Lee Kong Chian Natural History Museum opens to the public

SINGAPORE - The Lee Kong Chian Natural History Museum, the Republic's only museum dedicated to showcasing South-east Asian biodiversity, opened its doors to the public on Tuesday.

Guests who had bought tickets to the 2.30pm slot were enthralled by the museum's three star dinosaurs - Prince, Apollonia and Twinky - and 2,000 other exhibits ranging from giant crabs to birds.

The skeletons of a dugong, short-finned pilot whale, as well as side-by-side comparisons of an orang utan and human skeleton, also delighted the visitors.

The museum is selling admission tickets in six one-and-a-half hour slots, with the earliest starting at 10am, and the last admission at 5.30pm. This is to help with crowd control.

While admission is strictly tied to the time on the tickets, visitors will not be made to leave once the time runs out, stressed deputy museum head Rudolf Meier.

Visitors such as retired construction supervisor Tan Kee Kwang, 68, told The Straits Times that he was impressed with the museum, especially the dinosaurs.

"It's very elaborate, I'm surprised by it," said Mr Tan. His daughter had bought tickets for he and his wife.

"I wonder how they pieced (the dinosaurs) together."

Another guest, volunteer guide Anne Perng Branigan, who is from the United States but now lives in Singapore, had taken her seven-year-old son Ivor to see the dinosaurs.

"We are excited to be here on the first day, and... natural history is one of the things I want to educate him about," said Mrs Branigan, who is in her 40s.

"I'm also fine with the ticket buying from Sistic, (the ticket buying process) it has been very well-publicised."

Those keen on visiting the Lee Kong Chian Natural History Museum should buy their tickets through Sistic counters or online at http://www.sistic.com.sg/events/lkc2015. Tickets will not be sold at the door.

For Singaporeans and permanent residents, tickets cost $15 for an adult and $8 for a child.