coral reefs, mangroves, seagrasses, sandy shores.
Swimming, diving, camping.
The reefs of Pulau Hantu are only half an hour from the city centre
by fast boat! More about our city reefs.
Legends of Pulau Hantu
"Hantu" is the Malay word for ghost and Pulau Hantu is aptly named
as "island of ghosts". It was here that ancient Malay warriors once
dueled to the death and their ghosts is said to wander the isle.
Today, however, the island is a peaceful and idyllic getaway. Complete
with swaying palms, surrounded by white sands and rich reefs. There
is even a tiny patch of mangroves.
Pulau Hantu is actually made up of two islets: Hantu Besar (Big Ghost)
and Hantu Kecil (Little Ghost). Hantu Besar has two swimming lagoons
and a public toilet with fresh water. Both islets have shelters and
The current island is the result of massive reclamation. Pulau Hantu
Besar used to be 2ha and P. Hantu Kechil 0.4ha, surrounded by fringing
reefs with a common reef flat in between. Land reclamation from 1974-75
increased land area to 12.2ha using 400,000m3 of sand, leaving a narrow
strip between rock bund and edge of the reef (about 20-30m). The original
bit that stuck out above water at high tide is marked by untidy plant
growth, near the restrooms.
At low tide, it is possible to walk across the shallow lagoon between
the two islands; but not at high tide. So be aware of the tides and
make sure you are on the correct side when the tide comes in.
What to see and do?
Despite its forbidding name, Pulau Hantu is a favourite with fishing
and snorkeling enthusiasts because of its sheltered beaches, swimming
lagoons and inviting waters. It is also popular with campers and day-trippers
who want a unique outdoor experience away from the hustle and bustle.
Marine life of Pulau Hantu
Hantu has rich reefs despite its close proximity to Pulau Bukom's
refineries. The coral reefs lie outside the sea wall. Watch the tide
to ensure you are not caught on the wrong side of the sea wall when
the tide comes in.
A wide variety of hard
corals and soft
corals can be found on Hantu; mushroom
corals and enormous soft corals are particularly abundant. Commonly
encountered animals include clown
clams and a wide variety of nudibranchs.
The reefs around Hantu Besar is more extensive than those around Hantu
Kecil. There is a small patch of mangroves in between Hantu Kecil
and Besar, and native seashore plants line the beaches.
is the state of marine life on Pulau Hantu today? Webpages
with photos of what you can see at Pulau Hantu right now.
More photos of intertidal
marine life on Hantu and dive
photos from the Hantu blog.
Diving Pula Hantu
The Hantu Bloggers regularly
dive at Pulau Hantu. Contact them for more information.
Guided walks at Pulau Hantu
Currently, there are no regular guided walks at Pulau Hantu. But if
you are keen on organising one, you may try contacting these nature
guides and nature groups to see if they can bring you there.
tips for visitors
no regular ferries to Pulau Hantu. You can charter a fast work boat
from West Coast Pier to take you there. Rates will have to be negotiated
with the operator which depends on their availability and diesel prices
among others. The work boats operate 24-hours and generally service
business on Jurong Island and ships in our harbour. These boats are
not intended for leisure trips and are not designed for comfort. You have to pass through Immigration Control at West Coast Pier to get to the boat. They only accept IC (Singaporeans) and passport with FIN card (foreigners). No other photo ID accepted. Kids need to bring their buscard.
Admission to the island is free. Camping overnight requires a permit
from Sentosa. There is no charge for the permit.
on the Sentosa website It is advisable to consult Sentosa if you are
bringing large groups even if it's just a day trip.
As Pulau Hantu is close to petrochemical installations at Pulau Bukom,
access to it is sometimes affected by redirection of traffic due to
work at Bukom.
Facilities include: On both Hantu Kecil and Hantu Besar: jetty for
each island, shelters and picnic areas. Two swimming lagoons on Hantu
Besar. Toilets with fresh water, only at Hantu Besar. Hired boats
usually dock at Hantu Besar.
More about preparing for a trip to the shores
More FAQs about visiting the shores
How to take photos on the shores.
articles about Pulau Hantu
guides and references
sheets introduction to common marine life in Singapore.
- Tan, Leo
W. H. & Ng, Peter K. L., 1988. A
Guide to Seashore Life. The Singapore Science Centre,
Singapore. 160 pp.
- Ng, Peter
K. L. & N. Sivasothi, 1999. A
Guide to the Mangroves of Singapore II (Animal Diversity).
Singapore Science Centre. 168 pp.
- Lim, Kelvin
K. P. & Jeffrey K. Y. Low, 1998. A
Guide to the Common Marine Fishes of Singapore. Singapore
Science Centre. 163 pp.
- Tan, Ria
and Loh Tse-Lynn, 2004. Guidesheet
to the Amazing Marine Life of the Southern Shores of Singapore.
- Tan, Ria
and Alan Yeo, 2003. Chek
Jawa Guidebook. Simply Green. 219.