Also known as Little Guilin or Xiao Guilin among the locals, this park looks similar to that of Guilin in China - a granite rock sitting within a lake. Two dome shaped shelters give you a fantastic view of the tranquil lake. The towering rock cliffs make a majestic backdrop to the large lake. The park is beautifully landscaped so that you can walk along the banks of the lake. This park is popular with shutter bugs and wedding couples.
Bukit Batok Town Park (Little Guilin)
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Whenever passing by Little Guilin, I cannot help but admire the amazing view. I would not call this a small-scale Guilin, but considering the size of Singapore, it is rather impressive.
However, if you were preparing to spend a whole day in that area, there is really nothing much. Most people are just passers-by going to the stadium next to it, for evening-stollers who live very nearby. The only activity you could consider is fishing, but judging from the expressions of the fishermen there, don't expect a good catch.
In conclusion, definitely stop and take a look if you are passing by Little Guilin, but don't bother specially taking a trip there.
One would appreciate Xiao Guilin if you appreciated rocks, because they do have very pretty rocks. These rocks have all been through the weathering process, making it a geography teacher heaven. The place is incredibly tranquil, with it being difficult to spend your money there. I couldn’t even find a vending machine.
Xiao Guilin is wonderful for photographs, seeing that it looks more like a scene out of a Wu Xia Xiao Shuo (Chinese Martial Arts Classic). It really looks nothing like Singapore at all.
It must be noted that an overwhelming majority of people will find Xiao Guilin boring though, seeing that there really isn’t much to do apart from marveling at rocks and taking photos with the scenery. However, for those that will enjoy a relaxed afternoon, Xiao Guilin serves its purpose very well, free of snack vendors and boisterous children.
This is not a very good park for leisure because it is too constricted. Despite the trees, the air here is actually pretty bad and the entire place seems convered in constant constricted darkness. The place is quite dirty and because it is an enclosed park with roads and urban areas all around, there is really nothing much you can do here. This is not a good place for excercising even because of the constricted air.
The lake is bad and very muddy and polluted and you just don't get inspired from this place. It's a very run-down, unkempt nature park. There are much better and fresher ones out there. THis is not recommended.
Other than the quarry at Pulau Ubin, you would be hard pressed to find another scene like this in Singapore. That alone should make Little Guilin worth a visit. However, since this place is right at the opposite end of Singapore from my place, I have only been here less than 5 times in my life.
The last time I was here, I was waiting for my friends to finish their motorbike lessons in Bukit Batok Driving School. It was a quiet and tranquil place as far as I can remember. There were more than a few people around because it was evening and evening brings everyone into the parks, but the overall atmosphere was still pretty peaceful.
The only criticism I have for Little Guilin is that there simply isn't anything to do here other than enjoy the scenery. I'd come here again sometime, but only if I happen to be in the area.
If you watched TV serials from the past when Mediacorp was still TCS, you would have seen this back drop many times. In the old good days when television making budget was tight and they needed a back drop for heroes from period dramas to fly across water, this would be the scene of choice. The other place that heroes fly across a lot would be the quarry at Pulau Ubin but that place is for bigger budget production because you need to take a boat to get there.
If my memory had not failed, this was also the back drop for some scenes where couples fell in love or fell apart for modern dramas. So, long times ago, the reason to visit this park was the possible chance to see some TV crew making a TV series there and also some TV stars. This reason is no longer valid so let this park fade into history.
Other than serving as a backdrop for a photo shoot, I cannot think of any other reason why Bukit Batok Town Park is still being kept around. I find that this whole park just reeks of the undesirable and the unwanted.
I have personally seen on many occasions people who were drinking and passed out lying around the park. This park hardly gets any visitors from anybody, and I perfectly understand why. Even the lake is dirty and unkept, with dead leave often clogging in the midst of it. It's no wonder that this place isn't a breeding hazard for mosquitoes.
The only good purpose that this park serves would be as a backdrop for photographs. With the unique rocks shaped like hills surrounded by lush greens and a dirty pond, you can play dress-up as ancient characters (Xiao Long Nu and Yang Guo) and have your photos taken there! Don't worry, I doubt the viewer of the photograph will be able to see the dirtiness of the pond. If you are not planning to take photos, then you might want to give it a skip as it is as boring as it can get. No bicycle rental, no cafes... nothing much at all.
I went there for the first time as during my driving practices, I've always drove past that place and it always attracts my attention! Looks like a TV drama scene in reality. When I reached there, I was promptly disappointed and I felt "cheated" because I have wanted to go there every single time my car went past it. Don't go too close to the pond, it has a mouldy smell. There are a lot of mosquitoes as well (eeeek!!!) Take the effort to visit somewhere else like the Botanical Gardens instead. Please don't waste your time on Little Guilin! I think the park should change its name to 'Little Enjoyment'.
Situated just 5 mins walk away from Bukit Gombak MRT, you would have assumed that this particular park would have it's fair share of visitors, but on the contrary, it's doesn't. Should you be looking for a scenic place to be at to calm down your mind and eyes, then you've come 5 years late. Little Guilin has lost its charm over the years and it is now sadly, a lifeless, almost abandoned park. It isn't well taken care off, and no one seemed to really care. The small lake which you would use to see little turtles swimming in is now simply a murky lake filled with dried leaves, floating around.
Although this is so,the towering rock cliffs still is an amazing view to look at if you're around the area. This park is not picnic friendly so don't bother. Any other activities that I've seen happening around is just occasional visits by amatuer photographers trying to take an artistic picture of the scenic backdrop or TV crews shooting, making sure the rock cliff is in full view. If I could put it bluntly, nothing attracts anyone here anymore. If you really want to get away from hustle bustle of life, take the extra effort to go to the nearby Bukit Batok Nature Park. I assure you, you eyes and soul gets more serenity.