We went on a Sunday and started early as it would take us an hour to get to Tanah Merah. From there the #2 bus took about 15 min to get to the ferry terminal - take the MRT exit #1 to get to the correct busstop.
It's a short 200m walk to the jetty and the bumboat captains DO give change for the $2.50 ride. The ride was short and uneventful - they put the boat up against the dock and you hop out, they do not tie it down. The captain will tell you when you can jump out.
We tried for lontong but the cafe was closed. Visitor information didn't know why but it was also closed Saturday. There one other place open for food so we had some dry bee hoon and kampong (i.e. skinny) chicken.
We then rented 2 bicycles and rode east, west and north.
The rental place was quick and efficient. We told them we wanted 2 bikes $16, he brought 2 mountain bikes out. I tested mine: height was good, gears worked. We got helmets $4 and basket and bike lock were free. Honestly, they all looked pretty good so as long as the bike looks good to you, I don't think it makes a difference where you rent from.
The ride east has the most to do: the mangrove forest with boardwalk and observation tower, visitor centre in old tudor style house (with fireplace) and views of quarry lakes.
I wanted to take the off road route to Noordin but this appears closed off. It was high tide and the off road from Mamam beach had areas of water covered sand. The paved road west over a bridge had a few inches of water overlying the pavement - enough to get my shoes and socks wet.
Noordin campsite was closed and blocked off with steel doors, there is a toilet there and you can climb a hill and still see the water but otherwise it's a dead end.
The ride west wasn't very scenic. We didn't go to the mountain bike park.
We ate at Seasons Live on the water for seafood. The chill crab is market price and was slightly sweet as per local taste. The cereal prawn were not special - surprising considering they used to farm prawn here but I guess not any more.
There were wild boar in the bike parking lot of eastern road and someone was feeding them bread (against the rules) although we did see one foraging in the bush.
We saw monkeys eating oranges from a small temple on the western road. They were obliging for pictures but one of the tourists got too close and the monkey hissed at him. You need to exercise caution and keep your distance as these are WILD animals.
Overall, despite the rain, this was a lovely day trip. The roads are mostly paved and the off road areas were not too difficult if you've ridden a bicycle before. I was surprised at signs asking us to dismount b/c of grade. While it was steep and one needed to be careful especially b/c of other traffic on the road, not so much cars but pedestrians stringing themselves across the road and other cyclists, the hills were not treacherous and afforded a bit of a break and a good breeze! They were very short stretches. The whole island could be covered in short time, but this was about the journey more than destination so we took our time enjoying the scenery.
With 2 meals and picture taking, we spent 41/2hr there.
You can hire a taxi to drive you to and pick you up from spots but it is expensive (I didn't ask) and others were walking but we really wanted to cover as much ground as possible in a day trip.
Previous reviewers had commented on terrible toilets but the one I went to at one of the campsites was acceptable.
Own or manage this property? Claim your listing for free to respond to reviews, update your profile and much more.