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East Coast Park
Photograph: Situ Gupta/Shutterstock

The ultimate guide to Marine Parade and East Coast Park

There's more to Marine Parade than East Coast Park

By Cam Khalid
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When one thinks of Marine Parade, one's drawn to the soothing sounds of crashing waves at East Coast Park. But hidden in the shadows of the popular beach and next-door neighbour Katong are many hidden gems. A buffer between the central and east regions of Singapore, Marine Parade consists of housing flats that were built in the 1970s after the reclamation of the island's east coast.

Today, it's home to the newly revamped Marine Parade Central Market and Food Centre, the seven-storey shopping mall Parkway Parade, and the stunning Marine Parade Community Building which looks like a piece of art.

RECOMMENDED: Ultimate guide to Singapore's neighbourhoods and the ultimate guide to Katong and Joo Chiat

Do

East Coast Park
Photograph: Situ Gupta/Shutterstock

East Coast Park

Attractions Beaches Marine Parade

However hot and humid Singapore gets, there's always a light breeze blowing at East Coast Beach. Popular with literally everyone, this 15-kilometre stretch is perfect for an early morning cycle, evening jog, or even a moment of quiet contemplation at Bedok Jetty. The swaying coconut palms, Casuarinas, and Ketapangs also make ace shelters for a seaside picnic under the sun. Otherwise, there are numerous picnic tables and barbecue pits to rent for your weekend cookout.

Marine Cove Playground
Photograph: Hafizullahyatim/Shutterstock

Marine Cove Playground

Things to do Marine Parade

With kid-friendly restaurants and a beachfront setting, Marina Cove Playground makes a great spot for a family day out. This 3,500-square-foot playground is home to all manners of swings and slides. Older kids can scale up the wobbly net climbing courses at a three-storey play structure aptly modelled after a lighthouse. For those with toddlers in tow, steer them over to the merry-go-round and grass maze. The super-inclusive playground also has wheelchair-friendly play areas.

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Xtreme SkatePark
Photograph: TheX Contents/Flickr

Xtreme SkatePark

Things to do Bedok

If you want to channel your inner Tony Hawk by the sea, then Xtreme SkatePark will suit you well. This all-inclusive, 1.4-hectare skate park is designed to fit into the beach setting and has areas for both novices and pros. It's decked with a combo bowl, a vertical bowl, and a street course featuring a mix of obstacles for skaters to nail their flips, grinds, and other gravity-defying tricks. Not only for skater boys (and girls), the park also welcomes BMX enthusiasts and their two-wheelers.

Singapore Wake Park
Photo: Lionel Ng

Singapore Wake Park

Sport and fitness Bedok

If you're looking to hone your wakeboarding or water skiing skills, make a splash at Singapore Wake Park – it's the only cable-ski park to do so. The park has three cable systems: beginner, intermediate and full-sized ones that cater to all levels, children included. The first two are operator-controlled and allow one rider at a time to ensure newbies master their first experience balancing on the board – it’s not as easy as it looks. All equipment, such as kneeboards, wakeboards, helmets, and vests, are provided. For some post-workout fuelling, head over to the on-site café Coastal Rhythm for a fusion of local and Western favourites like chicken tikka pizza, and battered otah.

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Marine Parade Library
Photograph: Arnage/Flickr

Marine Parade Library

Things to do Literary events Marine Parade

Did you know that Marine Parade Library is the first one to be built on reclaimed land? It's also the only library with a mezzanine level, where books for teens and young adults, as well as graphic novels, line its many shelves. There's also a dedicated kids' section on the second level, where the lil' ones are free to read, learn and play (quietly). Adults will love the third level as genres here run a gamut, ranging from food to music, and even literary classics. No matter which level you're on, the book repository has plenty of cosy seats to get stuck in – even those at Café Galilee on the ground floor.

The stunning structure also houses the Marine Parade Community Centre, and local theatre company The Necessary Stage.

Eat

Char Kway Teow
Photograph: Ariyani Tedjo/Shutterstock

Marine Parade Central Market and Food Centre

Restaurants Hawker Marine Parade

Out with the old, and in with the new – the hawker centre reopens in 2019 after a major facelift. It's now brighter, airy, spacious, and decked with washrooms and intelligent tray return systems. Many of its previous tenants such as Apollo Fresh Cockle Fried Kway Teow, Yok Mari Yok Nasi Padang, and Neptune Hong Kong Dim Sum have returned to dish out their crowd favourites which sets you back no more than a fiver. Other worthy mentions include D’Authentic Nasi Lemak's signature dish complete with moreish sambal, crispy chicken wing, fried fish, fried egg, and ikan bilis ($3.50), and Aziza Putu Piring's steamed rice flour cakes which comes with different fillings like gula Melaka, durian, and Nutella ($2.70 for three).

Jumbo Seafood
Photograph: Jumbo Seafood

Jumbo Seafood

Restaurants Seafood Bedok

As it fitting for its name, Jumbo is arguably one of the biggest names in the business – having expanded regionally to China, Thailand, Taiwan and Vietnam, with more to come. The seafood joint's been serving chilli crabs (from $88/kg) at its birthplace, East Coast Park, since 1987 and has long been a favourite of many. The reason for its popularity has to be its choice of crabs – they’re all extremely meaty. Its sauce is pretty unique, too, deploying ground peanuts for an added crunch. Other crowd favourites include the salted egg prawns (from $24) wok-fried in a thick, salted egg sauce, and the plump, juicy scallops wrapped in a fragrant yam ring (from $20). 

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PS.Cafe by the Sea
Photograph: PS.Cafe

PS.Cafe by the Sea

Restaurants Bedok

PS.Cafe will have you dreaming of your next tropical holiday with its new spacious, airy, and naturally-lit outlet complete with the sounds of gentle waves crashing and the calls of distant seagulls spilling from its speakers. And with its new waterfront location comes an exclusive seafood-focused menu: chargrilled octopus ($21), where pork is swapped for the tender octopus in a char siew-inspired dish; lemongrass mussel and clam spaghetti ($29.50); Singapore chilli crab and prawns ($32) served with mantou and fried rice; and the hearty, spicy chorizo and calamari stew ($30) served with bread to mop up all the sauce. There’s also a newly launched Junior Menu for families to grab a bite after a day out at the beach.

Sandbank
Photograph: Sandbank/ Facebook

SandBank

Restaurants Cafés Marine Parade

Sandbank is big on family-fun, and it shows – the casual diner has a 15-metre plunge pool that spans the front of the outlet. However, due to safety guidelines, it remains temporarily closed. Food-wise, the family-friendly resto whips up handmade pizzas in a variety of flavours like chilli crab meat ($22), pasta like the traditional bolognese ($18), as well as chargrilled meats and seafood, cooked in an open kitchen. For something light, opt for the freshly-baked bread from its in-house bakery. It also offers a kids' menu, kids-friendly utensils, and baby high chairs – it even has a baby changing station for convenience's sake

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barbecue sambal stingray, East Coast Lagoon Food Village
Photograph: PrettyKateMachine/Flickr

East Coast Lagoon Food Village

Restaurants Hawker Bedok

Nothing beats dining by the beach. After a dip in the sea and sand, show off your brand new tan at the East Coast Lagoon Food Village for some piping hot street nosh. The food centre is big on barbecued seafood and local fare such as barbecued sambal stingray, chili crab, satay, mee goreng, and popiah, but there are plenty of stalls serving up specialty dishes – hawker style – if you're looking for alternatives. Keep an eye on your food – you don't want them swept off the table by the strong evening winds.

Drink

Georges Beach Club
Photograph: Georges Beach Club

Georges Beach Club

Bars and pubs Marine Parade

This humble East Coast beach club is filled with a rustic ambience that oozes plenty of good vibes. Reunite the crew for happy hour between 3pm and 8pm, and have a relaxing, post-work catch-up over pints of ice-cold beers (from $7.20), classic cocktails such as the old fashioned whisky (from $10.40) and Long Island ice tea (from $12), and various housepour wines and spirits. If you're feeling peckish, its also got Western grub such as the beef burger ($20.90), and beer-battered fish and chips ($15.90) on the menu. But brace yourself for an influx of football fans marching into the bar when it turns into a proper man-cave loaded with screenings of footie and rugby games.

Patro's
Photograph: Patro's Sports Bar & Restaurant

Patro's Bar & Restaurant

Restaurants Indian Marine Parade

If you're expecting a Mexican and North Indian cuisine crossover at Patro's à la tikka tacos – as implied by its signboard – we hate to burst your bubble. The bar and restaurant, instead, has separate kitchens serving both cuisines independently. But if it's the drinks menu you're after, you're in for a treat. Just as diverse as its food menu, its cellar is stocked with over 50 wines from around the world. There's also a wide selection of classic cocktails (from $14.50), tequila shots (from $10), and frozen margaritas (from $14.50).

Shop

bicycle
Photograph: Daniel Salcius/Unsplash

Lifestyle Bike N Skate

Shopping Lifestyle Marine Parade

Need a new ride? Let the pros behind this specialty bicycle shop in Marine Parade Central fit you with a suitable two-wheeler. If you need to get your trusty bike fixed, it also offers in-store bicycle repair services. But if you're just looking to squeeze a couple of hours to explore the city on wheels, it has teamed up with NParks' Park Connector Network (PCN) to provide rental of bicycles and in-line skating equipment art reasonable rates. You can also find them at various pitstops in the city's parks.

Honeyworld
Photograph: HoneyWorld/Facebook

HoneyWorld

Shopping Marine Parade

Whether you're looking to stock up your kitchen cupboard with manuka honey, royal jelly, propolis, bee pollen, raw honey, and even superfoods, HoneyWorld's got 'em all. The local brand prides itself as the only specialty store that carries a wide range of honey and bee-related products at affordable prices, starting from as low as $5. For an extra kick, try the HoneyWorld Enriched UMF Manuka with Royal Jelly or Propolis range (from $70), which is unique and exclusive to the brand. The synergistic effect of royal jelly or propolis with manuka elevates the honey as a whole.

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