Managed by Singapore Wildlife Reserves, the Singapore Zoo, River Safari, and Night Safari are located right next to each other on Mandai Lake Road, while the Jurong Bird Park is located further south in Jurong East.
The jungle-inspired landscape of Singapore Zoo certainly does not disappoint, with tall trees and lush shrubs providing a cooling relief from the sweltering Singapore heat. Set across 68 acres of land space, it is truly one of the most well-thought-out and beautifully-designed zoos in the world.
Along with the white tigers, leopards, lions, elephants, white rhinoceros, zebras, kangaroos, sun bears, orang utans, coexist in harmony with other smaller animals like monkeys, wallabies, otters, wolverines, meerkats, komodo dragons, crocodiles, and many other animals that call this place home, there are also new family members from Down Under – koalas! The four of them – Idalia, Pellita, Chan, and Paddle, just arrived here in March 2015 from Australia. So be sure to plan your trip here soon so you can meet these adorable creatures in person!
For families with little children, here’s an extra dash of fun! At the Rainforest Kidzworld, parents can chill down for a bit whilst kids can have fun playing around the water playground, ride the Wild Animal Carousel, or spend time with farmyard animals including ponies, goats and rabbits.
Opening hours: 8.30am – 6pm Admission fee: SGD32 (adult), SGD21 (child)
Running through a 30-acre tropical rainforest, the River Safari was designed with some of the world’s most iconic rivers in mind, including the Mississippi, Congo, Nile, Ganges, Mekong, and Yangtze rivers.
The Amazon River Quest is a short and fun cart ride along an artificial river where you will get to meet close to 30 species of animals that are native to the Amazonian rivers such as jaguars, Brazilian tapirs, red howler monkeys, maned wolves, and giant anteaters. Next, check out the River Safari Quest, a slow boat ride around the Upper Seletar Reservoir. Visitors are treated with scenic views of the waterways, lush landscape, and animals including giraffes, elephants, and birds.
Also located within the compound is the SGD 8.6 million Giant Panda Forest, the largest panda exhibit in Southeast Asia. It is home to two Giant Pandas that are on a 10-year loan from China. Kai Kai, the male panda, likes apples and long naps, while Jia Jia the female one is shy but playful at heart, and enjoys climbing up trees and munching on bamboo while up in the branches. Come and say hello to these cuties!
Opening hours: 8.30am – 6pm Admission fee: SGD28 (adult), SGD18 (child) SGD14 (senior citizen)
The world’s first wildlife park for nocturnal animals, Night Safari is also one of the best night safaris in Asia. All animals are safely contained within a naturalistic enclosure, lit by a dim lighting system that resembles moon lighting so that the nocturnal animals feel like they’re in their natural element. The best way to tour around the park is by getting on the night tram ride that goes on for about 40 minutes. All rides come with a guided tour explaining about each animal’s characteristics, origins, and other fun facts. So you’ll definitely be learning as you are enjoying the view!
The queue for the tram ride can get quite long especially during the Singapore school holidays, but no need to worry as there are four walking trails that you can follow. The Fishing Cat Trail brings you to see smaller animals like the Himalayan tahr, binturong, pangolin, civet, and fishing cat. Along Leopard Trail, you will get to meet a leopard, golden cat, fruit bat, giant flying squirrel, and lions. More exotic wildlife including babirusa, spotted hyenas, and wallabies can be seen along the East Lodge Trail and Wallaby Trail.
Don’t forget to check out the Creatures of the Night Show, where you can watch trained animals do some tricks including picking up rubbish and throwing them in the correct recycle bins. A good message on the importance of recycling, especially for kids. The shows take place at the Amphitheatre at 7.30pm, 8.30pm, 9.30pm and 10.30pm.
Opening hours: 7.30pm – 12mn Admission fee: SGD 42 (adult), SGD 28 (child & senior citizen)
Good times galore at the bird park! This exquisitely landscaped park has six sections – Lory Loft, Waterfall Aviary, Penguin Coast, Wings of Asia, Birdz of Play, and the Breeding & Research Centre. There are over 5000 birds from across 400 species roaming around the park, which has some free-flight aviaries for the birds to soar and swoop overhead.
Be sure to plan ahead if you want to make the most of your visit here. Bird-feeding programs are held daily at 10.30am and 2.30pm, while the Flamingo and Ostrich feedings take place at 1.30pm and 1.40pm on weekends and public holidays. Catch the High Flyer Show at 11am or 3pm and be entertained by the antics of some of the park’s star birds, including cockatoos, pelicans, and hornbills.
Another amazing attraction inside the bird park is the Waterfall Aviary, a 30-metre high artificial waterfall located inside the world’s largest walk-in aviary. Here, not only do you get to meet over 600 free-flying birds including parrots, rollers, yellow-billed stork, and even crested guinea fowls. You can also enjoy an amazing view of the waterfall from the suspension bridge, or climb the walkway up to a few observation decks.
Opening hours: 8.30am – 6pm Admission fee: SGD28 (adult), SGD18 (child & senior citizen)
HOW TO GET THERE BY PUBLIC TRANSPORTATION:
Singapore Zoo, River Safari and Night Safari (80, Mandai Lake Road, Singapore)
Take the MRT to Choa Chua Kang station and get on bus no 927.
Jurong Bird Park (2, Jurong Hill, Singapore)
Take the MRT to Boon Lay station and get on bus no 194 or 251.