17 Jun 2017
We have been wanting to visit Pulau Ubin, which is also known as Granite Stone Island, and thought June school holiday would be a good time for our family to explore and experience nature there.
I was expecting rain in the afternoon, as forecasted by the meteorological service. Thankfully, the sky was clear and blue.
Getting to Pulau Ubin
We set off from home only in the late morning and had our lunch at Changi Village hawker centre before heading off to the jetty to board the bum boat to Pulau Ubin.
It was little boy’s first bumboat experience to Pulau Ubin from Changi point jetty terminal. He was a little apprehensive during the short journey there.
We reached Pulau Ubin at about 1pm. At the jetty, the kids watched a man caught a catfish with the fishing rod and ‘cruelly’ snipped off its fins and put it in a plastic bag.
Beach play during low tide
J and Dot headed to the beach as it was low tide. Shortly, the rest of us joined them. It is very interesting to see little crabs, fishes, shrimps, hermit crabs, and the soft living barnacles that squirt water and shrink when touched on the beach. Dot didn’t want to leave the beach and wanted to stay there longer. She collected several odd shaped shells, corals and stones.
Angela J. Hanscom shared in her book, “Balanced and Barefoot” that playing at the beach is a whole-body experience that stimulates many of the senses – touch (sand, water, wind, varying temperatures), proprioception (digging the sand), hearing (crashing waves), sight (squirting barnacles, scurrying hermit crabs) and vestibular (reaching down to fill a container with water, running on the sand).
Walk to Chek Jawa Wetlands
Then we started our 4-hour walk to and back from Chek Jawa wetlands. Along the way, we saw terrace-like fungi growing on the tree trunk – Dot said they looked like bookshelf.
Monkeys can be seen scampering around. Dot ran ahead and squatted down to play with the pebbles and rocks on the dirt path. As we walked on, J said, “I thought Dot was a monkey from a distance. ”
The dirt path to and back from Chek Jawa wetlands is uneven and littered with pebbles and rocks. Little boy fell asleep along the bumpy road and it’s a wonder that he could sleep almost two hours in his stroller. His stroller worked very hard carrying little boy, enduring the steep bumps here and there.
At Chek Jawa wetlands, we went up the viewing tower that overlooks the sea.
At the boardwalk, we saw the mangroves, attap chee, noni plants and mudskippers.
As we walked towards the viewing bridge, we are not able to see much marine life as it was high tide. Little boy was excited to see the aeroplanes flying towards Changi airport.
Journey back to jetty
On our way back to the jetty, we passed by an old granite quarry that is now a lake. We fed Daniel his porridge on the way.
Little girl missed her beach play at the earlier part of our trip and asked to go and play at the beach. When we reached the beach near the jetty, it was high tide and it was not possible to go down to the shore. She was so disappointed.
All of us cleaned and changed to a new set of clean clothes before we departed from the island.
We had our dinner is at Changi village hawker centre before we went home. The moment we stepped out of the car, the rain started to pour.