For those who are seeking a one-day getaway during the holidays, Kusu Island is an island you should definitely consider visiting.
Located 5.6km away from Singapore, the island actually used to be a burial site back in the 16th century. Today, it’s home to a tortoise sanctuary and various historic and religious sites!
Filled with lagoons and pristine beaches, here are some of the activities you can enjoy on this mysterious island.
Things to do in Kusu Island
Visit Historic Sacred Sites And Make A Wish
On Kusu island are three Malay shrines, called Kramats, and a Chinese temple.
The Chinese Temple is called the Da Bogong Temple. It is one of the popular landmarks of the island because of its prominent and detailed architecture.
The Kramats were built to commemorate a deeply religious Malay family who lived in the 19th century. It is located at the top of a hill, in which you need to climb 152 steps to get to! The shrine is known to couples who wish to start a family.
The island is open all year-round, but most devotees go during the annual Kusu Island pilgrimage season, which is between September and November. It welcomes over 100,000 pilgrims during this period, but that has obviously changed because of the pandemic.
At these shrines, believers and devotees make a wish. It is believed that if a wish that is made here comes true, one must go back to give thanks.
Visit Tortoise Sanctuary
One thing you shouldn't miss here is the island’s tortoise sanctuary and shelter.
In case you didn’t know, “Kusu” actually means tortoise in Hokkien! For the Chinese, the tortoise is sacred and symbolises longevity, power, and tenacity.
The island was named after the creature because of the island’s interesting back story. Legend has it that a giant tortoise turned itself into a giant island to save Malay and Chinese sailors who were shipwrecked. Sounds magical, right?
Besides the island’s mystical origin story, it’s also filled with giant tortoise statues. So look out for them and feel free to snap as many photos with the statues as you’d like!
Have A Picnic With A View
Who wouldn’t want to have a picnic on this island’s peaceful beach? It has vast spaces for you to relax and enjoy your meal, all while feeling the sand between your toes!
Keep in mind, though, to clean up after yourself and bring trash bags! Let’s help maintain cleanliness to the island we’ve been graciously provided with.
Be sure to pack plenty of snacks, too, as the island does not have any convenience or food stores.
Enjoy The Perfect “Beach Holiday”
You don’t really have to look too far to experience a beach holiday. On the island’s beach, you can take a dip with friends and family, or even get a tan while reading your favourite book!
The island has two lagoons, too! So be sure to bring your bathing suits and your quirky floats if you’d like to drift along in the calm waters, or snap a photo for your IG feed.
In case you want to clean yourself off after swimming, the island does have a toilet with basic shower facilities, so bring an extra towel!