While kids never lose their sense of wonderment and adventure, even during a pandemic, COVID-19 has, unfortunately, kept many closer to home than usual. With travel plans being limited, with the possibility of schools shutting down again, how can you keep your children active and interested in these circumstances?
Thankfully, planning some fun activities to do as a family can help keep everyone entertained, even if you find yourself spending a little longer in Singapore than expected.
Here are our top 20 kid-friendly places in Singapore that can help turn the lockdown and pandemic-blues into days to look forward to!
1. East Coast Park and Sentosa Island
Spend a day on one of the beaches at Sentosa Island or East Coast Park. From picnics to walks along the coastline — both have plenty of fun activities for everyone. If you’re headed over with small children, try out St John’s Island, Changi Beach, Palawan Beach, Kusu Island or Pasir Ris Beach. You may want to steer clear of party spots and buzzing beaches, like Siloso Beach and Tanjong Beach.
2. Admiralty Park
Aside from an enchanting mix of fauna and flora, Admiralty Park nature reserve caters to kids of all ages. With 3 main play areas that encourage group and multi-generational playtime — Junior Play, Adventure Play and Family Terracing Play — Admiralty Park is the largest in the north. There’s even an inclusive playground for those with or without special needs (it includes the physical structures they may need to enjoy themselves or play with others). And, once done with the playground, you might want to explore the walking trails through the forest, mangrove, riverine and open grassland habitats for some nature-therapy.
3. Jacob Ballas Children’s Garden
This is the first garden in Asia dedicated to children aged 14 and below. A happy day spent here will help educate and instil a love for nature and the outdoors in the whole family. Filled with play areas, tree houses, a farm, orchard, and a forest with streams and ponds, there’s something for children of all ages and temperaments.
Source: National Parks
4. Botanical Garden Picnics
Singapore Botanic Gardens is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and the gentle slope of Palm Valley (within the gardens) is arguably the best place to have a family-friendly picnic in all of Singapore. For a break from the city buzz, claim your spot for a slow picnic and explore the gardens. You’ll find the Jacob Ballas Children’s Garden here, as well as a lake where you can feed black Australian swans, a rainforest patch and the world’s largest collection of orchids!
5. Bukit Timah Nature Reserve Trail
Take a walk through Bukit Timah nature reserve if you and your kids need to let off a little steam. The trail in this forest reserve ranges across easy to moderate terrain (read the brochure and view the trail map here), and it’s just minutes away from the city. The Wallace Education Centre and viewing platforms for the Hindhede Quarry and Singapore Quarry Wetland are also worth exploring while there.
Source: All Trails
Spark a love of gardening, indulge your child’s budding nature photography skills, or go for a family jog in the tranquil setting of HortPark. Explore the Nature Playgarden with the little ones, expand your gardening know-how at the Gardening Centre and themed gardens, or explore the Bee Trail to learn more about these magical creatures and their crucial role in our ecosystems.
7. Orchard Road Christmas Light Up
This 2.9km long walk from Tanglin Mall to Plaza Singapura along Orchard Road promises to be spectacular this year. It may feel quieter, as it’s been scaled down with the street festivities cancelled, but it’s still a beautiful way to celebrate the close of the year. According to The Straits Times, this year the installation includes up to 50kms of LED string lights. Kicking off on November 13th, the 2020 edition includes a virtual tour of the display with 360-degree views!
8. Gardens by the Bay
Adjacent to the Marina Reservoir, Gardens by the Bay is one of the best places to explore plant life from around the world. While some areas require you to purchase tickets for access, there’s enough here that’s free for you and the family to spend an enjoyable day exploring. Highlights include the Children’s Garden and an adventure trail with trampolines, balancing beams and hanging bridges for the older kids to enjoy.
9. Jurassic Mile
Singapore’s largest permanent outdoor display of life-sized dinosaurs is sure to get young hearts racing! Budding paleontologists will love the giant dinosaur eggs and more than 20 different prehistoric creatures — carnivorous, herbivorous, and flying — scattered over this 1km stretch at Changi Airport. Well worth the visit!
Source: Changi Airport
10. The Singapore Zoo
Meet orangutans, crocs, penguins, lions and more at The Singapore Zoo. Set within Singapore’s heavily forested central catchment area, at the edge of the Upper Seletar Reservoir, your children (and you!) have the rare opportunity to meet a range of animals in zones that replicate their diverse habitat — from Australasia to the wilds of Africa. And right in the middle of the rainforest, you’ll find KidzWorld, a fun-filled playground with special experiences designed just for the young ones.
11. S.E.A. Aquarium
Recently expanded to include 3 new animal habitats and free daily shows, a trip to the S.E.A. Aquarium can translate into hours of fun for the whole family. Aside from their world-class exhibits, sporting everything from jellyfish to sharks, their Fun Academy offers a series of engaging activities (themed around marine animals and ocean conservation) for children from pre-school to primary school.
12. Coastes Beach Restaurant (PET FRIENDLY!)
Finding a place for the whole family is challenging, especially when your family includes a furry relative or two. Thankfully, Coastes Beach Restaurant on Sentosa’s Siloso Beach is just the sort of place to stop for a laid-back lunch with everyone.
Source: Uncover Asia
13. Singapore Science Centre
Book a timed-entry ticket to the Singapore Science Centre in Jurong East and explore a range of exhibitions and activities that make learning about science and technology fun! Keep an eye out for their Year-End Holiday programmes, science shows and demonstrations where you can see fire tornadoes, Tesla coils and more!
14. KidsSTOP™ @ Singapore Science Centre
Brought your kids to the Science Centre and found they’re a little too young for the finer details of the demonstration you’re interested in? KidsSTOP™ is the big, indoor children’s play centre you’ve been hoping for! Interactive experiments, messy play weekends and birthday parties are just a taste of what’s available on their schedule, all designed specifically for 3–8-year-olds.
15. Pororo Park
This Pororo-themed kid’s indoor playground is the perfect place for days when you just want to spend some time indoors together, avoiding either the rain or excessive heat. With play areas catering for children upwards of 12 months old, your little ones can look forward to hours of play and fun exploration.
16. Amazonia Family Fun Centre
One of Singapore’s longest-running and largest family play centres, Amazonia is designed to keep the whole family entertained. That’s right — while your older kids enjoy the large play-gym, wave slide, trampolines and more, you can grab a coffee or light meal from their bistro, or join your little ones at the dedicated toddler play area.
Source: Little Day Out
17. Bounce Indoor Trampoline Park
Got active kids? Burn off the extra energy at Bounce Indoor Trampoline Park! Complete with a climbing wall, café, dunking nets and dodgeball arena, you’ll find something to suit everyone in the family.
18. Wild Wild Wet
A water theme park in Pasir Ris, Wild Wild Wet will keep everyone entertained with rides and attractions that range from kid-friendly splash play areas to extreme rides and slides for adrenaline-junkie adults.
Source: The Honeycombers
19. ArtScience Museum™
Situated in Marina Bay Sands, the ArtScience Museum offers a Family Friday special where up to 4 children (below 12 years old) enter for free with every paying adult. Enjoy a range of exhibitions that explore the places where art meets science, or sign your kids up for a complimentary hands-on workshop, where they’ll get creative and learn to upcycle materials and turn them into art.
20. Singapore’s public libraries
Singapore’s public library network has a well-established Children’s Programme for those 12 years old and younger (they also have programmes for teens, adults and seniors!). From baby play activities to storytelling sessions for the 4-6-year-olds and more, check out their kid-friendly spaces and events that include both parent-partnered and more independent exploration time.
Source: Singapore Motherhood
Stay safe while enjoying kid-friendly Singapore
While it’s a great time to catch some sun and head out to local attractions as a family, it’s still important to practice COVID-19 hygiene protocols. So, the team at White Lodge have created a free and practical child-friendly guide to staying safe during the pandemic. It’s an engaging story to read to your children while spending time together (perhaps on the beach?). Click the button below and grab your copy of How to Stay Safe During a Pandemic.