Thinking of ways to keep in shape during the holiday vacation? Why don’t you go for a walking adventure in some of the city’s previously hidden and off-beat spots such as Sister’s Island and the Kranji Marshes. You’d be surprised to discover unique activities and attractions while keeping your daily step count goals.
If you think you’ve seen everything Singapore has to offer, then try going on a guided walking tour in some of these 5 off-beat and unique destinations in Singapore:
5 Destinations to Go on a Guided Walking Tour in Singapore:
- Get to know the history behind deserted government buildings that are usually off-limits to the public.
If you’re a brave soul and are into urban exploration, then a guided tour in some of Singapore’s oldest and most intriguing city locations such as run-down manors, abandoned police quarters and allegedly haunted hospitals could just be your thing. But a word of caution: Do not go crossing fences just yet, as most of these spots are government-owned and you may get charged for trespassing.
Instead, check out Jerome Lim’s State Property Visits and sign up in his highly informative and research-backed guided tours which have ushered a number of guests to interesting locations such as the Old Changi Hospital, the Old Kallang Airport, and the red-brick faced Power Station ‘A’ at Pasir Panjang.
- Scour the 57-hectare Kranji Marshes for a one-of-a-kind nature walk.
Don’t miss out the rugged trails and scenic sights at the Kranji Marshes. This 57-hectare nature reserve is perfect for health and fitness enthusiasts who wish to load up their daily steps to reach their daily walking objectives while exploring the unique charms of the marshland.
Climb the Raptor Tower and enjoy an exquisite 360 degree-view of the nature park’s surroundings. Be at one with the marshland’s wildlife as you check out two of the park’s camouflaged hideouts, Swamphen Hide and Moorhen Blind, where you could chance upon several marshland birds such as the common moorhen and the rare purple swamphen.
You will also get to hear the birds’ melodious crooning when you catch the park’s free guided tour held once a month on Saturday nights from 4:30pm – 6:30 pm when the birds are most active.
However, the most important reason to sign up for the park’s guided tour is to gain access to its most ecologically-sensitive attraction, the typically restricted Core Conservation Area which you can get to by carefully passing through the floating platform bridge, also known as “The Reed Crossing.”
- Catch rare dolphin sightings at the Marine Park on Sister’s Islands.
The idea of seeing wild dolphins in Singaporean waters could either elicit doubt or spark interest. Either way, to discover whether it’s true or not isn’t such a bad idea especially when you can get on the NPark-sponsored guided tour of the intertidal area for free. Just get on a bumboat and head out to Sister’s Islands Marine Park, which is just a little ways off St John’s Island for a chance to spot the docile creatures at play near the reefs.
But if you aren’t so lucky with the dolphins, you can still enjoy the amazing biodiversity when you go on a guided walk through knee-deep waters where you can check out over 100 unique marine species such as giant clams, seahorses, and the Neptune’s Cup Sponge, which was believed to have hit extinction until it was found in Singaporean waters in 2011.
Because of this unique guided walk experience, slots easily sell out within a few minutes so it’s highly advisable that you monitor schedule dates and book your tour ASAP.
- Have a regal time exploring Istana’s Hidden Gardens
The Istana is the official residence and office to the President of Singapore. This makes the Istana a choice destination among tourists and locals alike. With this in mind, guided walking tours are offered during open days from $2 (children ages 4-12 years old) and $10 (adults) to encourage visitors to explore Istana’s public areas including the main building and the surrounding garden area. The tour takes visitors on a historic journey down memory lane to recount Singapore’s past presidents and to enjoy Istana’s plush gardens where the charming “swan lake” can be found.
- Explore Singapore’s Red-light District in an After-hours Walking Tour
Geylang is well known for its loose night scene. This creates a sense of wonder and curiosity among tourists about what goes on behind closed doors and under dim red lights in the neighborhood.
For the curious and uninitiated, the Original Singapore Walks offers The Secrets of the Red Lantern tour, a three-hour walking tour which aims to shed light on the famous red light district’s night scene and storied past. But it’s not going to be all dark and gloomy as the tour will also include a “lighter” take on the neighbourhood by visiting the bustling Club Street and by checking out great local food spots where you can get your stash of incredible durian and your fill of delicious chicken rice to keep your stomachs happy and full.
The tour starts from New Bridge Road then head all the way down to the heart of the Geylang District. You’ll surely be in for a long walk so it’s highly advisable that you wear a comfortable pair of walking shoes and, of course, don’t forget to bring your fitness tracker with you.
Sometimes finding the difference between the mundane and the extraordinary in life can only be determined by a curious mind and a pair of fresh eyes. If you do this for practical reasons like health, you get to enjoy the beauty of guided walking tours. Make your downtime this holiday season more meaningful by staying fit and by gaining new experiences to end the year on a high note.