Discover rich wildlife and yesteryear architecture in tranquil Pulau Ubin.
Morning: Discover thriving wetlands Chek Jawa and Pulau Ubin
Home to one of the last vestiges of authentic kampong (Malay word for ‘village’) life, Pulau Ubin is a breezy 10-minute ferry ride from Changi Point Ferry Terminal. Get to know the villagers who inhabit this hidden gem, then trek, or rent a bicycle and cycle, to discover this eclectic island. Ubin offers unique sights like a grand quarry and an ancient ‘German Girl’ shrine, where devotees frequently offer oblations to the supposed spirit of a young girl, in return for blessings and favours.
Avid conservationists will be thrilled to explore Chek Jawa and see its endangered species like the Greater Mouse-Deer and Ashy Roundleaf Bat. A teeming wetland that was scheduled to be razed, Chek Jawa saw redevelopment plans scrapped after a 2001 biodiversity survey revealed that it houses at least six diverse ecosystems.
From this northeastern 1,020-hectare island sanctuary in the Straits of Johor, catch another ferry to a unique lunch spot.
Changi Point Ferry Terminal. 51 Lorong Bekukong, Singapore 499172.
Afternoon: Catch a lunch break at Smith Marine Floating Restaurant
Hop on a nautical adventure to Smith Marine, Singapore’s first Floating Seafood restaurant in the middle of the sea. Order from a wide variety of dishes and fresh seafood, cooked to perfection. To get there, book your two-way ferry with Smith Marine via the contact details below.
Smith Marine Floating Restaurant. +65 9792 7609.
Daily 10am-7pm, closed on alternate Mondays.
After lunch: Shop eco-friendly stores at City Square Mall
Back on the mainland, Singapore has many ‘green’ malls that conservationists will enjoy shopping in. Visit City Square Mall in Little India, where you can learn how high-tech sustainable energy sources and eco-friendly measures greatly reduce the mall’s wastage and carbon footprint. The NTUC FairPrice supermarket here even uses biodegradeable plastic bags and energy-efficient refrigerators. If your schedule permits, you might like to explore similarly earth-conscious malls like Star Vista, 313@Somerset, JCube and Westgate too.
City Square Mall. 180 Kitchener Road, Singapore 208539. +65 6595 6565.
Immerse in sustainable fashion at Haji Lane
A little further on into the heart of our city, a myriad of sustainable fashion stores purvey earth-friendly goods. Walk along vibrant Haji Lane in cultural Kampong Glam and find these stores nestled within the shophouses of this picture-perfect lane. Kolumbiana sells colourful and hand-woven Mochila bags made by the Wayuu tribes of Columbia and Venezuela. Profits go back to benefitting these villagers. Touch The Toes, a popular boutique that sells environmentally friendly yoga apparel, accessories and other unique gifts, might have moved out of Haji Lane, but now has an even bigger online store that you can browse enticing earth-friendly purchases. If you’d like to seek out more socially responsible boutiques and brands, Singapore proudly showcases a wide array of them.
Kolumbiana. 82 Haji Lane, Singapore 189272. +65 9620 6039.
Night: Dine on sustainable global cuisine at Artichoke
Helmed by quirky chef Bjorn Shen, Artichoke serves up hearty Moorish fare in a communal dining setting, and cooks with the restaurant’s own herb garden’s produce. As the establishment is committed to having at least 33% of its menu to come from local sustainable sources, the menu undergoes seasonal changes. Try one of their ever-changing specials that are written on the walls daily, then kick back in the relaxing atmosphere of the restaurant.
Artichoke. 161 Middle Road, Singapore 188978. +65 6336 6949.