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National Orchid Garden, Singapore

31 May 2012 One Comment

Singapore National Orchid Garden

Located at the northernmost part of the Singapore Botanic Gardens (SBG), the Singapore National Orchid Garden boasts the largest display of tropical orchids in the world. Its roots began with the orchid breeding program in 1928, and when the SBG was opened in 1959, a dedicated place was given to house the orchids. Now, over 600 species and hybrids of orchids can be found in the Orchid Garden.

National Orchid Garden - Singapore Botanical Garden

The Travcult crew gave the Orchid Garden a visit somewhere in April, in the late morning around 11am. It is usually advisable to visit much earlier in the day, as the sun can be quite scorching in the afternoons, however, the sky was a bit overcast that day, so it was in fact quite cooling. While it was a Sunday, there were not a lot of visitors as it has just stopped raining. The bulk of the visitors were tourists; mostly Caucasians, Indians and Filipinos.

Waterfall at Singapore National Orchid Garden

We were greeted by the Crane Fountain at the entrance. My goodness! There were orchid plants in bloom everywhere! There were even places designated as excellent photo opportunity spots, where orchids were abundant for that perfect photo. A short distance away was the Golden Cage display, which is essentially a large cage where orchids are placed. Visitors can step into the cage and have a look at the orchid blooms there.

Tourist visitors at National Orchid garden

We headed northwards, admiring the numerous orchid plants along the way.  Burkill Hall was our destination, as it was near the toilet stop. Burkill Hall was named after two past directors of the SBG, Isaac and Humphrey Burkill. An early colonial bungalow, Burkill Hall was built in 1866 and used to be the directors’ house. Now, it is being used as a venue for weddings and special occasions.

Singapore National Orchid Garden

Nearby is the Vanda Miss Joaquim display, highlighting the special place the national flower has in Singaporeans’ hearts. Also at the same compound is the Orchidarium and the VIP Orchid Garden. The Orchidarium is designed to simulate the natural orchid habitats in the wild and houses over 400 species of orchids. Over at the VIP Orchid Garden are where outstanding orchid hybrids named after visiting dignitaries and VIPs are displayed. They are used by the Singapore government to promote goodwill and foster closer ties between nations. Examples include Dendrobium Margaret Thatcher and Vandaenopsis Nelson Mandela.

Orchid collection

It was a sweltering hot day so the Cool House was a welcoming sight. It simulates an environment of high elevation in the tropics, therefore the interior is cool and misty. Needless to say, various types of orchids are grown in there too. There were supposedly carnivorous plants in the Cool House but we only saw a couple or so, which was quite disappointing. Moving on, we took a quick stroll to the Yuen-Peng McNeice Bromeliad Collection exhibit. The exhibit has over 300 species and 500 hybrids of bromeliads from South America, generously donated by Lady McNeice.

Souvenir Shop at National Orchid Garden

We were almost done with the Orchid Garden, as we were nearing the exit. Visitors have to exit the garden via the RISIS Nature Gallery, which offers orchid themed souvenirs. Again, the air-conditioning in the store beckoned us forward.

In a nutshell, it was an enjoyable and knowledgeable trip. We would highly recommend a visit to the Singapore National Orchid Gardens.

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