A Complete Guide To Exploring Pulau Ubin


Pic credit: NParks


Pulau Ubin might be one of the islands we’re most familiar with, and if you’re looking to escape city life, this is the day trip for you!


Located off the North-Eastern corner of mainland Singapore, this island will transport you back to the 1960s. Home to some of the last villages and kampungs, you’ll get to explore what life is like without modern technology.


While there, make sure to pay a visit to Chek Jawa Wetlands as well, one of Singapore’s richest ecosystems. The area is home to 6 different ecosystems, and there are visitor facilities such as boardwalks and a viewing tower in place.


Planning a trip to Pulau Ubin soon? Read on for a complete guide to exploring the island!


What you need to know before visiting:

Pic credit: NParks


  • While the island has internet connection, your data plan may cut out at certain parts of the island due to poor connection. We recommend downloading the official map from NParks before visiting the island.

  • As there are people who live on the island, please be respectful and do not trespass onto private property while exploring.

  • There are a few food stalls available on the island, but these are located mostly near the main village, and opening hours depend on the owners. Do note that cash is the only form of payment accepted on the island.


What to pack:

  • Insect repellant

  • Water

  • Snacks

  • Cash

  • Sunblock

  • Rain gear (umbrella or raincoat)

  • Fishing equipment (optional)

Note: We recommend comfortable long-sleeve tops and pants to protect yourself from the mosquitoes waiting for you to arrive.


How to get there:

Pic credit: Google Maps


Pulau Ubin is a 15-minute boat ride away from Changi Point Ferry Terminal, and it costs $4 per person for a one-way trip. An extra charge of $2 will be applicable if you are bringing your own bicycle.


Note: The boat runs from 7AM-7PM daily and there is no fixed schedule as the boat only sets off when there is a full load of between 9-12 passengers.


Changi Point Ferry Terminal -


Address: 51 Lorong Bekukong, Singapore 499172

Nearest MRT station: Tampines MRT Station

How to Get There: From Tampines MRT station exit D, hop onto Bus 29 from Tampines Bus Interchange to Changi Village Bus Interchange


Getting around Pulau Ubin:

Pic credit: Ithaka Travel

There are 3 options - walking, by bicycle or by taxi.


Walking:

Given Pulau Ubin’s relatively small size, exploring the island Bear Grylls-style is possible, although it will take more time and effort. Going on foot lets you get closer to the wildlife on the island, which includes critters like otters, boars and birds.


Cycling:

Cycling is the preferred way of exploring the island, and there are bike rental shops located near the jetty for convenience.


For those who are afraid of getting lost, there are organised bike tours available. These tours come with a guide and will allow you to get a more in-depth understanding of the island as you explore it on bike.


Taxi:

If walking or cycling is inconvenient for you, there is also a Taxi Service stand located on the left of the jetty. While the term “taxi” is used, minivans are usually used and can accommodate up to 10 pax. Taxis can be booked either per trip or per hour, but prepared to pay up to $35/hour.


What to do at Pulau Ubin:


1. Explore Chek Jawa Wetlands

Chek Jawa is home to one of Singapore’s richest ecosystems, and is roughly 100 hectares in size. There are also guided tours available at $60 for a group of up to 5 pax, and booking can be done via the NParks website.


How to get there:

Chek Jawa is a 40-minute walk away from the main village, but visitors can opt to cycle there or take a taxi. Do note that bicycles are not allowed in and will have to be parked at designated lots outside.


Tip: As Chek Jawa is an intertidal area, low tide would be the best time to plan a visit. Guests are encouraged to check the tide table before planning a trip there.


2. Go kayaking through the mangroves

Pic credit: Klook


For the more adventurous, try out your hand at kayaking through the mangroves at Pulau Ubin with a kayaking tour! Not only will you be able to get closer to the wildlife there, but you’ll also get to see traditional stilt houses or kelongs hidden around the island too.


Meeting Point:

34 Pulau Ubin, Ubin Adventures Hut


3. Visit Jejawi Tower

Pic credit: NParks


For some of the best views of Pulau Ubin and Chek Jawa, make sure you head up the 20m high Jejawi Tower! Not only will you get a bird’s-eye view of the island, but you’ll also get to spot wildlife such as birds that can be found in the tree canopy.


How to get there:

Take the Mangrove Loop at Chek Jawa Wetlands


4. Camping

If you’re looking to truly escape city life, a camping trip is the perfect activity! Chances are most of us have never really been camping in the outdoors, and Pulau Ubin has 3 campsites for those up for the experience. While there are toilets on the island, do be warned there are no showers and you’ll need to bring your own food and drinks to cook at the designated fire pits.


P.S: You’ll need a permit which you can apply for via the NParks website.


5. Try your hand at fishing

One of the more popular activities on the island, you’ll probably spot a handful of fishermen scattered around the island during your trip. Do note that you’ll need to bring your own equipment should you wish to fish, and fishing is prohibited at all quarries within Pulau Ubin.


6. Go cycling at Ketam Mountain Bike Park



Pulau Ubin is also home to Ketam Mountain Bike Park, where you’ll get the chance to experience mountain biking! The park has 3 trails, and these suitable for beginners, middle-skilled cyclists and those with advanced skills.


Do note that you will require a proper mountain bike and protection gear, and cyclists are encouraged not to cycle alone. A map of Ketam Mountain Bike Park can be found on the NParks website.


How to get there:

Ketam Mountain Bike Park is located around the fringe of the Ketam Quarry, which is a 20-minute bicycle ride away from the main village.


7. Explore Butterfly Hill

Pic credit: NParks


A man-made knoll located in the South of Pulau Ubin, did you know Butterfly Hill was created to attract butterflies? Special plants were planted to attract over 140 species of butterflies in the conservation area, and these efforts paid off when the Dwarf Crow, which was thought to be extinct, was rediscovered in 2002!


How to get there:

Butterfly Hill is located up the hill from Jelutong Campsite



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