Island Escapes: 5 Stunning Islands Near Singapore Expats Must Visit
Salt air, white beaches; you'll never need anything more.
Whether you’re looking for a weekend getaway or a staycation in Singapore, we all need a break from the city sometimes. Luckily, there are lots of nice islands near the turquoise waters off of Singapore that you can explore. Each island has a lot to offer, which is why we’ve narrowed the list down for you. Here are 5 fantastic offshore islands near Singapore. Most of them are just a short ferry ride away.
The 5 Beautiful Islands Near Singapore You Must Visit:
1. Pulau Ubin
Just northeast of mainland Singapore is Pulau Ubin. This boomerang-shaped, 1,020-hectare island will transport you back in time, taking you back to 1960s Singapore. Here you’ll find the rustic charm of old Singapore in the last villages or kampongs.
The Chek Jawa Wetlands, one of the richest ecosystems in the country, is on the island. The entire island has a natural abundance of flora and fauna, which you can explore through the footpaths that snake around the hills.
You can kayak through the mangroves, spotting wildlife as you go. Or enjoy one of the best ways to see the island, cycling. There are biking trails for any level of experience. If you really want to get in touch with nature, you can camp on the island and sleep under the stars.
To reach Pulau Ubin, you can take a bumboat from Changi Point Ferry Terminal, which is about half an hour outside of Singapore.
2. Lazarus Island
Also called Pulau Sakijang Pelepah, Lazarus Island is just south of the city. Mostly made of open spaces and grassland, the island is home to pristine white sandy beaches and crystal clear waters.
It’s the perfect place for sunbathing, swimming, and picnicking. The beautiful beach is protected from large waves, making it the perfect place for a relaxing swim in gentle waves. You can also fish or camp.
Its tranquil atmosphere creates a wonderful getaway that will make you feel like you’re worlds away from the city. The island is still a well-kept secret, so you won’t have to battle for a spot on the pristine beaches. And without a lot of other people there, it is the ideal spot for beach photos you won’t have to photoshop anyone out of.
The uninhabited island is connected to Saint John’s Island through a causeway. You can reach Lazarus Island by taking a ferry to Saint John’s Island and then travelling across the causeway.
3. St. John’s Island
Connected to Lazarus Island is Saint John’s Island. Just like its neighbour, St. John’s is a secluded and peaceful island resort near Singapore. Of the Marine Park Islands, this is the largest. There are lots of activities to do and wildlife to see.
If you’re an animal lover, there are many ways to connect with the creatures here. You can explore the coral reefs and keep an eye out for migratory birds. You can also visit the National Marine Laboratory. The viewing pools and aquariums here introduce you to the stunning sea life.
You can also go kayaking, fishing, hiking, cycling, picnicking, or boating. There are endless fun endeavours here.
The British colonized St. John’s Island and mainland Singapore in the 19th century. The island was the site of a colonial quarantine centre, but in the 20th century, it became a detention centre, drug rehabilitation centre, and refugee settlement. It’s now open to visitors.
You can get to the island by taking a ferry from Marina South Pier, just 15 minutes outside the blue waters of Singapore.
4. Sisters’ Islands
Two more of the Marine Park Islands, the Sisters’ Islands are south of the main island of Singapore, also accessible from Marina South Pier or West Coast Pier.
With vibrant coral reefs, warm water, and a national park—you can’t go wrong. On a clear day, you may even see Indonesian islands near Singapore. The Big and Little Sister islands are excellent places to snorkel and dive.
The Marine Park is teeming with marine life. You can see endless varieties of fish, corals, and other underwater creatures. The park is a place for outreach, education, conservation, and research about its natural marine biodiversity.
The beautiful islands have a few intertidal zones where, during low tide, you can take a stroll and see more marine biodiversity, including starfish, seaweed, coral, clams, algae, fish, and more. Check before you go to see if the low tide is during your visit.
If you miss the low tide, you can also walk through the trees or near the waves on a guided nature walk. The gorgeous islands is truly the perfect backdrop for some quiet contemplation.
5. Coney Island
Also known as Pulau Serangoon, Coney Island is off the northeastern coast. While it isn’t a private island near Singapore, Coney Island’s serene and unspoiled nature makes it feel like it is.
The island holds a park of the same name, offering visitors the chance to wander lush trails, catch sight of some of the 80 species of birds and other wildlife, and capture the perfect picture in its many photogenic spots. You can also go kayaking, camping, or fishing on the island.
Coney Island Park opened in 2015. There are a variety of habitats in it, including coastal forests, grasslands, and mangroves. On the island, you can find the bungalow of its previous owners, Aw Boon Haw and Aw Boon Par, who were known for the Tiger Balm brand of analgesic heat rub.
Coney Island is about 30-minutes away from Punggol MRT and Bus Interchange, and it’s navigable by walking or cycling. Since its opening, it has become a popular destination for residents of northeast Singapore, since they can easily get there.
You don’t even need to splurge on a private island resort for an adventurous getaway. From Coney Island to Pulau Ubin, there are many idyllic islands to explore near Singapore. Each has its own unique landscape and activities for you to enjoy, away from the crowded beaches of East Singapore.
Spot wildlife on Pulau Ubin, sunbathe on Lazarus Island, picnic on Saint John’s, dive near the Big and Small Sisters’ Islands, or cycle through vibrant greenery on Coney Island. Embark on your own island adventure, and embrace the natural beauty just outside the city.
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