Pulau Ubin, A Nature Respite – Singapore

We sometimes get tired of the city specially when we both work and live there. But this isn’t the case for Singapore, they have several beautiful respite for their city dwellers. One of them is Pulau Ubin, a small island in the north east side, of which the name literally means ‘Granite Island’ in Malay.

One Saturday we were lazing around, thinking where to go, when we suddenly noticed that the sky was clear and apparently haze-free! We immediately agreed to head off and see Pulau Ubin. Luckily, there’s a direct bus from our place going to the ferry terminal where bumboats are waiting to bring you to the island.



As we left a bit late, we arrived the ferry terminal in time for lunch. There’s a hawker center (Singapore’s version of foodcourt) and a lot of other eating places  in the area. To ensure we have enough energy to explore the island, we had the usual hainanese chicken and roasted pork with rice for lunch.



It was a heavy lunch, so before we feel sleepy, we walked down to the ferry terminal and jump into the next available bumboat. The ride only took us 10 minutes. Upon docking we were welcomed by numerous bike rental shops. They offer several types and for every riders need, the price is fixed as well for whole day use.



You would probably need a whole day to be able to cover big part of the island. In our case we only visited the Chek Jawa wetlands and some viewing points due to our limited time.



We rented a bike as most of the visitors do, but being someone who is admittedly not so active and  in the best shape, I had difficulty going uphill plus it’s a rough road. So whenever I am faced with an uphill trail, I would go down and push my bike (seriously, I need to exercise!). But for those who have the same dilemma as me, don’t be disheartened, you may take a van (villagers call it taxi) as an alternative.



After 45 minutes of riding, walking and some rest in between, we reached the entrance to the wetlands. Bikes are not allowed inside so you need to park outside the gate. You won’t run out of space to park your bike as they have allocated enough.


When we saw the beautiful views around the wetlands, our exhaustion was replaced with excitement and much appreciation on how this island has been preserved and remained unspoilt.



This is undoubtedly a different side of Singapore’s bustling city.


Tip #1 Plan to arrive early in the morning so you will have enough time to go around – even with just walking.

Tip #2 Bike rental fee is fixed (8am-6pm), so you’ll have your money’s worth if you are able to maximize the time.

Tip #3 Bring sunblock and mosquito repellant, although these are available in the island, it’s still best to be ready in case they run out of stocks! Extra shirts, as you know Singapore is a tropical country.

Tip #4 Don’t forget to bring your zoom lens (if you have any). There are a lot of long range views that you don’t want to miss capturing.

Tip# 5 Bring extra coins as vendo machines for cold drinks are available in the island.


Other photo ops in along the road:



How to reach Pulau Ubin:

Nearest MRT Station: Pasir Ris (East West Line)

There are two bus options from Pasir Ris MRT to Changi Village Bus Terminal. Both could take up to 30 minutes.

  1. From Pasir Ris MRT station walk towards bus stop – Pasir Ris Drive 1, before Pasir Ris Central (B77039), take Bus 109 and alight at Changi Village Terminal. Walk approximately 150 meters to Changi Point Ferry Terminal.
  2. From Pasir Ris MRT station walk towards bus stop – Pasir Ris Central, opposite Pasir Ris Town Park (B77171), take Bus 89 and alight at Telok Paku Road, before Singapore Avaition Academy (B99181). Walk approximately 350 meters to Changi Ferry Terminal.

Take the next available bumboat – 12 persons per boat. Fare is $3.00 per way (adult/child). Operating hours is 6:00am to 8:00pm.

Admission in Pulau Ubin is FREE