Running is not just a great cardio exercise – it can also help lower anxiety, reduce depression, stress and help calm the mind for better mental health and wellness! Best of all, you get to sleep better after a good run.
And what better way to experience nature’s beauty and serenity than running through some of our most scenic trails, surrounded by towering trees, lush vegetation and open skies! Joanne Chew, a trainer and the treasurer with the SAFRA Running Club shares with us the best places for a stress-free run and where to view stunning sunset and sunrise views afterwards.
With the 27th SAFRA Singapore Bay Run and Army Half Marathon (SSBR & AHM) returning from 1 to 28 November 2021, there’s no better time to dust off those running shoes and hit the trails! And don’t forget to sign up here!
Upper Peirce Reservoir Park and Lower Peirce Reservoir
The glistening, calm waters of Upper and Lower Pierce Reservoirs, surrounded by lush greenery, offer spectacular sunrise and sunset views that allow you to immerse into the tranquil and natural surroundings, away from the urban landscape.
Upper Peirce Reservoir is a fun, hilly route which can be a bit challenging to run. Some of us call this the M & M run because of the undulating up-and-down terrain. Although the road is wide and shared amongst runners, walkers, cyclists and cars, there are not many vehicles in the early morning; some parts of the route are also not accessible to cars. Overall it is a safe route to run.
Soaring trees and dense tropical greenery flank the roads, providing cool fresh air in the morning. It can get misty and cold at some areas where the temperatures can drop quite low – but that only makes running even more enjoyable.
Lower Peirce Reservoir’s running route is relatively flat and about 2km in total. It is an interesting change from the hilly run at Upper Peirce. You can start your run from Lower Peirce Reservoir Carpark which is about 1km away from the Upper Peirce Reservoir entrance. It is a slight upslope but manageable. Run around the hilly roads and back to Lower Peirce Reservoir, and continue running around there. You can also start from the Casuarina Road carpark which is just at the entrance of Upper Peirce Reservoir.
The 900m meandering and shady boardwalk takes you along the reservoir banks and onto the walking/running trails. It is similar to the narrow boardwalk at MacRitchie Reservoir, so do be careful when you run there and be mindful of other runners or hikers.
The boardwalk will lead you to the dam where you can see beautiful sunrise and sunset views. You will definitely feel refreshed and energised after a run here as the closeness to nature’s flora and fauna will give you lots of positive energy and vibes!
Upper Seletar Reservoir
Not far away from Upper Peirce Reservoir is the Upper Seletar Reservoir. For those who want to do LSD (Long Slow Distance), you can consider running there after completing the Peirce Reservoirs run.
You can start your run from the Casuarina carpark, turn left onto the Old Upper Thomson PCN and run towards Mandai. It takes about 5km to reach Upper Seletar Reservoir and another 5km back for a total of 10km. The total distance for the 3 Reservoirs Run is approximately a 21km, half marathon.
The first thing you see when you reach Upper Seletar Reservoir is the iconic rocket-shaped tower. The tower was officially opened in 1969 and stands at 18m above ground level. You can climb up to the top of the tower for 360-degree panoramic views of the reservoir and its surroundings. Right next to the tower is the famous, Instagrammable lone casuarina tree. The tree, with the backdrop of a shimmering reservoir, creates a beautiful vignette especially at sunrise or sunset.
About 600m from the Tower is a pavilion which also offers stunning views of the tranquil reservoir. It also has a toilet and a cold water dispenser – a great spot for water breaks.
For more information and details on the SAFRA Singapore Bay Run and Army Half Marathon, visit www.safra.sg/ssbr-ahm.
Share your favourite running trails with us at firstname.lastname@example.org!
Photos: Joanne Chew