Hiking along the Green Corridor Trail

Hey there! For all our long-time readers, you might find this week’s entry familiar to one of our first posts, namely our hiking trip along the Southern Ridges (you can check out that post here)! This week’s entry is likewise focused on keeping fit and healthy, so we embarked on a long trail along Singapore’s forgotten railway tracks!

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#throwback to our trip up Mount Faber and the Southern Ridges!

Last week, we spoke about our adventure to one of Singapore’s iconic landmarks, the Tanjong Pagar Railway Station. As a result of the cessation of train activities to Tanjong Pagar (nowadays trains from Malaysia stop at Woodlands), most of the railway tracks stretching from Tanjong Pagar to Bukit Timah and beyond have been removed and is untouched. Naturally, this opportunity creating a ‘green corridor’ trail for adventurers and hikers to follow!

This trail was recommended by our good friend Sarah, and together with her friend Sebastian, we embarked on what would be a lengthy and challenging walk down Singapore’s very own Green Corridor! We should mention at the outset that we did not manage to complete the trail, but we hope to complete the second stage of our hike in the near future!

The meeting point was Hillview MRT, where the entrance to the Green Corridor Trail was quite inconspicuous…

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Where does this lead to?!
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Sandra treading cautiously..
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Since train activities were ceased and the railway tracks removed in 2011, grass and weeds have grown over what would have been mud and stones. Yet, a beaten path can be seen clearly, indicating how popular a trail it is!

The walking route from The Rail Mail (near Hillview MRT) to the Bukit Timah Railway Station (which has been gazetted as a conservation site) is approximately 3km and is estimated to take 2.5 to 3 hours. Along the way, we passed by some residential estates but mainly encountered nature and foliage (like, a lot). Some of the railway bridges remained untouched, providing the setting for popular and unique photos!

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The Rail Mail and nearby residences can be seen from the distance; the view reminded us of the countryside in other countries!
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There were many people walking the trail on a sunny Saturday; it’s refreshing to see so many people trying to live healthily!
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Sarah and Sebastian doing what people will naturally do when they see railway tracks; balance on them!
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Clearly, we were VERY refreshed at the beginning of the hike…
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Even the algae found a place to settle amongst the steel structures!

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🙂
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Along the way, Sarah and Sebastian caught sight of a bridge that seemed to lead into the forest, causing them to venture from the trail and upwards!
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Damian DEFINITELY did not pose for this :/

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Such a picturesque sight, with tall plants seemingly guarding our walkway!
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Another railway bridge, this time without the steel support structures.
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Excited people are excited!
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As a result of the weather and continuous usage by hikers and bikers, some parts of the trail has turned ‘soft’, collecting water and mud. Do be careful when you traverse these plots of land!

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We loved this photo, as the object (the bridge) is captured in symmetry to the background. Clearly we were not the only ones with this idea (see the photographer on the tracks)!

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It’s a blessing to receive blue, cloudy skies when hiking, and this day was no exception!

After about 1.5 hours of just walking (and taking water breaks, that’s important!), we reached a significant pitstop: the Bukit Timah Railway Station! Constructed in 1903, this station was designed like many small town stations in the United Kingdom and served as a crossing loop station (where trains could overtake one another). Since the tracks only allowed one train to pass in one direction, tokens were passed from the driver to the station master; these tokens came to be recognised as authority for utilising the tracks.

We decided to take a stop to admire the old station. Unlike the station at Tanjong Pagar, the Bukit Timah station is open to the public in the day (and not on public holidays only)!

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The station’s cottage look was particularly enticing to us!

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The evidence of wear and tear only bolsters its historical appeal!

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A key that appears to have never been removed since 2011…

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After our exploration at the Bukit Timah station, we carried on towards Tanjong Pagar in hopes of completing this massive achievement. As the trail stretched through the heartlands of Singapore, we saw less of nature and more of Singapore’s unencumbered development. It was a good hour or two before we decided to cut short our hike and exit near Buona Vista MRT; by then we had completed almost 5 km in the span of 3 hours!

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We wouldn’t dream of doing that…
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At the underside of the Buona Vista flyover, the scale of graffiti adorning the walls caught our attention!
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If only we had umbrellas to shade us the entire hike!

Overall, we enjoyed a good workout from the hike, and despite not meeting our goal of reaching Tanjong Pagar station, we were more than pleased with our progress! The key to have a fun hike is the company, and we were glad to be joined by Sarah and Sebastian! We also stress the importance of being well prepared i.e. good walking shoes, sufficient hydrating fluids and of course, a camera! We hope that you will be able to enjoy the Green Corridor Trail as much as we had!

Till next time,

Damianwithsandra

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