Our Singapore very own Botanic Gardens is declared as a UNESCO World Heritage Site!
This good news was announced on 4 July 2015 and totally came just in time as a special memorable gift to Singapore’s Jubilee Celebration for her 50th birthday!
Singapore, this little red dot on the world map, which could hardly be seen, has come so far and there is no other tropical botanic garden on the Unesco Heritage list, making this the first! I can’t contain my joy and pride 🙂 I love you Singapore!
Last week during the long Hari Raya weekend holidays, we brought the kids out with the grandparents to Singapore Botanic Gardens. This is the second nature place that we go for 2 weeks running and I am hoping to maintain such frequency for our weekly nature trip.
If you have been to Singapore Botanic Gardens, you would know that it is a very huge place consisting of 3 core areas in the expensive land at the outskirts of Orchard Road. This is a favourite place for walks, orchestra performance, family outings with locals and tourists alike. We parked near the Ginger Garden and walked to the National Orchid Garden. There is free admission now till 10 August for the celebration of being on Unesco Heritage Site list as well as the Jubilee Celebration.
This greeted us upon entering to the National Orchid Garden.
Do you know that Orchid is Singapore’s national flower? It always amazes me that we have such a perfect flower to symbolize Singapore. Orchids are so beautiful and easy to care for. And in this National Orchid Garden, there are over 1000 species and 2000 hybrids!
A variety of purple orchids
The Cool House mimics a tropical highland cloud forest, where naturalistic man-made trees and rocks are draped with a profusion of spectacular cool-growing orchids, carnivorous plants and other cool-growing plants. The orchid species in the cool house are grouped based on their origin, either from the Old World (mainly Asia and Africa) or the New World (mainly Central and South America). (Source from here)
We found some pitcher plants and information on them
Does this look like bananas?
Celebrity Orchid Garden
This garden acknowledges the contribution of many celebrities around the world by naming orchid hybrids after them. We see Jackie Chan, Shah Rukh Khan, Bindi Irwin, Bae Yong Joon and Stephanie Sun among others. And Missy 10 and I took a photo with Stephanie Sun’s orchid hybrid.
We saw a sun dial. There was not much sunlight in the morning and hence we could not exactly see how it will show time.
VIP Orchid Garden
In this garden, there is a special VIP Orchid Garden where presidents, princes and princesses have an orchid hybrid name after them. This is for promoting good will and fostering closer ties between Singapore and other nations. We have seen Margaret Thatcher, Zhu Rongji, The Duch and Duchess of Cambridge among many others.
Papilionanda William Catherine
We tried to find our founding father’s orchid, Aranda Lee Kuan Yew and his wife’s orchid Vanda Kwa Geok Choo, but could not see it in this garden to our disappointment. So, I found these 2 photos from the nparks fact sheet to make this post complete!
Ah.. I have not mentioned our National Flower Vanda Miss Joaquim which is now renamed as Papilionanthe Miss Joaquim. Seriously, we didn’t see this flower in the garden, we probably had missed it with the array of orchids everywhere we walked. This flower was named as National Flower of Singapore in 1981.
This orchid is a hybrid between Papilionanthe hookeriana and Papilionanthe teres (previously known as Vanda hookeriana and Vanda teres respectively). It is hardy and free flowering. Described by the first Director, Mr H.N. Ridley in 1893, this was the first orchid hybrid to be described from Singapore. Ridley named the plant after Ms Agnes Joaquim, in whose garden the hybrid originated. (Source)
Papilionanthe Miss Joaquim
It took us a morning of 2 hours walk around the National Orchid Garden. Although we took some picnic mats and ball intending to sit and relax, we decided to head off for late breakfast at Tea Garden Mac Donald’s nearby. There are many cafes and restaurants in the Singapore Botanic Gardens to check out but with hungry stomachs and the sun getting hotter, we decided to come back to this place another day. It is simply to big to visit in a day with so many things to see. We haven’t revisit the Jacob Ballas Children’s Garden, the Swan Lake, Ginger Garden and many more.
More information on Singapore Botanic Gardens (SBG):
Opening Hours for SBG – 5 am to 12 midnight daily
Opening Hours for National Orchid Garden – 8.30 am to 7 pm daily (last entry at 6pm)
Admission Fee for SBG – Free
Admission Fee for National Orchid Garden –
Adults – $5.00, Students – $1.00, Senior Citizens (60years and above) – $1.00, Children (below 12 yo) – Free
Website – click here
Location – click here