When you hear the word ‘Singapore,’ all that strikes your mind is a majestic city with towering skyscrapers, a supersonic metro system, glitzy shopping malls, the sea, and various parks.
You might get this imagery about the country as it strives to stand at the forefront of modernity and is not often associated with nature.
However, today Singapore has embraced the challenge of becoming a ‘City in a Garden’ and developing an eco-vibe for the future. And the Gardens by the Bay, a tech nature park that spans over 250 acres on the Marina Reservoir, may be considered a part towards building a sustainable green future.
So, walk through the post to learn everything about this memorable attraction to put your best foot ahead!
1. What are Gardens by the Bay, and Why was it Built?
Gardens by the Bay is a colossal nature park in the heart of the metropolis on reclaimed land, the marina reservoir. It is a renowned tourist hub for nature lovers and horticulturalists alike for its three waterfront gardens;
- Bay Central Garden – 37 acres
- Bay East Garden – 79 acres
- Bay South Garden – 130 acres
Astonishing Fact: Did you know? The massive size of the gardens can contain about 188 football fields! Cool right?
Now, you might already know that Singapore is the epitome of urbanisation. And to balance urbanity with nature, the Government approved the project to promote greenery and fauna in the city to implement sustainability.
In 2005, Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong announced this garden to become a national icon and a major urban outdoor appeal in Singapore and become a City in a Garden!
2. How were the Gardens by the Bay Built?
Initially, where the Gardens by the Bay stands now was just sea, sand and soggy soil. You can always keep the Biblical creation of Eden beside you while delving into the depths of the creation of this magical garden!
Then following an international design contest, Grant Associates, a landscape architecture firm, was selected in 2006 by the National Parks Board of Singapore to begin the Bay South Garden masterplan design. This is the largest of the three gardens at the marina bay.
With the Grant Associates, the British design team for Bay South included:
- Wilkinson Eyre (architects)
- Atelier Ten (environmental design consultants)
- Atelier One (structural engineers)
- Land Design Studio (museum and visitor centre designers)
- Thomas Matthews (communication designer) took part to work on the project.
And the once barren site devoid of drains, roads, and electricity took shape from the Grants Associates masterplan inspired by the form of an orchid. It was built with an elegant fusion of nature, technology and environmental regime.
Finally, in 2012, the massive garden was officially opened to the public view, and later, by 2015, it topped the bucket list of every tourist stepping onto the shores of Singapore.
Some of the unique highlights of the Gardens by the Bay are attributed to the following architects and designers:
- Wilkinson Eyre Architects designed the Cool Conservatories consisting of the Two giant biomes, the Flower Dome (1.2 hectares) and the Cloud Forest Dome (0.8 hectares), to provide an edutainment space within the gardens with flora from all climatic regions of the Mediterranean.
- Grant Associates architected the 18 Supertrees that are of a height of up to 50 metres in the iconic vertical gardens that are a wow factor. This vertical display consists of climbing tropical flowers, ferns, and epiphytes. These Supertrees come to life at night with dazzling lighting and projected media. And an aerial walkway is constructed to give a unique perspective of the floral fantasy.
Did you know? The Supertrees are vital to cooling the Cooled Conservatories as they are embedded with water technologies and sustainable energy.
Even the Horticulture gardens were crafted by the Grant Associates in two collections: The Heritage Gardens and The World of Plants Centre. This is a spectacular-coloured foliage landscape with mass flowering that offers a spectacle of colour, fragrance, and texture inside the gardens leaving a mesmerizing effect on its visitors.
Now millions of people have visited worldwide, but while looking back, one can never forget the grandiose thinking that has gone into the evolution of the Gardens by the Bay that stand today!
Did you know? The Gardens by the Bay have received three renowned awards: The Landscape Award from World Architecture News (2013), The Best Attraction in Asia Pacific from Travel Weekly (2015) and The Best Attraction Experience (2019) from Singapore Tourism Awards.
3. Astonishing Facts about the Gardens by the Bay, Singapore
Singapore today marches towards a greener future and has become a famous green city worldwide, primarily known for its national garden that doubles horticulture attraction.
From the ultra-modern biodomes and the bizarre Supertrees to the extensive waterfront gardens – there’s no repudiating that Gardens by the Bay is merely magnificent. And this is a fantastic vantage point in the marina bay with numerous outdoor gardens and amenities for visitors of all ages to learn and reconnect with nature.
As you plan to visit this floral fantasy in marina bay in Singapore, here are some top facts about the Gardens by the Bay to stun you!
3.1 Gardens by the Bay were Designed on Reclaimed Land
A recovered land in Southern Singapore that spanned over 250 acres was used as a natural park by the Singapore Government. It was an initiative to wall the metropolis with lush greenery, influencing the city’s foliage and plant life.
3.2 It is a UNESCO World Heritage Site
With the idea to build a city in a garden, this one-of-a-kind garden was created to promote the development of lush green spaces amid the concrete structures to provide a healthy work-life balance.
And having the horticulture heaven in the nation’s heart for educational and recreational purposes with breathtaking city and waterfront views, the Gardens by the Bay is Singapore’s latest addition to its UNESCO Heritage site.
3.3 Flaunting Architecture that Exceeds the Ordinary
This is a magnanimous architecture that is a significant propeller of Singapore tourism. One has to appreciate the meticulous planning and unique design. You might be shocked to know that initially, there was an international design competition held with 170 firms from 24 countries competing with their design ideas.
The 11-member jury selected the two designs: one from Grant Associates, who designed Bay South, and the other from Gustafson Porter, who designed the Bay East Garden. However, the Bay Central Garden design was to be decided later.
However, the Bay South Garden became the highlight with its massive size, extraordinary tropical horticulture, innovative architecture and gardening creativity. It drew inspiration from Singapore’s national flower (the Vanda’ Miss Joaquim’ orchid), where the themed gardens, two prominent conservatories, and the SuperTree Grove, with its rich assorted foliage from across the world, became a massive hit among tourists.
3.4 The Gardens by the Bay has Horticulture-Themed Gardens
These gardens tend to preserve and showcase the horticulture heritage of Singapore from the colonial past. It also promotes the focus on the economic importance of flora in the nation and South East Asia.
The four primary themes in This heritage Garden are;
- The Indian Garden
- The Chinese Garden
- The Malay Garden
- The Colonial Garden.
3.5 The Whole Setup of the Garden Resembles the National Flower
The entire master plan of the garden was to showcase Singapore’s orchid, the nation’s national flower.
The flower’s nickname stuck after being located initially in the garden of Miss Agnes Joaquin in 1893, which became the national flower of Singapore on April 15, 1981.
3.6 Each Surreal Supertree Grove has a Garden in it
One of the most iconic structures in the garden is the gigantic supertrees that tower up to 50 metres off the ground. They were primarily designed as a unique vertical garden blanketed with plants, climbers, and flowers.
Also, you can stroll through the OCBC Skyway that connects two supertrees in mid-air to get dazzling panoramas of the entire garden.
At night, these supertrees are illuminated to offer hypnotic light shows that have a lasting effect on visitors.
3.7 The World’s Largest Greenhouse is in the Garden
The Flower Dome in the Gardens by the Bay is considered the world’s largest greenhouse and has topped the Guinness Book of World Records (2015). Walking through this dome, you can get an imitated version of the cool Mediterranean climate with various exotic flowers, plants and garden displays from five continents.
Interestingly the temperature within the flower dome remains constant. Want to know how? Check out this interesting video!
3.8 There is a Special Place for Children too in the Garden
For kids, the Children’s Garden offers numerous child-friendly attractions, hanging bridges, trampolines, balancing beams etc. It stands close to the treehouse and the adventure trial.
3.9 Futuristic Architecture Inspired the Creation of the Planet Xandar
This is a wondrous fact about the Gardens by the Bay since it was an inspiration for the movie Guardians of the Galaxy. The futuristic architecture paved the way to create planet Xandar. Stephane Ceretti says,
There’s a place in Singapore called Gardens by the Bay which has that lush, kind of futuristic feel in terms of architecture and a very lush tropical feel.
3.10 Magnanimous Gardens by the Bay has Skyrocketing Costs
Finally, you might wonder about the cost of building such an awe and glory-filled place in the heart of Singapore. You might be shocked to know it was a costly price tag.
SGD 893 million was the initial budget to begin the project. Later it shot up to 1.035 billion SGD. This is an estimate that doesn’t include the land’s price and the maintenance of the garden.
Overall, 28 million SGD went into maintaining the conservatory buildings, and 25 million SDG went to the outdoor gardens. For more information, click here!
Ultimately, Singapore’s vision of designing a city in a garden has come true significantly with the Gardens by the Bay. A magically beautiful garden and a fantastic tourist hub, Gardens by the Bay, is your answer to the question, ‘Have you ever been to the world’s highly revered manufactured tropical garden?’
4. End of the Line
Now doesn’t this bubble up your wanderlust? Then you are the right person to read the following FAQ section that feeds your wanderlust with all the vital information to get there in a jiffy. So, keep reading!
Frequently Asked Questions
- Where are the Gardens by the Bay located?
18 Marina Gardens Drive, Singapore, Singapore 01.
- How to reach the Gardens by the Bay?
- Reach the Bayfront MRT station on the Orange Circle Lines and Blue Downtown.
- You can also take a walk from the Marina Bay Sands or the Helix Bridge toward the Art Science Museum.
- Click here in case you wish to take public transportation.
- When is the best time to visit the Gardens by the Bay?
It depends on your preference, as the beauty of this spectacular garden remains unrivalled at whatever time of the day you visit. However, most tourists prefer early evening or sunset as they feel the park looks beautiful around that time, followed by the Gardens by the Bay Light Show.
Also, you can consider this the best time if you wish to avoid the daytime heat.
- Are there any weather considerations for planning my trip?
Hopefully, it’s a yes because it’s best to visit from November to March as the temperatures drop down around this time, making the climate moderate and pleasant.
If you are planning a rainy season visit, be prepared for frequent thunderstorms and downpours. However, you might not have a massive difficulty as the Flower Dome and Cloud Forest are predominantly enclosed conservatories.
- How to purchase Gardens by the Bay tickets?
- How do the Gardens by the Bay flower dome tickets work out?
These are the rates applicable for Singapore residents:
- Adult- $12
- Child (3-12 yrs old)- $8
And these are the Gardens by the Bay ticket price for foreigners to enter the flower dome and cloud forest;
- Adult- $53
- Child (3-12 yrs old)- $40
- How do the Gardens by the Bay work hours function?
The approximate working hours for the park are between 9 am to 9 pm. However, the places you wish to explore might vary. Check the official website before you step out!
Now you’re all set to zoom into the Gardens by the Bay in your upcoming vacation. And before you leave, catch a glimpse of the rest of the articles posted on our site here to get a breath of fresh news into your senses!