The month of May is a month of wonderful celebrations. Leading up to my birthday, Sam decided to bring me to St John’s island as part of my birthday surprise. I had no idea where we were going until he mentioned that we are taking a cruise to St John’s island that early morning. Strangely, I was bubbling with excitement as I love exploring new places. Why didn’t we go for an island hop earlier?
Thanks to our extensive transport system, we were able to get from places to places so conveniently and affordably. We first hop on the MRT train to Marina South Pier (on the red MRT line) and walked over to Singapore Island Cruise centre which is just right outside the exit of Marina South Pier MRT station. There will be a ticketing counter where you can purchase a two-way ferry ticket to St. John’s island or Kusu island for $18. To our surprise, there was quite a crowd! The island hoppers were mainly foreigners who were heading there to have an idyllic picnic. The ferries were quite packed on weekends and public holidays but there were sufficient ferries to ferry most of the passengers across from Marina South Pier to the islands.
The ferry ride lasted about 30 minutes which was quite long! We thought that St.John’s island was probably about 15 minutes of ferry ride away but perhaps it takes a little longer to travel across waters. St.John’s island is about 6.5km away from the south of Singapore.
It was our first time at St.John’s island and the water is so blue and clean! It looked exactly like those islands I visited in Phuket and Malaysia. Exploring this place has made us rediscover the beauty of our country. On St.John’s island, there are beautiful sandy beaches, chalets and Marine Gallery. And it felt great to be just pacing across the long stretches of beach and enjoying the cool breeze that brushes across my face.
The island may not have the most exciting things to do but the view is just gorgeous. For once, I was able to look our beautiful cityscape from afar. Sometimes, it is great to just take a step back and look at the big picture. We are just humans, indeed, far smaller than what we think. We are creations made from our Father’s big hands.
We were planning to head back to the island soon to have a long picnic and just to frolic under the sun.
After exploring the coast, we decided to visit the Marine Gallery which is about 15 minutes away from the jetty.
The Marine Gallery is actually a small exhibit which is part of the Marine Park Outreach and Education Centre. While we followed the signs that led us to the Marine Gallery, we saw many stray cats sitting along the pathway. These cats were habitants of this island and I believe that there might be more cats than human on St.John’s island.
We discovered that there was a path that connects St.John’s island to Lazarus island and while walking there, we spotted these blue wooden houses which were surrounded by so many cats as well!
Look at these wild mangroves with long breathing roots!
Other than cats, we also saw monkeys but these monkeys were not as aggressive as the ones we had at Bukit Timah Nature Reserve or MacRitchie forest. They pretty much just do their own things and swing from tree to tree.
We wished we had more time to explain Lazarus island but we wanted to catch the ferry back before late afternoon. We only managed to walk half of the connecting path before we rushed back to hop onto the ferry.
This place feels like Krabi, don’t you think? Why travel to Phuket or Krabi when we have our own offshore islands here in Singapore? A hidden tropical paradise here in Singapore.
On our way back to Marina South Pier, the ferry stopped over at Kusu island to drop and pick up more passengers. The island looked really stunning too with its pristine sandy beaches. I heard that many local Chinese like to visit the temple on special occasions and I wonder if they still do.
We were tired after the long ferry ride back but it was truly a fruitful trip as we discovered a scenic side of Singapore together. Certainly, a memorable one (even though there isn’t a birthday cake)!
You can also check out more off-the-beaten-path activities in Singapore.