Istana open house on second day of Chinese New Year

A group of friends on the lawn in front of the Istana building during the open house on Feb 11, 2013. -- ST PHOTO: NEO XIAOBIN
A group of friends on the lawn in front of the Istana building during the open house on Feb 11, 2013. -- ST PHOTO: NEO XIAOBIN

SINGAPORE - The Istana grounds will be open to the public on Friday (Feb 20) in celebration of Chinese New Year.

There will be special performances including lion dance, acrobatics and dance performances by the Nanyang Girls' School Lion Dance Troupe, Xinjiang Production and Construction Corps, PA Talents and SOKA.

The Singapore Bird Park will be displaying macaws and parrots, and Hay Dairies will put their farm goats on show.

Visitors can sign up for guided nature walks at the Istana, which will showcase its flora, fauna and biodiversity, or they can take a tour of the Istana main building led by volunteers from the National Heritage Board (NHB).

Guided tours cost $2 for all children and $4 for adults who are Singaporean or Singapore permanent residents (PRs). It is $10 for adults who are non-Singaporeans/PRs.

More details on the Istana building tour can be found at the NHB website.

Entry to the Istana grounds is free for Singaporeans and Singapore permanent residents. All other visitors are required to pay an entrance fee of $1 per person.

All fees collected will be donated to charity.

The official residence of Singapore's president will be open from from 8.30am to 6pm on Feb 20, and entry to the Istana grounds is via the main gate at Orchard Road.