Jun 25, 2017

14 New Singapore Attractions for Kids that Opened in 2017


We are nearly approaching the end of the first half of 2017 and while there are the usual places to bring the kiddos, there are quite a number of new places that have sprouted up this year to discover together as a family.


Some of them may be familiar names but to the kids, they offer a different fun experience! So the next time the holidays or weekends come along, here are 14 new adventures - of which NINE are FREE for all! - to take your pick from.

1. Let 'Em Play

Located at Tradehub21 (near International Business Park and The Chevrons in Jurong), Let 'Em Play is a brand new family-centric edutainment hub which combines both the fun of wall-climbing AND high elements obstacle course.


There are a total of 5 different types of climbing walls, each with varying difficulty as well as a 2-level high elements obstacle course. Billed as the FIRST and ONLY indoor High Elements Obstacle Course in Singapore, this course features over 15 different obstacles - and all in air-conditioned comfort! The course is suitable for both adults and children as young as 3 or 4 years old (accompanied by parents). Kids who are over 6 years of age can go on the course on their own.


The REAL highlight at Let ’Em Play though, is Singapore’s FIRST Augmented Reality Rock Climbing Wall. Currently one of the hottest trends around the world, Augmented Reality (AR) Climbing is the world’s first global gaming platform for climbing walls which projects graphics onto a climbing wall and paired with proprietary body tracking to create a variety of interactive games, like how participants are tasked to climb the wall in order to smash a bat.


Head HERE for a detailed review.

Address: 18 Boon Lay Way, Trade Hub 21, #01-100, Singapore 609966 (In front of McDonalds & Sakae Sushi)
Opening Hours: Weekdays 10.30am - 10pm | Weekends: 9.30am - 10.30pm
Cost: From $20 (child) for a 90-minute session. Visit HERE for full rates.
Website: letemplay.com.sg

2. KIDZLAND Indoor Playground

Located right beside PasarBella at The Grandstand, KIDZLAND spans over 12,000 square feet and consists of 2 portions: an indoor playground and an arcade centre. The Forest indoor playground is a jungle-themed one, and recommended for kids between three and 12 years of age. The main play area consists of a three-level climbing structure with various obstacles, tunnels and slides to get through.


One of the focal points at the Main Play Area is the mini Carousel area, where kids will be able to hop on for a good spin. But the most unique - and most instagrammable - portion of the indoor playground has got be the Rainbow Net, which is a huge 2-level climbing net structure that kids will have a fun time ascending.


Have kids that find the indoor playground childish? A massive arcade centre forms part of KIDZLAND and comprises of all the game machines that you can imagine.

Head HERE for a detailed review.

Address:  200 Turf Club Road, #02-14, The Grandstand, Singapore 287994
Opening Hours: Mon - Thurs 10.30am - 8.30pm | Fri 10.30am - 9.30pm | Sat, Sun, PH & Sch Hols 9.30am - 9.30pm
Cost:
Children (Above 3 years old) – $22 Peak, $20.00 Non-Peak, Unlimited Play Time
Toddlers (1 - 3 years old) – $18 Peak, $16 Non-peak, Unlimited Play Time
Babies (Below 1 year old) – Free, Unlimited Play Time
Adults –  Free for first adult, $5 per subsequent adult
Website: www.kidzlandsg.com

3. The Learning Forest

The Learning Forest is the newest extension of Singapore Botanic Gardens and located in located in the new Tyersall-Gallop Core. Spread over a stunning 10-hectare area (that's equivalent to 15 football fields!), the Learning Forest features a network of boardwalks and elevated walkways that allow visitors to explore habitats ranging from a freshwater forest wetland to a lowland rainforest.



The Learning Forest is divided into five areas - The SPH Walk of Giants, the Lowland Rainforest, Keppel Discovery Wetlands, Bambusetum, and Wild Fruit Tree Arboretum. The biggest draw is the Canopy Web which allows visitors to experience being in the canopy of a forest from a height of about 8m. Visitors get to lie on the installed canopy webs, be among the canopy layer of century-old trees and gaze up into the crowns of trees!


No matter whether your kids are young or old, I strongly recommend paying The Learning Forest a visit. The entire area is extremely walkable as there are hardly any steps to climb. It's even stroller-friendly, thanks to the walkways and elevated boardwalks.

Head HERE for a detailed review.

Address: Singapore Botanic Gardens
Opening hours: 5am – 12 midnight daily
*The SPH Walk of Giants and Keppel Discovery Wetlands will be closed from 7pm to 7am to maintain a conducive habitat for wildlife
Cost: FREE Admission

4. Diggersite @ ORTO

Located at ORTO, Singapore's first 24-hour multi-recreational park, Diggersite offers little diggers the chance to realise their dream of operating a real-life working excavator! Previously at East Coast Park, Diggersite now occupies a larger area in Yishun which means that the construction vehicles are spaced out further apart.


All of the previous stations at East Coast have been replicated here - some with a slight twist. In total, there are now 5 stations where one of the fave will be kids having the chance to drive - yes, DRIVE - a forklift around the Diggersite compound while transporting a wooden mallet from one point to another. For kids who love sand play, there is a dedicated sand pit with sand toys.


Head HERE for a detailed review.

Address: 81 Lorong Chencharu, #01-01, Singapore 769198
Opening hours: Weekdays 11am - 9pm | Weekends 9am - 9pm
Cost: $5 per ride (7 minutes per ride, except for Forklift which is 5 minutes)
Website: www.facebook.com/diggersite

5. Aviation-themed Playground at Seletar Aeospace Park

The Oval at Seletar Aerospace Park (SAP) is currently the foodie hot spot to head to for a family-friendly alfresco brunch or dinner. But for kids, the aviation-themed playground is undoubtedly the main attraction.


In keeping with the aviation theme of SAP, all the play structures at the playground come in the form of aeroplanes and other aviation landmarks.

The playground is essentially divided into 2 areas: one for toddlers and younger kids while the other is for older kids who love a good climb. The toddler area features a mini play structure where everything are mini-sized, like the climbing rope, ladder, wall and slide. For older kids, they might fancy the other playground which comes with larger play structure and a control tower. There is also a huge life-sized Ludo (or aeroplane chess) board game that parents and kids can play together!


Head HERE for a detailed review.

Address: 3 Park Ln, Singapore 798387
Cost: FREE
Website: www.facebook.com/ovalsap/

6. Palawan Pirate Ship

Port of Lost Wonder at Sentosa may have closed its doors in December last year, but the water play park with the iconic pirate ship comprising of plenty of water slides and cannons for the kids to splash around and run amok has OPENED its doors again this year. And best of all, it is FREE for everyone!


Re-branded as Palawan Pirate Ship, the water play area retains all the play features that the kids love. Housing a signature water play area in the shape of a huge pirate ship, expect lots of water pistols, slides and water jets. There is also a wading pool surrounding the entire ship!


Head HERE for a detailed review.

Address: Palawan Beach, Sentosa
Opening Hours: 10am - 6pm daily
Cost: FREE

7. Pang Sua Pond

Built in the 1990s, Pang Sua Pond's main job is to collect rainwater runoff from the surrounding areas before the water is pumped to the Upper Seletar Reservoir for storage and treatment. Under PUB's Active, Beautiful, Clean Waters (ABC Waters) Programme, the pond has been revitalised after a 30-month makeover where the drains, canals and reservoirs have been integrated with the surrounding environment to create beautiful community spaces for all to enjoy.

Now, it is home to Singapore’s second largest floating wetland and boasts a boardwalk across the pond. And it is beautiful.


Located just a 10-minute walk from the Senja LRT station and beside Senja-Cashew Community Club, the pond features a 480m-long elevated boardwalk suspended at a height up to 7m above water, connecting residents to facilities such as the new 3G Wellness Centre and Bukit Panjang Neighbourhood 5 Park. More interestingly, Singapore's second-largest man-made floating wetland system (the largest being Sengkang Floating Wetland in Punggol Reservoir) can be found at Pang Sua Pond.


Besides beautifying the surroundings, the wetland plants serve an important purpose which is to help improve water quality in the pond and also create a habitat for dragonflies, birds and fishes.

Head HERE for a detailed review.

Address: Located beside Senja-Cashew Community Club (101 Bukit Panjang Road, Singapore 679910)
Cost: FREE
Website: www.pub.gov.sg/abcwaters

8. Singapore Maritime Gallery

The Singapore Maritime Gallery has underwent a face-lift and re-opened in April this year with fresh exhibits and experiences. The Gallery not only tells the story of the growth of Maritime Singapore from a small entrepot to a premier global hub port and a leading international maritime centre, but also demonstrates how Singapore prepares itself for the future.

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From a ship simulator to “Ship Spotting”, visitors can immerse themselves in virtual reality as they experience a 360 degrees view of the various ship models and their components. They can also take the helm at the simulated ship bridge and pilot eight unique ships through story-driven missions.

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In addition, children will be able to learn more about the diversity and vibrancy of Singapore's maritime industry through interactive games. For example, a container-stacking game which explains the importance of not overloading a vessel, hands-on nautical knots challenge, and a “Set Sail” game where children can learn about navigational safety and the importance of marine conservation.

Address: 31 Marina Coastal Drive, Marina South Pier, Level 2, Singapore 018988
Opening Hours: 9am - 6pm (Tues - Sun) | Closed on Mondays, except for Public Holidays
Cost: FREE
9. Parkview Museum Singapore

Located within Parkview Square - one of the most iconic skyscrapers of the Bugis cityscape - Parkview Museum Singapore is a private gallery and for its inaugural exhibition, it touches on the tenacious topic of shark protection and ocean conservation.

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Titled “On Sharks & Humanity” (until 9 Sep 2017), this exhibition displays 33 engaging works from 29 artists, and explore and analyse the interdependent relationship between sharks, the ocean, and human beings, challenging prevailing prejudices surrounding this deeply feared creature and bringing to light the importance of sharks in the marine ecosystem.

And the best part? Admission is FREE for everyone!

Address: Level 3 Parkview Museum Singapore, 600 North Bridge Road, Singapore 188778
Opening Hours: 12pm - 7pm daily
Cost: FREE

10. Former Ford Factory

Previously known as Memories at Ford Factory - or more recently, Syonan Gallery - the Former Ford Factory is the site of the surrender of Singapore by British forces to the Japanese Imperial Army. Re-opened in February and a national monument, its contents have been revamped and now features refreshed content and a new focus. The gallery highlights a new area of focus for the exhibition by looking at the impact of the war and the Occupation years, including the immediate and longer-term legacies of this period on Singapore and the region.


The exhibition space proper is broadly divided into three zones: Fall of Singapore: Outlines the events leading up to that fateful moment where British forces surrendered unconditionally to the Imperial Japanese Army in the Ford Factory boardroom, Becoming Syonan: Captures the diverse experiences of people during the Japanese Occupation and Legacies: Highlights the various legacies of war and Occupation in Singapore, from the political and social changes that arose and the ways we remember the war in Singapore today.


Head HERE for a detailed review.

Address: 351 Upper Bukit Timah Road, Singapore 588192
Opening Hours: Mondays to Saturdays, 9am – 5.30pm | Sundays, 12 noon – 5.30pm
Cost: FREE Admission for all Children under 6, Singaporeans and permanent residents, Singapore student pass holders and Museum Roundtable members | Others: $3 per person

11. Windsor Nature Park

Located off Venus Drive at the Upper Thomson area, the 75-hectare Windsor Nature Park is a green buffer for the Central Catchment Nature Reserve. Visitors can explore new trails including the specially curated Hanguana Trail and the Drongo Trail. The Hanguana Trail is lined with rare native plants, some of which are named after Singapore. The Drongo Trail features a sub-canopy walk where visitors can catch a glimpse of the fauna that are found under the canopy level, in addition to examining the understorey of the regenerating secondary forest.

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Discover other highlights of Windsor Nature Park such as a marsh habitat and several freshwater streams by hiking on the restored trails and new boardwalks.

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Address: 30 Venus Drive, Singapore 573858 (Located close to Singapore Island Country Club)
Opening Hours: 7am – 7pm daily

12. Clip 'n Climb

Okay, so I cheated a little because this attraction opened late last year. But hey, this is one indoor playground with a difference and one which I am sure kids will go crazy over!


New Zealand's indoor climbing theme park Clip 'n Climb has set up base at HomeTeamNS Tampines' space located at the refurbished Our Tampines Hub, a community and sports centre. Quirkily designed walls awash in bright colours greet climbers at Clip 'n Climb, which is not your run-of-the-mill indoor climbing joint. There are 19 wall designs in the 260sqm facility that range from easy for the rookies to difficult for the more experienced, such as the snaking beanstalk from fairy tale Jack and the Beanstalk, a lightning bolt and Morse code-inspired one.


The park utilises an automatic belay system, which means kids can climb the different walls at the same time without having to take turns. Experience a twist in rock climbing at the Dry Ice wall where you’ll be given ‘ice picks’ - a pair of wooden sticks - to scale the structure and manoeuver yourself to the top.There is no minimum age for climbers, they just need to weigh between 10 and 150kg.


Head HERE for a detailed review.

Address: Our Tampines Hub, 51 Tampines Ave 4 #03-03, Singapore 529684
Opening hours:
Monday to Thursday: 12pm – 9pm | Friday and Saturday: 10am – 11pm | Sunday and public holiday: 10am – 9pm | School holiday and eve of public holiday: 10am – 11pm (1st Monday of every month: 2pm – 9pm)
Cost: From $18 for 90 minutes. View all rates HERE.

13. Chestnut Nature Park

There are two areas to Chestnut Nature Park – Chestnut Nature Park (South) and Chestnut Nature Park (North). Chestnut Nature Park (South) opened last year and is Singapore’s first nature park with separate mountain biking and hiking trails. Chestnut Nature Park (North) opened in February this year and together with the southern portion, Chestnut Nature Park now totals 81 hectares, making it Singapore’s largest nature park to date.


If you are planning to bring the kids for their first taste of hiking, great news - the hiking trail is slightly undulating and pretty straightforward. Chestnut Nature Park (South) has a 2.1km hiking trail, while Chestnut Nature Park (North) has a 3.5km hiking trail. Click HERE to download the southern hiking trail and HERE for the northern hiking trail.


For more adrenaline thrills, the 8.2 km mountain biking trail at the fully completed Chestnut Nature Park comprises varying levels of difficulty ranging from easy, moderately difficult, very difficult and extremely difficult. Visitors can rent mountain bicycles at AIRE MTB (Address: 201 Chestnut Avenue, #01-K1, Singapore 679525).

Address: Located along Chestnut Avenue
Opening Hours: 7am - 7pm daily
Cost: Free Admission
Website: www.nparks.gov.sg/gardens-parks-and-nature/parks-and-nature-reserves/chestnut-nature-park

14. Playeum's 'Making It Home' Exhibition

Located at Gillman Barracks, Playeum is a museum without walls which hopes to inspire children through self-directed exploration and learning and in the process, establish a culture of meaningful and impactful play.


The new exhibition opened on 16 May and will last all the way until 29 October 2017 and it is all about dreaming rooms, making spaces and creating places. Kids (and parents) will be able to experience the home as a place where many ordinary materials can have multiple purposes and support imagination, innovation and sustainability.


Interestingly, the spaces within the indoor playground - if you can call Playeum that - have been transformed into different ‘rooms’, each with a different purpose with different opportunities for the kids to explore, experiment and redefine. Whether it is imagining colours, materials and designs for floors walls and ceilings, to conjuring up art works with sand or recyclable materials, kids can stretch their creativity and imagination to the limit! Head HERE for my review.

Address: Blk 47, Malan Road, Gillman Barracks, #01-23, Singapore 109444
Opening Hours: Tues - Sun: 10am - 6pm (Closed on Mondays)
Cost: $22 per child (1-12) | Accompanying adult: Free | Additional accompanying adult: $10
Website: www.playeum.com




I'll update the list whenever new attractions open in Singapore, so do check back often!


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