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Sassy Mama Field Trip: Mangrove Heaven at Sungei Buloh Wetlands Reserve

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Wild crocodiles spotted in Singapore!

*This article was last updated on 12 January 2018
Sungei Buloh Wetland Reserve is one of those places we love to visit multiple times – there’s no way of getting bored! It is a spot that I also frequently recommend to friends and family who pass through town, as it is a jewel of an ecosystem. In the 19th century, mangroves were found all along the coastline of Singapore, but were cleared for industry and housing. Today, forests of mangroves can only be found on offshore islands and nature reserves.

sungei buloh wetland reserve common redshank

Of the 70 species of mangrove found in the world, 31 can be found in Singapore, and 27 in Sungei Buloh Wetland Reserve alone. These diverse species are home to a plethora of insects, amphibians, fishes, birds, and mammals. My preschooler and I, have taken to birdwatching upon moving to Singapore, and we have spotted exotic migratory birds like whimbrels, plovers, resident herons and sunbirds here.

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On our most recent visit, we saw mudskippers, bizarre fish whose eyes protrude from the water and “skip” along the mudflats, and even managed to follow, from afar, an estuarine crocodile from sea to inland. In all our visits, we have yet to catch sight of a Malayan water monitor lizard, which can grow up to 6 feet long, or a smooth-coated otter, which are widespread along the Johor Straits. Soon, we hope!

Sungei Buloh has several walking trails, including Route 1 (3 kilometers), Route 2 (5 kilometers, and includes the longest boardwalk), and Route 3 (7 kilometers). The 500-meter long Mangrove Boardwalk, which winds its way through the mangrove trees, is just perfect for my daughter who can hike a little over a mile comfortably before asking to be carried. The Boardwalk is also stroller- and wheelchair-friendly.

Sunghei Buloh Wetland_4

Route 1 is also suitable for young children, as it’s a level gravel trail. In fact, the photographs here were taken not far from Platform 2, on the banks of Sungei Bilabong Buloh near Pulau Buloh, on Route 1.

All the details
Getting There: Easily accessible by car with carparks at the entrance. A bus stop, located outside the entrance on Kranji Way, is served by bus No. 925.
How much: Free
Opening Hours: Daily from 7am to 7pm
Tips: Don’t forget sunscreen, a hat, sunglasses, an umbrella, a water bottle, and a packed lunch if you plan to walk the longer trails.

Volunteers lead free guided walks every Saturday at 9:30am (expect on public holidays and the eves of public holidays). Each walk is also limited to a maximum of 20 people and registration is required.

Sungei Buloh Wetland Reserve
Kranji Way entrance: 60 Kranji Way, Singapore 739453. Neo Tiew entrance: 301 Neo Tiew Crescent, Singapore 718925. Tel: (+65) 6794 1401 or email [email protected]www.sbwr.org.sg

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