Visiting River Safari next to Singapore Zoo can be a lot of fun but you need to avoid the temptation to succumb to ‘panda fever’. Here are my top ten tips for visiting River Safari in Singapore.
1. View the River Safari animals when they are active
Arrive earlier in the day so the animals are more active or attend one of the daily River Trails presentations which take place in various spots around the park. The animals get a snack at these so you will definitely get to see them.
2. An hour or two should do
While it is possible to stretch your visit out, between 60 to 90 minutes should be enough time for you and your family to enjoy this attraction. It can be more convenient to pre-book your tickets so you’re ready to go when you arrive.
3. What to bring to River Safari
Some sections of this attraction are air-conditioned but a lot of it is outside. Bring some water and a hat and wear sunscreen as it can get very hot.
4. Don’t let the kids run ahead
When you enter River Safari, make sure your family stays together. It is tempting for kids to run ahead and miss some of the displays.
5. Enjoy the lesser known displays at River Safari
Some of the attractions at the beginning of River Safari such as the enormous fish tanks don’t seem to get much of a mention in reviews but they are beautifully curated and really interesting. Take your time and enjoy these as well as the more famous attractions.
6. Don’t succumb to ‘panda fever’
It’s tempting to race through River Safari to reach those famous pandas but take your time because ….
7. The pandas will probably be sleeping
Arriving early can increase your chance of seeing these adorable animals awake but you’ve got to be very, very lucky. While they’re cute to look at even when they’re sleeping, the pandas might not be the visit highlight you were perhaps expecting.
8. Go on the Amazon ride at River Safari early
We went on the Amazon River Quest ride at midday which was, as per my number one tip above, probably one of the worst times to do this ride. Most of the animals were snoozing under trees in an attempt to avoid the hot midday sun which made them hard to spot. The exception was the flock of flamingos at the end of the trip which were the highlight of our Amazon River Quest ride and impossible to miss with their bright pink plumage.
9. River Safari squirrel monkeys
To our family’s surprise, our favourite River Safari attraction wasn’t the pandas, it was the squirrel monkeys which roam freely inside their huge tree-filled enclosure. It is possible to observe their antics up close as you walk through the display.
10. River Safari dugongs
We also enjoyed watching the manatees (or dugongs) swimming around their huge tank. This is a good place for kids (and their parents) to chill out and take a break from the heat as there are plenty of seats in the viewing area.
Disclosure: The writer was a guest of River Safari. Her family paid for their tickets.
We also had breakfast with the orangutans next door at Singapore Zoo. If you would like to visit river safari and visit Singapore Zoo for the orangutan breakfast, it is best to do these two activities on the same day.