Doing a round the world trip and just managed to get an unexpected week in Singapore - we arrive in tomorrow! However, we are not city people and prefer countryside, mountains and beaches, so would be happy to see Singapore in a day and then head out for 5-6 days somewhere else reasonably close. Which way do we head? (Budget is limited, so we'd need to bus or train it out of the city, rather than fly).
#1 Markontheroad has been a member since 23/1/2010. Posts: 1
Ive never spent more than 3 days at a time in Singapore so cant say much but a friend of mine lived there for a few years and told me a little.
About 25% on singapores' land area is forest and nature reserves - all reserves are easy to get to with buses. She said for an unusual 'trek' you can do the Southern Ridges Walk which is something like 9km of man made walkways and 4 large parks, in the hills and pockets of forest/jungle but also parts of the city interjecting she said its quite surreal at times - can be a very interesting and relaxing way to spend 4+ hours (if you take it easy) without leaving the city. I found this on it http://wikitravel.org/en/Southern_Ridges_Walk
I know you can get to Bintan in Indonesia by ferry (about 50-60 minute trip) its in the Riua Islands, its kind of built up though, and quite upmarket most of the time but also alot of cheaper places to stay around the group of islands. She used to spend week/2 week breaks there from the city.
Its very easy by bus or train to go into peninsular malaysia, only takes 5 hours to reach all Kuala Lumpur, so its all very accessible.
Singapore is very developed, but there are some parks and nature reserves left. The biggest is Bukit Timah Park. You'll likely see monkeys there. Here's an article about "green spots" in Singapore:
It's easy to hop on the bus and head north into Malaysia. Kuala Lumpur is also a big, modern city. The Cameron Highlands area near there might appeal to you -- forest walks, tea plantations, etc. in a cooler mountain area north of the city. You might like Melaka too -- it's still a city, but more laid back than Singapore or Kuala Lumpur and has lots of small historic sites to visit.
places within Singapore other than those 3 in the Travelfish feature: WildSingapore
(there are more, but sealed off within huge military training areas, including many of the fishing, camping & durian-picking spots my parents' generation used to enjoy).
if you are into biodiversity, consider:
Chek Jawa (on Pulau Ubin) - see here & here
Reef Walk (depends on low tide timings) - see here
Bukit Timah Nature Reserve mentioned in the feature - the trails that diverge from the main route to the summit are quieter & more interesting (e.g. marked in green on this map.
Southern Ridges mentioned in #2 - see here; for background on (mostly WW2-related) history see here & here
for Malaysia, apart from Cameron Highlands there's also Fraser's Hill (birdwatching & walking trails), Endau Rompin National Park & Taman Negara.
Based on your interests, definitely recommend Cameron Highlands. Best to go on weekdays as it will be less packed.
For beaches, you can head to the East Coast islands. By bus, it's a tiring journey. But nowadays Fireflyz flies to nearby areas. So from there, just take a taxi to the jetty.
Pulau Ubin in Singapore is also worth a visit. There is a mangrove boardwalk area which you can explore and the view is great!
But I definitely feel you can't see Singapore in a day. Give it 2-3 days at least!