Heritage Trails in the West: Walk down memory lane, discover an old railway bridge

Wessex Estate is home to black-and-white colonial bungalows. ST PHOTO: CHONG JUN LIANG

Queenstown's charming shops and good hawker food



More than six hours if you visit all 40 points. About 26,300 steps. An easy walk, with some stair-climbing.


Queenstown Public Library; first HDB blocks; HDB terraces; Tiong Ghee Temple; HDB's first point blocks; "Butterfly Block"; Alexandra Hospital; Hang Jebat Mosque; colonial terraces at Jalan Hang Jebat; Wessex Estate; former Malayan Railways; Singapore Improvement Trust flats; Sri Muneeswaran Temple; Church of the Blessed Sacrament; Tanglin Halt Neighbourhood Centre; first flatted factory; Shuang Long Shan Wu Shu Ancestral Hall; VIP Block; Ridout Tea Garden; Commonwealth Crescent Neighbourhood Centre


Queenstown is Singapore's first satellite town, so it has plenty of character - from charming old sundry shops to examples of early public housing, and there is no shortage of good hawker food.

The five mini trails offer a comprehensive tour of Queenstown, although it can be a slog to do them all.

I recommend skipping the Princess Trail and starting at Stirling Road - home to HDB's oldest blocks and less commonplace terraces.

Visit Tiong Ghee Temple and HDB's first point blocks, before grabbing a bite at Mei Ling Market and Food Centre. Then zip over to the "Butterfly Block", one of HDB's first curved blocks, before heading to Alexandra Hospital.

If you are feeling peckish, Alexandra Village Food Centre is close by and has good avocado milkshakes.

When you are done exploring Queensway, trek to Jalan Hang Jebat, which has a mosque and colonial terraces. After a stroll through the futuristic Mediapolis area, you will arrive in Wessex Estate. The leafy area is home to black-and-white colonial bungalows and the quaint Cafe Colbar.

The first Housing board flats in Stirling Road. ST PHOTO: CHONG JUN LIANG

Afterwards, walk down a flight of stairs to the Green Corridor (former Malayan Railways) and head back to Queenstown. You will see low-rise housing blocks by the Singapore Improvement Trust.

Down the road sits Sri Muneeswaran Temple and Church of the Blessed Sacrament.

Then stop by Tanglin Halt, which is slated for redevelopment and is home to the famous Chef Hainanese Western Food stall (open from 7pm to 9pm, closed on Thursdays).

If you are not exhausted, the hilly area near the VIP Block offers a good view of Queenstown.

Then walk down a flight of stairs and cross an overhead bridge to Ridout Tea Garden, Singapore's first Japanese-themed community garden.


Several highlights could have been reordered for a less circuitous route. Some buildings on the Princess Trail have been demolished. Explore all five trails in one day at your own peril.

Jurong is no 'boring' industrial town

The old Jurong line railway bridge. ST PHOTO: JASON QUAH

RATING: ​3/5


Covering all 25 points will take at least one day. Hop on a bus wherever possible. An easy walk.


Old Jurong line railway bridge; Jurong Town Hall; Science Centre Singapore; Taman Jurong Market and Food Centre (site of old Yung Sheng Food Centre); Tuas Pek Kong Temple; Thow Kwang Pottery Jungle; Jurong Bird Park; Jurong Hill


Jurong is often regarded as a boring industrial town, but the highlights on this trail - from parks and eateries to places of worship and pottery kilns - will have you seeing the neighbourhood in a new light.

Do not miss the modern Jurong Town Hall building, which officially opened in 1975 and is a national monument. Another highlight is Thow Kwang Pottery Jungle - home to a dragon kiln - where you can pick up pottery for your home or attend pottery classes.

If you want a sweeping view of the Jurong industrial area, go to Jurong Hill and climb up the seven-storey spiral lookout tower, which is also near Jurong Bird Park.

If you need some grub, there is Taman Jurong Market and Food Centre, or Boon Lay Place Market and Food Village near the Tuas Pek Kong Temple.

The Tuas Pek Kong Temple. ST PHOTO: TOH WEN LI


Points on the trail are not always numbered in the order they should be visited. For your own sanity, home in on just a handful of highlights and craft your own route before going down.

As at press time, the location pin for Jurong Railway on Roots.gov.sg does not identify the exact location of the old Jurong line railway bridge, which is a five-minute walk down the Ulu Pandan Park Connector.

Also, Chinese Garden, Japanese Garden and Army Museum of Singapore are temporarily closed.

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