Retrace Singapore’s World War II history with four days touring several museums and sites showcasing the remnants of the terrible war. Now a world-class city and economic powerhouse, during the war it was a scene of horror following the Japanese occupation. It is estimated that more Australian prisoners of war perished during incarceration in the labour camps than died in battle itself. Walk in the footsteps of these brave men and women during battle and their imprisonment, bringing this fascinating chapter of history to life.
Day 1: Arrive Singapore. A day of leisure
Day 2: Explore sites associated with the bitter fighting in Singapore in 1942. This includes Changi Museum, Johore Battery, Selarang Camp, Sembawang Kranji War Memorial, City Hall, Lim Bo Seng Memorial and Cenotaph Memorial
Day 3: Half day touring of the Old Forts followed by an afternoon at leisure. The tour includes Reflections at Bukit Chandu, Labrador Park, Fort Siloso and St Andrew’s Cathedral
Day 4: Depart Singapore
Full Itinerary (Click here)
Singapore Flexi Tour
Day 1, Arrive Singapore
On arrival into Singapore Airport, we will be met by a representative of Mat McLachlan Battlefield Tours and transferred to our hotel. The rest of the day is at our leisure.
STAR INCLUSIONS: Arrival transfer
Day 2, Full Day Battlefield Tour
Today we will explore sites associated with the bitter fighting in Singapore in 1942, and the horrendous ordeal of prisoners of war who were captured here. The first stop today is Changi Museum, dedicated to Singapore’s history during the Second World War. Once the site of many prisoner-of-war camps during the Japanese Occupation, Changi has since gone down in history as a place of much pain, torture and human suffering. It is said that more Australian POWs perished under incarceration than in battle itself. Whether it is on the Death Railway or the countless labour camps in Japan and Formosa (Taiwan), the Changi WWII trail commemorates the fight of brave men and women during battle and in internment. Afterwards we will visit Johore Battery which was an artillery battery in Changi, Singapore. Built by the British in 1939 for the defence of Singapore, the Johore Battery is a gun emplacement site consisting of a labyrinth of tunnels. The tunnels were used to store ammunition to support three large guns that could fire 15-inch shells. The guns were the largest installed outside Britain during World War II. They were destroyed before the surrender of the British army and the tunnels were sealed up after the war. The location remained a secret until the Singapore Prisons Department rediscovered them in April 1991. Today, replicas of the large gun and a 15-inch shell are located at the Johore Battery. We will see Selarang Camp en route to Sembawang, where over 15,000 prisoners of war were held in a space designed to hold 1,200. Next we will pass the Sembawang Park and Sembawang Shipyard, used as a British Naval base complex from the 1920s until Singapore’s independence. We will enjoy lunch at a local restaurant before we visit the Kranji War Memorial, to pay our respects to more than 1100 Australian soldiers who are remembered in the British Commonwealth Memorial. We will also visit the Kranji War Cemetery, the final resting place for 4,458 allied servicemen in marked graves laid out in rows on maintained and manicured lawns. After we will take a scenic drive towards the Civic Centre to visit the City Hall. The significance of the City Hall lies in the involvement during the World War II. British prisoners-of-war were rounded up in front of the building for a march to POW camps at Changi Prison and Selarang. On 12 September 1945, the Japanese General Itagaki surrendered to Lord Mountbatten to end World War II in Singapore. While in the city, we will visit 2 memorials: Lim Bo Seng Memorial, a tribute to a local hero with his involvement in anti-Japanese activities and the Cenotaph Memorial, built in memory of the 124 British soldiers born or resident in Singapore who gave their lives in World War I (1914–1918), with a second dedication (but no names) added in remembrance of those who died in World War II (1941–1945). At the end of our today’s touring we will be dropped back to our hotel where the evening is at our leisure. (B, L)
STAR INCLUSIONS: Changi Musuem – Johore Battery – Selarang Camp – Sembawang – Kranji War Memorial – City Hall – Lim Bo Seng Memorial – Cenotaph Memorial
Day 3, The Old Forts
This morning we will depart for a half day tour of the Old Forts. Our first stop for the day is Reflections at Bukit Chandu. Set amidst the lush greenery of Bukit Chandu (Opium Hill), this interpretative centre is a memorial to the last moments of the brave soldiers of WWII and a place to reflect on their courage, the cost of war and the price of peace. We will go back in time to 1942 when 1,400 soldiers of the Malay Regiment made their stand against 13,000 Japanese soldiers, choosing death over dishonour. We will continue our journey to Labrador Park which besides its rich biodiversity, this headland played a significant role in the history of Singapore during World War II. Remnants of the past like the tunnels and a fort enable visitors to have an interactive learning experience of the military history of the British rule during that era. Proceed thereafter to Fort Siloso, one of twelve coast artillery batteries which made up “Fortress Singapore” at the start of World War II. Although there are visible remains of some other batteries to be found on Singapore, Fort Siloso is the only restored battery open for public visitation. Our final stop today is St Andrew’s Cathedral, the oldest Anglican house of worship in Singapore. After a morning of touring, the afternoon is at leisure to explore the sites of Singapore. (B)
STAR INCLUSIONS: Bukit Chandu – Labrador Park – Fort Siloso – St Andrews Cathedral
Day 4, Depart Singapore
Unfortunately your tour ends today. After breakfast you will be transferred to Singapore airport for your departure flight. (B)
Your Tour Includes (Click here)
Singapore Flexi Tour
- Services of an English speaking expert Guide
- 3 nights’ accommodation in a 3.5- to 4-star hotel
- Bottled water for each passenger on touring days
- Entrance fees as per itinerary
- All transfers and sightseeing by air-conditioned vehicle as per itinerary
- Breakfast daily and 1 lunch
- The opportunity to discuss your battlefield travel plans with our expert team
Singapore Flexi Tour
HOW TO BOOK: Contact our reservations team on 1300 880 340 or click enquiry button below and leave your details. Deposit is 30% of selling price.
Please note: Itineraries are subject to change due to operational reasons. In addition, your Historian may alter the sites visited on each day to suit local conditions.
*From price per person (2017 & 2018), twin share, land only. Please enquire for single passenger prices. Ask about our airfare deals, which offer great discounts when booked in conjunction with our tours.