Singapore’s “Mount Everest” stands just 163.63 metres tall. Easily accessible, it is no wonder that Bukit Timah Hill and its surrounding nature reserve are popular with trekkers and nature lovers of all ages.
In 2014, all this was getting a bit too much for the “Tin Hill”. NParks called a time out in September 2014 to carry out maintenance works on the nature reserve’s trails in order to ensure the safety of visitors and to preserve this vestige of nature near the centre of Singapore. In April 2015, it was announced that the Summit Trail leading to the top of Bukit Timah Hill would reopen to the Public on weekends. In October 2016, the Bukit Timah Nature Reserve was completely reopened and accessible once again.
Heading to Bukit Timah Hill Summit
Intrepid adventurers can once again make the ascent up Bukit Timah Hill. Even kids as young as four have been spotted braving the steep slopes of Bukit Timah Hill and taking on the vertical challenge.
Entry to Bukit Timah Hill is via Hindhede Road, off Upper Bukit Timah Road.
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From the car park area, it is a short walk to the start of the trail. The Bukit Timah Nature Reserve Visitor Centre can be found to the left of the trail while toilets are located to the right.
Head past the Visitor Centre to start the ascent up the Main Road leading to the Summit. This stretch of tarmac is the first of three segments on the way to the top of Bukit Timah Hill. Watch out for the steep incline!
After making it past the steep first segment of the Main Road, catch your breath at the Kuruing Hut.
Thankfully, the next leg of the trek to the top is the easiest and flattest part of the Summit Trail.
Those who wish to venture off the Main Road can do so alongside paths that extend into the Bukit Timah Nature Reserve.
Carrying along the Main Road to the Bukit Timah Hill summit, it is an easy walk through the sights and sounds of the forest before winding up at Simpang Hut.
Final Push to the Summit
From Simpang Hut, the road gives way to the Summit Path, a flight of stairs stretching up to the top of Bukit Timah Hill. The stairs comprise of small and large steps juxtaposed side-by-side.
Alternatively, you can also carry on along the Main Road. This a longer but less steep route to the top.
Once you spot the green fence, the Summit is close by!
Bukit Timah Hill’s Summit is pretty unremarkable. Home to stoic relay stations, even its view is obscured by vegetation. This was not always the case. Once upon a time back in the 1890s, a government bungalow was located here and available for rent to tourists ($2 a day, without bed linen!). Nowadays, the thrill is in the journey and the act of conquering Singapore’s highest peak!
If your kids still have energy after the climb, stop by Hindhede Nature Park at the foot of Bukit Timah Hill. One of Singapore’s hidden secrets, you will find a children’s playground and a wonderful view of Hindhede Quarry awaiting you. Read more about Hindhede Nature Park.
Tips and Info for Your Trek to Bukit Timah Hill Summit
1. Bukit Timah Hill is 163 m. The surrounding area was designated a forest reserve in 1883, making it one of the first forest reserves in Singapore. The Bukit Timah Nature Reserve is open from 7 am to 7 pm daily.
2. Bring plenty of water for your trek up to The Summit.
3. Budget around 30 to 45 minutes to climb to the Summit and around 20 to 30 minutes to get back down.