Singapore Zoo has become one of the country's most famous attractions, with almost 2 million visitors annually ? It's easy to see why it's so popular though because it's an incredible place to visit!
With an efficiently-run facility that's home to a wonderful collection of wildlife, it's the perfect spot for a day out to get up-close with these wonderful creatures. To help you out, we've come up with the ultimate Muslim traveller's guide to Singapore Zoo so you'll know everything you need to in order to have a great trip!
Singapore Zoo is one of four parks managed by Wildlife Reserves Singapore. Covering a space of 24 hectares, it's home to more than 2,400 specimens of over 300 species. The zoo has built a reputation for not only being a wonderful attraction loved by both locals and tourists but also for its conservation initiatives and breeding programmes (with up to 100 animals bred in a year!).
Credit: Faidhi Baidri on Facebook
The other three parks managed by Wildlife Reserves Singapore are the River Safari, the Night Safari, and Jurong Bird Park, each major attractions in their own right. The Singapore Zoo, River Safari and Night Safari are all located adjacent to each other, which is why you'll often find many visitors visiting them together (more on that below!). In addition, Wildlife Reserves Singapore is also currently running its Rainforest Lumina attraction. This popular attraction in which guests walk a one-kilometre stretch of the tropical rainforest settings of the zoo at night while treated to a mesmerising audio-visual experience is back for its second year and will be on until 9 Feb 2020.
How much does it cost to enter?
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The admission fee for just Singapore Zoo is as follows:
- Non-residents: SGD33.30 per adult, SGD22.50 per child
- Residents: SGD31.45 per adult, SGD21.50 per child, SGD17 per senior citizen
#HHWT Tip: If you're a Singaporean citizen, PR holder, employment pass holder, dependent pass or longterm visit pass holder and you're thinking about bringing kids to the zoo or Jurong Bird Park, good news! WRS is having a promotion between 1 – 31 October 2019 (excludes Deepavali period of 27 & 28 October 2019) where kids enter free with every paying adult (tickets priced at SGD37)! The promotion is applicable for one child per paying adult. The same promotion is being held for Jurong Bird Park as well tickets priced at SGD30), so if you're planning to visit either of these parks with your kids this month, it's a great time to do so!
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However, if you have time to spare and want to make the most out of your trip, the most cost-effective method is to consider one of the multi-park passes available. A popular option is the Park Hopper Plus ticket, which not only gives you access to all four parks as well as Rainforest Lumina, but you'll also be able to ride all the park trams, boat rides, as well as a carousel ride for free! The ticket is available for 7 days from the date of your first visit, so you'll have ample time to cover all the parks.
Wildlife Reserves Singapore has a number of other multi-park passes available, from 2-park passes to 4-park passes with or without Rainforest Lumina. If it seems a bit confusing, don't worry! We've taken the liberty of compiling the different passes available and how the costs compare to the standalone admission fees for the different parks below:
Disclaimer: Please note that this information is accurate as of 4 Oct 2019. Prices and pass types may change at the discretion of Wildlife Reserves Singapore. The Rainforest Lumina attraction is available until 9 Feb 2020.
As you can see, going for any of the 4-Park Admission passes (including Park Hopper Plus) can save you anywhere from 30% and up to 47% off regular fees! It's also worth noting that for the 2-Park Admission pass, there's also a version available with the Rainforest Lumina. In addition, if you don't visit Singapore Zoo, you can choose 2 of any of the other parks (prices will differ depending on which parks are chosen) for the 2-Park Admission passes ?
P.S. For more tips to get the most out of your trip at all 4 parks, read this!
#HHWT Tip: If you're a Singapore citizen or PR, did you know you can go to the zoo for free for your birthday?
How to get there
Singapore Zoo is located to the north of Singapore (about half an hour's drive from central city area), and you have a few options to get there.
You can take the North-South line to the Khatib MRT station, and from there you can take the Mandai Khatib Shuttle Bus to Singapore Zoo (costing SGD1 for a one-way trip). The shuttle bus runs from 8am to 10.40pm daily every 10 - 20 minutes. Please note that payment for the shuttle bus can be made by EZ-Link or NETS FlashPay card only, as cash is not accepted.
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Besides Khatib MRT station, you can also take the North-South MRT line to a few other stations and take public buses from there:
- Choa Chu Kang - take Bus 927
- Ang Mo Kio - take Bus 138
- Woodlands - take Bus 926 (operates on Sundays & public holidays only)
- Marsiling - take Bus926 (operates on Sundays & public holidays only)
By Direct Bus Services To/From the city
1. Safari Gate
Safari Gate offers a pick-up from Suntec City and direct transfer to Singapore Zoo. In addition, you can opt for a return trip from Singapore Zoo as well and they can drop you off at one of 10 drop-off points in the city that includes key spots and hotels like Orchard Hotel, Marriott Hotel, Mandarin Hotel, Orchard Plaza, Raffles City/Swissotel, Suntec City and more! The rides cost SGD7 for one-way trips or SGD12 for two-way transfer. Find out more about their pick-up/drop-off points and timings here. You can purchase your tickets on their website or also head to their outlet at Suntec City ((#01-330) to purchase them directly.
2. Singapore Attractions Express
Singapore Attractions Express (SAEx) offers transfers from many of the hotels in the city to Singapore Zoo. Tickets cost from SGD6 for adults and SGD4 for children for one-way transfers, depending on your pick-up and drop-off location. Check their website for exact timings, route availabilities and pricing. You'll need to purchase your tickets online on their website as well.
3. Star Island Travel
Credit: Starisland Travel on Facebook
Similar to SAEx, Star Island Travel also offers transfers from several hotels in the city to Singapore Zoo. If your hotel isn't covered by SAEx, do check with Star Island Travel! Based on our checks, the hotels the two providers serve differ quite significantly, with not much overlap. Price-wise, Star Island Travel is on par with SAEx at around SGD6 for adults and SGD4 for children for one-way trips. You can check their pick-up/drop-off locations, timings, and purchase tickets online on their website.
From Bedok, Sengkang & Tampines
If you're coming from one of these estates on weekends, school holidays or public holidays, you have the option of taking the Mandai Express bus from Bedok Point shopping centre, Exit C of Sengkang MRT station or the coach pick-up point at Our Tampines Hub (South Plaza) straight to the zoo. Operated by WRS and At SGD3 per adult and SGD1 per child for a return trip, it's definitely an affordable option! Tickets can be purchased online or onboard using EZ-link / NETS FlashPay card, though you may want to book ahead of time online to guarantee your seats for when you want them. You can book your tickets and see the set pick-up timings available on this website.
Halal dining options
The zoo has a number of halal dining options, so you won't have to worry about where to eat when visiting!
Outside Singapore Zoo
Located right outside the entrance of the zoo you have KFC, which is halal-certified. It's also an option for a meal before you head to the River Safari and Night Safari!
Inside Singapore Zoo
If you’re hungry while exploring Singapore Zoo, don’t worry! KFC has another outlet inside the park’s Rainforest KidzWorld, and there's also Ah Meng Restaurant and Ah Meng Bistro (both halal-certified as well!) located at the Forest Lodge opposite the Orangutan Boardwalk too.
Credit: @sheeatshsucooks on Instagram
Just to note, you have the option of bringing your own food too! The park allows guests to bring their own meals, with picnic areas available in the zoo at Pavilion by the Lake (opposite the Primate Kingdom) and Garden with A View (located near Rainforest Walk).
Unfortunately, the zoo doesn't have a dedicated prayer space as of yet. But not to worry! You can approach one of the staff at the reception counters for assistance and they will provide you with a prayer mat and a room. You can also perform your ablutions in a nearby toilet. ?
How to make the most out of your trip
1. Get up-and-close with some of the animals at the feeding sessions
Bring some spare change and don't miss the opportunity to feed some of the gentle creatures at the zoo! The zoo hosts feeding sessions at select times with the elephants, giraffes, white rhinoceros and goats at the zoo. The current timings of the feeding sessions are as follows (we recommend you show up about 15 minutes early as the food supply is limited and you can beat the queues by showing up early!):
- Elephants (at Elephants of Asia area): 9.15am, 1.30pm and 4.30pm
- Giraffe (Wild Africa area): 10.45am, 1.50pm and 3.45pm
- White Rhinoceros (Wild Africa area): 1.15pm
- Goats (Rainforest Kidzworld area): 11.30am and 3.30pm
*Do note that these timings are accurate as of 3 Oct 2019. Do double-check the timings on their website ahead of your visit.
For a small fee of SGD5, you can feed the animals the prepared foods. And the best part of it? All proceeds from the feedings go towards wildlife conservation!
2. Learn more about the animals through shows and Keeper's Chit-chat sessions
See the animals in action through fun interactive performances at the zoo! These shows last about 15-20 minutes and are a super fun way to learn more about the animals while also seeing their prowess and capabilities. The zoo currently has 4 shows which are performed twice daily:
- Splash Safari (featuring the sea lions) at Shaw Foundation Amphitheatre: 10.30am and 5pm
- Animal Friends (dedicated to domesticated animals) at Rainforest Kidzworld Amphitheatre: 11am and 4pm
- Elephant presentation at Elephants of Asia area: 11.30am and 3.30pm
- Rainforest Fights Back (featuring rainforest animals like exotic birds, snakes and more) at Shaw Foundation Amphitheatre: 12.30pm and 2.30pm
Besides the shows, keep an eye out for the Keepers' Chit-chat sessions where you can get insight on many of the animals from the very people who care for them! They happen at various timings for different animals - check the full schedule here.
3. Come prepared
Here are a few pro-tips to help you make the most of your time at the park:
- Exploring the zoo can easily take up to half a day. If you'd don't have that much time, you can plan ahead by identifying which animals or sections you want to see at the park during the visit. You can find the park map on the zoo website and also use their park planner to narrow down the animals you want to see and get an estimate of the time it would take.
- Know the park's facilities and where they are located. The zoo offers ATMs, nursing rooms, diaper-changing facilities, lockers and luggage stowing services. Find out more about them and where they're located here.
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- For those with young children or with mobility issues, the zoo rents out strollers, wagons, electric scooters. They offer wheelchairs for use for free as well for guests that may need it.
- Bring a hat, sunscreen and mosquito repellant. The majority of the park is outdoors, hence do protect yourself from the elements! In addition, it's a good idea to check the weather forecast before your visit and bring umbrellas or ponchos should it rain. A portable fan isn't a bad idea too!
- Wear comfortable shoes! This probably goes without saying, but given the amount of walking you'll likely be doing, it probably doesn't hurt to include this as a reminder ?
#HHWT Tip: Bring your water bottle too! water bottle! Water fountains are available in various spots around the 4 wildlife parks, so you can refill your bottle any time.
#HHWT Tip: For a less strenuous option to explore the park, you can opt for the guided tram tour that goes around the park (stopping at 4 tram stops along the way). It costs SGD5 per adult and SGD3 per child - it's free for those with the Park Hopper Plus ticket!
4. Check out the special encounters and wildlife tours
If you're looking to splurge a little to bring your visit to the next level, the zoo offers some pretty incredible experiences and private tours that guarantee an insider's experience like no other.
One of it's most notable experiences is probably the Jungle Breakfast With Wildlife where you get to have breakfast in the company of the resident orangutans! Priced at SGD35 per adult and SGD25 per child, it'll be a meal to remember. Find more and make reservations for it here.
There's also a selection of guided tours available at the zoo for a more tailored experience, including the Wild Discoverer Tour where you'll a chance to interact with giant tortoises and giraffes, the RepTopia tour for a closer encounter with the reptiles of the zoo as well as a private buggy tour. Find out more about the tours available and their prices here!
Singapore Zoo promises an amazing time out for everyone, whether you're young, old, or young at heart! With this information and handy tips, we hope you have an awesome outing to the zoo that's a smooth and pleasant experience ? It's time to plan your day out to the zoo pronto!