Jurong Frog Farm – BYO Prince
We took our own princes to Singapore’s Jurong Frog Farm.
We had one prince each when we set out. And a tiny princess. We weren’t sure how many princes we’d be coming home with, though.
Unfortunately – or fortunately perhaps – we didn’t get close enough to any frogs to kiss them.
We did get close enough to smell them, which was a bit disconcerting. Who knew frogs had a smell? But in the dim shed that housed the frog ponds there was a distinct smell that had to be frog.
The frog farm was a hit, simply for the bizarre concept of farming frogs. Goggle-eyed, we ogled the frog food for sale in the gift shop, the frog meat on sale in the freezer and the fried frog on skewers on display on the patio. We pegged pellets of frog food (S$1 per container) at the frogs and got no response. We tried to strike up a duet with some of the bullhorn honkers in the frog shed but to no avail. And taking pictures in the low light was damn difficult too.
We discovered American Bullfrogs aren’t really handsome enough to kiss. I’d been expecting a farm full of cute green tree frogs, the type we have in Australia. Instead, we got large mottled bug-eyed frogs. Doubtful they’d turn into a suitable type of prince if kissed. Thank goodness we brought our own.
We asked the guy in the gift shop if we could pick up the frogs. He advised us not to. “They can get quite aggressive,” he said, without smiling. “And they have teeth.” Enough said.
There were also two dogs at the frog farm to entertain the princess. She liked the dogs more than the frogs. Although she gave a long baby babble commentary at the first frog pond.
Forty-five minutes was enough time for the frog farm, especially in Singapore’s midday swelter. Our sidekicks had arrived on an overnight flight and they needed to be fed. The fried frog meat on skewers didn’t tempt them. Neither did the Essence of Bullfrog sold in the gift shop.
So we jumped on the Kranji Express bus and begged the driver to take us back one stop to Bollywood Veggies.
The darling driver agreed to flout the published schedule and soon we were in air-conditioned bliss. First on the bus, then in Bollywood Veggies’ Poison Ivy restaurant. Then, baby fed, blokes beered, ladies lunched, we plunged into horticultural heaven.
Herbs, fruit trees, towering plots of sugar cane and corn, a lake, flowers, pink snail eggs, lizards, butterflies and strange signs, one promising a nudist enclosure, others threatening various violent acts by farm “warriors” for any breach of farm etiquette, such as leaving engines running in the carpark.
We even stumbled onto a Bollywood set at the back of the farm. (Or it could have been a local TV show, but we’d prefer to have had a brush with the glamour of Bollywood.)
By 3.30 pm, the heat and the lack of sleep had wiped us all out. We were more than happy to get back onto the Kranji Express and be whisked past all the other farms. But at the next stop, Hay Dairies, Singapore’s only goat farm, the driver announced he was taking a 15 minute rest break. That gave us enough time to whip around the goat viewing area — and boy-oh-boy do goats have a stronger smell than frogs. No one was interested in tasting the chocolate goat milk.
The Kranji Express is the brainchild of the Kranji Countryside Association, a cooperative of the farmpreneurs based in Singapore’s north-west. The farmpreneurs operate businesses from nurseries to farm resorts to frog and goat farming and the Kranji Express bus service stops at 12 of the businesses that are open to the public in a loop service that takes about an hour and a half.
We cheated a little by taking a taxi to our first stop, the frog farm. From Orchard Road, it was a 20-minute drive that cost S$25. We could have taken the train to Kranji MRT station (MRT map here) and then hopped on the Kranji Express.
The Kranji Express is only $3 and entrance to most of the farms is free. So a day out in the Kranji farmlands is an amazingly cheap family day out, especially in Singapore where things can seem so expensive. If you had a car and didn’t need the Kranji Express, you could even put this day trip on your “free things to do in Singapore” list.
There’s a bit of fun for everyone in the Kranji countryside. I’m already planning our next trip back, when we’ll check out the farm resort, a fish farm and one of the big nurseries.
Jurong Frog Farm
51 Lim Chu Kang Lane 6
Ph: +65 6791 9714
100 Neo Tiew Rd, Singapore
Ph: +65 6898 5001
3 Lim Chu Kang Lane 4
Ph: +65 6792 0931
For details, go to www.kranjicountryside.com and click on the “location” tab.
9 years ago