Famed for its extraordinary modernity and economic expansion, Singapore is also steadily gaining a well-earned reputation as a metropolis that is intelligently planned and laid out; even the relatively slight number of undeveloped green spaces are maximized to an incredible extent.
Among the many natural gems worth visiting is the Bukit Timah Nature Reserve (BTNR). Located on the slopes of Singapore’s highest hill near the geographical center of the city, BTNR is small in size (just 400 acres) by comparison to other nature reserves in the region and elsewhere, but it is nonetheless one of the largest remaining stretches of primary rainforest remaining in Singapore. It is home to more than 1,200 species of local flora and fauna, including millipedes, carpenter bees, rattan, figs, and macaranga, and many others.
Apart from its value to aspiring and amateur naturalists alike, BTNR is also very popular with hikers, climbers, mountain bikers, and other outdoor enthusiasts.
In a peculiar twist on the theme of Bigfoot and the Yeti, the park is also rumored to be home to the infamous Bukit Timah Monkey Man, a greyish, 3-6 foot tall man/monkey that has become a curious aspect of local folklore. It may be somewhat indicative about the strength of this particular superstition that the supposed existence of the creature doesn’t do much to prohibit locals from frequenting the park.
Note: When confronted by monkeys, avoid making eye contact, don’t bare your teeth, and back away slowly. Who knows, these tips might even help you escape the Monkey Man.