Fort Canning Park Hot
Located on a hill, Fort Canning Park is one of Singapore's most historic landmarks. During World War II, the hill was instrumental in Singapore's war efforts with numerous military buildings located there. One of these buildings was the Fort Canning Bunker or Battle Box, where the decision to surrender Singapore to the Japanese was made by the British. Many war relics from Singapore's colourful history have survived on the hill and are still visible today.
Nowadays it has taken on a new image becoming a popular venue for music shows and concerts. The lush lawns draw picnics, concerts, theatre productions and festivals, while weddings, parties and gatherings are a regular sight in the park's elegant indoor function rooms.
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The perfect concert setting
My first visit to Fort Canning Park was in early 2013, for a Fall Out Boy concert that may I add, was memorable. One of the reasons why it was so unforgettable was the venue. The concert was held in a large empty grass lot and the nature surrounding it made the place very cooling at night.
It does not lack in historical monuments as well. Getting there, the park was a visual treat as it was well-kept but still had the tinge of tropical wilderness. As you take a hike around the park, you will see various artifacts that date back to the old Singapore. Not only will you learn plenty about the history that made this country, but you will also get great exercise while doing so.
It's the trees that make it great
Singapore's parks are pretty good. I'm not talking about the wonderful community parks at the East and West Coast, Changi Beach and Pasir Ris and the numerous others that dot the country. I'm talking about the smaller parks tucked away in almost every corner of this surprising country.
IN the city, there are several: One on Mount Emily, the Istana Park, Pearl Hill, HOng Lim, and the best of them all: Fort Canning.
Stamford Raffles chose well when he had his minions build his government house on the hill overlooking the Singapore River. He knew what he was doing when he planted the first botanic gardens in the city.
Now you can explore the massive and wonderful trees that are hundreds of years old: trees from all over the world. YOu can wander round several levels of gently graded paths that lead up to the hill from the surrounding streets. There is even an outdoors escalator leading up from the National Museum. OK, it only takes yo a few metres, and the other 60 metres you must do yourself, but I've never been there when it's working, so I am assuming it has broken down permanently.
But that is beside the point. Check out what you can see:the Spice Garden, an archaeological dig, an outdoors theatre on the hill top, a wonderful old building now the headquarters of National Parks, the Battle Box, old Malay Royal tombs, and, overshadowing all, wonderful greenery, gardens and massive trees.
Go there. You won't be disappointed.
Right Place if only Right time
If Fort Canning was a person, I'd say he has severe mood swings which spring about drastic changes of attitude. I have visited Fort Canning enough times to know the three shades of emotions this place has. It varies according to time.
In the afternoon, the sun simply does not give justice to this place. When I go there at 2pm-5pm, Fort Canning is one female dog. Everywhere I go, i find myself trying to find shade or some bench. The place looked like a garden with a very bad attraction point. Every intention of checking out the key points of the place were gone right at the moment I arrived at Fort Canning Hill with the scorching intensity of the heat.
I once went there with a friend in the evening, and it was marvelously nostalgic. Under the purple sky and shadows of birds, Fort Canning was a beau from 5.30pm to 7pm. The old fashioned pavilions looked strangely romantic to us. With the absence of the sun's heat and presence of the slight wind, the walk was alluringly awkward to us as friends since he was a boy and I the opposite sex.
Then come the night. I would say, "Welcome to Ghost Town". The past of the Japanese Occupation and rumors of ghost sightings at this place assisted me in believing I was spooked. The air I recalled was misty and thick and sounds of crickets was especially unwelcome. My mustered courage could handle all of that until I walked through the tunnel (yes, this eerie tunnel) and felt someone behind me where there should not be. That was when I swore never to return to Fort Canning at night.
So hear me, don't make this a wrong place, wrong time. Make this the right place by choosing the right timing to go!
I went to Fort Canning recently to get my graduation pictures done. The greenery and colonial establishments make all photographs look pretty, and it is situated just beside the shopping centres (near Dhoby Ghaut MRT) - easily accessible.
Have a picnic with friends at the large grass patch above the flight of stairs (not only at the area where concerts are held). It is not too warm as there are trees and take some photographs of the greenery and colonial establishments.
Fort Canning at night is pretty awesome too - nothing like the serene greenery. It is transformed to become a stage for many international artistes and I was there few years back for a Stereophonics concert.
Overall, a great place to go that's near to town but away from the hustle and bustle of the city.
Fort canning Park shows visitors many historical insights of the past during World War II. It shows you what they used when they fight like cannon and battle box. Furthermore they also shows you the room where those soldier having meeting. There are also fake soldier everywhere standing and seating on the chair as if it has bring you to the past to experience it, all you need to do is imagine it. I went there once during my primary school times, where they also teach us to grow plants. Fort canning Park not only shows historical items but also beautiful flowers and trees everywhere. An advised I think if you don’t really enjoy admiring historic items or flower, you better not go or else I think you will be very bored. However, it may not be true as I am also not interested in all these before I went but I was amazed by it afterward. It will be best if you wear track pants with covered shoe and also bring insect repellent as there are a lot of ants. Bring along water with you even though there are food and beverage sold.
Great place to have a picnic
Well you may think that amidst all the history and location of fort canning park in the business district area, having a picnic will be the last thing on your mind. I can proof to you that it can be done and has ever been done before by none other than yours truly.
Why i say it is an ideal location for picnics is because of its lush greenery and massive space of land. Furthermore the place is very quiet with not much activities especially during the weekdays but weekends too. Of course you need to find a suitable location and the best location i found was somewhere near the Fort canning green, the fort gate and the Raffles terrace.
Bring a mat, food, drinks not forgetting an umbrella because you may never know when you need one. Enjoy!
the near perfect wedding venue
I went to Fort Canning Park mostly for weddings and the 2010 Singfest concert. This park serves as a retreat from the hustle and bustle of town, giving you the feeling of serenity and tranquility when you talk a walk through this little peak.
I came here for a wedding a few months ago, and it was held in Fort Canning's main hall(Next to the battle box if you are not sure). The calm atmosphere and sparkling backdrop really makes this place one of a kind, and much more than the ideal wedding dinner. Parking space is never a hassle and to add a little more culture to this place, the Registry of Marriages is located on this hill. Therefore, the Fort Canning park has served its purpose as a piece of history, but now we shall call it the celebratory point for all couples alike. I would really recommend anyone to come to this lovely place.
I wasn't entirely impressed...
I am proud to be Singaporean and understand the history of my country, particularly during World War II and the Japanese Occupation, but Fort Canning merely left me feeling "blah". Now I had visited the park once before when I was a primary school student, venturing out of the classroom on mini excursions with the rest of my class. I remember seeing the moulds of canyons and taking endless photographs with my friends.
The second time I visited this iconic place was very recently, when a few friends from the States came to visit and wanted to take back a piece of Singapore heritage with them. We decided to pay a visit to The Battle Box, where the surrender of Singapore to the Japanese was made by the British forces. Perhaps due to the fact that it was a weekday and there were no scheduled tours or guides available, my friends and I were left to explore the area on our own.
It was interesting to see life-size figurines of the British forces in different poses, either scribbling away on a piece of paper or discussing possible action plans to conquer the enemy. However, there is only so much a human mind can decipher from the poses. With no sign boards to explain the situation occurring in each room, I was a little stunned and slightly overwhelmed by all the action happening. They say actions speak louder than words, but in this case, I think words were definitely needed to explain some of the actions.
Fort Canning Park is beautiful and historical, but if you are more into shopping or outdoorsy activities and not much of a historical buff, I would not recommend the place for you.
Besides being a park known for its history, it is actually quite a vintage yet romantic place. It is a good thing that the area is secluded as it makes it suitable for couples to spend some time alone by themselves. The fact that the registry of Marriages (ROM) is nearby is also somewhat reminiscent of the love commitment couples have vowed to have (or will have) towards each other.
The presence of garden swings also contributed to the peaceful and relaxed atmosphere. However, the last time I checked there were 3 to 4 swings that were rusty and one particularly looked like it could collapse anytime. I really would appreciate the relevant authorities to refurbish that area.
In addition, the brick-stone walls also give you a “peter-pan” impression where you feel you are frozen in time. It really evokes that nostalgic emotion as well.
Improvements wise, I would urge for clearer directional signs. There was once when I had a hard time finding the toilet and vending machines when I really needed it.
In summary, Fort canning park is a great place to consider when you wish to have time away from the hustle and bustle of city life. Occasionally you could catch an outdoor concert in the vicinity so it will not be too mundane a day for you!
Green Lung in the civic district.
Fort Canning Park is probably the only green haven in the civic district left. It is huge and can be accessed from a few directions. They are mainly the entrance from the Clarke Quay side, the side from behind the Registrar of Marriages and the National Archive (near Funan centre), and any other sides that you can get up the hill from.
If you want to have a quiet time in the historical home of the Malay rulers that governed pre-colonial Singapore, this is the place to be at. Here you will find the tombs of these noblemen, and remnants of what made it a fort, for the British (canons and all).
History and and romantic spot aside. This location is also a great place for concerts. Its natural slope provides a great space for outdoor performances. Many great bands have performed at FCP before and I've personally been to MUSE's concert there, as well as a picnic/ballet performance "Ballet Under the Stars". From moshpits to picnics, this space was perfect.
Near the performance area, is the National Museum of Singapore, you can access it from Fort Canning via its rear extension which was designed by reknown Singaporean architect, Mok Wei Wei.