8 Things to do on St John Island
What is st John island?
St John’s Island, also known as Pulau Sakijang Bendera, is one of Singapore’s southern islands. It is situated around 6.5 kilometres south of Singapore’s main island.
In the late 1800s, St John’s Island served as a quarantine station for cholera cases discovered among immigrants and starting in 1901, victims of beri-beri were also sent to the island. By 1930, the island had earned international acclaim as a quarantine centre for Asian immigrants and pilgrims coming from Mecca.
Other illnesses, such as leprosy, were eventually quarantined in the quarantine facility. When widespread immigration was stopped in the mid-twentieth century, the island was turned into a prison and a drug rehabilitation centre.
The times, however, have changed. St. John’s island is no longer what it once was. St John’s Island is becoming a popular vacation area for residents and tourists. The island’s rural ambience and non-commercialized location make it appealing to those looking for a half-day break from Singapore’s concrete jungle! Swimming on the beaches and enjoying a picnic with friends and family are a must on the island! You may also visit the Sisters’ Island Marine Park Public Gallery or take the St John’s Island Trail. On the island, you may rent vacation bungalows/chalets that can accommodate up to ten people.
How to get to st john island
You can reach Marina South Pier by train or bus. First, you can board the MRT train to the Marina South Pier MRT Station (NS28). Then take Exit B to the boat terminal after arriving at the Marina South Pier MRT Station. Alternatively, You may also take bus number 400 to the Marina South Pier (B03419) bus stop. The bus station is close to the ferry port, so there’s no need to worry about walking the distance.
Do arrive 30 minutes early at the Marina South Pier. Marina South Pier has two ferry ticket counters: one for Marina South Ferries and another for Singapore Island Cruises. Singapore Island Cruise provides a ferry service between Marina South Pier and St John Island. They also offer a ferry service to Kusu Island.
When you arrive at Marina South Pier, check in and complete a health statement at the Singapore Island Cruise counter. If you purchased your ferry tickets online, you can check in by showing your booking confirmation email on your phone. After that, you will be given physical access to board the ship.
The total time it will take from Marina South Pier to St John’s Island is roughly only around 15 minutes.
You may also travel to St John’s Island via private yacht from Yacht booking Singapore. However, this can be costly as it is meant for those with higher disposable income. Yacht hire Singapore allows these people to rent private yachts for their trip to St John’s Island.
Things to do on St John Island
St John Island National Marine Laboratory
The Public Gallery at the National Marine Laboratory displays marina biodiversity and protection in Singapore’s waterways.
The Gallery features a 3D miniature model of the Marine Park’s dive paths and a chronology of Singapore’s conservation efforts, a viewing pool, and tanks.
The Public Gallery is open to the public for free.
Hiking or cycling
Do you prefer more active pursuits? Hiking or cycling are two options. Natural wonders abound on the island, allowing you to breathe fresh air away from the monotony of city life on the mainland.
Enjoy your lunch on one of the numerous shaded seats or open-air picnic tables with benches. You may also bring your picnic mat and have a picnic on the grass.
Picnic tables are only accessible along the jetty at St John’s. There are no more picnic tables as you get closer to Lazarus, Seringat, or Kias, although there are covered benches.
Have fun on the beach
Because St. John Island has just one beach, it’s the place to go whether you want to swim, tan, or relax on the beach. The beach is a secure lagoon with sea barrier rocks protecting it.
Overnight stay at St. John’s Island.
If you wish to spend the night on St. John Island, you may rent a room at the island’s lodge. You won’t need to carry your tent because you’ll be sleeping in a bed!
On weekdays, a bungalow (max 10 pax) costs SGD 21.4 per night, whereas, on weekends, it costs SGD 42.8 per night. Meanwhile, a campground (maximum 50 people) costs SGD 74.90 per night.
Pet the cats
A few cats can be found roaming the streets of St. John and the nearby islands. If you’re lucky, you might get to meet and pet them.
Walk on the lagoon
The beach’s lagoon also serves as an intertidal zone. It implies that there is very little water in the lagoon at low tide, allowing you to stroll on the lagoon and view seagrasses, sea stars, fiddler crabs, sea cucumbers, and hermit crabs. To protect your feet, wear closed-toed shoes.
NParks Guided Walking Tour
If you enjoy learning about an area from a local expert, I recommend taking NParks’ free guided walking tour.
There is only one trip every month, and places are restricted, so getting in is difficult. Because registration is on a first-come, first-served basis, you must act quickly when it opens.
This 90-minute tour is free, but you must pay for your own boat ticket.
St John Island is a great place to enjoy the sun and the sea. There are plenty of activities to keep you entertained, including swimming, fishing, and exploring the beaches. The island is also home to a number of restaurants and cafes, so you can enjoy some delicious food while you’re here.