Skip to main content

Advertisement

Advertisement

Nature-inspired playground, Botanical Art Gallery among latest additions to open at Singapore Botanic Gardens

SINGAPORE — A nature-themed playground and a new Botanical Art Gallery are among the new features that visitors may look forward to on their next visit to the Singapore Botanic Gardens.

Nature-inspired playground, Botanical Art Gallery among latest additions to open at Singapore Botanic Gardens

The Como Adventure Grove, one of the new features at the Singapore Botanic Gardens Gallop Extension.

  • New features have been added to the Gallop Extension of Singapore Botanic Gardens
  • Children will get to play in a nature-inspired playground
  • Singapore’s oldest-surviving black-and-white bungalow will now feature interactive displays of the country’s forest ecosystems
  • Another colonial-era bungalow now houses the new Botanical Art Gallery

 

SINGAPORE — A nature-themed playground and a new Botanical Art Gallery are among the new features that visitors may look forward to on their next visit to the Singapore Botanic Gardens.

On Saturday (March 13), Deputy Prime Minister Heng Swee Keat and National Development Minister Desmond Lee participated in the opening event of the latest additions, which are in the gardens’ Gallop Extension. The space also includes an interactive forest display.

The additions come two years after an arboretum for the dipterocarps tropical tree and a hiking trail were unveiled at the 8ha extension to the gardens along Gallop Road and Tyersall Avenue.

The opening of the features, which make up about 5ha of the Gallop Extension, were delayed by a year partly due to the Covid-19 pandemic that restricted construction activity.

During a media preview on Friday, Dr Tan Puay Yok, the group director of Singapore Botanic Gardens, said that features at the Gallop Extension are part of the island’s broader “City in Nature” plan to bring Singaporeans closer to nature and educate them on the importance of conservation.

NATURE-THEMED PLAYGROUND

From Saturday, children visiting the gardens will get to see the Como Adventure Grove, a playground inspired by plants in the gardens.

They will be able to climb over the spikes of a structure resembling the cempedak fruit, and bounce on a gigantic red pod modelled after saga seeds.

There is also a rope course structured after the drooping branches of the Weeping Fig plant for children to climb.

FOREST DISCOVERY CENTRE AND ART GALLERY

Two black-and-white colonial bungalows on the grounds will be converted into an interactive display space on forest ecosystems in Singapore and a Botanical Art Gallery respectively.

Both bungalows were designed by Regent Alfred John Bidwell, the architect of Raffles Hotel and other colonial-era buildings around Singapore.

The bungalows were last occupied by the French Embassy and its ambassador in 1999 before being returned to the state.

Gallop House No 5, which was built in 1898 and is the oldest surviving black-and-white bungalow in Singapore, will now house the Forest Discovery Centre @ OCBC Arboretum.

The centre will showcase interactive displays of various forest ecosystems in Singapore such as the tropical rainforest and mangrove forest.

Visitors making their way through the bungalow will get to hear recordings of animals found in these habitats.

They may also learn how nocturnal animals in Singapore such as the Malayan Porcupine were captured on camera through camera traps, where the lenses are triggered to take photos when they sense activity.

The second bungalow, Gallop House No 7 built in 1906, has been converted into a Botanical Art Gallery featuring Singapore’s first permanent display of botanical art. This includes paintings, sketches and line drawings from the gardens’ collection.

Among some of the artwork on display includes an 1890 painting of the Phaius tankervilleae orchid, the oldest-dated painting in the gardens’ collection.

It also has on display watercolor illustrations of locally extinct plant species, although Dr Michele Rodda, the gallery’s curator, said that the gardens will update the exhibition if these species are rediscovered in Singapore.

For children inspired by the paintings on display, there is an activity room on the second level of the gallery for them to try their hand at sketching different parts of plants.

The gallery will be refreshed with new displays every six months, Dr Rodda said.

The Gallop Extension is open to the public from 5am to midnight daily.

The Forest Discovery Centre is open from 9am to 6pm daily, except on every last Monday of the month and public holidays. The Botanical Art Gallery is open from 9am to 6pm daily, except on every last Thursday of the month and public holidays.

CLARIFICATION: An earlier version of this story had stated that Gallop House No 5 is the oldest surviving colonial-era bungalow in Singapore. NParks has clarified that Gallop House No 5 is the oldest surviving black-and-white bungalow in Singapore. The oldest surviving colonial-era bungalow is Burkill Hall at Singapore Botanic Gardens.

Related topics

Singapore Botanic Gardens Gallop Extension Forest Discovery Centre conservation children

Read more of the latest in

Advertisement

Popular

Advertisement

Stay in the know. Anytime. Anywhere.

Subscribe to get daily news updates, insights and must reads delivered straight to your inbox.

By clicking subscribe, I agree for my personal data to be used to send me TODAY newsletters, promotional offers and for research and analysis.

Aa