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gnômadic’s guide to an active, off-the-beaten-path Singapoliday weekend

The lion city, the little red dot, the garden city — gnômadic’s home base has many names and for good reason. Singapore is a multi-faceted, vibrant city but there’s so much more to it than award-winning restaurants and bars, larger than life skyscrapers, and its reputation as one of the easiest places to do business. If like most of us, you’re staying put for Christmas, or if you’ve just returned home from overseas, here’s our pick on how to spend an active alternative Singapoliday weekend.

TAKE A HIKE

Yes, we have plenty of modernist architecture and a few Brutalist buildings still standing, but did you know that green spaces, parks, and gardens occupy almost 47% of land in Singapore? We are big fans of the iconic MacRitchie Park and Bukit Timah Hill, but when you’re social distancing from the crowds, here’s where you can head to:

Puaka Hill Hiking Trail


Puaka Hill is Pulau Ubin’s highest peak at 74m above sea level and is something of a glute-slayer. This hiking trail takes you to a summit overlooking the Balai Quarry via a steep, winding climb through thick growths and dense jungle, while the descent should only take about 20 minutes. This trail’s unmarked entrance and challenging nature means that it’s a rarely visited spot, so it’s perfect if you’re looking for some peace and quiet.

Pro Tip: Make sure you have some cash on hand for the ferry ride.

How to get there: Take a 10-minutebum boat from Changi Point Ferry Terminal to the Pulau Ubin Jetty.

Chestnut Nature Park to Windsor Nature Park Hiking Trail

This park-hopping route deep in Singapore’s West is one for those with a bit more stamina! The 20km trek takes you from the Northern Loop of Chestnut Nature Park to Windsor Nature Park, passing through Zhenghua Nature Park, Dairy Farm Nature Park and Hindhede Nature Park along the way. It’s gorgeous and leafy the whole way. The long distance means you’ll need comfortable hiking shoes and perhaps a good podcast or two.

How to get there: Take a taxi orGrabCar and input your destination as Chestnut Nature Park Car Park

CLUBBING BUT NOT REALLY

Currently Singapore is still in Phase 2 of re-opening, which means that while we can dine out at our favourite restaurants in groups of 5, nightlife is still on standstill with our world-famous clubs not opened for parties just yet. However, you can still get a club-like experience and work up a sweat at these locales:

Absolute Cycle x Zouk


Miss the iconic parties at DJ Mag’s #5 club in the world? Well you can expect not-so-snaking queues when you drop by Zouk’s pop-up with spin studio Absolute Cycle (our American friends will find this similar to Soul Cycle). Experience the exhilarating “Absolute 45” high-intensity spin classes hosted in a dark yet inviting space, with epic Zouk lighting and heart-pumping music for the ultimate workout. Comes complete with a drinks bar to purchase water, isotonic drinks and juices.

Pro Tip: Find a buddy and take a post-sweat wefie at their photo wall.

How to get there: Zouk Singapore is located at 3C River Valley Road, The Cannery, which is a five minute walk from Clarke Quay MRT station. There’s also a taxi stand right in front of the club —don’t worry, every cabbie in Singapore knows there this clubbing institution is.

HiRoller Singapore


It’s kind a like Whip It meets Dirty Dancing at HiRoller, located in the east side of Singapore at Pasir Ris. The super fun indoor roller skating rink is the biggest in Singapore and a two-hour session is an affordable S$17. Choose between roller skating or inline skating and zip to your heart’s content along to classic 90’s and pop hits. They offer skating lessons too, so if you want to learn a new skill in 2021, you know what to do.

Pro Tip: Best to bring your own helmet and guards if you have them.
How to get there: HiRoller is located at Market Square @ Downtown East, E!Hub, Level 5. Take a bus from Pasir Ris MRT station, it’s just one stop away.

GET SOME ZEN

All that Yang needs some Yin. Just because life is going at a million miles an hour doesn’t mean that you can’t take time out for yourself. There’s plenty of scientific proof that meditation is beneficial to our lives, including the fact that it promotes emotional health, lengthens attention span and can also generate kindness. While you can always meditate in zero time or do it from the comfort of your bedroom — many of our gnômadic residents are meditation advocates who practice in our beautiful shared spaces too — we have some alternative spaces we in our black book:

Pure Wellness Studio


Located on leafy Duxton Road is Pure Wellness Studio, Singapore’s first dedicated infrared sauna studio. They use state-of-the-art infrared technology that is said to promote a deeper and more relaxing, detoxifying sauna experience. Here, individual cabins are fitted with chromotherapy lights —  each colour is supposedly associated with a different physical and emotional benefit — and can be adjusted to a preferred temperature. Each session lasts 45 minutes, and you’ll leave feeling like new.

Pro Tip: Bring an extra set of clothes as you’ll be thoroughly drenched in sweat and can take a shower after (their eco-friendly bath products are a plus!)

How to get there: Pure Wellness Studio is located on 70A Duxton Road and is a 7 minute walk from Tanjong Pagar MRT station

Palm Ave Float Club


Float therapy or formally known as Restricted Environmental Stimulation Therapy (REST) may be more of an acquired taste, but we love the dark and sound proof pods for helping us slip into a mindful state with zero distractions. REST is said to promote better sleep, provide stress and anxiety relief and aid muscle relaxation. Perfect next stop after that long hike!

How to get there: Take a taxi or GrabCar to 66 Kampong Bugis and head up to the 3rd floor where Palm Ave Float Club awaits

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