Katong Park : Fort under the Park

Katong Park
It's the weekend. We had made a habit of finding parks to roam for the past month. Usually we would go to a park near our house for our parents weekend runs, while we exercise at the park's playground. Today we decide to take a detour and found ourselves at one of Singapore oldest park, Katong Park.

A little history

Did you know?
Katong Park is one of the oldest parks in Singapore. It is build in 1930s and was a popular park back in its heydays due to the location next to the sea ( back then East Coast Park did not exist)

History of Katong PArk
It was so popular then that there was a pagar (fence) build there to create a safe swimming zone. Unfortunately due to land reclamation in the 1960s, the park has slowly lost its lustre as a premier park for families.

Pictures form the National Archive of Singapore
Along the footpath on the park, you get to see signboards giving a little history of the park. Some historical facts on Katong Park
  • Before the park became a family destination in the 1930s, it was actually known as Fort Tanjong Katong from 1879 to 1901. The Fort was buried as it was abandoned due to its then remote location.
  • Katong Park was bomded 3 times in the Sep 1963 by Indonesia Konfrontasi to disrupt the formation of Malaysia.
  • The Fort was rediscovered in 2001by Jack Sim, a local resident who is also the founder of World Toilet Organisation
  • Excavation was carried out in 2004 to study the Fort. It was reburied again in 2005 to preserve it leaving only a small portion exposed.
  • It was a was factory site servicing aircraft engines of military planes during the war years
Park history

The Playground

What can you see?
As much as we like the history lessons , we were more intrigued with a new playground discovery. The children playground in Katong Park has been renovated recently , and we get a chance to try out the new facilities in this old park.

Composite play equipment
The park is build for children age 2-12. there are 2 main areas. The composite play equipment, rope spinner, track ride and multiple swing are suitable for age 5 to 12. For those age 2 to 5, the series of play panels and spring riders will keep them entertain.

We love the idea that the surface is filled with sand rather than path with composite material. It is quite rare to find sandy playground in Singapore.

I am Sandboy
For the exercise buffs, there is a fitness corner next to the playground. This makes it a great place for families. Mom and Dad got to exercise while we get to play! For the running fanatics, there is a walking / running track located around the perimeter of the park. Each round is estimated to be about 500 m, making it a choice jogging location.

Exercise Zone

Around the Park

After our play, Daddy decided to take us for a walk around the park. He showed us part of the exposed Fort that was excavated.

The old Fort
Seeing what Dad told us about the Fort buried beneath the park, we decided to do a little excavation of our own at the playground.
Don't think we have much success there.

The Wackies Evacuation
Back to the mini tour, there is a stage located in the middle of the park. It is not too big, but we are not sure what it could be use for.

There is a 30 m long foot reflexology path for those who need a little foot massage.

Foot Reflexology
The park is Dog Friendly as well, with a dog run corner specially for dogs. Great for dog lovers.

Dog Run
In case you need to answer to nature call, there are toilets there as well. However it was a little dirty when we check it out.

Toilets in the park
Did I mention that the park is great for gliding too?

Happy Cows
We spotted a few happy cows on the grass patch.These moove cows have a heart on their back and is part of the 'Happy Cows, Happy Hearts' celebrating Singapore as a City in the Garden. There are 600 of them around the parks in Singapore till 26th May. They are available for adoption at $250 and all proceeds will go to ComfortDlelgo/Lions Befriender Home improvement fund which serve to improve the living conditions of elderly in one-room flats.

Katong Park Guards
Before we leave, we spotted a pair of guards of Sikh and British origin guarding the park. These guards have become an icon in Katong and it is donated by Jack Sim, the same person who rediscovered the Fort under the Park

Courtesy of Jack Sim
It was an interesting park experience. While we were there on a Saturday morning, the park was not so crowded, given us acres of space to run around. We like how the park is nested amongst tall buildings, giving it a breath of fresh air amongst the modern skyline.
We love the quietness in this heritage park and will be back again for more evacuation in the future.

Gliding through Katong Park
For those driving, there is a side car park that is available along Meyer road. However do note , it has space for only 15 cars or so.

Have a nice day
Here is a map for those who like to venture to Katong Park. There is a underground pass to East Coast park from here, so for those joggers who like an extended run, you can consider this route as well.

1 comment:

  1. You miss out the Rainbow Eucalyptus Tree! The one and only tree there!