Although River Safari (next to Singapore Zoo) was already opened for almost a year, but we never visited this park until the New Year in 2014. It was because all of us had been waiting for the Amazon River Quest to be opened. When the boat ride was finally operated and still free to ride, we quickly made our plan to visit this park.
“River Safari is the newest addition to Wildlife Reserves Singapore’s portfolio of award-winning parks. Nestled between Singapore’s two award-winning wildlife parks – Singapore Zoo and Night Safari – River Safari offers an unforgettable adventure inspired by the world’s most iconic rivers. This $160-million attraction features state-of-the-art exhibit design, Southeast Asia’s largest panda exhibit as well as the world’s largest freshwater aquarium. Housing one of the world’s largest collections of freshwater fauna, the park features over 5,000 animals including 42 endangered species. And that includes Singapore’s resident giant pandas, Kai Kai and Jia Jia.” taken from the website http://www.riversafari.com.sg/
Since the boat ride was still complimentary, the entrance fee was still $25 for adults and $16 for child (from the usual price of $35 for adults and $23 for child). Get 5% discount by buying the tickets online or use AMEX credit card to get 1 child free for every paying adults.
My friend and his family was coming to Singapore on New Year, so we planned to meet at River Safari and enjoyed the day together. The boy was very glad when he saw his friends that he hadn’t seen for quite a long time and they absolutely had a wonderful time together. Too bad my friends and his family couldn’t join the boat ride since it was fully booked by the time they came (at about 11 am).
The Amazon River Quest Boat Ride time slot must be booked at the ticketing counters and they actually provided lots of seats, but on holidays and weekends, those who come after 10 am can forget about the boat ride…………….it will be fully booked at about 10 to 11 am. We were there at about 8.30 am and were lucky to book the first ride which was at 10 am, and it was a wise decision because the queue for the ride inside was very long too. So better book the ride at its earliest time to beat the queue inside and while the weather is still nice. If I’m not mistaken, the ride will be closed due to bad weather.
We thought the place inside would be like Singapore Zoo with its so many open spaces, so we brought umbrellas just in case the rain came. Well, it wasn’t necessary at all actually, because we found out that all the walking tracks for visitors were all sheltered from rain and hot sun, so it was very comfortable.
This place also has a nice view overlooking a lake, green grass, big trees, and forested are like this:
For lunch, we wanted to try the Mama Panda Kitchen with its very popular panda pau/bun, too bad the queue was unimaginable…………….super long queue. So we decided to eat outside River Safari. Many people also brought their own food for lunch and they ate at the picnic spot provided near the Panda House.
River Safari opens 9.00am to 6.00pm daily and first boat departs at 10am. The boat ride time slot can be booked start from 8.30 am at the ticketing counter.
And now let’s explore inside River Safari:
Wild Amazonia is divided into 3 parts: Amazon Flooded Forest, Squirrel Monkey Forest, and the newly opened Amazon River Quest. There is a small snack shop which sells ice cream, juice, and finger food such as fried fish ball. The finger food was all gone after lunch and I didn’t see the staff replenish the food after that.
From the name, I’m sure it’s all about the animals that live in Amazon…….not just underwater animals, but also to the top of the forest like Toco Toucan.
Amazon Flooded Forest
Squirrel Monkey Forest
They let the monkeys roam free inside here, but don’t touch them or feed them………
Amazon River Quest
The boy’s favorite thing was absolutely this boat ride. He said he would like to comeback just for the boat ride. I didn’t know what was wrong. maybe it was the time for the animals to take nap or they were too shy……………but when we were there we saw more animals signs than the animals themselves.
Overall, we enjoyed the ride so much. This was absolutely the best attraction of all. You must be at least 1.06 M to ride the boat.
The staff warned us that those who sit at the front of the boat will probably get wet a little………………and of course the boy instantly decided to sit at the front part of the boat. I was worry about my camera getting wet, so I sat behind him.
GIANT PANDA FOREST
We had to queue again to see the panda (phew……), but we all loved the pandas. They were so cute and lovely, and to see them eating and doing their activities so close like that was worth the queue. While waiting, we were shown a video of how Kai Kai and Jia Jia (the pandas) were brought from China to Singapore. Do you know that they went to Singapore by Singapore Airlines and were greeted by so many people at the airport? Well, they didn’t aware of it anyway since they were sleeping during the journey.
Besides the white and black panda / giant panda, there were also red pandas on the exhibit. We could learn many things about pandas too, like their diets, how they live, etc…..
RIVERS OF THE WORLD
With its motto: The River Is Calling, we will be brought to see the amazing land and aquatic animals in: Mississippi River, Congo River, River Nile, Ganges River, Murray River, Mekong River, Yangtze River.
Unlike the zoo, we only spent less then 4 hours in River Safari. We still find that Singapore Zoo is more attractive for children with its animal shows, dry and wet playground, tram ride, boat ride, animal ride, etc. My friend also said the same thing, because his children seemed to show less interest except at the panda house.
By visiting River Safari, it also completed our visit to four animal parks in Singapore: Singapore Zoo, Night Safari, Jurong Bird Park, and River Safari. The boy loves all four of them since he likes studying about animals, and all the visit really broaden his knowledge about the animal worlds.