So there’s this inside joke right, that people who live in Jurong might as well say they live in Malaysia “because it’s so far away”. But the joke’s on those who aren’t, because Jurong is so much more than an overlooked neighbourhood. And besides, nowhere is too far if you’re up for an urban exploration!
Did you know that Jurong actually has quite a fascinating history? It was nothing but a swath of swamps, jungles and small fishing villages before it became what it is now. In fact, Jurong has been touted as “an outstanding example of urban planning and development in Singapore”. And after visiting Jurong Lake Garden, I can see why.
We may not have the Punggol Lone Tree anymore, but we now have this.
When this place first opened, I saw a lot of people posting images on Instagram. Some of the images were really cool, and that’s what made me want to head down and present my own take on it. When I got there, I realised it’s actually even better than what I saw on social media!
It spans across 90 hectares (the total size including Chinese Garden and Japanese Garden, which have yet to reopen) and is the third and newest of Singapore’s national gardens – the other two being the Singapore Botanic Gardens and Gardens By The Bay.
Jurong Lake Gardens is home to a wide variety of flora, fauna and green spaces.
If you’re walking in from Lakeside, you’ll quickly find yourself in awe at nature and all of its glory just like I did. It’s the ideal playground for both nature lovers and photographers (hobbyists or otherwise). The first attraction you’ll find after walking in is the boardwalk, which extends out into the lake and provides a pretty skyline view of the neighbourhood. If you’re lucky, you might even catch a glimpse of hornbills and otters (I didn’t, unfortunately!).
There’s a bird hide over at the Grasslands so that you can observe grassland birds without alarming them.
Another attraction I loved was the Grasslands area. It’s dominated by tall grasses and reminds me of the savannahs in Lion King! Oh, and by the way, many people think it’s a lalang field. But it’s not! Those tall grasses, which are an important habitat for small birds, are from the Pennisetum family (that’s what it says on the NParks website!).
I love shooting puddle shots (that’s Fusion Spoon in the background).
Also, if you’re hungry and didn’t bring any snacks, there’s a convenient little cafe called Fusion Spoon where you can soothe your rumbling tummy. Get your lunch settled here and keep going!
I went late pretty late because I completely underestimated the size of this place. I was running out of time because it was about to get dark. But that’s when I found this gem of a spot in the Gardens.
Stay till at least 7:30pm to experience this at Rasau Walk.
It was a pretty unforgettable moment for me. As I was walking towards Rasau Walk, the sun was setting. And that’s when the pathway started “glowing”. It was so cool and magical, I felt like I was in a movie. Stay a little longer and watch as the glowing pathway literally provides light in the dark. It’s really beautiful. Use your phone or camera’s night mode and you’ll get a great shot!
While you’re busy looking for the perfect shot, don’t forget to enjoy the process of actually exploring the place and seizing the moment. It’s always good to soak in what Mother Nature has to offer and appreciate it.
I can’t wait to go back to Jurong Lake Gardens.