When you visit a city, there are certain places you HAVE TO visit. Singapore River Safari is definitely a top tourist destination in Singapore.
The River safari is a river themed zoo and aquarium run by the Wildlife Reserves Singapore and located between its sister properties, the Singapore Zoo and Night Safari. We went on a trip to the River Safari because it is one of the few zoos with pandas in residence – Kai Kai and Jia Jia (who are currently trying to mate so the panda house is temporarily closed). My daughter is simply OBSESSED with pandas, although she thinks bears are pandas too. She however, likes pandas in pictures and movies, but not in real life. Don’t try to hug her panda.
Singapore River Safari
Start at the main entrance connecting the Singapore Zoo, Singapore Night Safari, and the Singapore River Safari.
But the Singapore River Safari begins with its inspiration – rivers of the world. It begins with the Mississippi River full of beavers and alligators, continues to the great African rivers of the Congo and the Nile with its puffer fish and sharp teethed fish, and gives way to the funny turtles and catfish of the Ganges.
There is a small station to touch starfish (bumpy!) or horseshoe crabs, but the little lady was NOT interested.
The Asian rivers continue with the Mekong River with its massive catfish, and finally the Yangtze River which is home to the Giant Panda Forest, including red pandas too. There is an option to take a River safari cruise or Amazon River Quest ride, but note the restrictions (our little one is too little to ride the boat!)
The red panda can crawl right over your head!
The Amazon Flooded Forest is the world’s largest freshwater aquarium and the manatees were simply majestic.
We got here somewhat early – about 10 am – because we took a shuttle bus from the city. It was also nice because the river safari is less crowded. The first half of the park took almost 2 hours, including this fun interactive animal demonstration.
This little girl is not impressed.
We raced through the second half of the park (you don’t mess with a kid’s lunch and it gets really hot). Get here early if you can and wear a hat/sunblock! Overall, I would definitely visit again and liked how the park was laid out. The visit wasn’t cheap and you can expect to pay over S$20, but we took advantage of a park promotion.
Tip: If you’re traveling here, look into bus shuttle services which pick up from various hotels around the Orchard area as well as other parts of Central Singapore. This is located on the outskirts of Singapore so plan for a 30+ minute ride!
Singapore River Safari
80 Mandai Lake Road
Hours: 10 am – 7 pm daily
Check out tour operators or the River Safari website for discounts and promotions.