Discovering Singapore's Rich Marine Ecosystems: The Latest St John's Island Study Tour

Discovering Singapore's Rich Marine Ecosystems: The Latest St John's Island Study Tour

April 22, 2020

St. John's Island is no secret but it sometimes feels like it. An island in the south of Singapore, it serves as a central to access nearby islands such as Lazarus Island and Sisters' Islands. When standing at the shores of Tanjong Beach, Sentosa Island, you can almost spot Sisters' Island over in the distance. 

While most people visit St. John's Island to escape the concrete jungle that is Singapore to enjoy her clean, pristine beaches and rustic, kampong-like walking trails, there are actually a lot more to discover on St. John's Island.

Lesser known facts about the southern islands are the roles they played in Singapore's history and their current position as a Marine Sanctuary for research and development. This is where science and history can jump right out of the textbook with the right guidance and interest. 

St. John's Island

Singapore Maritime Gallery

Singapore Maritime Gallery at St John's Island Singapore

Singapore is well-known for being a world class shipping port, however our Maritime journey is perhaps lesser known. The Singapore Maritime Museum provides a rich resource in understanding Singapore's history and position as a maritime port and the impact sea traffic has had on our marine ecosystems.

Take a study trip to the Singapore Maritime Gallery to understand the essential operations in Singapore's harbor. Learn a thing or two about the different kinds of shipping vessels, the coordinates of Singapore's waters and even some water-based organisms threatening the Marine Biodiversity.

Since this Gallery is near the port, it is a great starting point for a learning journey to the nearby islands, making it an ideal Marine Sanctuary Study Tour.

Sisters' Island Marine Park

Coral Reef St John's Island

Did you know that in Singapore we have our very own coral reef at the Sisters' Islands right next to St John Island? It's no Great Barrier Reef, of course, but it's still pretty neat!

Over there, you can check out the mini mangrove swamp and sea creatures you never thought you could see! There are shallow viewing pools with a sampling of the coral reefs and some of the species that live within.

Everyone always gets excited when they see the familiar clownfish or Nemo swimming around the corals up close. There are also displays of unusual species found in and around the island itself!

 Sisters' Island Marine Park Viewing Pool

St John's Island National Marine Laboratory 

Boards at St John's Island

St John's Island is not just about beaches and adventures. The island is rich in history and educational opportunities. With our latest study tours, we have prepared exciting station activities around St John's Island to broaden students' knowledge of marine life. 

Through the integration of NParks information boards and a recently developed learning journey plan, participants are able to discover the unique organisms and plant life on the island and engage in fun and exciting marine-related activities at the same time. 

The key is to hone your sense of observation to look out for the less obvious sights and sounds that cannot be found on mainland Singapore. 

 St John Island National Marine Laboratory

As the participants go through the stations, they will encounter the National Marine Laboratory managed by National University of Singapore (NUS) students to conduct their marine science research. This is where researchers and scientists come to conduct field research. 

Lazarus Island 

Where St John's Island offers a rich resource for learning and exploring, the connected Lazarus Island offers a vast pristine sandy beaches for team-based activities and sea sports. A favorite anchoring point for private yachts because of its clear waters and calm seas. 

These are now accessible through our newly-developed programmes which requires participants to get involved in managing their own equipment and water supply. 

Lazarus Island is linked to St John Island by a majestic bridge that allows for under current flow. The clarity of the water is just stunning and you can just gaze into it and watch out for darting fishes. Full on hikes and expeditions are the order of the day and participants need to be prepared to weather the sun and pack the necessary items as there are no shops or facilities available to the public on Lazarus.

Lazarus Island Beach

There are many shaded spots around the beach, which makes Lazarus Island the perfect place for teams to spread out and have picnics. If you are lucky, you might also get a chance to spot dolphins swimming in and out of the water! On top of that, the gorgeous sunsets will be the perfect ending to your trip right before we catch the last charted ferry out. 

Campsite and Toilet Facilities

St John's Island Campsite

Have you ever imagined how it is like to have an overnight camping experience on St John Island? You will be surprised that St John Island used to have an accessible campsite. Since then, the holiday bungalows and campsites have gone through massive restoration works and upgrades. So, do not be worried about or fear the absence of creature comforts. It is definitely possible to stay overnight at St John Island for programmes, camps and just leisurely family bonding. 

 No littering sign

Since there are no food options on the island, you should bring your own food. However, please be reminded to keep the island clean and pick up your own trash afterwards!

Explore Intertidal Locations

The best time to catch animals out of the ordinary is to wait for the low tide to come in. Safety gears will be provided for this water-based programme because there may be toxic animals or insects that a water booty may not be able to cover. Not only in Sungei Buloh we get to see animals marine animals at low tide, but we have it in St John island as well! Share with us if you have more hidden spots of intertidal places we can visit!


Though our study tour programme, we will teach participants how to pack and plan for their expedition the next day. Leaving nature as we find it is important and we aim to teach mindfulness and self-management.

High Achievers has its own history with the island of St John's back in 2012. We were managed the campsites on the Island and conducted field expeditions for numerous schools. 

On a ferry to St. John's IslandChildren on a ferry to St John's island

We rely on our strong collaborations with partners such as Ferry operators and the local authorities to ensure a safe yet meaningful experience. The excitement starts right from the time you board the ferry. We strive to make every moment worthwhile and hope that participants take back a sense of wonder that our island is rich with life and it is possible to co-exist if we just play our part.

The wonders of St John's Island comes alive through our unique programme and enthusiastic facilitators. Write to us to learn more and customize your next outdoor learning journey a short ferry ride away!

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