Friday, July 10, 2015

Project Homeland: Heritage playgrounds in Singapore

Quite a few parents got pretty excited when they discovered the heritage playground "replicas" over at the "It's Playtime Once More" exhibition at Marina Square in June. Nothing like a familiar playground to evolve those childhood memories of building with sand, and running about in a dragon with friends! The exhibition is over though (and according to this mummy, it looked better than it was), but hey, isn't it better to go visit the real deal?

With that in mind, and the reality that some of these playgrounds would become extinct in time to come, I thought I'd compile the list of existing heritage playgrounds into a list for everyone. We've visited almost all of those that are still standing, and I hope you'll be able to go, too!

Location: Blk 28, Toa Payoh Lorong 6, S310028

This is the most famous of the heritage playgrounds, and would be preserved (so you don't need to rush to see it). The playground gets really crowded during the weekends, so try to visit on a weekday! The slides and coils are pretty high up, so do keep a close watch on younger kids.

You can click here for more details about our visit, and read more about this playground over at Life's Tiny Miracles

Location: Blk 240, Toa Payoh Lorong 1

If you are visiting the large dragon playground and have the time, take a swing nearby to visit his little brother nearby! This playground is much smaller, but the kids will have fun running up and down the stairs and trying to slide their way down the terrazzo slide. This playground is flanked by a modern playground as well as a fitness corner, which would provide some fun too!

And if your kids still have time, you can bring them to hunt for the blue animals statues which are just a block away, and enjoy a meal at the nearby coffeeshop, which serves great ramen and a really value for money fish and chips! (More details on both here.)

You can read more about our visit to the little dragon here, and about Mum's Calling's visit to the playground. There is one more little dragon playground in Singapore that is still standing, over at Block 57  Pipit Road, and that one is in a shade of pretty pink! You can read more about the Pipit little dragon over at A Juggling Mom

Location: Blk 571, Ang Mo Kio Avenue 3, S560571

This playground is much quieter compared to the one over at Toa Payoh. If you are concerned about the little ones, the sand in this playground has been replaced with the usual rubber flooring that you see at most modern playgrounds, and the slide platforms and coils are lower than the ones at Toa Payoh. 

You can read more about our visit here, or visit In the Wee Hours for an account of their visit.

Location: Blk 514C, Bishan Street 13, S570514

This playground is pretty cute, and I love the candy colors. Unfortunately, it isn't well maintained, so do watch out for jagged bits! It's a favourite smoke spot for people working around the area, so it's best to avoid the playground in the evenings. If the kids get bored sliding after awhile, they can also move to the modern playground next to it. 

One interesting thing about this playground though, is that it is flanked by trees that have these fruit (I'm not too sure what these are, but they are quite pretty!). The boys love picking up these and displaying them in their nature corner. 

Location: Blk 10, Dakota Crescent, Mountbatten East, S390010

This was, by far, our favourite amongst the heritage playgrounds that we managed to visit. The playground is pretty quiet, and nestled in a charming estate. There are old-fashioned tyre swings which the boys loved, slides and a bridge. And I do so love the pretty blue shade of the mosaic tiles!

This is one playground to visit soon, as the estate would be vacated by the end of 2016 to make way for new developments (for more details, click here). You can read more about our visit here, or visit A Juggling Mom to read about her visit. 

Location: 625 Elias Road, S510625

This tiny playground is next to a food center, and features a wide terrazzo slide and tyres to climb on. It's pretty small, but you could plan to visit this playground enroute to Pasir Ris Park! 

You can read more about our visit here

Location: Blk 858, Tampines Street 83, S521858

We've tried visiting these two playgrounds twice, but do note that both are now undergoing restorative works, and are still not accessible. We'll update once they are open to the public again! 

Meanwhile, you can read more about them over at Sakura Haruka, or at Cheekiemonkies

Extinct Playgrounds

Source: Remember Singapore

Many of our heritage playgrounds are no longer standing (all the more reason to visit the existing ones today!). The Pelican playgrounds are gone, and the Elephant playground is currently locked up in the grounds of the Home Team Pasir Ris Chalets (which have ceased operations since March this year). We'll be checking up on the status of the Elephant playground, and will update should it ever be open to the public again!  


We hope that this list would be useful for those hunting for a piece of Singapore's playground history to visit. You can read all our playground posts, here. Credits go to A Juggling Mom for running the Heritage Playground blog hop, which resulted in many of the blog posts mentioned here!

Here are more resources to check out:

:: A Google Maps listing of the heritage playgrounds. 

:: Mosaic Memories, a booklet looking at the history behind these mosaic playgrounds, and how these have inspired people today. This is a really good read. 

:: A very comprehensive and through list of old playgrounds in Singapore, some of which are no longer standing. Lots of photos!

:: A Million Little Echoes' "amazing race" where they visited four of the heritage playgrounds in one day. 

:: SengKangBabies' Playground Project, where they visited many of the heritage playgrounds. 

Also, if you are a parent, and you would like to explore more places in Singapore to bring the kids to, you can check out "Got Kids, Go Where?" by daddy blogger Kelvin Ang. We've yet to purchase or read the book, but it looks pretty useful! 


  1. The link to Mosiac Memories is particularly fascinating! Loved reading about 77 year old Mr Khor who designed the Dragon and Pelican, etc! Thanks for sharing.

  2. It is so nice to see the playgrounds being restored. I hope to be able to show my kids my old playground when we return for a visit.


  3. I like the mangosteen and watermelon playgrounds!



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