Follow the markings along the main path through Coney Island and take a turn that will take you to one of the island’s hidden beaches (we recommend Beach Area C). Expect to walk through bushes, trees and even a mangrove boardwalk to get there. While we wouldn’t recommend sunbathing and picnicking (there are native macaques on the island), it’s a pretty idyllic spot to take a breather before heading back to finish your trek. If you’re not a fan of sand, there are concrete steps by the water near the entrance to the island.
Far away from the city lies a stretch of white sand framed by clear, turquoise waters. No, we’re not talking about Boracay, we’re talking about Lazarus Island. One of Singapore’s best-kept secrets, it’s a quiet, undeveloped beach that you can (almost) call your own – just catch the first ferry out at 9am on weekends and 10am on weekdays to claim the sands for yourself. Other beach bums arrive in their yachts and speedboats around midday. And don’t forget to pack everything you need – floats, mats, towels – as there are no shops on Lazarus.
Punggol Beach is actually quite accessible by public transport – there’s a direct bus from Punggol that doesn’t require much walking, and there’s plenty of parking at the nearby Punggol Promenade. Take a stroll along the white sandy beach or spend a day fishing at Punggol Jetty. Although it may seem tranquil, this beach has quite a past. During World War II, the Japanese army executed many civilians on the shores of Punggol, so you might not want to stay out too late at night for fear of what might be lurking in the dark.
Located on the western edge of Sentosa, Tanjong Rimau beach can be accessed by walking along the edge of the Shangri-La’s Rasa Sentosa Resort & Spa compound and down the rocky slope to the beach. At low tide, many marine creatures such as starfish and crabs can be seen along the shoreline. Walk along the tidal pools, mangrove trees and caves closer to the shore and look out for the pitcher plants on the cliffs. If you head towards the Tanjong Rimau beacon, you’ll be able to see the Labrador Nature Reserve across the waterway. When walking along the beach, watch out for stonefish – the spikes on their dorsal fins are poisonous. To protect the natural environment and ensure everyone’s safety, visits to Tanjong Rimau are only available through guided tours by the Sentosa Development Corporation (SDC) or SDC-approved tours. Guests are also urged to treat these fragile ecosystems with care so that these areas can continue to thrive.
Seletar Fishing Village
From the outside, this hidden spot in Seletar might just look like a shabby and abandoned village. Close to the popular cycling spot Rower’s Bay Park, Yishun Dam and Seletar Airport, you will find kampong huts and a wooden jetty (called Jenal Jetty) still used by fishermen for their livelihood. The ‘village’ part and Jenal Jetty are not open to the public, but curious types can sign up for private tours to get a closer look at the fishing village and its daily activities. Seletar Fishing Village may be known as Singapore’s last fishing village, but fishing is not what it is known for. Cyclists and explorers know that the small beach area and the breakwater next to it are a secret – and probably the best – spot to watch the sunset in Singapore. At low tide, you can even walk down to the beach and marsh area.