There is plenty to look at while visiting Singapore’s Gardens By the Bay, but their Supertree Grove is definitely our favorite. The massive 82- to 164-foot-tall structures may be artificial themselves, but by providing support for fauna to grow from, they become statuesque vertical gardens. Plus, you can even make a trip to the top of one to check out the view, dine in the Supertree-top bistro or walk along the 72-foot-high, 419-foot-long walkway that connects two of the trees.
Envision by Singapore's National Parks Board, the land as a whole spreads out over 130 acres and features a flower dome, cloud forest, art and even lakes. In wanting to create an entire city in a garden, the man-made project is highly concerned with sustainability and a lot of thought was put into the use of energy and water. The concrete and steel Supertrees are hosts to over 162,900 different plants spanning over 200 species, and they have photovoltaic cells to harvest solar energy and Cooling Conservatories that function as air exhaust receptacles.
Sustainability doesn’t necessarily come cheap though, as the project’s initial budget of $893 million in 2006 was increased by 2009 to $1.035 billion. According to Singapore Business Review, the budget spike was mainly due to high construction costs and the overall design’s complexity. Currently, it costs around $53 million annually to keep the park running, which is split pretty evenly between the conservatories and outdoor garden.
If you want a different experience, make sure to visit the gardens at night and enjoy the cool light show display in tree canopies. Open from 5.00 a.m. to 2.00 a.m., admission to Gardens By the Bay is free.