Having seen only bits and pieces of the Bukit Timah Nature Reserve while my family was in Singapore, I decided to go back and take a more in-depth hike around Singapore’s well known hill. I’m glad I did.
Bukit Timah is home of the highest point in Singapore and is, from what I can tell, it’s last real rainforest. Much of the state’s nature has had to give way to make room for Singapore’s every growing population, making this one of the few nature reserves left on the island.
I read a sign while in the park that said Bukit Timah housed around 240 plant species only found there. Everything was beautiful and the hike was very nice, particularly because you remained coolly shaded by a legitimate rainforest.
There were multiple paths to take around the park, so my friend and I decided to take the scenic route both up and down. We were in for some pretty steep walking, but did get a great view of the surrounding forest.
In the United States it is not uncommon to see squirrels wondering around parks or campuses, particularly because the public, in complete disregard of the “don’t feed” signs, are always willing to lend a helping hand to the round bellies of these so called “tree rats”.
Not the case in Singapore. Instead, you see signs with an crossed out Banana along with a note informing visitors that eye contact is considered an act of aggression in monkey language. I mean these things were every where. Crossing the streets. Running around. Sitting around. If there was an open spot you were bound to see a monkey.
The entrance to the park had a map with a center location marked VHF Station. Having an interest in Ham Radios I recognized this as a radio station. Sure enough, when we reached the top of the hill we were greeted with every Ham operator’s dream (always at the dismay of his significant other): two giant radio towers, which I thought was pretty cool. I know that’s what I’d do if I owned a giant hill. (No, seriously…)
So that was my Saturday last week.
Here’s the slide show of some of the things I saw.