Jurong Lake Gardens
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The ultimate guide to the Coast-to-Coast Trail

The best things to do along the Coast-to-Coast Trail

Dewi Nurjuwita

If there's one thing to appreciate about Singapore, it's our beautiful nature parks and lush hiking trails. Up for a challenge? Hit Singapore's longest trail: the Coast-to-Coast Trail. The 36km trail spans across Singapore, stretching from Jurong Lake Gardens in the West to Coney Island Park in the Northeast. Launched by NParks in March 2019, the trail takes explorers through a series of curated walks across some of Singapore's best-known green spaces. 

Rediscover our own backyard again as you'll go through parks, park connectors, nature areas, places of interest and urban spaces. Anyone can explore the trail on their own using Google Maps or NParks' mobile app. It may be daunting to start, but we've got you covered. To make the most of your journey through the Coast-to-Coast trail, we’ve mapped out the best things to see and do along the way.

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Highlights on the Coast-to-Coast Trail

  • Things to do
  • Jurong East

This is where you'll start the Coast-to-Coast Trail. Lace-up and surround yourself with the flora and fauna in the west. Deemed as the largest nature wonderland in the heartlands, Jurong Lake Gardens offers a respite amongst residential estate. The gardens span a whopping 90 hectares and include Lakeside Garden, Chinese and Japanese Gardens and Garden Promenade – previously known as Jurong Lake Gardens West, Jurong Lake Gardens Central and Garden Promenade respectively. The grounds are specially landscaped and designed for families and the community to come together to play, learn and bond. 

  • Things to do
  • Bukit Batok

The serene Bukit Batok Nature Park was developed on an abandoned quarry in 1988. There are meandering footpaths that run through the secondary forest alongside undulating terrain for a workout or hike through the forest. Don't miss the lookout points that look out to stunning views of the quarry. For a bit of history, head to the WWII memorial, which commemorates the location of one of the fiercest battles that took place in Singapore.

  • Things to do
  • Bukit Panjang

Bukit Timah Nature Reserve is synonymous with hiking in Singapore. This 1.64sq km (0.63sq mile) nature reserve is renowned for having one of the richest and most diverse ecosystems in the world. Besides hundreds of animal and insect species, it also contains more tree species than the whole of North America. Weekends are busy with walkers, nature lovers and mountain bikers, so come on a weekday if you prefer a quiet trek. There are four walking trails. A steep paved path takes you directly to the peak, but more interesting are the unpaved trails; route 3 (green) follows a winding forest path, past caves used by Japanese soldiers in World War II. Look out for long-tailed macaques, squirrrels and snakes, and listen for the incessant ‘chonk-chonk’ of the striped tit-babbler. 

  • Things to do
  • Bishan

One of the largest parks in Singapore, Bishan-Ang Mo Kio park comprises two sections, separated by Marymount Road. Intersecting the length of the park is the starting portion of the Kallang River, which flows down from Lower Pierce Reservoir. Stop here for a bite, with the park's many eateries including Burp Kitchen & Bar, Canopy Garden Dining and McDonald's. The park also has a spa – Aramsa Garden Spa. Other amenities include a dog run, a playground and water park. Occasionally, there will be star-gazing sessions held by Singapore Sidewalk Astronomy, at the area near McDonald's. 

  • Things to do
  • Sengkang

Sengkang may be a populous town in the Northeast but you can still find pockets of green in this relatively young estate. The Sengkang Riverside Park is a riverine park by Sungei Punggol – one of the two large rivers that run through Sengkang.

Opened in 2008, the park is home to a unique water feature, constructed wetlands that collects and filters rainwater naturally through its aquatic plants. The wetlands also double as a wildlife habitat and attract many mangrove birds into the park such as purple heron, collared kingfisher and little tern. Other than that, dragonflies & damselflies, like the Red Scarlet and Common Bluetail damselfly, can also be found resting on the aquatic plants. For an immersive experience, you can walk right up to the edge of these ponds to observe the wildlife for yourself. 

Just nearby and over Sungei Punggol, you can also find Singapore's largest man-made wetland, the Sengkang Floating Wetland. Cross the bridge to get closer to the floating island of aquatic plants or sit on the seats shaped like orange slices on the bridge for a breather. 

Another interesting feature of Sengkang Riverside Park is also the cluster of edible fruit trees planted there. In the aptly named Mango Hilltop, Citrus Grove, and Pineapple Valley, you can find common fruits like star fruit, chiku, pineapple and dragon fruits. But no picking!

  • Attractions
  • Parks and gardens
  • Yishun

Rower's Bay Park at Lower Seletar Reservoir is named for the reservoir's popularity with kayaking and dragon-boating enthusiasts. It also forms the first phase of the planned 150km Round Island Route (RIR), which will connect parks around Singapore – yes, you will eventually be able to cycle around the entire island.

But for now, the park is one of the best secret spots to catch the sunrise or sunset in Singapore. Walk on the park's boardwalk for some great waterside views and check out other amenities in the park: like shelters, vending machines, a do-it-yourself bicycle repair station and toilets are available for cyclists or those seeking reprieve from our tropical heat.

The wetlands surrounding the boardwalk have also been filled with plant species that will attract and provide a habitat for native wildlife in the area – look out for the grey heron and copper-cheeked frog. 

  • Things to do
  • Punggol

Lastly, make your way to Coney Island Park. It's not only rich in history but is also home to a wide variety of habitats including coastal forests, grasslands, mangroves and casuarina woodlands. It provides shelter to a wide variety of fauna and flora, some of which are critically endangered. Some plants at the park are presumed nationally extinct in the wild.

Though open to the public, making your way to this end of Singapore is quite an adventure already. Good thing you don't even need a ferry to get to the island, just a pair of good walking shoes will do. This ecologically sustainable park also uses timber from fallen trees for all the signage in the park, benches and the boardwalk over the mangrove swamp. Everything on the island is kept rustic and as it is, so expect hidden beaches and some wildlife out and about. 

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