Christmas Wonderland at Gardens by the Bay opened on November 30 2018, with the guest of honour Chan Chun Sing, Minister for Trade and Industry, officiating the lighting of the golden Christmas tree. Currently Asia’s tallest luminaire tree, it is quite a sight to behold, towering at 20.7 metres that is akin to the height of a 7-storey building.
Attracting close to 3.5 million visitors since its debut in 2014, Christmas Wonderland is Singapore’s biggest yuletide fair. The first highlight of Christmas Wonderland is definitely the magnificent luminaire light sculptures. They are handmade by Italian craftsmen using white wood from the south of Italy, adding to the mood of festivity. Their intricate designs make them perfect for Instagram captures. Overall, it is made up of 160,000 light bulbs and there are more than 50 luminaries light sculptures to brighten up the night.
Another highlight of this year’s Christmas Wonderland is the charming European-style festive market, which features a total of 36 stalls selling special edition food and drinks that will have your mouths watering. My personal favourite is the Iced Chocolate Smores by Coffee & Smores by Big O, which features an iced chocolate lava drink with smores floating on top. Besides that, the stalls in the festive market also offer one-of-a-kind Christmas gifts such as handmade crafts, boutique goods, and vintage products.
Visitors can also expect an unconventional dining experience at ‘Slice of Savour’, where delectable food options start at $6 and are curated by some of Singapore’s trendiest restaurants. Innovative modern Chinese bites from Blue Lotus, juicy burgers from Three Buns by Potato Head Singapore, and artisanal Christmas cocktails exclusive to Christmas Wonderland by Three Wiseman are some of the star dishes.
Gardens by the Bay is known for its Supertree Grove, where the lights on these Supertrees change colour and interact with the music playing in the background. At Christmas Wonderland, the light show at Supertree Grove features a Christmas special. In addition to the Garden Rhapsody, which is Gardens by the Bay’s signature light and sound show, the Supertrees will be lit up with a beautiful sky blue hue synced with a medley of Christmas classics including ‘I’m Dreaming of a White Christmas‘, which may be hinting at the Blizzard Time that is to come.
A crowd favourite, Blizzard Time is a scheduled 5-min artificial snowfall in the gardens. The little flakes do not resemble real snow very much and the snowfall is more for entertainment than the aesthetics. Nonetheless, many people seem to be having fun snapping pictures of themselves with the surrounding ‘snowflakes’.
There is an array of games offered at Christmas Wonderland, featuring 11 traditional carnival game stalls, 6 kiddy rides and 3 inflatable gingerbread houses. Games and rides start at $4 and tokens are required to play. The appeal to both kids and adults makes Christmas Wonderland a sweet attraction for a family bonding experience. However, the carnival games are highly challenging, and no one has won anything in the twenty minutes that I was there. Play them for pure fun or at your own risk.
Overall, I enjoyed the ambience at Christmas Wonderland. The luminaire light sculptures lend the gardens a dreamy and jubilant vibe. The food and merchandise are also specially crafted for the occasion, though it is indeed a place for people with full wallets. Otherwise, a window shopping experience may suffice.
Admission to Christmas Wonderland at Gardens by the Bay starts at S$4. For more information on the tickets and discounted bundles, visit the official site https://www.christmaswonderland.sg/.
Photos by Soloman Soh of the DANAMIC team.