If you want to escape crowds and concrete just take the subway from the city center and head to some of the best places to visit in Singapore. Not far from all the bustle, you will find Chinese and Japanese Gardens, so different than the scenery of skyscrapers and modern technology, and yet well embedded in the culture of locals.
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Singapore Japanese Garden
According to the Japanese gardening tradition, this park is a picture of harmony, spreading over peaceful promenades along the lake and vast green meadows bordered by huge stones. There is a covered bench on the small hill with a view of the serene lake waters while you gaze toward the greenery on the other side, with a few blossoming trees.
It was clear now why guys I met the day before recommended the park as one of the places to visit in Singapore where one can take a break after running around the city like crazy for the past few days. There weren’t many people there either contrary to what I expected compared to what I have encountered thus far in the city. And this was one more detail that allowed me to genuinely rest, not just my feet but my eyes and mind as well. This was a refuge without murmurs and traffic noise, just what I needed to recharge and continue my journey.
Singapore Chinese Garden
When coming toward the lake, there are typical Chinese constructions on the opposite side and a nice white fairy bridge. Richly decorated it is called the Rainbow Bridge, or Pain Hung Chiao. They say it was built to resemble the bridge in the Summer Palace in Beijing, famous for its 17 arches. I crossed over and was thrilled to see more constructions with small courtyards and fishponds. And there it was, another of those lovely places to visit in Singapore – Chinese Garden.
I immediately noticed that from the garden of silence and simplicity, I came over to the park of harmony where every stone exudes the tradition of yet another great nation from the Far East. A few visitors were walking or just reading a book sitting on the porch of the small building with dragon-like decorations on the roof.
I was passing by sculptures of animals, crossed over a small two-step bridge, a sun clock, and a pagoda on the hill. I read somewhere that these constructions were used for preserving human bones, and this Ru Yun Ta pagoda was constructed to resemble the Ling Ku Buddhist Temple in Nanjing.
It goes for seven floors up and it takes a while to climb to the top. The stairs were spiral and I found nicely decorated windows on every floor, letting the fresh air in, and a beautiful round terrace. The view was just amazing, just as I would expect of one of the places to visit in Singapore. There, there was the park stretching all around and far beyond while the city skyscrapers were peaking out.
Singapore Bonsai Garden
One of the places to visit in Singapore that I enjoyed the most was the Bonsai Garden. I was amazed to find that the city has put almost four million local dollars into this garden that houses more than 1,000 bonsai trees, mostly imported from China.
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I crossed over a small bridge, stepped onto big rocks, and entered a nice little house with inscriptions in Chinese all around with resting areas decorated with beautiful lamps. And right there, numerous bonsai trees were lined up in all shapes and sizes. A small fountain in the middle with a few orange and yellow fish, a nicely arranged backyard… Just perfect!
This garden was also supposed to house a training center for those interested in learning how to grow this special tree.
Escaping the City Noise
A bit further from the Garden, there is a statue of Confucius, the Museum of Turtles, and two more pagodas emerging from the lake. You will find a nice view of yet another pretty white richly decorated bridge with arches. The two traditional buildings (and interesting places to visit in Singapore) will take your breath away – the Stone Bridge and the Tea House, also built to resemble the Palace in Beijing.
Singapore Chinese Garden was built in 1975 and designed by Yuen-Chen Yu, the famous Taiwan architect, creating a mixture of royal constructions and serene landscapes. Everything is neatly done, there are signs everywhere, toilets and water fountains, and while leaving the garden you will be escorted by statues of Chinese scholars, generals, and public figures (there was even a statue of Mulan).
When you reach a small (red) bridge that goes over the lake, with all those weeping willow branches touching the water’s surface, you will find a stone-paved path taking you to the subway station and back to the skyline of Singapore.
If you have the time, make sure to visit these three gardens in Singapore because they are quite impressive. Also, this can be a great refuge and relaxing place, even though you will walk around for hours.
Such silence in this vibrant and bustling city!
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