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What You See At These Singapore Green Running Trails Will Surprise You

by On Sep 23, 2015
What You See At These Singapore Green Running Trails Will Surprise You

No matter how many running trails you visit in Singapore, you can expect to discover distinct mixes of bio-diversity, traffic-stopping beauty and even a little history. Whether you prefer to run, cycle or walk these verdant trails, you will witness the way Singapore respects the past and celebrates the future.

Pioneers Trail at Ann Siang Hill Park & Telok Ayer Green

Distance: 0.6 km
Time needed: 30 minutes
Difficulty level: Easy
Highlight: Ann Siang Hill (located on Telok Ayer Bay) was one of a trio of hills levelled to create more living space for Singaporeans. Yes, Ann existed; in the person of Chia Ann Siang, a wealthy landowner. Before the area was flattened, the land was home to a Cantonese cemetery and other sacred memorials. These days, those who run or walk this area are soothed by cinnamon, nutmeg and tamarind trees as well as plenty of natural eye candy.

Pioneers Trail at Ann Siang Hill Park & Telok Ayer Green

Wallace Trail at the Dairy Farm Nature Park

Distance: 1 km
Time needed: 2 to 3 hours
Difficulty level: Easy to moderate
Highlight: The 63-hectare Dairy Farm Nature Park is just six years old, yet it's already won the hearts and feet of runners and walkers. The Wallace Education Center offers kids an exceptional "green" education as first interpreted by English environmentalist Alfred Russell Wallace, a Charles Darwin contemporary. The park's quarry was rehabilitated and is now a wetlands habitat with viewing platform, so if you use this park to run, you'll have much on which to feast your eyes.

Wallace Trail at the Dairy Farm Nature Park

Monument Trail at Empress Place, Esplanade Park & War Memorial Park

Distance: 1.5 km
Time needed: 45 minutes
Difficulty level: Easy
Highlight: Once upon a time, the mouth of the Singapore River was a beehive of commercial activity, but it's been transformed into three parks bridged by trails filled with historic landmarks. Start your walk at Empress Place, continue to Esplanade Park and end at War Memorial Park to make a full circuit. Along the way, pass museums, the Padang, City Hall and the Supreme Court. Cannonball and Leopard trees coexist nicely with statues and World War II and Civil War Memorials recalling some of Singapore's darkest days.

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Monument Trail at Empress Place, Esplanade Park & War Memorial Park

Ancient History Trail at Fort Canning Park

Distance: 2 km
Time needed: 45 minutes
Difficulty level: Moderate
Highlight: When artefacts were unearthed at Fort Canning Park back in 1926, it was just the beginning of the revelation of an archaeological treasure trove left behind by ancient Malay rulers. Learn about the 13th and 14th Century era of the five kings and Golden Age of Singapore at the start of this trail and make it a point to stop your jog or walk long enough to inspect the ancient tomb said to hold the remains of the nation's last pre-colonial ruler.

Ancient History Trail at Fort Canning Park

Colonial History Trail at Fort Canning Park

Distance: 2 km
Time needed: 45 minutes
Difficulty level: Moderate
Highlight: While you're in the Fort Canning Park vicinity, the Colonial History Trail picks up where the aforementioned Ancient History Trail ends. The influence of Britain is unmistakable along the Colonial History Trail. See Sir Stamford Raffles' bungalow and the official buildings that formed the fort that served as British military headquarters in 1860 and named for Viscount Charles John Canning.

Colonial History Trail at Fort Canning Park

Sculpture Trail at Fort Canning Park

Distance: 2 km
Time needed: 45 minutes
Difficulty level: Moderate
Highlight: Be forewarned: The art situated along the Sculpture Trail will stop you in your tracks, so you may wish to walk the distance first and run later. This impressive gallery of 3D art relies upon Mother Nature for a backdrop. Learn more about the origins and creators of each piece, originally contributed by artisans around the world back in 1981 when the ASEAN Sculptures Symposium was staged in Singapore.

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Sculpture Trail at Fort Canning Park

Trees of the Fort Trail at Fort Canning Park

Distance: 2 km
Time needed: 45 minutes
Difficulty level: Easy
Highlight: It's hard to run (or walk, for that matter) with a guide book in one hand, but if you want to try and identify the 25 tree types planted throughout Fort Canning Park, go for it. Trees chosen for planting along this trail are diverse. From Malayan Banyans to statuesque Kapoks, Madras Thorns and upside-down Baobabs, six of 178 types of trees listed in Singapore's Heritage Tree Programme are represented.

Trees of the Fort Trail at Fort Canning Park

Chemperai Trail at the MacRitchie Boardwalk

Distance: 1.5 km
Time needed: 30 minutes to 1 hour
Difficulty level: Easy
Highlight: The Chemperai Trail is a feast for the eyes, pairing Singapore's oldest reservoir with secondary and primary forest land. To span the entire 1.5 km path, start at the amenities centre, follow signs along the boardwalk and forest paths, keeping an eye out for exotic lizards, dragonflies, pigeons and woodpeckers. Note elegant reservoir pavilions circa 1867 as you walk. Once you enter forested areas, watch your step! Thick vegetation in varying stages of decomposition are left in place for conservation reasons.

Chemperai Trail at the MacRitchie Boardwalk

Prunus Trail at the MacRitchie Boardwalk

Distance: 3 km
Time needed: 1 hour
Difficulty level: Easy
Highlight: The Prunus Trail starts near the entrance of MacRitchie Nature Trail; signs will help you pick the right path. The boardwalk is a short, easy stroll so it's no challenge to veteran runners. On the other hand, if you love nature, slow down and glimpse winged insects and birds. If you're particularly observant, spot Oriental Whip Snakes, Sun Skinks and Clouded Monitor Lizards soaking up sun plus the occasional squirrel or Macaque amid the lush trees, plants and flowers.

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Prunus Trail at the MacRitchie Boardwalk

The Tree Trail at Pulau Ubin

Distance: 1.5 km
Time needed: 2 hours
Difficulty level: Easy
Highlight: One prolific blogger called this trail the ultimate sensory experience since all five senses are engaged while on this trail, which is likely why so many tastes, sounds and sites stand out. See vestiges of ancient Singapore village life as you follow the trail through acre after acre of coconut, mangrove and rubber trees. In the midst of this park, a last relic of colonialism remains in place: The Tudor-style Chek Jawa Visitors Centre.

The Tree Trail at Pulau Ubin Running Trails, Expect Surprises!

Rainforest Trail at the Singapore Botanic Gardens

Distance: 600 m
Time needed: 30-40 minutes
Difficulty level: Easy
Highlight: Located near Orchard Road, a prominent shopping district, both coexist nicely. The rainforest sprawls across 6.2 hectares of land, so 314 types of tropical plants and trees have plenty of room to grow. Established in 1859 to protect indigenous flora and fauna, this trail sports three forest layers: a lower tree tier with 25 m high trees, a tree tier of 35 m-high trees and an over-arching canopy topped made up of trees averaging around 45 m. An elevated boardwalk affords you spectacular views from within this primeval forest.

Rainforest Trail at the Singapore Botanic Gardens

Start Exploring These Great Singapore Green Running Trails

When confronted by beauty, history and art, there's much to see, and only a leisurely walk does these trails justice. That stated, not every runner can focus on training or conditioning when there are these kinds of distractions. As a runner, are you attracted to or distracted by splendid surroundings when you pick running trails, and why?

Priscelia adores beautiful visuals and has a keen eye for detail. As a smart shopper and avid runner, she assists in the creative direction of RunSociety as well as occasionally conjuring thought provoking articles. Never shy to give constructive feedback, she also manages the product reviews section.

Location
Singapore
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