If you have a day to spare in Singapore, or you’re just sick of city life, how about a day trip to one of the Southern islands? You will surely find some peace and tranquility away from the bustling metropolis as your eyes feast on some jewel-blue seas.
Kusu Island is located 5.6km off the Straits of Singapore. “Kusu” or 龟屿 refers to “Tortoise or Turtle island” in Chinese. The legend behind the island says that a magical tortoise turned itself into an island to save two shipwrecked sailors – a Malay and a Chinese.
There is a Chinese temple on the island and it was Kusu Pilgramage season when we visited. There were a number of devotees who came to offer their prayers that day. However, fret not as they were mainly staying around the temple and most parts of the island were still empty. Further, the Kusu Pilgramage season is only during October so it shouldn’t be even quieter during normal days.
Directions: Take the MRT to Marina South Pier and take Exit B. Look for the ticketing booth operated by Singapore Island Cruise and purchase tickets. Tickets are for sale at $18 for two-way.
The ferry will head to St John’s island before heading to Kusu Island.
– Journey from Marina South Pier to St John’s island takes 30 minutes and 15 minutes from St John’s to Kusu.
As there was no ferry to St John’s that day, the journey took only 20 minutes.
Our initial plan was to head over to Lazarus island as we heard of the pristine water and beautiful private beach but it was closed that day. We headed off to Kusu island anyway as we were already at the pier.
There you have it. What a pleasant surprise! It is looking promising already.
Taking a walk around the island, we spotted a small food center selling food and prices are definitely reasonable. Laksa and char kway teow were priced at $4, that’s definitely affordable! There were even people selling desserts like Cheng Tng. Plus, the toilets were spanking clean and there were shower heads available.
We finally decided to settle at the beach so we took a quieter corner with the trees providing shade as we laid our table/ picnic mats on the sand. Chips, sandwiches, apple juice, chocolate waffle biscuits… That’s a perfect picnic there!Only one other family was using the beach! Basically it was our little paradise away from the madness as we swam in the water and overlooked the city.
The silly things we do. I was tasked to stuff the entire thing into my mouth at one shot. Chocolate and chips, sweet and savoury, why not?
We stayed for a good 3 hours before taking the 2:15pm ferry. All this while, there was nobody else in the water except the family that was here before us.
We definitely enjoyed ourselves and felt well-rested this Saturday. Next month, we are thinking of heading back to check out Lazarus island. We’re also considering to apply for a permit to camp overnight at St John’s. Do note that overnight stay is not permitted at Kusu island but it still makes a good day trip anyway. Till then! 🙂
All photos taken using iPhone 6+ hence the compromised quality