align="alignnone" width="838"] Image credit: theincentral.com[/caption]
This is the real deal. Do you know that there are words on every page number of your Singapore passport? The words are so small, you probably can’t see it with your naked eye. Grab a magnifying glass and squint your eyes to figure out the words “REPUBLICOFSINGAPORE”. Even the macro shot in the camera couldn’t help! We bet you probably didn’t know about this until we told you!
Other Fun Facts
Here are other fun facts about our Singapore passport you probably didn’t know!
3. Singapore Passport Is Ranked Top 5 In The World[caption id="attachment_11613" align="alignnone" width="780"] Image credit: The Straits Times[/caption]
According to a global index released this year, the Republic has been ranked fifth in travel freedom for three consecutive years. Joint fifth alongside Japan and Austria, Singapore citizens are able to travel to 173 cities and countries without the need to apply for a visa. This includes traveling to North Korea without a visa! As such, Singapore and Japan are the leading Asian countries this year, making us the highest-ranking Asian nations on the travel index!
4. The Choice Of Red As The Colour Mirrors Our Flag[caption id="attachment_11665" align="alignnone" width="630"] Image credit: sg.news.yahoo.com[/caption]
Singapore’s and Switzerland’s passports are red to mirror the national flags. However, some communist nations or those formerly under the Communist regime also use red as a reflection of the party flag. Other countries with red passports include Great Britain, China and the Russian Federation. On the other hand, some countries choose the colour of their passports on other factors, such as their culture, geography, politics, or even religion. Despite this, most passports are just different shades of red, blue, and green.
5. At S$80, Singapore Passport Isn’t That Expensive[caption id="attachment_11621" align="alignnone" width="600"] Image credit: theincentral.com[/caption] [caption id="attachment_11706" align="alignnone" width="650"] Image credit: Telegraph[/caption]
As compared to the UK, USA and Turkey, our Singapore’s passport isn’t that expensive to make. It costs S$80. Converted to British pound, it is an estimated £45. It takes about 8 hours of work at Singapore’s minimum wage to buy a passport with a validity of 5 years. This is much more affordable than the UK Passport, £76 (S$135). What’s the worst? Turkey‘s passport, at £166 (S$295).
6. Singapore Had A Blue Passport Before[caption id="attachment_11617" align="alignnone" width="425"] Image credit: singaporememory.sg[/caption]
Well you probably didn’t know Singapore had a blue passport just to facilitate travel between Singapore and West Malaysia. This blue passport, called “Singapore Restricted Passport” (SRP) was created as a result of Singapore’s separation from Malaysia. During that time, there were two kinds of passports, the red one for travelling internationally and the blue one for travelling between Singapore and West Malaysia. However, the blue passport ceased from 31st December 1999.
So, how many of these interesting facts did you know? Share this with your friends! We’re sure they probably didn’t notice these until today!
(Header image by drwealth.com, edited by writer)
Also, read A Travel Diary – S’pore From The Eyes Of A Tourist [by The Girl Beneath The Headscarf]
That’s Not A Fish! 4 Places In Singapore Where Crocs Roam Free
Nature photographers who are expecting birds, otters, or monitor lizards are now also able to spot crocodiles in Singapore. Well, you don’t have to visit the zoo or a safari to see these crocodiles. In recent years, there is a growing number of crocodile sightings in Singapore. Wander around the wetland reserve or nature park and you will
Wander around the wetland reserve or nature park and you might just find yourself up close and personal with these reptiles. For some of you, you may know that crocodile sightings in Singapore are common at Sungei Buloh Wetland Reserve. However, do you know that they are spotted in the Northern and Eastern part of Singapore too?
Whether you are a reptile fanatic or an adventure seeker, the park, reserves and reservoirs are where crocodile sightings in Singapore are common. You may want to keep a close eye on family and friends if you’ll be around the area, as these are the spots where crocs roam free.
1. Sungei Buloh Wetland Reserve[caption id="attachment_10257" align="alignnone" width="780"] Image credit: The Straits Times[/caption] [caption id="attachment_10263" align="alignnone" width="1024"] Image credit: Youtube[/caption]
Sungei Buloh Wetland Reserve is a great place to walk around. You get to escape the hustle and bustle of Singapore city. Walk along its boardwalk and if you are lucky, you may be able to spot a Saltwater crocodile. Also known as the Estuarine crocodile, these crocs are also usually found lying across the main footpath, soaking up the sun or lying under the waters.
Free guided walks at the reserve are available on selected Saturdays. Check out the details on the Sungei Buloh Wetland Reserve website.
2. Kranji Reservoir[caption id="attachment_10258" align="alignnone" width="780"] Image credit: The Straits Times[/caption]
Enjoy the panoramic view of Johor Straits at Kranji Reservoir Park. There are as many as ten saltwater crocodiles living in the north-west coast of Singapore, as reported in the Straits Times in June 2013.
In recent years, a 400kg, 3.6m-long saltwater crocodile – one of the largest to have roamed wild here – was found dead on the Kranji Reservoir grounds.
3. Tampines/Pasir Ris River Canal[caption id="attachment_10259" align="alignnone" width="780"] Image credit: The Straits Times[/caption]
Several years ago, an angler fishing at Pasir Ris Park snared an unexpected catch of a one-metre-long crocodile. Some of these reptiles have been seen in a mangrove swamp near Tampines/Pasir Ris River Canal. They are likely visitors from Malaysia! The reptiles are known to swim freely in the Straits of Johor.
4. Woodlands Waterfront Park[caption id="attachment_10260" align="alignnone" width="1024"] Image credit: Asiaone[/caption]
Recently, an angler fishing at the jetty snared a crocodile which had bitten on his fish hook.
“The fishing rod was suddenly yanked by a huge force. On closer look, I realised it was a crocodile about 3m long that was caught,” Suhairi told the newspaper reporter.
These reptiles feed and rest in mangroves and freshwater bodies along Singapore’s North coast. Crocodiles and sharks have also been sighted lurking in the sea off Woodlands Waterfront Park.
The “no swimming” notices along these stretches do not warn about sharks or crocodiles. However, the park’s jetty and promenade are fenced off from the waters of Strait of Johor with railings. Despite this, children are often seen sourcing for crabs on the marshland bordering the sea.[caption id="attachment_10486" align="alignnone" width="500"] Image credit: giphy[/caption]
Whatever it is, when visiting nature reserves, always keep within designated land trails and footpaths. Don’t venture too near the water’s edge, you never know what could be lurking. Also, keep a close eye on family and friends!
(Header image by The Straits Times)
Also, read Kranji Marshes Opens With Free Guided Walks To Restricted Areas, Perfect For Nature Lovers!