Island Getaways for the Budget
It is pretty expensive to go on a holiday overseas these days, so what do you do when you’re in need of a quick yet affordable getaway from your hectic lives? Actually MAG has came up with a list of Southern Islands near Singapore for you to break away and have a breather.
1. St. John Island
Used to operate as a quarantine station for lepers and patients suffering from cholera and a rehabilitation center for opium addicts, it has now been transformed into a tranquil island with some of the most sanitary swimming lagoons and beaches. There are also picnic grounds for you to relax and enjoy the breeze or trekking routes and soccer fields to bring out the adventurous side in you! Chalets and bungalows are also available for rental if you are planning to stay a little longer.
How to get there: Take a two-way ferry ride from the Singapore Cruise and Ferry services at Marina South Pier.
2. Lazarus Island
Merged with Pulau Seringat, along a stretch of reclaimed beach spanning 800 meters, it claims to be Singapore’s best-kept beach, with its white sand and crystal clear waters. As the island is not really known to the public, the serenity of the beach is something you would really be able to indulge in, unlike any other public beach. Definitely a perfect destination for anyone who wants to escape from the bustling city life.
How to get there: For visitors coming from St John’s Island, it is a mere walk across a connecting paved bridge.
3. Kusu Island
Resembling the shape of a turtle, the island got its name Kusu, which means “Tortoise” in Hokkien, from a famous folklore of how a giant tortoise turned itself into an island to save two shipwrecked sailors, who were Malay and Chinese. To show their gratitude, they built a Muslim kramat and a Taoist shrine respectively.
Today, the island has become a sanctuary for Muslim and Taoist worshippers to pay their respects. There are also several tortoise-related exhibitions open to the public and a guided marine tour hosted by Blue Water Volunteers, allowing visitors to interact with the sea creatures, like shrimps, corals and sea turtles.
How to get there: Take a five-minute boat ride from St John Island’s Jetty.
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