Let’s face it, the closest we are going to get to the airport this year is a trip to Jewel. In case you weren’t familiar, Jewel is a nature-themed entertainment and retail complex on the landside of Changi Airport. Opened to great fanfare in 2019, you’ve likely spotted the ‘world’s tallest indoor waterfall’ on Instagram. After checking in our bags, we’d sometimes pop in for a Shake Shack before a longhaul flight. Now Jewel is the destination and a fine way to spend an afternoon with the kids. Bonus points for feeling like you’re in the beautiful outdoors when actually you’re in an airconditioned dome.
Isn’t Jewel it just a mall?
Yes, there’s a multitude of dining and shopping stores. However, if you’ve come with the kids in tow, you’re there’s a 4,000 sqm recreational area on level 5. This is known as the Canopy Park and is open 10am-10pm daily. Children below the age of 12 must be accompanied by an adult. We didn’t explore but on level 4 is the Changi Experience Studio. This is a virtual world of Changi Airport with interactive games and immersive shows. If I’m not on a plane by the end of 2020 I’ll have to head to level 4 to get my kicks.
It was relatively quiet when we visited. Local schools were still in session and of course, Singapore basically shut to international tourists. I recommend spending a good half day there. For dining there are a multitude of options. I hadn’t realised Level 5 had so many eateries, although with a lovely ‘outdoor’ vibe. Next time I’ll head to Burger Lobster. This time we couldn’t resist our faithful Shake Shack although had a late 3pm lunch due to the queues.
They have suspended the light and sound show for the HSBC Rain Vortex (aka the waterfall). The water feature is still extremely impressive and it’s great to check it out from all heights. The best way is to walk through the Shiseido Forest Valley from ground floor to the Canopy Park.
What to bring
If you are bouncing on the sky nets, wear covered shoes. There are free lockers for you to place your bags although I’m not sure they fit giant shopping bags. Bring water as the nets are a good cardio workout.
Activities in the Canopy Park
There are various things to do from mazes to nets. All come at a price. Keep your eye on special deals. For now, admission to the Canopy Park includes: Discovery Slides, Foggy Bowls, Petal Garden and the Topiary Walk.
Separate charges apply for the Canopy Bridge, Hedge Maze, Mirror Maze, Bouncing Nets and Walking Nets. I bought a bundle package which included nearly all of the above.
Check out all the height restrictions as you don’t want disappointed kids. For the Bouncing, that is an hour’s slot and with quotas in place, you may need to put your name down.
Be prepared to scan both your phone and kids ID cards for every activity plus temperature checks.
The kids LOVED these even though they are basically just artificial grassy knowls with smoke piped through.
Although the slides look good, Jetlag & Mayhem said they were a bit lame. To be fair, only one was open so perhaps it’s the other slide that’s fun! Be mindful of the 110cm minimum height requirement.
Petal Garden & Topiary Walk
A lovely place to stroll through although I’m not sure I would pay solely to see this!
You get an hour slot to bounce (incl a 10 min safety briefing). So head to the Skynets first in case you need to put your name down as slots fill up. Minimum height requirement is 110cm.
The nets stretch for 250 metres long and up to 8 metres at its highest points. You aren’t allowed to flip but there are a few slides and the interconnecting tubes are fun. This was probably the highlight of our Canopy Park experience.
This is a taut web stretched 25 metres above the mall. If you have vertigo (like me), you may find this a challenge. I couldn’t believe I was walking over the height of the mall… just don’t look down! Of course the kids just sailed over it and couldn’t figure out why I was crawling most of the way. Minimum height is 110cm.
Who doesn’t love a glass bottom bridge, suspended 23 metres above the ground. They emit fog every 10 minutes. Miss Jetlag was excited about walking through the fog but by the time they had scanned the ID cards and done temperature checks, the fog had disappeared.. You are allowed on the bridge for 30 minutes but my kids had one eye on a Shake Shack.
Hedge & Mirror Maze
Easy to navigate, you can let the kids lead the way. Not the most exciting maze in the world but there are some nice touches, like the moving flowers. We didn’t do the Mirror Maze as we couldn’t be bothered so will have to do it next time.