SINGAPORE - Explore "otherworldly" landscapes in this InstaScram feature. We ride the Triumph Street Twin to Xiao Guilin in Bukit Batok and the Chinese Garden in Jurong East to discover their historical and cultural significance.
Xiao Guilin is a choice site for filming period dramas, and a relaxing hangout for tourists and locals alike.
The towns of Bukit Batok and Bukit Gombak were originally home to more than 20 quarry sites until the early 1990s. The most famous among them is the picturesque Xiao Guilin - or Little Guilin.
Known back in the day as the Gammon Quarry, Xiao Guilin earned its name from its resemblance to the majestic karst cliffs in Guilin, China.
As dangerous explosive detonations were carried out at the quarries then, there were no residences or even main roads around the area, a far cry from the bustling neighbourhood it is today.
Historical photos of the area were a lot less scenic. The rock formations there date back more than 250 million years, and still remain relevant to our ecology today.
This episode also features a panoramic, bird’s-eye view of the exquisite Chinese Garden, or Yu Hwa Yuan, the biggest Chinese garden outside of China.
Opened in 1975, the Jurong Town Corporation built the Garden on one of three islands, which were created when the Jurong River underwent a damming process.
The Garden attracts joggers, cyclists, photographers and particularly couples. Check out its Bonsai Garden, 10m high bronze statues and 100-year-old pomegranate trees.
Architectural influences from the classical northern Chinese imperial dynasty are represented at the Chinese Garden. The seven-storey pagoda mirrors the Linggu Temple Pagoda in Nanjing.
The four pavilions were inspired by the style of pavilions in Northern China, and the White Rainbow Bridge, linking the Chinese Garden to the Japanese Garden, is styled after the 17-Arch Bridge at the Summer Palace in Beijing. The bridge was featured in Amazing Race Asia as that season's finishing point.
The Live Turtle & Tortoise Museum, added to the gardens in 2002, features a variety of the shelled creatures. Visitors can even feed them.