During our travels we often come across places we later realized we lingered too long around – Baku’s Yanar Dag comes to mind – which tend to evaporate quickly from our memories. Occasionally however, the opposite happens, realizing your mistake as soon as you walk up the lonely path from the Bayfront metro station in Singapore, to set your eyes upon a sight like Gardens By The Bay.
Recommended to me by reader Dave, whom I sent to Dubai back in 2010, Gardens By The Bay is Singapore’s answer to urban sprawl within a nation that is smaller than 76% of the world’s countries. On the very last night of my visit, several hours before departing to Sydney, Australia, I hastily showed up around 8pm…immediately regretting the limited time I had allotted myself and camera.
The entire 1.01 million square meters that comprises Gardens By The Bay is actually 3 separate garden complexes, Bay Central Garden, Bay East Garden, and Bay South Garden which houses these ~50 meter “Supertrees”.
It is hardly all neon lights and steel however, the Supertrees and the surrounding parks are interwoven with hundreds of species of indigenous and exotic plants. Although it’s not entirely evident from my travel photos, there is greenery – bushes, trees, vines, and flowers absolutely everywhere.
Planned in 2006, Gardens By The Bay is the creative work of two British firms, Grant Associates and Gustafson Porter. Bay South Garden (designed by Grant Associates) was completed in 2012, Bay East Garden’s first phase finished in 2011 (Gustafson Porter), and Bay Central Garden is currently in the planning stages. Above are the Cloud Forest and Flower Dome (reminiscent of Valencia’s City of Arts and Sciences), housing plants from tropical and Mediterranean climates, respectively.
Most of Gardens By The Bay’s outdoor areas are free of admission and open from 5am until 2am everyday of the week. Fortunately for your wallet it’s a cheap visit but it won’t do you any good if you cheat yourself on time. Set aside a leisurely few hours, bring along a tripod, and welcome to the jungle in the world’s richest city-state.
Thanks for sharing these photos. I’ve been to Singapore over 50 times, seen the “Supertrees” from the highway, but never taken the time to stop by the Gardens By The Bay. I’ll definitely have to take my camera down there next time.
That’s great to hear, if you like parks, greenery, and photography you’ll be very happy when you visit! If you post any of your photos online feel free to send me a link 🙂
Those lights are crazy!
I thought you might be interesting in reading about some of their sustainability efforts:
Much of the Supertree electrical power comes from solar energy 🙂
I found Singapore to be supremely weird, but in a wonderful way. These Supertrees go some way towards keeping that impression alive in my mind, 4 years after my visit.
Singapore left me with the impression of being controlled chaos.
What an amazing place. I love the bright lights and colors of the Supertrees, but would love to experience the native flora (it’s great to know that solar power is utilized for this display). Adding another exotic location to my ‘place to see’ list. Thanks!
I wish I could have also visited during the day or at least had more hours to see the native plant-life during the daylight hours.
Very beautiful pictures beyond the words. I wish to be there and see these bright lights and colors of the Supertrees live.
Thanks for sharing these pics and experience really amazing pictures.
You’re welcome, I’m glad you enjoyed them.
This is just amazing! The lights reflecting on the water are so colorful and beautiful. I hope to see this in person one day. Your images are fascinating, thanks for sharing.
Thank you. That particular shot took *many* takes so very glad one of them worked 🙂