St John's Island
St John's Island
4
About
See the colourful coral right in front of your eyes or swim in one of St John’s Island’s many lagoons. You might also like to enjoy a pleasant picnic on the beach or go dolphin spotting by the water.
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The area
Address
Neighbourhood: Pasir Ris

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4.0
4.0 of 5 bubbles118 reviews
Excellent
29
Very good
57
Average
21
Poor
3
Terrible
8

Lance Tay
Singapore, Singapore25 contributions
1.0 of 5 bubbles
Oct 2019
Writing as a singaporean and assuming most people who read this are tourists thinking about doing this trip, whether by chartered boat or ferry. If a beach and boat trip is the primary consideration strongly recommend other places in neighbouring countries Malaysia or Indonesia or Thailand, as you will be missing out. That's where locals go for these things. Singapore is a place people visit for its modernity and culture, not beaches and definitely not islands. Was okay for us as we were friends just wanting to go out of the city but travelling here for this is not worth the money and time.

For those going, suggest to apply a very powerful sunblock if going in the early to late afternoon as the sun here can be strong. Note also not to allocate too much time as there is nothing much to do here apart from walk in the blazing sun.
Written 11 January 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

YJ Vicky
Singapore, Singapore291 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Nov 2020 • Solo
St John's Island used to be one of the largest quarantine stations of the British empire, later an opium treatment centre, drug rehabilitation centre. Nowadays St John's Island has become a leisure destination, allowing Singaporeans to get away from the bustling city life. There are no cafes or shops on the island so you will need to bring your own food and enough water before getting on the ferry.There are toilet and shower facilities but no soap provided, so please bring your own hand sanitizer as well. It takes about 15 minutes to walk from St John's Pier to Lazarus Beach where you can see beautiful bay, fine sand, and clear water. It's hard to believe that you are in highly urbanized Singapore, giving you the illusion that you are overseas in a tropical beach paradise. This is a wonderful place to have picnics with family or friends, play beach games, canoeing, swimming, or just strolling on the beach... peaceful and relaxing. I took the 4pm ferry back to Marina South Pier. If you like to stay longer, the last Marina South ferry is at 6pm. Highly recommend this wonderful and enjoyable day trip!
Written 7 December 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

elinzme
Singapore, Singapore217 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Jun 2021 • Couples
My grandfather used to volunteer on St John’s island during the days that it was a quarantine island, and my dad used to tell me of all the days he spent hanging out there while my grandfather was going about his duties as medical officer. So, I finally took a trip out to St John’s and saw for myself the bungalows/chalets that are now used for group campsites…somewhat eerie, thinking that this was where people were quarantined (and buried??). Other than that, I enjoyed the walk around the lovely island. A cool respite from the crowds of the mainland on a rather hot day. Found the way to Lazarus as well, where I discovered the most pristine beach in Singapore I’ve ever seen.
Later, lunch in one of the shelters by the water, but beware the crazy monkeys…probably attracted by the smell of food and sound of wrappers etc, they suddenly appeared behind me and lunged for the food. Managed to save the food, but they got one packet of expensive refreshing wet wipes which was meant to wipe away the day’s sweat. Yikes!
Written 12 January 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Izzy CW
London, UK24 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Jan 2020
Check the weather before you go (we did but it was the only day we could go so we risked it) we had beautiful sunny weather for two hours and then the biggest thunderstorm I have ever been in which was quite scary. In the week there is only one ferry in and out of the island so make sure you have all the food and water you need - there are toilets somewhere but I didn't use them. Beautiful island to swim and spend time on the beaches without the crowds of Sentosa but just make sure the weather is in your favour and you have everything you need as there is nothing on the islands.
Written 12 February 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

FS
sydney1,957 contributions
3.0 of 5 bubbles
Dec 2021
Come to St John's Island for a day trip to the beach. The best time to come is to time your trip to coincide with the high tide. Try to take the 10 am ferry which will take about half an hour to arrive at 1030. Tickets sold by the ferry operators at Marina South Pier next to the MRT station. Please note there's NO food and drinks sold on the island you will need to bring your own including drinking water. The best beach is on Lazarus Island, follow the path across the causeway - it is signposted. the ferries back are aroud 3 pm, unless you also want to take the ferry to Kusu Island. The best thing to do is to plan a BBQ or bring prepacked meals and please take your rubbish back with you to the mainland. Please note your bags will be scanned on arrival by Immigration.
Written 7 January 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Planitearth
Beaconsfield, UK48 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Sept 2016
I did this on a weekday and used Singapore Island Cruises. The ticket can be bought on the day at ferry terminal at Marina South Pier. This is now directly accessible by MRT.
The ticket is $18 for an adult return.
On a weekday, it departs Marina South at 10am and 2pm and takes around 20 minutes to St John's. You can then either spend until either 10.45am or 2.45pm until the same or later ferry heads on to Kusu Island, which is 10 minutes away. From there, you have an hour to wander around before heading back to Marina South at 12pm/4pm. Take your own food and water as there is nowhere on St John or Lazarus to buy it.
You'd be forgiven for thinking that on the surface, 4 hours might be a long time on St John's. It seems as if there's a pleasant (but not amazing beach), some toilets (with simple showers) and a couple of trails, most of which come to a dead end or a sign saying that it's only open to people staying overnight in cabins. There is also a museum which I did not visit as well as plenty of shaded picnic benches to escape the sun.
Where the interesting bit begins is if you cross the concrete bridge across to Lazarus Island. There's a small beach just on your left but continue for another 10 minutes or so and there's an enormous C-shaped bay with proper white fine sand and clean water. This is where you want to go! I suggest that you take a look at Google maps before you go and get an idea of the size of this beach. There are 3 shelter huts - one at either end and one in the centre. I imagine that they would be pretty busy at weekends, so if you have kids or want to escape the sun, take your own beach umbrella / shade.
Once your time is up on St John's, it's a 10 minute boat ride around to Kusu, which is slightly more developed with a temple, a place to buy food (although it wasn't open) and a little turtle sanctuary. There is also a sheltered and pleasant bay where you could swim. The sea seemed quite low when I went and I'd had plenty of chill time at St John's / Lazarus so didn't go myself. I'd say that Kusu is more child friendly.
This little trio of islands is a great escape, especially given that mobile phone signal flips between Singapore and Indonesian networks so you're out of range for some of it!
Written 28 September 2016
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Nudibranquio L
Singapore448 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
May 2015 • Family
Getting To St John Island:
- If you are driving you can park at Marina South Pier, address as stated below but do note that parking here can be challanging due to the limited parking space.
(31 Marina Coastal Drive, 018988 @ 6324 5025)
- Alternatively, you can park at Marina Bay Cruise Center Singapore which is further & required a walk of 8-10mins (depending on your pace) to Marina South Pier to catch the ferry.
- MRT is another transport mode that you can consider if you do not wish to drive.
(Alight at Marina South Pier MRT Station (NS28)

Ferry ticketing:
- Ferry fare include island entry priced at (A) S$18 (C) S$12 (age: 1-12)
- 1 small booth (Singapore Island Cruise)
- Long queue during the public holidayso it adviseable to go early to queue to purchase the tickets as well as queue to board the ferry.
- During peak day, the ferry are running continuously

Monday to Friday Ferry Timing:
- Ferry departure from Marina South Pier: 10am

Saturday, Sunday & Public Holiday Ferry Timing:
- Ferry departure from Marina South Pier: 9am

For more information, do click on the link below or call & inquire with them
http://www.islandcruise.com.sg/ferry_schedule.html

St John Island:
- A place that is much better than East Coast & Sentosa
- It's not crowded given that it's a public holiday when we visited this place
- Water visiblities more than what I expected
- There are tables & benches where you can place your stuffs at
- Do note that ants will be part of your company to this trip
- Toilets are on the hilltop near the between the jetty & swimming lagoon
(Female toilet: 1 general cubical & 2 shower cubical / Men: 1 of each)
- Swimming lagoon is a nice place to hang around as the kids swim
- Walk further up along the bridge where quite a number of people are fishing lies a beautiful & crystal water where you can take a dip (if you are blessed, you may see Big fish swim pass or when you look at the horizon, you may catch some Dolphins)
- Walk further in, you will reach the hidden gem of Singapore called the Lazarus Beach
(Gosh!! The water here is comparable to Phuket & Bali)
- Don't forget to bring your snorkels, who knows what marine creatures you will see!
- Do note there is no tables & benches at Lazarus Beach, so you may want to bring your beach mat along!
- Oh ya, there is no toilet as well
- We spent about 4-5hrs swimming & lazing at the beach

Activities that I spotted people doing on this island:-
Walking to explore the island, fishing & swimming

Lastly, there is NO store or vending machine on the island that sells drinks or food therefore please prepare enough food & drinks that will last you throughout your trip.

Have a blessed & enjoyable trip :-)
Written 15 May 2015
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Greenpeas
Singapore, Singapore22 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Sept 2017 • Friends
I went to St John's and Lazarus island (15 min stroll, connected by a photograph-worthy bridge) on a Saturday for a quick getaway from the hustle and bustle of Singapore's city life. I spent half a day there enjoying the pristine beaches and soaking up all the sun. As someone who is used to the creature comforts of living in Singapore, I would highly recommend some planning to have a comfortable trip there. Here are some tips from my own planning:

1. Getting there: We took a ferry from Marina South Pier to the Islands (SGD$18/2-way trip). As the ferry departs the pier at specific times, it would be good to check the ferry schedule online to plan your trip accordingly. We took the 11am ferry and caught the last ferry back to MSP at 3.45pm.

2. Shelter: The afternoon sun was intense, so seeking shelter from the sun was a must for us. There were limited shelter near the beach area at Lazarus, hence we brought our own tents. Bringing a portable fan would be ideal as it gets pretty warm in the afternoon.

3. Food: There is NO food or drinks sold there so bring ample sustenance (especially water). **IMPORTANT

4. Washrooms: Based on my experience, there was only one washroom area located at St John's island, so do empty your bladder before walking over to Lazarus island. Bring your own toilet paper!

5. Cats: There are many friendly cats there, and are like the welcome team of the island. They are quite chill, and open to food and cat people. They seem to prefer the wet food to the dry ones, so if you're there for the cats, wet food will get you more cats (we had over 10 cats welcoming us).

Have fun!
Written 12 September 2017
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

simpletravels13
Singapore44 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Aug 2019
Getting there: nearest MRT station is Marina South Pier.

Ferry: either Singapore Island Cruises or Marina South Ferries. The boats from Marina South Ferries were nicer and the top deck had nice benches with a astroturf sort of flooring which was very nice. Price of tickets and timing of ferries are the same.

Which one first: Go to Kusu Island first, it's smaller so you definitely cover it in an hour. We took the 1st ferry at 10am and reached St John's Island which is the 1st stop at 1030am. We stayed on the ferry and it shortly went to Kusu Island which is the 2nd stop. We got off and explored Kusu Island and later caught the 1230pm ferry from Kusu Island to St John's Island. We spent the rest of our time there exploring both Lazarus Island (with a nice beach but nothing much else) and St John's Island until we caught the 5pm ferry back to mainland.

What to bring: Bring an icebox for your drinks and bring your own water because we didn't see any water fountains. At Marina South Pier there are some convenience stores that you can buy drinks or snacks before u get on the ferry. But best to actually pack a proper picnic lunch there. Bring sunblock, sunglasses, umbrella for the unforgiving Singapore sun. There are some open wide spaces on both islands for a game of frisbee or for kicking a ball around. Definitely good space for kite-flying esp with the good wind. Bring a nice good book to read too.

Toilets: found clean toilets at Kusu Island (where there are some temples) and St John's Island. Toilet paper provided. No soap seen so thank God we brought hand sanitizer.

The perks of the island: experiencing nature and the vast expanse of land away from the crowded city. If you're into beaches/sunbathing that sort of thing, there are nice beaches on St John's/Lazarus island.

Both islands have sheltered areas with seats to sit and chill and just read a book while you lap up the beautiful sea breeze. We didn't see any monkeys/wild animals except for birds, lizards, turtles and a small komodo lizard on Kusu Island. We saw some flying fish leaping out of the water while chilling at St John's Island.

There are rubbish bins around and we also saw some bbq pits at Kusu Island but I'm not sure if BBQ-ing is allowed.

On coming back, do visit the Singapore Maritime Gallery, it is open until 6pm and really an excellent museum with lots of interesting exhibits, fascinating interactive models and beautiful scaled down versions of ships. It is free! Really worth a visit. The toilets near the exit of the gallery are quite clean.
Written 6 August 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

shinraemonsam
Sydney, Australia996 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Apr 2018 • Couples
6.5km, 20 minutes and $18 from the mainland, St John's is a good day day out when paired with a picnic and swim at Lazarus.

Other reviews have the details covered, keep up with the ferry schedule at their website.

The only thing I think I can add is that it is well worth talking to Old Man Brian up in his outreach lab. Brother knows a thing or 2, not just about marine biology, but the island in general.

I would suggest reading up a little on the history to give yourself a fuller experience, rather than just "oh, old buildings". For example, if you walk through the camp area, you will see human size chess board. Apparently POWs were used by the Japanese as chess pieces, and when knight takes bishop - chop chop. Some dark history here that give the island a haunted reputation. I imagine at night it would be a bit sp00ky. A detention centre for illegal immigrants still remains.

As do heaps of stray cats.

KEEP IN MIND: the National Parks team run a free 90-minute guided walk held on the first Sunday of every month. You have to register on the website for the following month a few weeks before, usually around the 8th. The site says 'All slots are typically taken up within the first minute.' So good luck with that. Get on the waiting list.
Written 1 April 2018
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

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