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8 Hidden Gems In Singapore’s Bishan That The Residents Want To Keep Secret

More than just a residential district

Once a cemetery ground, Bishan was developed as a residential area in the 1980s and proved to be a popular choice given its central location.

Today, residents share their hood with many interesting spots hidden within the district. We’ve got them all here for you!

1. Bishan-Ang Mo Kio Park

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A beautiful meandering river that used to be an old concrete canal flows through this 62-hectare park, one of the largest urban parks in central Singapore.  Take your kids to the children’s Water Playground at the Pond Gardens, enjoy recreational activities at the River Plains, and let your furkids free at the dog run area; there are also plenty of cafes to refuel after.

Bishan-Ang Mo Kio Park
Along Bishan Rd and Ang Mo Kio Ave 1, 569981

2. Bishan Active Park

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A few blocks down, you’ll find Bishan Active Park. It’s often overlooked because of its much larger neighbour, but if you’re down to really sweat it out, head here for a game or three at the basketball court, soccer field, or even the beach volleyball court.

Bishan St 23, Singapore 570210

3. Harmony Centre

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Located in the An-Nahdhah Mosque, this two-storey learning centre is an integrated hub to promote better understanding and engagement between all faith communities in Singapore and encourage inter-faith dialogue through talks and activities. Plan a visit to view exhibits, artifacts and get information on Islamic civilisation and lifestyle here.

Harmony Centre
9A Bishan St 14, 579786

4. The Secret Merlion Statues

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The gigantic Merlion spewing water into the Singapore River by Marina Bay gets all the attention – few non-residents know about this pair of Merlion statues that stand proudly in Bishan’s residential area. Rumour has it that the Merlions were almost removed as they were not authorised by the Singapore Tourism Board, who owns the copyright of the Merlion.

Ang Mo Kio Ave 1 (carpark entrance of Blk 216-222)

5. Scout Discovery Centre

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Launched in 2010 to commemorate 100 years of scouting in Singapore, the Scout Discovery Centre is housed in the Singapore Scout Association and it captures the history and development of scouting globally and in Singapore. Lay your eyes on significant artifacts such as Scout uniforms, medals and more that have been collected and preserved over the years.

Scout Discovery Centre
1 Bishan St 12, 579808

6. The Famous Clock Playground

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Why the fame? Every Singaporean remembers the characteristic mosaic-tiled playground from back in the day with fondness. Oh, the nostalgia. This playground features two colourful clocks, and this humble little play area is one of the very few surviving sandpit playgrounds from the 1980s.

Blk 514B, Bishan St 13, 572514

7. Kong Meng San Phor Kark See Monastery

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It’s hard to miss the beautiful sight of this monastery when you’re in the area. Founded in 1920, it’s the largest Mahayana Buddhist temple in Singapore and features Chinese art aesthetics and Southeast Asian architectural styles. Highlights here include a 13.8-metre Giant Buddha and the Pagoda of 10,000 Buddhas.

Kong Meng San Phor Kark See Monastery
88 Bright Hill Rd, 574117

8. The Wholefood Kitchen

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Contrary to what you might first assume, The Wholefood Kitchen isn’t a zen cafe, but a humble stall located in a coffeeshop. Unusual? Probably a little, but in a good way – wholesome meals that’s big on quality ingredients come with small price tags below $10.

The Wholefood Kitchen
514 Bishan St 13, 570514

By Muneerah Bee / Updated by Sandhya Mahadevan, November 2018

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