It may surprise you, but Singapore does have her fair share of rich biodiversity - if you know where to look. Which also explains why I have always been a fan of boardwalks, especially since it is the perfect way to expose the monkies to nature without having to get our feet muddy and dirty!
Of all the boardwalks in Singapore, the ones at Labrador Nature and Coastal Walk have got to be the most family-friendly around. Yes, even for strollers and skate scooters... as we found out during a visit a few weeks back.
Located within walking distance of Labrador Park MRT Station, the 2.1km Labrador Nature & Coastal Walk comprises three distinct segments – Alexandra Garden Trail, Berlayer Creek mangrove trail, and Bukit Chermin Boardwalk.
If you are taking the MRT, you will hit the Berlayer Creek mangrove trail immediately after exiting Labrador Park MRT. It definitely cannot get more accessible than this! Or if you are driving, the closest car park is Car Park 2.
The Berlayer Creek mangrove trail is 960m long and is one of the few remaining mangrove areas in the city area which is home to back mangrove species, as well as a myriad of fauna and flora, including one of the highest densities of molluscs in Singapore.
Be sure to take breather at one of the two look-out points along the boardwalk too.
Perched over the creek, these look-out points allowed us to observe the surrounding mangroves and get closer to he rich biodiversity.
Of course, spotting fishes and straining our eyes to locate the occasional mudskipper was loads of fun too.
Can you spot the mudskipper in the above photo?
We even had the bonus of seeing a Malayan water monitor lizard swim casually across the creek!
Elated much, yes?
If the Berlayer Creek was all about mangroves, then the 330m Bukit Chermin Boardwalk was where we got close to the sea.
This elevated boardwalk on sea brought us across the mouth of Berlayer Creek and along the coastal foothill of Bukit Chermin. Visitors can take a leisurely stroll along this coastal boardwalk, while soaking inthe panaromic views of the expansive waters of Keppel Harbour, the lush greenery of Bukit Chermin hill, and the distant rocky cliffs of Sentosa island.
Or as Ale will tell you, scooting across the boardwalk makes the experience much more fun.
During high tide, the boardwalk will bring visitors close to the water surface where schools of fishes can be sighted.
If you are still up for more walking (or scooting), then feel free to explore Labrador Nature Reserve and beyond - the Reserve is one of the parks connected via the 9km Southern Ridges, which spans other green areas such as Mount Faber Park, Telok Blangah Hill Park, and Kent Ridge Park.
For us though, conquering 2 boardwalks in a day feels just about right - especially with kids in tow.
The Berlayer Creek mangrove trail and Bukit Chermin Boardwalk are perfect for parents who are looking to bring their kids out for that first boardwalk trek. The entire terrain is flat with no obstacles in sight and best of all, the total distance of 1.3km is not overly daunting.
So grab those bicycles, skate scooters and strollers, and let the kids indulge in an oasis of calm amidst the hustle and bustle of the city!
*Check out another boardwalk we explored a few years back!
Labrador Nature and Coastal Walk
Address: Along Labrador Villa Road