Around the World: Kusu Island


Much attention is dedicated to the skyscrapers and technological marvels in Singapore’s downtown core. However, there is a different side of the city that many people miss. About an hour boat ride from the city center brings you to lovely Kusu Island.

Island of Legend

According to legend, a magical giant tortoise turned itself into an island to help two shipwrecked sailors: one Malay and the other Chinese. The sailors were so grateful that they returned to the island many times to give thanks. Before long, others continued the tradition as well.

Before the development of the island, locals claimed Kusu looked like a giant tortoise floating in the sea, but it is not easy to see this anymore. In recent years, there have been several temples built on the island and also a sanctuary to house giant tortoises. This makes seeing the original tortoise-shaped landscape difficult. However, visitors may see the magnificent creatures of the island’s legend up close and learn more about efforts to protect them.

An Island for Everyone

This little island is packed with interesting things to do for all ages and activity levels. There are great spots for family picnics, photo ops, and snorkeling for those looking to step things up a notch. There really is something for everyone to enjoy, and it’s a nice break from the crowded city center.

If you’re looking for adventure beyond sightseeing, be sure to snorkel the surrounding coral reefs. Both hard and soft coral are found along the edges of the island. Plus, the clownfish made famous by Disney’s “Finding Dory” live here! And don’t forget to look for giant clams.

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 Looking for something off the beaten path? Not interested in tourist traps? Stay tuned for our Around the World series. Several times a week, we share interesting things to do in exotic places. Give your clients a new experience in old places!



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