10 Hidden Gems in Singapore You Need to Uncover

10 Hidden Gems in Singapore You Need to Uncover

Discover Singapore's captivating beauty and hidden treasures at these places!

Attractions like Gardens by the Bay and Jewel are a fraction of Singapore’s prized tourist hotspots. Have you ever wondered what lies beyond our urban jungle in the “outskirts” of our little island? The answer: A plethora of hidden gems in Singapore waiting to fill your Instagram feed.

If you’re looking for date ideas or a Sunday-Funday adventure, make your way to these off-the-beaten paths for a dose of something refreshing. From abandoned bunkers to a lighthouse, these hidden gems in Singapore beckon to be explored! 

Hidden gems in Singapore

1. Punggol Beach

hidden gems singapore

Image credit: William Cho

A serene stretch of land masks Punggol Beach’s dark history. Despite the aesthetic layout of boulders lined across the undisturbed sand bed, this was the site of 1942’s Sook Ching Massacre. As grim as its history may be, this landmark sits calmly in the outskirts of Punggol with its brilliant sunsets. A memorial plaque reminds visitors of its place in the National Heritage Board’s historical sites. 

Address: Punggol Promenade

2. Tiong Bahru Air Raid Shelter

Tucked cosily behind coffee shops and in the basement of Block 78 Guan Chuan Street is the last place you’d expect to find the Tiong Bahru Air Raid Shelters. It opened in 2012 for the first time to the public, where its dingy corridors are subtly compelling for the local adventurer.

Occupying an area of 1,500sqm, this hidden gem in Singapore can accommodate a whopping 1,600 persons. Plus, it is the last pre-war civilian air raid shelter still standing today. Dive into Singapore’s history as you wander the corridors of the shelter — but don’t let its ominous appearance deceive you! 

Address: 78 Guan Chuan Stret, Singapore 160078

3. Kong Meng San Phor Kark See Monastery

This beautiful space sits outside Bishan’s bustling central, making it a safe haven for individuals seeking time away from their hectic lifestyle. With its extravagant architecture and breathtaking Pagoda of Ten Thousand Buddhas, this landmark is bound to fascinate believers and visitors alike. 

Fun fact: The monastery has developed extensively over the years thanks to brothers Aw Boon Hor and Aw Boon Par. They are also the brains behind the Tiger Balm and Haw Par Villa’s prominence.

Address: 88 Bright Hill Road, Singapore 574117

4. Kampong Lorong Buangkok

Kampong Lorong Buangkok

Image credit: Grps

This remnant of kampong living in modern-day Singapore is truly one of the island’s hidden gems. Also known as Kampong Selak Kain, it achieved this Malay title for people having to hoist their sarongs up during a heavy downpour. 

hidden gems singapore

Image credit: Grps

In the face of a rapidly developing Northeast area, this village may be the very last of the Singapore’s mainland villages. Take a nostalgic stroll through this emblem of Singapore’s early days — who knows how long we’ll be able to keep it before redevelopment works step in. 

Address: 7 Lorong Buangkok, Singapore 547557

5. Little Guilin

Also known as Singapore’s own Xiao Guilin, this picturesque landmark reminds visitors of Guilin in China with its iconic granite rock in the middle of a lake. Where serene waters reflect the natural rock cliffs, this landscape attracts wedding photoshoots, photographers and avid hikers alike. 

This disused granite quarry sits comfortably between nature and Bukit Batok’s surrounding neighbourhoods. For Instagram-worthy shots and a tranquil morning stroll, we recommend checking out this hidden gem in Singapore! 

Address: Bukit Batok East Avenue 5, Singapore 650242

Also read: 23 Nature & Hiking Trails in Singapore To Discover on Your Weekends

6. Raffles Marina Lighthouse

Erected at the top of Raffles Marina Club’s breakwater stands Singapore’s only lighthouse not owned and operated by the Maritime Port Authority of Singapore. This edifice, standing at 12 metres tall, flashes every 10 seconds with a beam that reaches up to 15 metres. 

Resembling an Australian-esque lighthouse — a common sight when travelling Down Under — this nautical icon has been making waves in the recent years. If you’re looking to wind down after a hectic day, visit this coastal attraction to catch Singapore’s amazing sunsets at dusk. 

Address: Raffles Marina, 10 Tuas West Drive, Singapore 638404

7. Japanese Cemetery Park

hidden gems singapore

Image credit: Michael Lee

A beautiful floral archway and lush greenery may make you forget that you’re actually stepping into a Japanese cemetery. Resting in a quiet residential neighbourhood near Hougang, the ground is home to approximately 1,000 Japanese civilians and soldiers from the early 20th century.

The Japanese Association of Singapore maintains this ground, which became a memorial park in 1987. In addition to the quaint Prayer Hall, Japanese war memorials and even Heritage Trees by the National Parks Board can be found in this place. 

Address: 22 Chuan Hoe Ave, Singapore 549854

8. Seah Im Bunker 

This historical landmark rests at the foot of Mount Faber and just behind Seah Im Carpark. The bunker is shrouded behind leaves and natural greenery, hence making it feel like you’re on the set of Indiana Jones or Tomb Raider. The bunker was supposedly used to hold prisoners-of-war (POWs) and ammunition for the British.

Despite its eventful history, you will only be met with a vacant space and dilapidated remains. Those daring to explore this area should definitely bring torchlights (plural) and a buddy. Make sure to tread the areas safely as its densely forested area can make for slippery trails and walking paths!

Address: Keppel Hill

9. Bollywood Veggies

Make your way to this hidden gem in Singapore for a countryside experience unlike any other. Tucked away in Kranji, you can embark on a guided tour around the farm. Feast your eyes upon an array of plants and fruits amongst a variety of local produce. It’s not often that you get to see firsthand how your favourite ingredients end up on the supermarket shelves.

Also, the scene out of Bollywood Veggies is a breath of fresh air from the common sights in our metropolitan. So, do come ready with your camera to capture snippets of this idyllic sanctuary!

Address: 100 Neo Tiew Road, Singapore 719026

10. Peranakan shophouses along Koon Seng Road

Well-preserved Peranakan shophouses in a kaleidoscope of colours pepper the eclectic Koon Seng Road. Here, you can immerse in the vibrant nuances of a mixed-race community that dates back to the 15th century as you explore the area by foot. Stop in your tracks to admire the intricate facade adorned with elaborate motifs that once housed the Peranakans. It will take you by surprise that some of these them are still inhabited by the families who made this area their home in the bygone era.

What you see today of the neighbourhood is an amalgamation of old-world charm and touches of modernity — a stunning juxtaposition. Nonetheless, a wave of nostalgia will sweep over you as you stroll past every nook and cranny. 

Also read: 9 Night Cycling Routes in Singapore to Admire the City After Dark

Besides towering skyscrapers and UNESCO World Heritage Sites, these hidden gems in Singapore lay hidden in the heart of neighbourhoods and nature. While some of these locations may be off-the-beaten-path, they will definitely transport you to a place and time outside the hustle and bustle of Singapore’s urban living. 

 

About Authors

Sarah Jane Lee
Sarah Jane Lee

Sarah strongly believes that much like sunflowers, she draws her energy from basking in the sunshine. She believes that detours, chance encounters and stories shared by strangers at a bus stop are part of what makes adventure beautiful. Apart from being a sports enthusiast (current fix: Muay Thai), Sarah enjoys soaking up the afternoon sun with a book in hand.

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Ifah Sakinah
Ifah Sakinah

Sakinah has a discerning palate and an innate desire to satisfy her inner curiosity. While she hasn't been everywhere, it's definitely on her list.

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