Plenty of people flocked to St John's, Lazarus & Kusu Islands over Christmas long weekend

A massive telepathy among Singaporeans.

Zhangxin Zheng | December 30, 2021, 06:56 PM

The closest that Singaporeans can get to feeling like they are travelling overseas, without burning a hole in their pockets, is to take a ferry to the nearby islands.

And that's exactly what many did over the long Christmas weekend apparently.

Large crowd at southern islands over Christmas weekend

Large crowds were spotted at Marina South Pier and the jetties of St John's Island and Kusu Island on Christmas Day, Dec. 25, and on Monday, Dec. 27.

A Mothership reader, David, said it was "mayhem" on St John's Island on Dec. 25.

He added that everyone was crowded at the jetty to catch the ferry when it started raining heavily on Christmas afternoon.

There was "a lack of order", "lots of queue cutting", and "no safe distancing at all", even though safe distancing ambassadors were sighted earlier in the afternoon, he said.

Here are some photos he took on Dec. 25:

Photo courtesy of Mothership reader.

Photo courtesy of Mothership reader.

Similar sight on Dec. 27 Monday morning

On Dec. 27, St John's Island remained a popular destination for people in Singapore as snaking queues formed at the Marina South Pier as early as 10am.

There were families with young children or furkids, couples, and groups of youths ready to spend time at the beaches and have picnics on the island.

Video by Mothership.

After arriving from St John's Island, many people headed to Lazarus Island, which is about 20 minutes walk away from the jetty.

Photo by Mothership.

Photo by Mothership.

Those who were thinking of having some tranquil time at the beach on Lazarus Island on Christmas weekend ended up having to compete with crowds to find a good spot to chill.

Here's the sight on Lazarus Island:

Photo by Mothership.

It was comparable to Bondi Beach.

Almost impossible to avoid queuing

As the ferries run according to a fixed schedule, it was difficult to escape from the crowd as everyone arrived and departed St. John's Island pretty much at the same time.

For example, if you take the 10am ferry to the island, most likely you will plan to depart on the 2.45pm ferry.

Ferry timings are fewer on weekdays too.

Here's a photo taken at around 11am and the queue had extended to the end of the jetty's shelter:

Photo by Mothership.

At around 2:30pm, the queue extended beyond the shelter.

Despite the lack of signage, the ferry staff actively managed the queue on Dec. 27, guiding people to the two queues: One for the ferry to Kusu Island and the other to mainland Singapore.

Photo by Mothership.

Photo by Mothership.

A similar sight was spotted at Kusu Island:

Photo by Mothership.

Photo by Mothership.

Photo by Mothership.

Why was it so crowded?

A combination of factors contributed to the large crowd at these southern islands:

  1. School holidays
  2. People clearing leave days at the end of the year and finding new places to go to as travelling overseas is not an option.
  3. Klook running a deal that comes with S$3 Gong Cha voucher
  4. Ferry schedule and the small jetties are simply not built for such crowds.

If you are planning to go to St John's Island this weekend, brace yourself for this or find another day to visit.

Top images via Mothership reader and Mothership