The easiest way to discover this Singapore’s special island is to reserve a few hours for the purpose before your flight departing from Changi airport. Singapore’s international airport is famous for its different one-of-a-kind attractions (like an open-air cactus garden with views of the planes on the tarmac or a butterfly garden), but you should rather skip them for a visit to the authentic and well preserved Pulau Ubin Island.
From downtown Singapore, take a cab to the terminal of your departing flight and drop your luggages (airlines like Singapore Airlines or Cathay Pacific allow you to check your bags in regardless of the departing time and there is also a left luggage service for carry-ons in the terminals). Then make your way to the arrivals floor, take a taxi to Changi Village and queue for a bumboat towards Pulau Ubin island. Their system is quite good, instead of fixed schedules each boat leaves when a total of 12 passengers is on board (which usually shouldn’t take a long while). If you are in a hurry or want the whole boat just for yourself, you can pay for the missing passengers and the boat will leave right away! After 15 minutes, you arrive to Pulau Ubin.
The island is quite small and perfectly designed for a few hours of cycling (depending on your pace you can spend only a couple of hours or the whole day here). After leaving the bumboat you will easily find a bike to rent for a few bucks (don’t forget to ask for a free map of the island and a lock). The nicest place to visit is probably the mangrove walk, at the easternmost tip of the island. Park your bike (that’s for the lock) and follow the signs (no bicycles allowed on this track) for a short and enjoyable walk. On the north shore of the island you can see Malaysia very close.
On this island’s quiet roads you will meet more bikes, dogs and monkeys than cars. Enjoy the lush tropical forest and panoramas of the surrounding ocean.
Before you head back to mainland Singapore by bumboat and a final taxi ride back to the airport, quench your thirst with a freshly opened coconut. Have a nice flight!