Whenever I gaze out over the ocean from the Capella Singapore, I notice the many small islands in the distance. Capella Singapore is located on Sentosa Island, one of the many islands off of Singapore. While there is a multitude of amazing attractions and activities on Sentosa, there is much to do on the other Singaporean islands as well.
Kusu Island, one of Singapore’s southern islands, holds many of the mysteries to Singapore’s cultural heritage. Kusu Island, which means Turtle Island in Mandarin, is also known as “Pulau Tembakul” (Peak Island) in Malay. Like many places with rich histories, Kusu Island earned its name from a legend. According to the story, the island was once a giant magical tortoise that transformed itself into an island to save two shipwrecked sailors – one Malay and the other Chinese.
Given the folktale that landed Kusu Island its name, it is only natural to find that Kusu Island is home to one of Singapore’s most revered Chinese and Malay religious monuments. The Chinese temple in Kusu Island houses two highly regarded deities – the Da Bo Gong (God of Prosperity) and Guan Yin (Goddess of Mercy). You can also find the three Malay “Kramats” (holy shrines of Malay saints) on the island.
While being a small island, accessible only by ferry from Singapore’s Marina South Pier, Kusu Island still attracts many Malay and Chinese religious devotees who make their trips to the temple and shrines to pay homage and pray for wealth, fortune, love and harmony. This is known as the annual Kusu Pilgrimage, which happens every year, from September to November.
In addition to its rich heritage sites, Kusu Island is also known for its beautiful and tranquil nature with enchanting lagoons, pristine beaches and varied wild life. Other attractions on the island include a wishing well and as you might have guessed, a Tortoise Sanctuary. Thinking about Kusu Island’s rich culture and heritage makes me want to plan a visit myself!
If you would like to visit Kusu Island during your next stay at Capella Singapore, please let your personal assistant know and they can arrange it for you!