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WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 34032 [post_author] => 1 [post_date] => 2015-07-27 08:35:01 [post_date_gmt] => 2015-07-27 08:35:01 [post_content] => [caption id="attachment_34035" align="aligncenter" width="654"]Pic: Mat Carney. Pic: Mat Carney.[/caption] By Mat Carney SINGAPORE is famous because of successful economic practices and development, Orchard Road and the endless supply of shopping malls, prestigious hotels, Sentosa Island, casinos, superb architecture, and efficient and clean streets and public transport. However few people know Singapore for its tropical gardens and nature, and even fewer for its wildlife. Arguably the most underrated attraction in Singapore, the Singapore Botanic Gardens are a natural wonderland in the middle of an urban jungle. Although the most visited Botanic Gardens in the world, primarily because their popularity with locals, relatively few foreigners take advantage of this urban oasis. Established in 1859 the Botanic Gardens offer Singaporeans and tourists a unique natural experience with over 183 acres of tropical rainforest, gardens, grasslands and park space. Although easily accessible through Singapore’s efficient MRT train system, once you step through the gate and enter the gardens you hardly realise you are in the middle of an incredibly busy metropolis. [caption id="attachment_34037" align="aligncenter" width="654"]Pic: Mat Carney. Pic: Mat Carney.[/caption] In early July 2015 the Singapore Botanic Gardens received World Heritage status at a ceremony in Paris, thus gaining international acclaim and prestige as a site that offers environmental, cultural and historical significance. The gardens are also home to numerous workshops and research centres that are world leaders in tropical botany and horticulture. In the herbarium there are over 750,000 specimens, containing almost every species from throughout Southeast Asia. As you walk through the gardens almost every large tree and numerous small shrubs have small plaques stating the species and where it originates from. Information signs and brochures are plentiful, clearly explaining what you are looking at, the significance of the species, or the historical importance of that one section of the gardens. There is even a staircase that was built by Australian prisoners of war during the Japanese occupation of Singapore. [caption id="attachment_34036" align="aligncenter" width="654"]Pic: Mat Carney. Pic: Mat Carney.[/caption] The Botanic Gardens have numerous smaller gardens scattered throughout, offering a pleasant surprise to those who visit the gardens for the first time. The National Orchid Garden is the most famous of these, consisting of the largest orchard display in the world. Even for one who does not have a significant appreciation for flowers, the Orchid Garden is impressive, with thousands of bizarre and intriguing flowers. The National Ginger Garden (my personal favourite) contains over 3,000 plants that belong to the ginger family. Who knew there were over 3,000 different varieties of ginger and that there are numerous types of ginger flowers! The Healing Garden contains over 400 species of plant that are traditionally used throughout Southeast Asia for medicinal purposes. The wide open spaces, with lush tropical grass and the odd enormous tropical tree, provides a very  scenic backdrop to any walk. Tranquil lakes and ponds, surrounded by grasslands, tropical forrest and thousands of ferns, create perfect habitats for black and white swans and other birds. There are thousands of neat and artistic statues throughout the gardens, and playgrounds for children. The paths are immaculate, with some venturing off into the rainforest on steep mist covered boardwalks, and almost all of the garden is disabled accessible. The large and informative information centre offers numerous insights into local and regional fauna and flora, and provides details on why the gardens are so important. [caption id="attachment_34038" align="aligncenter" width="654"]Pic: Mat Carney. Pic: Mat Carney.[/caption] Every weekend there are concerts, buskers, tours and activities held at the gardens, providing a relaxing and enjoyable social place for Singaporeans. This is significant as Singapore is a city state, not offering much space to its citizens, thus the gardens provide a natural and awe-inspiring oasis. I usually enjoy natural experiences far away from the hustle and bustle of the city, but the Singapore Botanic Gardens really impressed me. It is far from being ‘fake’, and has botanical and historical significance in the middle of a city that is almost entirely brand new. It could not be more simple to get to the Singapore Botanic Gardens - MRT station, Botanic Gardens. Entry is free, except for the National Orchard Garden, which is SG$5 (US$3.65). [post_title] => Singapore Botanic Gardens: A tropical wonder in the midst of a vibrant city [post_excerpt] => SINGAPORE is famous because of successful economic practices and development, Orchard Road and the endless supply of shopping malls, prestigious hotels, Sentosa Island, casinos, superb architecture, and efficient and clean streets and public transport. However few people know Singapore for its tropical gardens and nature, and even fewer for its wildlife. 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Singapore Botanic Gardens: A tropical wonder in the midst of a vibrant city

Singapore Botanic Gardens: A tropical wonder in the midst of a vibrant city
July 27, 2015 - 0 Comments - Travel Wire Asia

SINGAPORE is famous because of successful economic practices and development, Orchard Road and the endless supply of shopping malls, prestigious hotels, Sentosa Island, casinos, superb architecture, and efficient and clean streets and public transport. However few people know Singapore for its tropical gardens and nature, and even fewer for its wildlife.

Best places to ski in Australia

Best places to ski in Australia
July 14, 2015 - 0 Comments - Jo Lane

ICE, snow and powder don’t usually fit into most traveller’s conscious thoughts about Australia, but actually the land down under does have plenty of good options for a snowboarding or skiing holiday.

Selfie summit: Japan launches free Wi-Fi on Mount Fuji

Selfie summit: Japan launches free Wi-Fi on Mount Fuji
July 10, 2015 - 0 Comments - Travel Wire Asia

We can expect a deluge of selfies from the top of Japan’s tallest mountain in the coming days and weeks after a Japanese mobile phone network said it will begin offering a free Wi-Fi service Friday at eight hotspots on Japan’s most famous mountain, including the 3,776-meter (12,389-foot) summit.

Quake-hit Nepal reopens heritage sites

Quake-hit Nepal reopens heritage sites
June 15, 2015 - 0 Comments - Travel Wire Asia

Nepal has reopened most of the heritage sites that were damaged in a pair of strong earthquakes that devastated parts of the country recently, hoping to bring back foreign tourists.

Kingdom of Dreams: India’s answer to Broadway?

Kingdom of Dreams: India’s answer to Broadway?
May 19, 2015 - 0 Comments - Ruchika Vyas

EXTRAVAGANT musicals, live theatrical shows, special effects, aerial acrobatics and more – Kingdom of Dreams may as well be India’s answer to Broadway

Thailand: Full Moon events escape Koh Phangan party ban

Thailand: Full Moon events escape Koh Phangan party ban
April 7, 2015 - 0 Comments - Travel Wire Asia

Thai authorities are putting a kibosh on Koh Phangan’s notorious debauchery, forbidding most of the notoriously loud and narcotics-addled parties that draw throngs of young Westerners – not to mention lucrative tourism revenuies – to the small, idyllic island.

Myanmar: Weaving together the old and new

Myanmar: Weaving together the old and new
April 6, 2015 - 0 Comments - Jo Lane

WHEN I first came to Myanmar, also known as Burma, in 2009 it felt like a country frozen in time due to its years of isolation and stagnation. Indeed I recall penning an article for Jet Star, something along the lines of it being one of the few places left you could glimpse the Asia of old, one that existed some 50 years ago. And at that time, within the glittering modernity of much of Asia’s new sky rise cities, that was oddly appealing but also a rather simplistic perception.

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Marina Bay Sands

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Marina Bay Sands

Three Towers of Fun

2,561 Bedroom, sleeps 4
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Hotel Fort Canning

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Wanderlust

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New Majestic Hotel

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New Majestic Hotel

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Hotel 1929

Singapore, Chinatown, Singapore

Hotel 1929

Restored Chinatown Singapore boutique hotel

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Comments

  • avatarFred { Mainlanders might lack "class," but I'll take them over the egotistical and condescending "Hongkies" anyday. Seriously, your slang term for yourself is the same as... } – Jul 03, 4:30 AM
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  • avatarRony Nham { Mario Games - Kizi - K7x - Cricket Games } – Apr 19, 3:39 AM
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  • avatarleskate { went there had a wonderful experience with tiger cubs & also adult tigers in the canyon . It was the middle of the day &... } – Apr 07, 5:06 AM
  • avatarvisaforvietnam { Good news for the travelers. Travelling will be easy now with visa on arrival. } – Apr 02, 11:43 AM
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