MARINA COUNTRY CLUB (600 Punggol Seventeenth Avenue)
Halal buffet Sakura Charcoal Grill and Shabu Shabu (from $28.80+. Tel: 6385 8197) needs no introduction, so we’ll tell you about Ah Lok Kaya Toast, a quaint push-cart coffee stall, as well as arcade machines that will keep kids busy (from $0.50), an indoor soccer pitch at Stadio Futsal Singapore (from $60/hr), and a shuttle bus service from Sengkang MRT station. While you’re there, pamper yourself with a traditional Thai massage at Cozy Spa (from $48/45min. Tel: 6475 1110) and flaunt your catches at Gills Fishing (open 24 hours, $60 for a six-hour night fishing package) or EBI J Prawning Centre (freshwater $18/hr, saltwater $20/hr)–who knows, you might catch a lobster!
Horkomo Pier Bar & Seafood
There’s more to savour than live seafood here. Feast on fresh fish (from $58/kg for seabass), and chilli crab ($68/kg) as you chill out with a beer and make your voice heard on their karaoke system (min. spend $35). Daily 12.30-10.30pm (tze char); 10pm-1am (karaoke). Tel: 6315 7811
Great Atlantis Grand Grouper Restaurant
This restaurant tries to utilise every single part of the giant grouper, which can grow to be as tall as a man. Try fish abdomen ($48/65/100), fish peduncle ($48/65/100, that narrow part near the tail), braised anal fin ($100/kg) and other tze char dishes too. Daily 12pm-10pm. Tel: 6386 0600
It’s a tranquil walk on the wooden planks by the sea, as you gaze at boats, yachts and wakeboarders. Check out the Water Sports Centre, Singapore’s largest wakeboarding hub with 45 wakeboard boats and three operators ($120/hr for Mastercraft X-9, inclusive of cold beverages, instructor and equipment from Wake Time. Tel: 6387 1997). Go shopping for nautical gear, service your boat, and book a fishing trip.
PUNGGOL POINT (900 Punggol Road)
Gallop Stables Punggol
Choose from a stable (pun intended) of riding lessons (from $65), horse-leasing, pony feeding, stable tours, pony camps and even a staycation (from $181.90) in one of the many “wagons” on the ranch. They’ll also be pleased to help you with photoshoots, birthday parties and team building sessions. Horse riding daily 10am-12pm, 2-7pm. Tel: 6690 0900
The Punggol Settlement (3 Punggol Point Road)
Rent a X-Trainer or Runner ($12/18/20 for 1/2/3 hours) from LOOK.GOOD.NAKED (#01-14) for a gym session on wheels. While it looks simple, you’ll get a cardio workout and a stronger core. You might remember The Original Ponggol Seafood (Hock Kee) (#01-08/09) from the old days near the jetty and its subsequent spot at Marina Country Club. It’s now back near the jetty with nostalgic photos lining the walls of the restaurant. Order cold crab in Teochew style ($39.80/pc), sashimi geoduck ($158/kg) or lobster porridge ($14.80/100g). Then have your drinks alfresco at Georges By The Bay (#02-12) along with a burger ($16.90), blue cheese fries ($10.90) and beer on tap ($7 for half pint). No service charge, and Sunday’s happy hour runs the whole night.
Punggol Point Park/Promenade
Red-eared slider turtles bask in the afternoon sun around the rim of the pond, and there’s a modest playground too. Follow the park connector all the way to Lorong Kampong Buangkok. What we like, however, is the nearby beach. Perch on the ship-inspired viewing deck for glorious sunset views or join photographers and their readied tripods on the sand. From your vantage point, you’ll see the Strait of Johor (Pasir Gudang), Pulau Ubin and even Coney Island (Pulau Serangoon), which will be open to the public next year. The beach was also one of the many execution sites during WWII’s Sook Ching Massacre–spot the memorial plaque near the police coast guard house. Walk out to the jetty to chat with anglers or catch a glimpse of the ferry (by appointment only) headed for the Outward Bound School Pulau Ubin Camp 1 & 2.
Uncle Leong Seafood (#01-03, 6 Tebing Lane)
Signatures include Shimmering Sand crab ($58/kg), Gold Coast prawn ($20/25/30), Guinness pork rib ($15/20/25), crab bee hoon soup ($58/kg, additional bee hoon and soup $8) and chye poh steamed fish ($90/kg of red garoupa). Check out their crab displays, the ‘corridor of claw’, and sit outside for waterfront dining. Daily 4.30-11.30pm. Tel: 6441 1848
[24h] Hai Bin (#01-04, 6 Tebing Lane)
This 15,000sq ft Punggol venue is equipped with three prawning ponds ($18 per rod for 1 hour) and one Nelayan Pro fishing pond ($5 per rod, game over when line snaps or rod breaks). Afterwards, fire up the barbecue and chug down draft pours from Banyan Beer Garden. Tel: 6447 8693
Frienzie Bar & Bistro (#01-02, 10 Tebing Lane)
Spend quality time with friends and family at this waterfront chic-casual bistro which is pet-friendly too–sit al fresco or bring your own cushion. Mingle over pork knuckles with keropok ($35, Thu-Sun), wagyu steak ($58, grade 6), chicken wings ($13.90) and live oysters (about $30 for six). A bar’s also at your disposal: ice cold beer (from $10.90 for Heineken pint), house shooters ($35/six), and wine ($10.90/glass). Mon-Thu 5pm-1am; Fri-Sat 5pm-2am; Sun 5pm-1am. Tel: 8318 8850
Lorong Halus Wetland
Behind the dining establishments at Punggol East and some way down the park connector, look for a red bridge that’ll take you to Lorong Halus Wetland. A former landfill, it now collects and treats water so it won’t flow into the reservoir. It’s a tranquil spot with a lily pond and a learning trail.
Punggol Waterway Park (along Sentul Crescent Road)
There’s no F&B yet, but the 12.25 hectare (one round’s 8.4km) riverine park is a great place to jog and cycle. There are four themes within the family park: the relaxing and scenic Nature Cove; the Recreation Zone with water and sand play with a fitness corner; the Heritage Zone with mature trees and vegetation; and the Green Gallery, a conserved area good for a stroll. Also check out its two bridges, with one designed as a kelong, and the Heartwave Wall which recounts Punggol’s past.
Waterdrop Tea House (Level 3, 1 Punggol Place)
The eatery’s signature snack, crispy ginger ($5), is mildly spicy and more chewy than crisp. We like the mixed fruits tea ($3 cup, $5 pot)–sugar optional. Try also braised rice ($4.50), vegetarian crispy gluten ($3), lemongrass prata ($3, week days only) and iced cappuccino ($5). Located in the Fo Guang Shan Buddhist temple. Tue-Fri 10am-6pm; Sat 10am-7pm; Sat, PH 10am-5pm. Tel: 6411 0596
Ang Mo Supermarket (639 Punggol Drive)
Good prices: Drypers for $14.90 (U.P. $16.95), Lee Kum Kee light soy sauce for $1, and a curious basil seed lychee drink for $1.30. Around the corner is Kopitiam@The Meadows. Chow on: My Genie Gourmet (#01-07, stall 1B) sells handmade mini soon kueh ($3.50 for 5pcs), waffles with maple syrup and Planta ($1.90) and chicken wraps ($3). Co-owner Mr Tay used to be a chef based in Toronto.
[24h] Prime Supermarket (#01-02, 108 Punggol Field)
Drop in for roast duck (special offer: $13.80 each), raw bulan pork ($1.65/100g of special spareribs), recipe tips, “buy & win” promotions as well as household products: Dynamo ($10.45, U.P. $13.40), 1.5L Pokka ($3.45 for 2 bottles). Tel: 6315 9074
Punggol Plaza (168 Punggol Field)
Get here via the free neigbourhood shuttle service (9am-9pm) provided by Koufu (#01-01); and you’ll find Nihon Mura (#B1-05), Canadian Pizza (#01-02) and Prima Deli (#01-18). There’s also an NTUC FairPrice (L3) and a wet market (B1) with a tailor and a bicycle shop.
[24h] GM Food Centre (#01-01, 198 Punggol Field)
Asia Ghani Jamu Selera Chicken Rice (10am-10pm) has been around for 35 years and is named after the owner’s mum, Asiah Ghani. Nasi ayam ($3) is a must-order, and we also spied mee kuah ($4) and mee Hong Kong soup ($4).
[24h] Sheng Siong (#01-01, 301 Punggol Central)
For live seafood, browse the tanks for crab (from $18.90/kg), Boston lobster ($38.80/kg), oysters ($6.50 each for large, $9 for 5 small ones), red tilapia ($9.90/kg) and frog legs ($9.90/3pcs). Senior citizens get a discount every Wednesday. Tel: 6484 6582
Did You Know?
Matilda House @ A Treasure Trove (50 Punggol Walk)
This 1902 property was built for Irish lawyer Joseph Cashin (there is a street named after him) as a weekend resort. It’s also known as the white house, Istana Menanti (“waiting palace” in Malay), or the Punggol Kampong House. Today, the grand home with its red-tiled roof is surrounded by A Treasure Trove condominiums and is under conservation. In 2015, it will become a clubhouse with a lounge and a gym.