Check out our 2020 roundup of our favourite green spaces and parks for kids in Singapore. Because a bit of fresh air is always good for everyone!
Singapore may be hot and humid (and occasionally quite thunderstormy), but it’s also one of the greenest cities on Earth (one of many reasons we love it here!). If your go-to park is feeling a little stale, check out our list of the best parks for kids all around the island — it’s the perfect adventure to keep busy on weekends or over school holidays.
With social distancing measures in place as the fight against COVID-19 continues, Singapore’s gorgeous green spaces provide a welcome respite from being cooped up indoors. Experts say sunlight and heat can kill the virus, not to mention Vitamin D and exercise can help boost immunity! Public parks and playgrounds are thankfully open again, but be sure to visit safedistparks.nparks.gov.sg to see which parks are less crowded and check out our FAQ with Nparks about what is and isn’t allowed!
From treetop walks to stand-up paddleboarding, from ziplining to stellar satay, and of course plenty of monkey spotting, the best parks for kids in Singapore offer heaps of fun for mamas and kiddos alike. Click on the links for our fave parks below:
Bishan-Ang Mo Kio Park
Bukit Batok Nature Park
Changi Beach Park
East Coast Park
Fort Canning Park
Gardens by the Bay
Gardens by the Bay – East
Jurong Lake Gardens
Labrador Nature Reserve
MacRitchie Reservoir Park
Pasir Ris Park
Pasir Ris Town Park
Singapore Botanic Gardens
West Coast Park
Lead image (Jacob Ballas Children’s Garden) by Michell Tam
We’re super lucky to have this gorgeous park literally minutes away from us, making it an easy choice for a fun day out. As one of Singapore’s largest urban parks, it houses several water playgrounds, well-equipped play areas and sand pits, so it’s lovely to splash about and cool down after cycling around or just kicking a football. And there are some great restaurants in the park itself, including a McDonald’s for junkie days. We quite like Grub for casual burgers and all day big breakfasts. Also, with its heavy slant on eco-diversity, there are several initiatives to keep the park as green as possible – and we’ve actually participated in tree planting there a few years ago, and have a young tree with our name on it, making the park even more special for our family. Sometimes it’s the perfect place to just sit down and unwind amid the lush greenery while the kids run amok. It’s probably also the most dog-friendly park on the island with its two huge dog run areas – and there are some gorgeous dogs there, too!
Image by Challenge
There’s so much that I love about this park! For one, it’s dog-friendly (unlike nearby Bukit Timah). It’s also got some decent elevation (for Singapore) so you can hike or run up the steps to the WWII War Memorial and actually feel like you’re getting a workout. It’s otherwise paved and quite stroller-friendly, with a beautiful quarry pond that feels very different from anyplace else that I’ve been on the island. And it’s got great kid bonafides, including plenty of monkey-spotting, and a fantastic playground with bathroom facilities nearby.
Because I literally grew up on that sand, and being there, smelling the sea breeze brings back so many childhood memories of being with my mom and dad. My dad and I used to play this game where we would lay on the sand and try to identify the planes that would fly overhead on their way to Changi Airport. We also used to go fishing there as a family and it’s where I learnt how to hook a worm at the end of the fishing line. Grosses me out now but what a cool thing to do as a kid! Just nearby you can hop onto a ferry to go to Ubin. And so many food options from local fare to a great cuppa flat white at Changi Village!
I personally love Coney Island for how rugged it is! The dry look of the trees and bush give it such a cool autumny charm, although don’t be fooled – it does get pretty humid. Getting there is pretty easy too – take bus 84 from Punggol bus interchange – and there are a few bike shops to choose from for you to rent a bicycle for a ride around the island. The little beaches are great for taking breaks or having picnics, and we noticed there’s a wide variety of colourful birds and bugs to discover there that you won’t normally see on the mainland. Interestingly, there’s also a horse ranch located at the Punggol Promenade, Gallop Stable (you’ll see it when you alight at the bus stop) if the kiddos would like to try a little horseriding!
Hands downs our favourite family-friendly park as there is something to do for everyone! For one we love to bicycle there, and the new Cyclist Park – with its special cycling paths and obstacle courses – has made it even better. Last weekend we cycled through the East Coast Park all the way to the ArtScience Museum, spotting monitor lizards and otters on the way! On Sunday mornings, my husband takes our son to the East Coast Skate Park for lessons with a very cool skater teacher. On a windy day my boys try their luck in a dinghy (small sail boat) at one of the sailing clubs (we like Constant Wind) dotted along the east coast park. You can also rent a Stand-up Paddle Board (SUP) to enjoy the water while getting a work-out! The Sassy Mama team had fun wakeboarding at the Singapore Wake Park where kids as young as 4 are able to join in the fun. And if the kids are still not tired, you can always take them to Marina Cove Playground which is paradise for any child – just make sure you go there early mornings or late afternoons as this playground is not covered! Whatever we do, we always make sure to grab a fresh young coconut at the gorgeously situated Hawker Centre overlooking the ocean to replenish our depleted minerals on a hot day.
Mamas love this centrally-located park for the wide open spaces and the hills (feel the burn as you push the pram uphill), kiddies love the Battle Box – the former headquarters of the British military and an underground, tunnel-filled exploration wonderland, while everyone loves to picnic on the grass! The 2019 opening of Jubilee Park Playground (handily right next door to the Fort Canning MRT Station) has only boosted Fort Canning’s bonafides.
Our family loves Gardens by The Bay. It’s easy to access with its own MRT stop, and offers loads of fun for kids but also for out of town visitors. Any visit to Gardens by the Bay with our kids invariably starts with the water playground. Such a wonderful way to cool down in the Singapore heat. It is usually followed by an hour or two of play in the adjacent playgrounds which provide endless fun for kids. We love taking visitors through the the Super Tree Grove and then the domes. The domes have the most stunning architecture and plant collection and offer a nice break from the heat. We usually end up at Satay by the Bay for coconuts and local food before heading back home.
We love the access to this beautiful (and less crowded) side of Gardens by the Bay. Perfect for bike rides and spontaneous picnics with the littles, there’s also plenty of cover for when it pours, out of nowhere – happens so very often! Whether it’s kiddie yoga lessons, scooting around or just spotting otters cross the river, there’s never a dull moment here. Walk further and you cross Marina Barrage to Satay by the Bay for a quick and easy dinner (Don’t miss the Turkish stall!) Avid photographer? The east side of the park, gives you the most gorgeous shots of our city and its famous landscape too.
This oft-forgotten park is full of surprises. It is lovely to stroll around the many themed gardens and our kids love trying to catch a glimpse of butterflies in the Butterfly Garden, exploring the edible garden for humungous luffas or growing aubergines and sniffing out for mint and lime. There is a play area and sandpit as well as plenty of space to use scooters, and we’re big fans of the Nature PlayGarden that opened in 2019 (although there’s not much shade so bring hats and sunscreen!). If all the greenery has inspired you to make your own balcony more botanical there is a large gardening shed with herbs and plants on sale as well as monthly gardening events. If you are feeling adventurous, Hort Park actually connects to Mount Faber, Kent Ridge and beyond so it is the perfect starting point for a long walk fringed with greenery throughout and often above Singapore.
Jurong Lake Gardens in the heartlands is situated around the beautiful Jurong Lake (where you may spot otters). This huge park encourages families to explore nature (something we at Sassy Mama are 100% for!). The Lakeside Garden Park comprises a whopping 53 hectares of the 90-hectare park (the rest will be opening from 2021 onwards). Lakeside is centred upon the concept of “Biophilia”, our innate emotional connection with nature (much like the Nature Playgarden at Hortpark). The Forest Ramble area is officially for kids ages 5- 12 years, but younger kids will have fun at the playground and there’s a water and sand play park as well as a cafe. Our faves are the trampolines, rope courses and adventure bridges!
I’m loyal to Labrador Park since it’s literally at my doorstep. We’ve spent many a Sunday scooting down the boardwalk which connects our home to the park and once there, time really flies!
The park is right by the water so there’s almost always a pleasant sea breeze, which is a huge plus in sunny Singapore. A park with not one but two playgrounds, a sandpit, outdoor workout stations, lawns and a maze in which the kids can chase each other….what’s not to love?! We’ve had countless running races, picnics, boat sighting fun and relaxed Sunday evenings there and occasionally, we’ve even been greeted by a family of peacocks! Bonus points for even having its own MRT stop!
Read more: Ultimate Guide to Labrador Park with Kids
Still hard to believe there is this mass expanse of parkland in the heart of Singapore. We don’t go often but when we do everyone in my family – especially my husband – loves it. It’s just so green, so lush and a nature lover’s dream. Covering 12-hectres surrounding a reservoir, the MacRitchie Reservoir is a great spot for family walks. When we go, my kids love to hike over to the TreeTop Walk, a 250 meter suspended pathway between the 2 highest points in MacRitchie, Bukit Peirce and Bukit Kalan. At the TreeTop Walk’s highest point, you’ll be 25 meters above the ground – my kids are a bit older and they love getting that adrenalin rush of being that far off the ground. It’s a good long walk and needs to be done early morning to avoid the midday heat. It’s also nice that there’s a cafe on site so you can cool off with a refreshing coconut afterwards. Great way to tire them out!
There is so much to love about Marina Barrage – the dam with a park on its rooftop (yep you read that right). First off, it’s got to be one of the breeziest spots in Singapore, which in turn makes it a mecca for kite-flying. The large lawns are perfect for picnics and for kids with kites, while water babies can cool off in the children’s water play area. And Insta-devotees are sure to love the stupendous views of Marina Bay and our sparkling Singapore skyline.
Pasir Ris Park is not as long as East Coast Park by any measure but the fact that it’s by the beach makes it a great alternative! My favourite activity there is just to cycle around with music in my ears. With kids in tow, there’s plenty to entertain them in the form of a large playground with swings, slides, hills, a bridge, a mini maze and more. There are also opportunities for camping, bird watching and nature walks along a mangrove boardwalk, and a kitchen garden where kids may get inspired to grow their own herbs & veggies at home! It’s also a great place for your kids to try their hand at horseback riding at Gallop Stables. And of course, you’d want to feed those hungry mouths after a fun day out at the park and you can do that at any of the restaurants in the park itself – or just book a BBQ pit and do it yourself!
Image by Michell Tam
Located right next to Pasir Ris Park (literally, just across the street), Pasir Ris Town Park is much more subtle and has a very different vibe. The giant fish pond is the biggest highlight, my kids enjoy chilling next to the water and watching the pros fishing BIG fishes. But the funnest part is definitely the side pond where kids can learn and practice fishing, and my young one LOVES the kiddy place for fish feeding and scooping!
Image by Michell Tam
There’s about 160 reasons why I love Singapore’s Botanical Gardens to match the 160 years it has already been around to grow and mature. Though its longevity can be seen everywhere from its enormous grandfather trees to its colonial buildings, it also benefits from Singapore’s characteristic ever-evolving approach. We love the Learning Forest that features a network of boardwalks and elevated walkways allowing visitors to explore habitats ranging from a freshwater forest wetland to a lowland rainforest. Your older kids can learn about freshwater forest wetland ecosystems at the Keppel Discovery Wetlands and littles can marvel amongst a collection of some of the tallest tree species in Southeast Asia!
The botanics (a UNESCO World heritage site) stretches over a huge area and so you can get lost ( in a wonderful way) within. Each time I visit I tend to find something more to explore. With kids my favourites are the Jacob Ballas Children’s Garden with its cheeky squirts fountains and treehouse slide. For visitors I’m always so proud to show them the exquisite orchid garden or pay a visit to one of the fab restaurants or coffee shops. In 2020 the Botanic Gardens will increase by more than 10% when the full Gallop Extension opens — with everything from a “forest bath” to a nature-inspired playground, it’s sure to be a hit.
For me, my favourite walk is around Swan Lake. It was my go-to walk when I had a newborn, as you can park easily and it’s close enough to my house to not panic if there’s a sudden happy explosion or breastfeeding crisis! I would often go early and sip on a cold smoothie, smile at the baby and smugly meander past all the hot sweaty mamas doing their boot camps! It’s so magical and feels so far removed from city life.
Image by Irina Nilsson Photography
Overlooking the sea, West Coast Park near Clementi is defo my fav!
The playground area is one of the biggest and best in Singapore: Zip lines, climbing frames, swings — it’s great for all ages. The part I love the most is actually the huge amount of paths around the park – we love taking the kids and their scooters or their Ezy Rollers for a good run around! I can run alongside them! There is also a great place to hire bikes, or go-karts and this is a big hit in our family. Also Parkrun operates a 5k there every Saturday morning. Shame there is only a McDonalds there for F&B, though!