It’s surrounded by skyscrapers and the sea, and it’s one of the most amazing nature parks in the entire world.
In this post, you’ll discover the ultimate list of interesting facts about Gardens by the Bay, a fascinating landmark in Singapore.
1. What is Gardens by the Bay?
Gardens by the Bay is an immense nature park in the vicinity of the Marina Reservoir in the central region of Singapore.
The park consists of 3 waterfront gardens and has since its creation become one of the most popular tourist destinations in Singapore, welcoming millions of people every year.
2. Gardens by the Bay covers a huge area
The huge nature park spans an area of 101 hectares (250 acres) and consists of 3 separate gardens.
- Bay Central Garden – 15 hectares (37 acres)
- Bay East Garden – 32 hectares (79 acres)
- Bay South Garden – 54 hectares (130 acres)
To give you an idea of the huge size of the gardens, the total area could be covered by about 188 football fields!
3. Why was it built?
Being a city-state, Singapore is a highly urbanized country. For this reason, the government approved the project to increase the greenery and flora in the city.
It was announced back in 2005 by Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong to become Singapore’s main urban outdoor attraction and a national icon.
So what was the main aim?
To transform the existing Garden City into a City in a Garden!
4. Gardens by the Bay represents a flower
The overall design of the master plan, which was created in such a way that it resembles a flower.
And not just any flower, the country’s national flower, the “Singapore orchid” also known as the Vanda Miss Joaquim.
Why does it have this nickname?
The Vanda Miss Joaquim was discovered for the first time in the garden of Miss Agnes Joaquin in 1893. It has been declared the national flower of Singapore since April 15, 1981.
5. Bay South Garden is the place to be to discover flowers
It’s the largest of the 3 gardens and it opened its doors on June 29, 2012. It was designed by UK-based landscape architecture firm “Grant Associates.”
In this immense garden, you can discover the largest number of tropical plants and enjoy some of the world’s best garden artistry.
6. Bay East Garden offers you amazing views of the Singapore skyline
This garden was partially opened to the public in October 2011 and designed by a UK-based landscape architecture firm, Gustafson Porter.
Apart from being designed as a series of large tropical leaf-shaped gardens, each with its own specific landscaping design, character, and theme, it also has a 2-kilometer (1.2 mi) promenade that borders the Marina Reservoir.
Here you can get some of the best, unobstructed views of the Singapore skyline to capture the most amazing pictures.
7. The Flower Dome holds an amazing record
One of the most remarkable structures in Gardens by the Bay is the Flower Dome, an enormous greenhouse that exhibits exotic flowers and plants from all 5 five continents.
Since 2015, it has been listed in the Guinness Book of World Records as the largest greenhouse in the world with a total size of 1.2 hectares (3 acres).
8. The temperature in the dome remains constant
Singapore is a tropical country, meaning it can be extremely hot and humid. If you take a visit to the Flower Dome, which is one of two cooled conservatories, you won’t have to worry about that.
the temperature inside is kept at a very enjoyable cool-dry Mediterranean climate at around 23-25 degrees Celsius.
This is the perfect place to have an enjoyable stroll surrounded by nature!
9. The Cloud Forest has an actual mountain inside
Have you ever wondered why the second dome has a much higher roof than the Flower Dome?
It’s because there’s an actual mountain inside which is decorated with tropical flowers, plants, and even a waterfall.
This dome is a bit smaller than the Flower Dome at 0.8 hectares (2 acres) and the temperature here remains at a constant cool moist climate found in tropical mountain regions between 1,000 meters (3,300 ft) and 3,000 meters (9,800 ft) above sea level.
10. The supertrees are really high
Another those interesting fact about Gardens by the Bay is that the “Supertree Grove” actually exhibits “Supertrees” that reach heights between 25 (82 ft) and 50 meters (160 ft).
Apart from creating height for the gardens to balance the tall structures in the Marina Bay area, in the daytime, they also provide the shade needed for the tourists that want to enjoy this amazing spot.
11. Want to walk amongst the Supertrees?
The Supertree Grove doesn’t just allow you to get a ground-level view but also allows you to enjoy nice aerial views as well.
The OCBC Skyway connects two of the tallest supertrees, allowing you to take a 128-meter walk from a height of about 22 meters above the ground.
It’s the perfect place to get an amazing panoramic view of the Supertree Grove and other parts of Gardens by the Bay.
12. Make sure to stay for an amazing light show
Every night, the Supertree Grove turns into a magical place when the “Garden Rhapsody” provides the visitors with an amazing light and music show.
The music is changed frequently, so if you have seen it before, it will be much different now as well.
Make sure to be there at either 7:45 pm or 8:45 pm to enjoy the show!
13. The Supertree Observatory opened its doors
Even though the Skywalk allows you to get amazing views from the Marina Bay Area and Gardens by the Bay, a new attraction opened on December 27, 2019, to provide visitors with an even more amazing experience.
The Supertree Observatory is located at the top of the highest Supertree (which stands 50 meters or 160 ft tall) and allows visitors to get 360-degree unblocked city views at an open-air rooftop deck.
Pretty amazing stuff!
14. Learn all about plants in the horticultural-themed gardens
Gardens by the Bay isn’t just about entertainment. A huge part of the gardens is designed to both entertain and educate visitors at the same time.
The horticultural (agriculture of plants) themed gardens are part of the Gardens’ edutainment program, which aims to bring knowledge about plants to the public.
These themed gardens consist of two main types of gardens:
- Heritage Gardens – 4 gardens that highlight the cultural groups in Singapore, including the Indian Garden, the Chinese Garden, the Malay Garden, and the Colonial Garden.
- World Gardens – Showcasing the biodiversity of plant life on the planet in 6 themed gardens that are named Discovery, Web of Life, Fruits and Flowers, Understorey, World of Palms, and Secret Life of Trees.
By the time you have finished studying all of these gardens and the plants that they have on display, you’ll be a full-blown plant expert!
15. This is how much Gardens by the Bay cost to construct
Gardens by the bay was a massive project which obviously had a serious price tag associated with it. It’s built on 101 hectares (250 acres) of land, and even though it was publicly announced as early as 2005, it only opened on June 29, 2012.
The initial approved budget of the project was SGD 893 million, but due to unexpected conditions, it was raised in 2009 to 1.035 billion SGD, which is about USD 732 million.
Even though this price tag includes an access road, drainage works, and soil improvements, this excludes the price of the land the Gardens were constructed on.
16. And here’s how much it costs to maintain the Gardens
Just as everything else in Singapore, Gardens by the Bay remains in mint condition. But because the area is so vast and maintaining botanical gardens isn’t cheap, there’s a huge price tag attached to maintenance as well.
The conservatory buildings cost SGD 28 million to maintain, and the outdoor gardens about SGD 25 million, making the total price tag SGD 53 million a year.
That’s the equivalent of about USD 37.5 million every year!
17. A competition was held for the design of the Garden
In 2006, an international architectural competition was held to decide on the design of Gardens by the Bay.
We don’t really need to say that this was quite popular. The board received a total of 70 entries, submitted by 170 landscaping firms from 24 different countries.
Two UK-based firms, Grant Associates from Bath for Bay South Garden, and Gustafson Porter for Bay East Garden were the winners and awarded the contract.
Interesting fact: Grant Associates has also been working on Sentosa Island in Singapore, another popular tourist spot in the country.
Watch the Director of Grant Associates, Andrew Grant, talk about Gardens by the Bay in the video below:
18. Gardens by the Bay inspired the Marvel crew
One of the most interesting facts about Gardens by the Bay is that its futuristic architecture actually inspired the Marvel movie creators.
Stephane Ceretti explained that they got inspiration from the Gardens to create the visuals of the planet Xandar which is featured in the movie “Guardians of the Galaxy.“
He explains: “There’s a place in Singapore called Gardens by the Bay which has that lush, kind of futuristic feel in terms of architecture and a very lush tropical feel.”
19. It’s more popular than gardens in New York and London
Gardens by the Bay has quickly become one of the most popular tourist attractions in Singapore, and one of the most visited gardens in the world.
While the New York Botanic Gardens and the Kew Gardens in London receive an estimate of 1 to 2 million annual visitors, Gardens by the Bay received over 6.4 million visitors in 2014.
What makes this number even more impressive is the fact that this was only the third year the Gardens officially opened!
By November 2015, the 20 million visitor mark was crossed and the 50 million visitor mark in 2018. Some pretty amazing numbers for such a new tourist attraction!
20. Gardens by the Bay will become home to the Founders’ Memorial
What better place to commemorate the Founders of the Nation than Gardens by the Bay?
In 2018, it was announced that the Founders Memorial, which is supposed to be ready by 2027, will be constructed in Bay East Garden of Gardens by the Bay.
A competition was held and the winning design was submitted by Kengo Kuma & Associates in collaboration with K2LD Architects.
21. There’s a balancing baby sculpture
One of the most remarkable sculptures you’ll ever come across can be found in Gardens by the Bay.
The sculpture was created by Mark Quinn and depicts his own son Lucas when he was a baby. It’s 9 meters long and 3 meters high.
What’s remarkable about this colossal bronze statue is that the weight of the statue is balanced so perfectly that it creates the illusion that the baby is balancing on his right hand.
Apart from this one, there are plenty more sculptures to discover.
22. It looks amazing at night
Singapore is an amazing place to visit. Gardens by the Bay has made it even more amazing by integrating a lot of greenery into a highly urbanized area.
One thing you must surely do when you get the chance to visit Singapore is exploring it at night. The views you get are simply jaw-dropping and will stay with you for the rest of your life!