Botanic Gardens is top park in Asia again

For the second year in a row, the Singapore Botanic Gardens has been ranked the top park in Asia by leading United States travel website TripAdvisor.

It beat the likes of Jingshan Park in Beijing and Japan's Hiroshima Peace Memorial Park in this year's TripAdvisor Travellers' Choice Awards, which is in its 12th year. The park category was added last year.

Overall, the Singapore Botanic Gardens came in 11th in the world, with Stanley Park in Vancouver ranked No. 1.

The ranking was determined through an algorithm that considered the number of ratings and the quality of ratings on a scale of one to five, over a year.

"It is difficult not to use words like stunning when talking about the marvellous Botanic Gardens of Singapore," wrote TripAdvisor user Suratrichard from Thailand in December.

"As you walk into the gardens, you keep finding more and more beautiful plants which are nearly all clearly labelled."

In a press statement yesterday, Nigel Taylor, director of the Singapore Botanic Gardens, said: "This is an encouragement to us as we continue to work towards conserving the living heritage of the gardens for future generations to enjoy."

TripAdvisor chief marketing officer Barbara Messing said in a press release: "TripAdvisor travellers have helped identify some of the best attractions around the globe.

"These award-winning landmarks and parks are an ideal starting point for taking in the world's must-see sights."

The gardens receive about 4.4 million visits every year, and this figure is expected to rise to six million in 2021.

By then, the Botanic Gardens MRT station on the Circle Line will be connected to the Downtown Line. Another station will also open near the attraction on the future Thomson Line.

The opening of the Botanic Gardens MRT station in 2011 added half a million visits per year.

The 155-year-old Singapore Botanic Gardens had submitted its bid to become the country's first Unesco World Heritage Site earlier this year. The results will be revealed next year.

It is a hit here too. Ms Ryane Wong, 24, said it is the ideal picnic spot.

"It is pretty, sitting next to the water, and you can sometimes see birds. It is a good place to chill and hang out," the project executive said.