Friday, November 6, 2015

Trip to Singapore - 4 : Southern Ridges Nature Trail

13 September 2015

The southern ridges consist of 9 Km beautiful track that offers splendid views of Singapore and nature. This place is again not so famous among tourists but being a nature lover who loves to walk in open and green spaces to breathe some fresh air, I was very much attracted towards it.
There are various small nature trails interconnected by bridges each having identity of their own but still they are called as Southern ridges.

Below route that starts with Marang trail and terminates at West coast park. It passes through numerous famous places in sequence below:

Marang Trail à Mount Faber Parkà Henderson waves àHilltop walkàForest walkàAlexandra Archà Hort parkàKent ridge park.

Sequence that I covered as part of my walk is as below (took me 2 hours to cover below 4-5 km track at leisure pace) :
 Marang Trail à Mount Faber Parkà Henderson waves àForest walkàAlexandra Arch

The Marang Trail obtained its name from 
the Marang fruit, more commonly 
known as Johey Oak
There are many entry and exit points. Most famous entry is either through Marang trail or directly starting from Mount Faber Park if you are not interested in taking too many stairs ( Marang to Mount Faber consists of only .8 km but with elevation of 70m) and ending your journey at Alexandra Arch passing through Henderson waves and beautiful forest walk.

I started my trail from Marang trail which is simply exit ‘D’ from Harbour Front MRT station. This trail is less than 1 Km and should take you to an elevation of 70 meters (equivalent of a 24-storey building) at top of Mount Faber which is 2nd highest point in Singapore. It is bit difficult and I was sweating profusely when I reached at the top but the views were worth it. Cable car was starting from this point to take you to Sentosa Insland. But today I was on my mission of visiting southern ridges. 

This sudden elevation is the reason that many people booked cab till Mount Faber and starts their walk from this place.

View of Cable cars on their way to Sentosa Island Via Harbour Cable point

Mount Faber Park. Very Clean. Cars and Tourist
Buses were quite frequent on this track. It has
dedicated shaded place for peddlers.

After capturing some panoramic views and continue my path, I reached Henderson waves, structure not to be missed.
Me posing at Henderson Waves

Various small tracks of Southern ridges and their distinct identity
 It’s the highest pedestrian bridge in Singapore         and constructed in wave like fashion.           It would be difficult for me to further describe it in words so sharing its pictures. Wave forms will be lit from 7 pm -2am every day and looks magnificent. 

View of the city from Henderson Bridge

Continuing on my path and saw numerous paths going in different directions with proper signboards however at 1 or 2 places they were missing so I had to wait until I saw some joggers to inquire the route to forest walk. It was quite easy.

I was very excited once the Forest walk started. It looks amazing. It consists of 1.3 km track of crisscross metallic structure that offers you an unique experience of walking through the forest at a height of 3 to 18 meters from ground. It was descend for me so I didn’t feel tired. This part of the route I enjoyed most and covered with very easily.

1 point to note that I saw most of the people going in opposite direction and it looks to me that that path is also quite famous among locals. Then there is Alexandra Arch that connects to the HortPark but as this point, I took exit and begin to wait for bus for my Hotel at Orchard Road. Lighting hours for Alexandra Arch are  7 pm – 12 am daily when LED lights keep on changing and keep you spellbound.

Alexandra Arch
It is at this location famous B-school SP Jain Institute of management is located having main branch at Mumbai.
I took this exit from Alexandra Arch to take Bus
 from SP Jain School of management.
Finally, I can say this trail is not as difficult as MacRitchie trail and offers numerous entry and exit points. People can directly come by Cab to see the Henderson waves.

Finally, when I completed this track I started dreaming of covering this trail in a rainy season with carrying umbrella and thought how beautiful it will be. Thought not the entire track, but Forest walk is pretty much safe in a rainy season. Also, Forest walk is lighted from 7 pm – 12 am & 5 am – 7 am daily. Seeing this , I came to know this place is more famous for evening and night time walks as compared to morning walks.
This place is worth and every nature lover must visit this to experience bliss especially in a densely populated urban jungle of Singapore.
Also, Henderson waves and Alexandra Arch along with the Forest walk were selected for the competition to seek the best concepts for bridges. Being at such places, one can imagine cultivating greenery and nature is a culture and if people really want they can create gardens and nature friendly places anywhere. Shortage of space is not an excuse for the government to shy away from developing the parks. This is 1 important lesson that every country should learn from Singapore.
For the more information refer the below site literally having all the details one wants to refer before beginning his trail:

If you like to read about my other blog on MacRitchie trail, refer here

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Thursday, November 5, 2015

Trip to Singapore - 3 : MacRitchie Reservoir Trail

11 September 2015
Mac Ritchie Reservoir is nature’s park for those who love the open areas and fresh air and want to appreciate the nature in all its Glory.

Macritchie is not very famous among tourists. It is a place which is generally visited more by regular Singapore citizens or expats working here for several weeks. But, it you are nature enthusiast and wild life lover or practicing for marathon or runner, then you cannot afford to miss this place.

There are numerous beautiful reservoirs that bound Singapore’s nature reserves namely Bedok reservoir, Jurong lake, Pandan reservoir, Serangoon reservoir, Fort canning reservoir but the more famous and bigger are  MacRitchie Reservoir, Lower Peirce Reservoir, Upper Peirce Reservoir and Upper Seletar Reservoir out of which MacRitchie is the oldest and most beautiful one. Macritchie is supplying water to the island even long before British settlement. As a gateway to unspoiled forest and waters, the park is a popular venue for schools and organizations to conduct cross-country events, allowing participants to run through various trails while embracing the wonders of our native biodiversity. The iconic MacRitchie bandstand continues to hold a special place in the hearts of many Singaporeans, and is often used to host performing arts presentations.

For the more information refer the below site literally having all the details one wants to refer before beginning his trail:

I started from Reservoir Park at 11 am and completed 11 km trail at around 3pm. Though I was quite tired but the beautiful sceneries and landscapes and professional runners kept me motivated to complete the trail. And once finished I was rejuvenated like never before. Below are the views as soon as I started my trail. I was mesmerized. This beauty amidst corporate jungle of Singapore is unimaginable.

Either one can start his trail from the main gate from the reservoir park which is having designated parking area, changing clothes area, bath section, restaurants or from the car park at Venus drive. Those interested to see Tree top without much walk can opt for Venus park entrance. Entrance is free.
Reservoir main entrance à Tree Top walk is around 5 km
Venus main entranceà Tree top walk is 3 Km

Tree Top Walk is a  free-standing suspension bridge spanning
Bukit Peirce and Bukit 
Kalang, the two highest points in MacRitchie 

Total length of the walkway is about
250m and its height from the forest is 25m
Since walkway allows only 1 way traffic, the total trail would be 7-11 Kms depending on your entrance. You can also take exit from the middle but those are not having enough signboards and can confuse you and lead you to join main area only after some excursion. Prefer to take any exit in middle only if you are local or well equipped with routes. I was feeling quite tired after 6 Km and then ask one of the guy how to exit in between. He told me 1 way but that was so confusing that I preferred to complete the 11 Km trail.

Once you cross this bridge, then starts the endless series of stairs. I was wondering why they are not ending. 

But once they completed then started the most beautiful part of the Reservoir, walk by the river, nearly around 5 km. Its a paradise for photographers. 

And then finally the last picture the glimpse of which told me that I was near to the point from where I have started. Yes, The feeling of completing it cant be defined in words. Its an experience that Will always stays with me. Also, Forgot to mention that I covered this track alone and even without listening to music but listening to sounds of nature. That was bliss. 

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If you like to read about Southern ridges trail in Singapore, refer here.

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