The Singapore Botanic Gardens (also the Gardens) is located within an 82-hectare area at the heart of the city of Singapore. Situated on Orchard road with a modern and vibrant pace of life, the Singapore Botanic Gardens is home to more than 10,000 species of tropical and subtropical plants, not to mention a large number of reptiles such as giant lizards and other jungle creatures. In 2015, The Gardens was named a UNESCO World Heritage Site and the world’s first tropical gardens to get the honor. So, what to do in Singapore Botanic Gardens? Let’s check out our fullest guide on how to visit the gardens and top things to do in Singapore Botanic Gardens!
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How to know the Gardens as a symbolize attraction for your trip in Singapore, let’s check out and explore the best places in the Gardens must-go through the mentioned interesting guide below!
Overview of Singapore Botanic Gardens
Approved by the Agri-Horticultural Society in 1859, the Singapore Botanic Gardens is the oldest garden in Singapore. Besides being an ornamental and recreational garden, it was also a scientific garden in its early years. Currently, the Gardens’ mission includes providing botanical and horticultural support for the nation’s greening plans, being a center for plant taxonomic and biodiversity research in the region, as well a recreational and educational attraction.
The Singapore Botanic Gardens is a well-defined cultural landscape, which includes a rich variety of historic landscape features, plantings, and buildings that demonstrate the evolution of the Botanic Gardens that is one of the world’s finest in terms of both its aesthetic appeal and the quality of its botanical collection.
Address: 01 Cluny Road, Singapore
- Singapore Botanic Gardens: Opens every day of the week from 5:00 am to 12:00 pm.
- SBG Heritage Museum: Opens every day of the week from 9:00 am to 6:00 pm and closes on the last Monday of the month.
- National Orchid Garden: Opens every day of the week from 8:30 am to 7:00 pm.
- Jacob Ballas Children’s Garden: Opens Tuesdays to Sundays from 8:00 am to 7:00 pm and closes on Mondays.
Guides to Singapore Botanic Gardens
With three cores of Tanglin, Central, and Bukit Timah, in which each has a different size, visitors can separate into three routes to the entire vast area of the Singapore Botanic Gardens.
However, if you fail your full sightseeing visit, you can access the Gardens’ official website to download four walking and hiking guides designed for various objects, and you can navigate in your own time. Each such direction spends within 40 to 90 minutes, depending on the speed of visitors.
In addition, note that if you intend to visit the Singapore Botanic Gardens, you must bring a water bottle due to Singapore’s hot weather. It will easily make you dehydrated if you have to go out in the sun for a long time.
The most prominent tourist attraction at the Singapore Botanic Garden can be mentioned the National Orchid Garden, which is considered the largest orchid garden in the world with over 60,000 plants and orchid plants. In addition, there is also the SBG Heritage Museum features interactive and multimedia exhibits and panels that detail the Gardens’ rich heritage, while the CDL Green Gallery displays botanical-related exhibits.
Besides, kids will have a blast at the Jacob Ballas Children’s Garden, where they can play and learn all about plant life
At the same time, a further plus point for the Gardens is that a host of restaurants and cafes are also available to satisfy thirsty and hungry visitors after a day out in the sun.
What to do in Singapore Botanic Gardens?
Tanglin Core (#what to do in singapore botanic gardens)
Visit the Tanglin core, visitors can explore numerous interesting things from the entrance through an artful combination of plants, water, Hardscapes, and textures in the design.
The most prominent feature is the Swan Lake, Sundial Garden, Bandstand, and Bonsai Garden. In particular, Swan Lake is considered to be the oldest ornamental water feature, and is also home to graceful, beautiful white swans from Amsterdam, the Netherlands, always looking for a quiet retreat near Dell Lane. You can go to the area near Dell Lane to gaze swans glide gracefully across the lake. Avoid taking photos with flash mode or making noise, as all cause the swan’s fright.
In addition, the Bandstand in Tanglin core is also one of the iconic attractions in Singapore Botanic Gardens with an octagonal gazebo design. Its purpose was to serve music performances and is now used as a wedding photo shoot or a shelter from the sudden rain. One of the notable landscape features of the Bandstand today is the ring of Yellow Rain Trees (Samanea saman) surrounding it. The Rain Tree usually has light green foliage, but due to a mutation, some trees produced yellow leaves and some of these plants have been re-produced by cloning. The Yellow Rain Trees have been planted here for the enjoyment of visitors.
Bukit Timah Core (#Singapore Botanic Gardens)
If you choose to travel by subway get to the Gardens and stop at the Circle Line station. From here, you just walk a short distance to reach Bukit Timah gate on the east side of the Gardens. Bukit Timah is always crowded with tourists and locals alike, especially on weekends.
There are several prominent areas, such as Trellis Garden, Eco-Lake, and Foliage Garden. The Trellis Garden is home to climbing plants, which you can see while walking here.
Furthermore, you can admire the black swans from Australia as well as other countries’ bird species on the Eco-Lake. In addition, in the Foliage Garden in Bukit Timah, there are also very interesting plants, but the most interesting and special ones are the prominent red carnivorous plants.
Finally, the Central core has the giant orchid garden, which is the most famous tourist attraction.
This place is home to nearly 2,000 different species of orchids around the world. The captivating blooms are an absolute sight to behold. There is also a Healing Garden, which is plenty of medicinal plants used in traditional remedies. This is additional knowledge for those who want to try planting medicinal plants in their backyards.
What to do at Singapore Botanic Gardens?
Admire the VIP Orchid Garden
In the National Orchid Garden, you can find hybrid orchids named after international dignitaries that visited the Gardens including Vanda William, Catherine, and Paravanda Nelson Mandela who is famous and played significant roles in society.
This unique area is home to one-of-a-kind orchids, named after the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge William and Catherine, as well as special guests such as Nelson Mandela and celebrities languages such as Jackie Chan, and Shah Rukh Khan.
With more than 200 kinds of VIP orchids on display, visitors can drop by to know how many characters to be felicitated, and then that’s a result of more than one hundred.
Learn about the origin of the latex industry boom in Southeast Asia
It would not be an exaggeration to say that Southeast Asia would be a very different region without the Singapore Botanic Gardens. In 1877, the first rubber seedlings were brought to Singapore from Kew Gardens, London, where they were planted in the garden.
And during the 1880s and 90s, rubber extraction techniques were invented and developed here, and efforts of the Gardens to popularize it led to a huge expansion in rubber production in the Malaysian peninsula. And until 1917, when these gardens were able to provide a large number of more than seven million rubber seeds to the countries in the region, this brought prosperity and outstanding development of the economy for countries in Southeast Asia.
This supply of rubber also gave rise to unprecedented developments in various modern industries that required rubber for their various innovations, including automobiles, aviation, and textiles.
Enjoy a bit of England atmosphere in the tropics of Singapore
With its gently sprawling grounds, meandering paths, and natural distribution of plants, the Singapore Botanic Gardens is the only major landscaped garden in Southeast Asia according to the English style.
Founded in 1859, the Singapore Botanic Gardens were designed by Lawrence Niven, whose buildings help depict gardens and parks in distant Great Britain.
This layout has survived the ages, mostly intact, and the park is also dotted with many historical buildings including Ridley Hall, EJH Corner House, Holttum Hall, and Burkill Hall.
For the extra buildings, do not miss the Burkill Hall, which is said to be the only remaining example of an Anglo-Malaysian plantation-style residence in Southeast Asia.
Get cultured with free concerts in the park
There’s something incredibly unforgettable about enjoying a classical music concert with nature’s lush greenery as the stage.
Therefore, the Singapore Symphony Orchestra holds frequent free concerts at the Gardens for all to attend, featuring a line-up of familiar classics, as well as contemporary movie scores thrown in for good measure.
Visit Singapore Botanic Garden’s First Arboretum
As you stroll around the Garden City and admire the lush greenery lining the roads and little pockets of nature in this urban jungle, know that many of these plants had their roots–literally–in the Botanic Gardens.
When Singapore’s prime minister Lee Kuan Yew launched his tree planting campaign and Garden City program in the 1960s, the area where Symphony Lake now resides was then a nursery to grow the plants that would eventually paint the city green.
Today, the nursery maintains its mission to keep the city clean and green with its large-scale Botany Center, which is recognized as the world’s leading institution for tropical horticulture.
Have a date at first Paktor in Singapore
Travel back in time and go on a romantic date at the Botanic Gardens, which could very well be Singapore’s first Paktor.
During the 50s and 60s, this was said to be a popular meeting ground for families hoping to broker arranged marriages. Later on, young lovers would plan secret meetings at the various nooks and crannies of the park.
Some picturesque spots you can bring someone special to include the Swan Lake Gazebo, the majestic Burmese Banyan tree, or the Bandstand. The latter used to be the site for band performances and is now a popular spot for wedding photo shoots in Singapore.
Remember the contributions of pioneers in Singapore greening
Take a closer look when you walk up the steps of the Plant House. The bricks on these steps were made by prisoners of war (POWs) during World War II and inscribed with arrows as a silent act of defiance.
While you are there, take a few moments to reflect on this touching reminder of the hard work and sacrifices that our predecessors have made to lay the foundations of this modern city.
It is true to say that Singapore is a green country with a series of green parks built across the country. If you come to this lion island, you should plan a renowned attraction must-go-to Singapore Botanic Gardens on your itinerary.
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