Singapore’s most famous garden, Gardens by the Bay is a huge, futuristic urban park near the marina. Its famous Supertree structures overlook the gardens and at night, light up in a lively music and light show. Two seashell-shaped conservatories contain unique ecosystems. The Cloud Forest recreates the vegetation found in elevated mountain climates. The Flower Dome contains hundreds of different plants, trees and flowers from different regions.
Opened in 2011, Gardens by the Bay was created to realize the vision of creating a “City in a Garden”. The goal was to design a space where nature and greenery flourish amidst rapidly growing urbanization. Over 6.8 million people visited the park in fiscal year 2014/2015 and the numbers continue to grow.
And it is easy to see why. The park is beautifully designed, and its structures are one-of-a-kind. Over 1.3 million plants fill the park and the gardens provide the opportunity to see trees and flowers without having to travel to the remote, and sometimes endemic, locations where they grow.
On our recent visit to the park, I was amazed at the variety of organisms throughout the park. Each display and garden were carefully thought out and presented in aesthetically pleasing way. The message of environmental sustainability and climate change was also carried out through each of the gardens. What’s most impressive is that the park is entirely carbon neutral. You can read more about how the park’s design is built upon sustainability here.
What to see at Gardens by the Bay
The most iconic structure within Gardens by the Bay are the majestic Supertree vertical plant displays. 12 of these large metal structures dominate the center of the garden, with others scattered throughout the park. The Supertrees are each composed of over 200 different species of plants and flowers on its exterior.
In the evening, the Supertrees come to life with a spectacular music and light show. Shows are presented nightly at 7:45pm and 8:45pm.
For a unique experience, enjoy the view from the 22-meter high Skyway, a walkway that connects three of the Supertrees together. Tickets cost $8 SGD for adults and $5 SGD for children. Or, for an extra special dining experience, dine among the Supertree Grove at Indochine, perched 50 meters high with 360 degree views and a tree-top bar.
Two cooled conservatories offer not only a respite from the heat, but also a walk through a unique biosystem. Entry to the two bio-domes costs $28 SGD for adults and $15 SGD for children.
The Flower Dome
The Flower Dome recreates the climates of places like the Southwest United States and the Mediterranean. Stroll through this giant conservatory and take a journey around the world.
You’ll pass Baobabs from Africa, olive trees from the Mediterranean, fruit trees from California, and flowers and plants from the far reaches of the globe.
Scattered throughout the conservatory are sculptures and woodwork carvings, integrated seamlessly into the surrounding plants and trees as if they were there all along.
Explore the Cloud Forest, which features a 35-meter high, man-made mountain that replicates the conditions found at high tropical mountain elevations. Upon entering, a dramatic waterfall cascades down from the top of the mountain and surrounds the entire dome in a cloud-like mist.
Your journey starts at the top of the mountain and as you work your way down, observe the different plants found at each vegetation level of the rainforest.
The majority of the park is comprised of several smaller gardens. The heritage gardens are each themed around one of Singapore’s main ethnic groups: Malay, Chinese and Indian. Other gardens are centered around different types of plants, like palm trees, fruits and flowers and cacti.
The Far East Organization Children’s Garden is an outdoor playground complete with treehouses, suspended bridges, and motion-activated water fountains.
How to Get to Gardens by the Bay
Gardens by the Bay is next to Marina Bay Sands hotel. From Marina Bay Sands, walk across the Lions Bridge on level 6 which connects to Dragonfly Bridge into Gardens by the Bay.
By MRT, take the Circle Line or Downtown Line and get off at Bayfront MRT station. From there, take exit B and follow the underground link way. You’ll enter near the foot of Dragonfly Bridge.
From the East-West MRT line, alight at Tanjong Pagar MRT Station. Take Exit C and head towards bus stop 03223 located at International Plaza, Anson Road. Take bus service 400 and alight at bus stop 03371 along Marina Gardens Drive.
Gardens by the Bay Tickets
Walking around the park won’t cost you a cent but if you want to visit the Supertree Grove or either of the two climate-controlled conservatories there is an admission fee.
The OCBC Skywalk at the Supertree Grove costs $8 SGD for adults and $5 SGD for children.
Tickets for the Cooled Conservatories are $28 SGD for adults and $15 SGD for children.
Audio tours, shuttle service and self-driving auto riders are also available.
Singapore’s Gardens are a Must-See
The main park area is open from 5:00am to 2:00am daily. The Flower Dome, Cloud Forest, and OCBC Skyway are open from 9:00am to 9:30pm daily.
Gardens by the Bay is an easy escape from Singapore’s bustling traffic and imposing skyscrapers. It offers a fun and interactive space to explore vegetation from around the world. The Supertrees, Cloud Forest and Flower Dome conservatories bring plants to life like you’ve never seen before.
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