Fort Canning Park : A Walk Around Singapore Bicentennial Park

The sky was clear, the air was crisp and what better thing to do than having a nice stroll at a park? When my husband and I went to Singapore recently, we thought of having a walk around Singapore Historical Landmark. It would be nice to just get some fresh air in the city.

And the best place to do that? Fort Canning Park.

Fort Canning Park, Singapore Historical Landmark In The Heart Of The City

First of all, it is important to don comfortable clothing (preferably thin cotton) and shoes before walking around Fort Canning Park. I don’t know how you feel but I think Singapore can be quite humid at times without wind and I would sweat profusely because of this. Don’t get me wrong, I love what I see but I don’t really appreciate the trickle of sweat going in between my boobs (pardon my French).

Other than that, I’m all eyes to the always-changing-always-upgrading Singaporean attraction.

Outside Dhoby Ghaut MRT
Don’t you love big trees?

My husband and I went to Fort Canning Park via the MRT. We dropped off at Dhoby Ghaut, took the exit to Penang Road, walk through Dhoby Ghaut Green and follow the walkway to Fort Canning Tunnel. That was the first place went to first because my husband wanted to take a photo at the famous spiral steps at the end of the tunnel.

Sadly though, there was such a long line of people taking photos there and we weren’t very patient so we skipped that and walked up the stairs towards the Information Centre. We wanted to join the Battlebox Tour but that was happening in almost two hours from when we were at the Information Centre so we decided to have a stroll nearby first.

The Battlebox Fort Canning

The Sally Port Fort Canning

We first went to check out the Battlebox entrance (only guided tour are allowed to get inside), the Sally Port. Then, we walked towards the Fort Canning Centre and saw that there was a show going on inside the Fort Canning Centre for the Time Traveller experience called “From Singapore to Singaporean : The Bicentennial Experience”.

From Singapore to Singaporean Bicentennial Experience

From Singapore to Singaporean Bicentennial Experience

Of course my husband and I wouldn’t pass up the opportunity to watch the show ourselves. I must admit, by the end of the show, it brought the nationalism feeling in me – and I’m not even a Singaporean.

The show was an hour long and add that up with us taking photos and buying some mementos, we missed the time to join the Battlebox Tour (yes, that sucked). So we just ended up walking at the Pathfinder area and checking out some very interesting pieces up here.

At the Pathfinder area, you would be able to see these:

  1. Emporium of the East
  2. Lookout
  3. Lightbeam
  4. House of Maps
  5. Seed Conservatory
  6. Reflections of our past
  7. Pavilion of Words
  8. Observatory

All this even before heading towards the Fort Gate.

Fort Canning Map

What Can You Find At Pathfinder Fort Canning Bicentennial Park?

I really wasn’t expecting to find such gems in a place like this. When I stepped into the Emporium of the East at the Pathfinder area, I was immersed in the displayed replicas of commonly traded goods that are found in Singapore from centuries ago.

I found pieces like the Keris (common dagger by the Malays), Bamboo Spear, Hornbill Casque, Headless Horseman, Songket, Quarter Dinar and so many more.

In case you didn’t know: In the 19th century, Singapore is a very famous trade port and some of the things traded here includes Cotton, Wool, Iron, Steel, Firearms, Glassware, Clocks from Europe, SIlk, Tea, Porcelain, Medicines from China, Opium, Cotton, Cloth from India and Spices (such as nutmeg and cloves), Rice, Coffee, Bird’s Nest, Precious wood (such as sandalwood and teak) from The Malay Archipelago.

There were so many Secondary school children around the Lookout, Seed Conservatory and Lightbeam areas so I skipped those and went straight to House of Maps.

House Of Maps Fort Canning Park

House of Maps Fort Canning Park

At House of Maps, you can find the story of 10 maps throughout the centuries. You see, at first Singapore was a nameless island. But when it began to be a significant trading port, cartographers from around the world started acknowledging this little island’s presence and gave it many names like Sabana Emporium, Cingatola and Bargungapara, among others.

I loved how the maps at House of Maps were displayed like sails to reflect the maritime theme of when it started to become a popular shipping route.

Maps by Al-Idrisi (1300 copy of 1154 map), Mao Kun (1600 – 1900 print), Vndecima Asiae Tabvla (published by Johann Reger, 1486), Cantino Planisphere (1502), Ortelius (1588 – 1612), Linschoten (1598), Selden Map of China (1620 – 1629), Moll (1717), Bellin (1755) and Horsburgh (1824).

You know, I wasn’t very good in my Geography subject in school but perusing all these maps slowly from centuries ago, made me think how little I was in this great big world.

You could really lose track of time when you’re here, especially if you take note of all the information available.

If you have extra time, you can even check out the Heritage Trails BalikSG Augmented Reality App. As you walk around Fort Canning Park and even other Singapore Heritage Trail (in Clarke Quay and others), you will be furnished with information of the history of that area.

Amazing right?

As we walked past the Fort Gate, we realized there’s a door and stairs that leads to the top of the fort. From the Fort Gate as were walking back to the Battlebox Roundabout, we came across information about Sir William George Sheldon Dobbie or better knows as Dobbie Rise before coming upon Hotel Fort Canning.

Dobbie Rise

By the time we arrived at our starting point, we realized more than 4 hours has passed us by. We wished we had more time to explore the other parts of Fort Canning Park (read: the gardens) but we had another pressing matter to go to next. Oh, so sad that we had to leave before properly exploring this huge and amazing park in the city.

Watch this short video of our stroll at Fort Canning Park below:

What Other Things Can Be Found In Fort Canning Park?

Fort Canning Park offers a variety of recreational activities as well as historical, educational, entertainment and cultural experiences. Back in May, Singapore National Parks Board announced that it has completed the first phase of the historical restoration of Fort Canning Park.

This first phase was done on 9 new gardens in Fort Canning Park to allow tourists and locals to experience Singapore’s historical and heritage-inspired gardens. The gardens includes:

  • Raffles Garden – a garden inspired by Sir Stamford Raffles
  • Sang Nila Utama Garden – a garden inspired by the first ancient king of Singapore, a Palembang prince from Srivijaya kingdom
  • Artisan’s Garden – Singapore’s last archaeological dig sites
  • Spice Garden – inspired by the plantations that Raffles had experimented with and according to Singapore National Parks Board, by year 2021, a gallery trail that with provide information to visitors will be completed
  • Farquhar Garden – inspired by Raffles’ right-hand man and first British resident and commandant of Singapore
  • Armenian Street Park – inspired by the Peranakan
  • Pancur LaranganPancur Larangan or Forbidden Spring is a Javanese-themed water area that was used as bathing place by noble ladies in the royal court of Singapura
  • Jubilee Park – play area for children with swings, slides and more
  • First Botanic Garden – find many types of plants here

So yeah. It certainly is the City’s Green Lung here at Fort Canning Park and it’s just so easy to lose time when you’re here.

If you’re in the Lion City and would love to get out of the hustle and bustle of city, a whole day at Fort Canning Park would definitely just be a walk in the park.

Written by 

LizzaBella is a part-time traveler, amateur photographer and videographer and writer. Connect with LizzaBella through her social medias today!

18 thoughts on “Fort Canning Park : A Walk Around Singapore Bicentennial Park

  1. noted. tq for sharing. love it.
    saya belum lagi ke spore. planned so many times, tapi x jadik!
    dekat je. but yet so far 🙂
    wajib gi tempat ni. byk info.
    yes. walaupun kita bukan warganegara, tapi, feeling kewarnegaraan tu penting.

  2. Selalu terbayangkan pergi singapore je USS sahaja. Tak tahu pulak ada tempat menarik untuk travel sana. Boleh la plan utk buat short vacay ke singapore.

  3. Ruby belum pernah lagi jejak kaki ke Singapore.

    Padahal Jb ke singapore tak lah jauh mana 😁

    Bila berjalan, Ruby pun prefer pakai baju yang jenis cotton.

    Banyak tempat best kat Fort Canning Park rupanya. Spice garden tu mesti terhidu macam² rempah kan.

  4. Thank’s sharing. Jika ada peluang , Naim akan kesana pada suatu hari nanti. Semoga kenangan ini memberi memori indah kepada anda.

  5. Fort Canning Park bukan sahaja menawarkan pelbagai aktiviti rekreasi serta sejarah, pendidikan, hiburan dan pengalaman kebudayaan malah ia mengenali asal dan sejarah sebuah negara tu penting memang wajib singgah ni….

  6. menarik betul taman ni. banyak aktiviti menarik boleh buat kat sini. tak sangka kat singapore banyak tempat best boleh pergi selain kat pulau sentosa tu. eh rasanya dah lama BBL tak pergi singapura. boleh la masuk dalam check list nanti

  7. Wowww seronoknya jalan2 singapore. Negara maju yg cantik. Even sebelah je tapi saya belum pernah sampai ke sana. Love it lah. Thank you sharing info tempat menarik singapore

  8. Terima kasih atas perkongsian. Banyak tempat menarik ya, teringin pulak nak ke sini. Memang Singapore berada dalam wishlist saya. Semoga diberi peluang di masa akan datang.

  9. Hye Bella. I am Nur. Salam kenal 🙂

    Ive never been to Singapore before. But by reading your story about Fort Canning Park, as it was like I was there too enjoying the moments walking around the historical landmark.

    I like the way you write about your experience there. It seems to be an inspiration to me who is new to the blogging world 🙂

  10. waaa. next year plan nak celebrate birthday kat singapore. boleh plan ke sini jugak.

  11. Seronoknya dapat jalan2 singapore. Banyak tempat menarik untuk diexplore.
    Bila la nak sampai sana..buku merah xrenew lagi..btw thanks sharing this info

  12. Beautiful place…hope we can visit this place for our holiday….nice sharing and thank you

  13. tq sbb share.. tak prnh pergi la ke singapore ni.. moga2 ada rezeki ke sana.. best juga kalau dpt tempat tgm org

  14. Dta stairs cantik..
    Never been to this place… Nnt kalau ke Spore lgi.. Boleh la pay visit here

  15. i never been in singapore. this place looks so amazing. if one day i come visit singapore i will surely visit here and take pretty photo!

  16. ii pernah pergi singapore tapi tak pernah sampai tempat ni…agak menarik dan terasa nak singgah satu hari nanti..tempat ni cantik dengan keindahan dan pada yang sama kita boleh belajar sesuatu

  17. Dah lama xpg Singapore firstly Fort Canning Park tgk mcm bedt sgt

  18. Well design parks with all different theme! Thank you for sharing this info!

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