Ready for the ultimate family adventure? Strap on those hiking boots, slap on that mozzie repellent and head to MacRitchie Reservoir!
We’re so lucky we live in Singapore, where there’s no shortage of green spaces to explore and enjoy the sunshine. But once you’ve had your fill of parks and playgrounds, what’s a mum with adventure and nature-loving kids to do? Go exploring nature reserves, of course! And our top pick, over and over again is MacRitchie Reservoir. Not only is it super accessible, there’s always lots to see — 12 hectares of awesomeness, in fact — every single visit. From crazy monkeys, beautiful birds and monitor lizards, your little wildlife explorers are bound to have a blast.
Guide to exploring MacRitchie Reservoir with kids
How to get to MacRitchie Reservoir
If you’re taking the bus, there’s a bus stop right by the Lornie Road main entrance. Otherwise, there’s a two-level parking garage that doesn’t ever get full. If you’d prefer to cab it, getting to MacRitchie takes around 15-20 minutes from Central Singapore. Also, MacRitchie is open daily from 7am to 7pm.
What to bring to MacRitchie Reservoir
It doesn’t matter if you’ve sprayed yourself with mozzie repellent before your visit — you’ll want to have it on hand as you’ll probably sweat it all off. With that being said, you’ll need a hat and water bottle. If you’re planning on doing the trails, wear hiking boots or all-terrain running shoes — you’ll get muddy for sure! Bringing a young bub? The trails aren’t stroller friendly so you’ll want to bring a baby carrier instead, but if you’re sticking near the boardwalk area, you’ll be fine.
FUN THINGS TO DO AT MACRITCHIE RESERVOIR
1. Spot wildlife
One of our top places to spot wildlife in Singapore is MacRitchie Reservoir. Even if you’re just exploring the boardwalk or the park, there’s already lots to see. Your kids will love spotting the silly Macaques and their crazy antics near the bandstand and the jetty. Looking for other animals? There’s no shortage here! We hear of people spotting mousedeer, monitor lizards, and even pangolins! MacRitchie is also an awesome place for birdwatching — check out Waxwing Eco to see all the birds spotted at MacRitchie recently.
2. Hike the trails
Depending on your — and your child’s — endurance, there are six different trails to choose from, ranging from 3km to 11km. And what we love most about the trails at MacRitchie Reservoir is that it always makes you forget that home’s just a few minutes away — it’s easy to slip into a jungle reverie out there!
If you’re bringing younger kids along, it’s best to stick to the shorter 3-4km trails near the water. But if you think your kids are up for the trek, you can pick any trail (they’re pretty straightforward albeit a bit muddy) and shorten as you please. Unfortunately, the Treetop Walk (which used to be the highlight of every MacRitchie trip) is closed ’til May 2021. Not to worry, there’s still lots to do and see at MacRitchie Reservoir!
3. Kayak and canoe at MacRitchie
Apart from hiking, you and the fam can enjoy water sports at MacRitchie. This is meant for bigger kids though — children must be at least 7 years old to join adults. And yes, it’s pretty easy canoeing and kayaking here. There’s no current to paddle against!
So – is MacRitchie kid-friendly?
Absolutely! And yes, there are public restrooms with nappy changing areas as well as a small cafe just in case the kids get hungry. We recommend heading here early in the morning to skip the heat AND the crowds. Another hot tip? Head to Upper Thomson for some good brekkie — our big sister The Honeycombers has the lowdown on all the best cafes in the area!
See you at MacRitchie Reservoir soon, folks!