Have you missed traipsing through the countryside of Europe or Japan? There are plenty of equally impressive forested areas on our island you can explore that have been made more accessible by the National Parks Board’s trails.
Singapore is commonly regarded as an urban jungle, but there is more greenery around our island than you would think. A good way to discover the forests around us is to put on your hiking shoes and go on a specially curated trail. Here are a few:
DAIRY FARM NATURE PARKDeveloped by National Parks Board as an alternative recreational venue to Bukit Timah Nature Reserve, Dairy Farm Nature Park offers multiple trails for walking and mountain biking. A relatively easy one is the 2.2km Wallace Trail, which takes you through a dense forested area that used to house a kampung. It includes the Wallace Education Centre, which houses a permanent exhibition on renowned English naturalist Alfred Russel Wallace to honour his contributions to natural science. Formerly a cow shed, the centre is an education gallery where visitors can learn about the biogeography and biodiversity of our region and try hands-on activities. Along the trail, you’ll come across meandering streams and maybe even spot wildlife, such as the rare Crimson Sunbird and Slender Squirrel.
Address: 100 Dairy Farm Road, Singapore 679057
Opening hours: 24 hours
Getting there: You can access the trail via either Car Park A or B. From here, find the path towards the Singapore Quarry and Wallace Education Centre.
HINDHEDE NATURE PARKHindhede Nature Park has fairly easy and short hiking trails. The highlight of the park is, of course, the majestic Hindhede Quarry, with its shimmering turquoise waters. The quarry is just a 10-minute walk from the car park where the lookout point is located. Beyond the quarry, there are also little streams and lush greenery for you to enjoy. Kids, moreover, can look forward to playing on mini ziplines and swings.
Address: Hindhede Drive
Opening hours: 7am–7pm
Getting there: The nearest car park is at Dairy Farm Nature Park.
SOUTHERN RIDGESThe Southern Ridges cover 10km of green, open spaces connecting Mount Faber Park, Telok Blangah Hill Park, Hort Park, Kent Ridge Park and Labrador Nature Park. This trail has plenty to offer hikers. It’s also perfect for beginners, as you can get off the trail at any point. There are several routes you can take. One of them begins at Mount Faber Peak, from which you can walk downhill to Faber Walk and take a detour to Telok Blangah Rise. Head back up and continue to the iconic Henderson Waves, a 274m-long wood-panelled bridge. Next stop: Forest Hill Walk above Telok Blangah Hill Park, at the end of which you’ll step onto Alexandra Arch, an 80m-long bridge that looks like a leaf opening up over the road. This leads you to the 23-hectare Hort Park, a one-stop resource hub for all things gardening and plant-related. From the end of Hort Park, continue on to a park connector to Kent Ridge Park, where you can finish at the 280m-long Canopy Walk, which offers lovely views of the forested landscape.
Address: Southern Singapore
Lighting hours for Alexandra Arch: changing LED lights: 7pm–12am daily
Lighting hours for Forest Walk: 7pm–7am daily
Lighting hours for Henderson Waves: 7pm–7am daily
Safety LED lights on bridges: 7pm–7 am daily
Getting there: Park at Seah Imm public car park