Visiting Gardens by the Bay is like entering an entirely new world pulled straight out of a sci-fi novel. Giant metal ‘trees’ linked by a walkway tower over a forest with thousands of trees, lakes and beautiful areas to sit for a picnic.
Two structures, the Cloud Forest and the Flower Dome, are the stars of the show. These are fully encapsulated greenhouses which are home to their own ecosystems of plants from all around the world.
If you stick it out until the night, you’ll get to see the Supertree Grove light up to classical music.
Oddly, the locals don’t tend to visit Gardens by the Bay so much, making it one of the best things to do in Singapore as it is one of the less crowded places.
It’s the perfect way to get away from the shopping malls of Singapore and while away a few hours exploring something entirely unique. You won’t find anything like this anywhere else in the world.
We’re going to tell you everything you need to know about Gardens by the Bay. From the ticket prices to the best way to get there (it’s always the MRT by the way).
Gardens by the Bay Cloud Forest
From the outside, the Cloud Forest at Gardens by the Bay looks like a giant greenhouse. Architecturally, it looks pretty cool. But it’s still fairly unassuming compared to what you will find inside.
As you walk in you will be greeted by the second largest indoor waterfall in the world. It was the largest, but Singapore decided to outdo itself yet again by building an even bigger one in the middle of Changi airport – which is absolutely mental.
You’ll obviously stop here for some photos, before continuing along the path. The path spirals around a vertical rainforest where you will find thousands of tropical plants. Along the way, there is a large orchid installation showcasing some of the world’s rarest and most unusual orchids.
You’ll reach the top and step out onto walkways that extend out from the main tower allowing you to see the entire Cloud Forest from 35 metres up.
Finally, you make your descent which includes a number of intriguing installations. Our favourite was an educational one that teaches people to care more about the environment. There’s also a room with a screen that shows the projected effects of climate change.
How Long to Spend at the Cloud Forest
Make sure to give yourself one to two hours. It’s not just a garden, so you’ll need this time to fully experience it. Otherwise, 20-30 minutes will be enough to pop in and take a few snaps for Instagram.
Gardens by the Bay Flower Dome
If you’re pressed for time (or strapped for cash), then the Flower Dome is one you can give a miss. The Flower Dome’s coolness is significantly dwarfed by the Cloud Forest with its giant waterfall, skywalks and literal tropical rainforest.
The Flower Dome is another huge greenhouse, this time filled with thousands of flowers and tropical palms scattered throughout.
You will find plenty of cool sculptures which transform the place into a magical wonderland. Meticulously designed flower beds allow for some awesome photography, especially when composed symmetrically.
How Long to Spend at the Flower Dome
This will really depend on you, but for most people, 45-60 minutes is enough time to walk around. If you are really into flowers or macro photography, you may wish to stay longer.
OCBC Skyway & Supertree Grove
If you don’t like heights, then the OCBC Skyway probably isn’t for you. I clutched the railings with both hands like a child the entire time, but it was absolutely worth it.
This is a massive walkway in the sky that was built to connect two of the Supertrees. This enables you to walk through the Supertree Grove from an entirely different perspective – well a 22-metre high perspective to be exact.
It also gives you an amazing view of the entire Supertree Grove, the Marina Bay Sands hotel and even the Singapore Flyer in the distance.
The Supertree Grove surrounds the Skyway with giant, man-made structures in the shape of trees. These Supertrees are made of concrete and steel with over 150,000 plants embedded into the ‘trunks’.
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Gardens by the Bay Light Show – Garden Rhapsody
Head on down to the base of the Supertree Grove when the sun goes down. You will experience a dazzling light show timed with a beautifully composed piece of classical music. This show is suitably named Garden Rhapsody.
Our favourite spot is right by the base of the Supertree at the end of the OCBC Skyway. There’s a large grassy patch which is perfect to lie on and watch the show.
Expect to be utterly mesmerised for the entire show, so if you brought food or snacks make sure to eat them beforehand. You won’t want to look away.
What Time is the Light Show?
The Gardens by the Bay light show starts at 7.45pm and 8.45pm every day of the week. Aim to be there between 7pm and 7.30pm to grab a good spot.
Gardens by the Bay Ticket Prices
It is free to visit Gardens by the Bay and to watch the light show. Access to the Cloud Forest, Flower Dome and OCBC Skyway require purchasing tickets.
When you purchase in person, access to both conservatories at Gardens by the bay is $28 SGD for an adult, or $15 SGD for a child. It is an additional $8 SGD per person to use the OCBC Skyway.
If you purchase your tickets online from here you will be able to skip the lines and save a few dollars. The online price from Get Your Guide sits around $20 SGD for both conservatories making it a better deal.
Where to Buy Gardens by the Bay Tickets?
You can purchase tickets to Gardens by the Bay in person at a kiosk. There are a couple around the park. There is usually a queue if you choose to purchase your tickets when you’re there, so make sure you factor this into your plans.
When we went we almost missed the light show as we didn’t factor in the queue for the OCBC Skyway.
We recommend purchasing your tickets online. Get Your Guide is the only place we know about online that sells legitimate tickets to Gardens by the Bay – including both domes.
The tickets also work out to be a fair bit cheaper when purchased online. You can check them out from these links:
Buy Gardens by the Bay Tickets Online:
We have also heard that the tickets can sell out, so even more reason to book in advance. Tickets for the OCBC Skywalk now need to be purchased in-person.
Best Time to Visit Gardens by the Bay
Gardens by the Bay is great to visit any time of the year. Singapore’s climate is very temperate, so you will find that no month is better than any other.
It may pay to check the forecast and to try and arrive at Gardens by the Bay when it isn’t raining. Although the Cloud Forest and Flower Dome are enclosed, the OCBC Skyway wouldn’t be a pleasant experience in the rain.
Our number one recommendation would be to visit Gardens by the Bay around late afternoon. This way you will have a few hours to explore the two conservatories and the OCBC Skyway, before finding a spot to watch the light show at 7.45pm or 8.45pm
The conservatories and Skyway are open from 9am until 9pm each day, so make sure you visit within these hours.
Where to Stay Near Gardens by the Bay
Marina Bay Sands
Accommodation options near the gorgeous gardens are plentiful, but none are quite as prominent as Marina Bay Sands with it’s three buildings towering over the Supertree Grove.
If you have the budget for a splurge then we reckon a room in the 5-star Marina Bay Sands hotel is definitely your best option!
How to Get to Gardens by the Bay
Gardens by the Bay MRT
As with most places in Singapore, the most efficient way to get to Gardens by the Bay is via the MRT to the Bayfront MRT station right next to Gardens by the Bay.
You can jump on either the Circle Line or Downtown Line and take the MRT alighting at Bayfront MRT station. You then follow the underground path towards Gardens by the Bay.
Before you visit Singapore, make sure you check out our guide to the Singapore Tourist Pass – you’ll need either this or an EZ-Link card to use the MRT.
Walk to Gardens by the Bay
If you are staying nearby, then Gardens by the Bay can easily be accessed by foot. It is a nice, medium length walk from Clarke and Boat Quay along the waterfront.
If you are staying at Marina Bay Sands, then it is a very easy walk across the overhead bridge directly from the hotel to Gardens by the Bay.
Grab or Taxi
This is super easy and reasonably priced in Singapore. Just book a Grab through the app, or call a taxi, and they will be able to take you straight to Gardens by the Bay. They are certain to know where it is.
Gardens by the Bay Map
Gardens by the Bay Closure Dates
For one day each month the Flower Dome, Cloud Forest and OCBC Skyway close for maintenance. Make sure to check the official Gardens by the Bay website to check the closure dates.
You will want to avoid these dates where possible but bear in mind that only one attraction is ever closed at a given time. You will still be able to visit the other two if you come on one of the closure dates.