📸 Skai Chan Photography

Gardens by the Bay (GBTB) Photoshoot Complete Guide

photography at gardens by the bay

Introduction

Hey there, I'm Skai - a professional shutterbug who lives and breathes photography. I specialise in bespoke and on-location photo sessions that capture the true essence of my client's story in a heartfelt and meaningful way.

Be it a high-end fashion shoot or a casual family portrait, I go out of my way to put my clients at ease, making sure they feel comfortable and confident in front of the camera.

I've had the privilege of working with many international clients who have specifically requested to shoot at Gardens by the Bay. Thanks to them, I've gained heaps of experience capturing spectacular shots in this mesmerising location.

But my passion for exploring new things is never-ending. Despite my success, I am always eager to learn more, and that's why I never fail to uncover the garden's hidden treasures, even amidst my busy schedule.

Overall, Gardens by the Bay is a breathtaking location for any type of photoshoot. Whether you're looking for a romantic spot for engagement photos or a unique backdrop for a fashion shoot, the garden has it all. So, read on and start planning your day at this stunning destination!

Location Highlights

Gardens by the Bay, also known as GBTB, is hands down one of the most stunning spots in Singapore that people adore - locals, tourists and even folks from all over the world! And guess what? It's also one of the hottest spots for a photoshoot!

Gardens by the Bay is a unique combination of mother nature and modern technology that'll blow your mind! You'll be surrounded by stunning gardens, breathtaking floral displays and massive Supertrees leaving you in awe! With such gorgeous backdrops, it's no surprise that photographers and models flock here to capture that perfect shot that'll stun everyone who sees it!

If you plan a photoshoot at Gardens by the Bay, you're in for a real treat! You'll have endless opportunities to snap some truly breathtaking photos, whether you prefer a natural or an urban setting. And let's not forget about all the cool attractions and features the gardens offer - you'll be spoilt for choice! So, it's time to unleash your inner creative genius, get your camera ready and capture some unforgettable memories!

Read on and I assure you'll be strongly benefited from the useful information on this page. So, let's dive in and explore some of the top areas that you should check out.

Supertree Grove

night couple photography at supertree grove, gardens by the bay
couple photography at supertree grove, gardens by the bay

Are you ready for a photoshoot location that will leave you awestruck? Look no further than Supertree Grove in Gardens by the Bay. These towering metal structures are more than just trees; they are a stunning display of engineering and sustainability that harmoniously blends technology with nature.

As you approach Supertree Grove, you'll feel like you're walking into a sci-fi movie set. The towering structures reach up to 50 meters high, adorned with hundreds of plants and flowers that create a real-life vertical garden. It's a sight that will leave you feeling small, humbled by the sheer scale of these magnificent trees.

But the Supertrees aren't just pretty to look at - they play a vital role in the ecosystem of Gardens by the Bay. Fitted with photovoltaic cells that harness solar energy, they light up like fireworks at night, creating an otherworldly atmosphere. The Supertrees also serve as air exhaust receptacles, helping to regulate the temperature inside the park's conservatories.

Supertree Grove is more than just a tourist attraction; it's a symbol of how humans and nature can coexist sustainably. These trees remind us of our responsibility to the environment and our potential to use technology for good.

And when the sun goes down, the magic doesn't stop. As night falls, the Supertrees come alive with a stunning light and sound show called "Garden Rhapsody." The Supertrees light up in a symphony of colours, and the music adds an ethereal quality to the experience. It's a breathtaking display that will leave you transfixed.

In short, Supertree Grove is a must-see location in Singapore. With its futuristic atmosphere and breathtaking light show, it's a true marvel of modern engineering and sustainability. Don't miss out on this unforgettable experience that highlights the beauty of our relationship with nature.

There is a free light-and-sound show nightly at 7:45pm & 8.45pm. Each session of the light show lasts for 15 minutes.

Golden Garden

Golden Garden is one of the most frequently visited parts of the Gardens by the bay, at least, tourists would enter it unplanned since it's located right next to the main visitor centre.

Visitors will be greeted by three Supertrees, which probably is a good start to their visit to the garden. So, many tourists will begin their trips by taking some portraits using the trees as the backdrop.

That's to say, it isn't the best spot for photoshoot.

Silver Garden

couple photography at silver garden, gardens by the bay

Silver Garden is identical to Golden Garden with three Supertrees. However, being located away from the visitor centre, it's less prominent. This makes Silver Garden a much more suitable place for photoshoot.

Dragonfly Lake

lifestyle photography at dragonfly lake, looking at silver garden, gardens by the bay
men's fashion photography at dragonfly lake, gardens by the bay
couple photography at dragonfly lake, gardens by the bay

This Lake stretches quite a long distance nearer to the side of the MBS building. This serene lake provides a calm and tranquil backdrop for your photoshoot. The lake is surrounded by lush greenery, providing a natural and peaceful setting for your pictures.

Since the two paths along the lake are quite narrow, the limitation in angles does make doing portrait photoshoots quite challenging. At the right spots, you still can get good pictures though.

Serene Garden

couple photography at serene garden, gardens by the bay
dance photography at serene garden, gardens by the bay
corporate group photography at serene garden, gardens by the bay
garden corporate headshot photography at serene garden, gardens by the bay

Serene Garden is my favourite section of the garden. I chanced upon it in the year 2019 when there was still a bit of construction around. I saw a few people chilling there and one was simply reading his book.

So, Serene Garden, as its name says, is a serene garden. This garden is a peaceful and calming location with beautiful flowers and greenery. The garden has a romantic ambiance and is perfect for couple shoots or bridal portraits.

I think it's the best "hidden" part of Gardens by the Bay because it's furthest away from the main attractions like the Supertree grove and domes, and even the Satay by the Bay. For people who love privacy and have visions of taking good photos, it's one of the best options in Garden by the Bay.

Sun Pavilion

If you're looking for something more exotic, the Sun Pavilion is a great option. This is a sheltered area although the glass ceiling won't help much if it's a sunny day. I would say it's a clean place in terms of colours. This location is filled with cacti of all shapes and sizes, providing a unique and striking backdrop for your photos.

Heritage Gardens

The Heritage Gardens are divided into four sections, each representing a different culture: Colonial, Chinese, Malay and Indian. Each section has its own distinct features, making them great for capturing cultural and traditional shots.

The gardens are kind of in the limelight, probably due to their locations. Many tourists who are heading to the domes from Bayfront MRT or MBS would be crossing these gardens, except for the Colonial Garden, which isn't located exactly along the direct route.

In some parts of these Gardens, you can get some views of the Supertrees or the Dragonfly Lake. However, the difference in lighting would definitely make it difficult to get the exposure of both the subject and the background correct. Therefore, if it's not a high-end photoshoot with the use of professional lighting, either the subject's face would be in the shadow or the background would be overexposed (white and little details left).

World of Plants

bridal photography at world of plants, gardens by the bay
friends photography at world of plants, gardens by the bay
surprise marriage proposal photography at world of plants, gardens by the bay
couple photography at world of plants, gardens by the bay
couple photography at world of plants, gardens by the bay

This section of the Gardens features various exhibits showcasing plants from around the world. The different exhibits include the Secret Life of Trees, World of Plants, Understorey, Fruits and Flowers, Web of Life and Discovery. Each exhibit offers a unique and fascinating backdrop for your photoshoot.

The world of plants is likely another under-utilised area of Gardens by the Bay.

To be honest, if I were a tourist with limited time, I would likely be visiting the main "attractions" in the garden. However, if I want to do a portrait photoshoot with the greenery and want minimum distraction, such as people walking around, I will prefer to do a shoot at the World of Plants area.

Water Lily Pond

bridal photography at water lily pond, gardens by the bay
couple photography at water lily pond, gardens by the bay

The Water Lily Pond is located right next to the Golden Garden. That's to say, it's pretty accessible from the visitor centre.

I first chanced upon it years back during a portrait shoot as I was exploring the garden. It's something unique. You can get a far view of the Supertrees and MBS building in the background, which makes it quite a good idea for photoshoot.

However, to balance the exposure of both the subject and the background, high-end photography is preferred. Unfortunately, the tree branches have since been overgrown, making framing the shots more difficult. Do also beware of the mud if the weather isn't too good.

Kingfisher Lake

The Kingfisher Lake is usually on the quiet side. On the few occasions that I was taking the route in a hurry, I could see some opportunities for photoshoot with limited angles. Unlike other attractions, it doesn't leave a huge image on my mind.

Kingfisher Wetlands

Kingfisher Wetlands is one of the latest additions to the garden, or otherwise, it's newly renovated or completed.

It's located right next to the Satay by the Bay food centre. It has some water features but the bridge might be a bit narrow for photoshoot. There's also a big pond, which some people may find interesting.

Far East Organization Children's Garden

This section of the Gardens is designed specifically for children and features a variety of fun and interactive exhibits. It's a place to get wet. This location is perfect for capturing playful and joyful moments with your little ones.

You can at most do some natural light photoshoot there, although I haven't found any signboard for its rules. Avoid getting the camera wet!

Bay East Garden

night music portrait photography at bay east, gardens by the bay

This garden offers stunning views of the Singapore skyline and is a great location for capturing cityscape shots. It's one of the best spots to get a great snap of the garden from across the reservoir. It includes the two domes, the MBS building and Singapore Flyer.

However, it's along the reservoir is a path that's occupied by joggers and cyclists and thus it can be challenging to do a shoot over there.

Active Garden

The Active Garden is one of the latest additions to Gardens by the Bay.

You may like to use the outdoor fitness gym for your fitness photoshoot, the musical playground for a music or lifestyle photoshoot, the community garden for your lifestyle photoshoot, the waterfront plaza (if it's not booked for any event) for a simple wet weather photoshoot, and Mylo's Pet-friendly Café for your dog's photoshoot.

Supertree Observatory

For stunning aerial views of the Gardens and the surrounding area, visit the Supertree Observatory and the OCBC Skyway. That's probably the highest point you could access at Gardens by the Bay and there's an admission fee. The location offers breathtaking views and are perfect for capturing panoramic shots.

I haven't been up there but I'm very sure you can't do high-end photography there, unless, maybe you pay for it.

OCBC Skyway

OCBC Skyway is an overrated attraction. I usually discourage tourists to go up because the bridge is rather short and you probably won't stay there for long. Since there's an admission charge, you probably have to factor in the entry fee for your photographer as well.

Avoid noon time if you want to go up because it can be hot! I would love to be up there at 7.45 pm to experience being near the light show for once but that's about it.

Floral Fantasy

Floral Fantasy is one of the indoor attractions in Gardens by the Bay featuring various floral displays and gardens that are good for capturing stunning shots in a controlled environment. It requires an admission fee.

Flower Dome

pre-wedding photography outside flower dome, gardens by the bay
night bridal photography outside flower dome, gardens by the bay

The Flower Dome is a popular place for flower lovers because it has many species of plants. However, I personally feel it's "just another big and beautiful garden" for doing portrait shoots. The advantage is that it's fully air-conditioned.

There's a fee that you can pay to do a professional photoshoot inside and the management will send an ambassador or security guard to escort your team.

On the other hand, I prefer using the external of Flower Dome for shoots and it can produce amazing work.

Cloud Forest

men's fashion photography outside cloud forest, gardens by the bay

Located right next to the Flower Dome, Cloud Forest is my preferred choice. I mean if I have limited time, I would choose to visit Cloud Forest instead of Flower Dome.

The waterfall near the entrance of Cloud Forest is impressive but beware of the mist that may damp the camera lens. The entire architecture of the dome is picture-worthy, however, can be difficult for portrait shoot due to the height. People who seek to do photoshoots inside the dome should have realistic expectations due to various limitations.

Meanwhile, enjoy the air-conditioning and take note that there may be special themes for the Cloud Forest at times. For example, during the year 2023, they are using the Avatar theme.

Similar to Flower Dome, the external of Cloud Forest along the reservoir can be a nice place to do your photoshoot.

The Meadow

The Meadow is a big outdoor garden event space that offers a standing capacity of up to 30,000 people.

Therefore, if you are looking at a shoot with a huge space in between you and the nearest trees, this may be a good place.

However, as mentioned, it's an event space and thus do check out the official website if this space is your main priority for your shoot.

Victoria Lily Pond

Victoria Lily Pond is quite a small pond. I have been there once or twice but didn't stay for long. At the back. there's actually an aquarium.

Hope some people can do some good shoots at that location.

Gardens by the Bay's Map

Gardens by the Bay's map Source: Gardens by the Bay

- Streetdirectory
- Google Map

Opening Hours for Attractions

  1. The free 15-minute music and light show at Supertree Grove are at 7.45pm and 8.45pm daily.
  2. Most parts of the gardens that don't require admission fees are open from 5am to 2am daily.
  3. The Bay East Garden is open 24 hours daily.
  4. The Cloud Forest, Flower Dome, OCBC Skyway and Supertree Observatory are open from 9am to 9pm daily.

For other attractions and more information, you can view the official website.

How to Get There?

Address: 18 Marina Gardens Dr, Singapore 018953

MRT Stations

Visiting via MRT? With the opening of the Thomson-East Coast MRT, visiting Gardens by the Bay is made easier for many people.

Now, you can either take the (yellow) Circle or (blue) Downtown line and alight at "Bayfront station" (CE1/ DT16), or take the (brown) Thomson-East Coast line and alight at "Gardens by the Bay station" (TE22).

It depends on which part of the garden you want to head to, you may want to alight at either of the stations. If you're meeting someone at the Visitor Centre where the main drop-off point is at, the Gardens by the Bay station will be nearer.

Car Parks

There are around five carparks. You should plan your destination and park at the nearest carpark.

  1. Main Entrance (basement): Supertree Grove, Golden Garden, Silver Garden, Cloud Forest, Flower Dome, Supertree Observatory, OCBC Skyway, Sun Pavilion, Heritage Gardens, World of Plants
  2. The Meadow: Garden Pod, Serene Garden, The Meadow
  3. Satay by the Bay: Satay by the Bay, Kingfisher Wetlands, Wildlife Lookout, Kingisher Lake, Children's Garden
  4. Bayfront Plaza: Serene Garden, The Meadow, Floral Fantasy, Dragonfly Lake
  5. Bay East: Bay East

Opening Hours: 5.00am – 2.00am (Daily)

Permits and Fees for Photoshoots

Before you start snapping away, it's important to know that permits are required for commercial photography at Gardens by the Bay. These permits can be obtained through the park's website and must be obtained at least 14 days in advance. Fees vary depending on the type of shoot.

That's to say, you can still do it for your personal shoots! Basically, you can hire a professional photographer to do your photoshoot at any part of the garden.

However, you will not be able to do high-end photography at places that require admission fee. Obviously, these places will be crowded and any setup will pose danger to the visitors as they may somehow trip over a tripod or light stand. However, these attractions may provide photoshoot packages (at a high cost) and allocate a timing for you to shoot within the premises, and they will have a staff/ security officer to follow you around.

Generally Rules & Ethics in the Garden

In order to fully enjoy your time at Gardens by the Bay, it's important to be mindful of some simple but essential rules.

  1. Respect the Plants: Give the plants the respect they deserve. Avoid causing any damage to them while capturing your shots. Don't climb trees.
  2. No Littering: Keep the garden clean and green by not littering. Dispose of your trash properly to help maintain its beauty. If you are using disposable props during the shoot, please clear them before leaving.
  3. Picnic: You can do a picnic photoshoot theme at most places in the garden, but not in the conservatories.
  4. No Food & Drinks in the Conservatories: Should you be doing a shoot inside the conservatories, please keep your snacks and drinks outside. I don't think anyone will stop you from drinking plain water though.
  5. No lighted candles: Candles may add a touch of romance to your photoshoot but don't light them in the garden. Respect the safety of others and the garden's beauty.
  6. Dogs are welcome: Dogs are welcome to join you in the outdoor gardens but not the Children's Garden. Capture great memories with your furry friend while keeping the garden clean.
  7. No Smoking: No smoking allowed. Not only is it harmful to your health but it also disrupts the serene ambiance of the garden and disturb other visitors.
  8. No cycling: No cycling or roller skating in the garden to prevent accidents or damages to the plants. Take a leisurely stroll instead and snap some pictures. If you're doing a cycling shoot, I'm not sure if the staffs would stop you if you are keeping it at a quiet area.
  9. No kite-flying, swimming or fishing: Although it may be tempting to fly a kite or take a dip in the waters, they're not allowed. Therefore, you should consider doing such photoshoot themes elsewhere instead.
  10. No drone-flying: As tempting as it may be to fly your drone over the gardens, it's prohibited at Bay Central, Bay East, and Bay South gardens. Keep the garden peaceful and capture its beauty from the ground.

More information at: Gardens by the Bay website

Tips for a Successful Portrait Photoshoot in GBTB

Are you planning to have a portrait photoshoot in the beautiful Gardens by the Bay? This location offers a unique blend of natural beauty and futuristic technology that will make your portraits stand out. To help you make the most of your experience, here are some tips for a successful portrait photoshoot in Gardens by the Bay:

  1. When capturing the iconic Supertrees, keep in mind that they are tall and may be challenging to include in the background composition and exposure. Also, remember to consider the sky, which is the third element in your composition. The Supertrees look stunning at night with their LED lights, making it a perfect backdrop for your portraits.
  2. Avoid crowds in the background by heading over to the Silver Garden. This area has fewer people, making it an excellent spot for capturing the Supertrees. However, remember that having a good background doesn't necessarily mean you can take casual portrait shots. Be mindful of the lighting conditions to get the best results.
  3. Avoid weekends and public holidays if you're looking to avoid the crowds in the garden. It's best to schedule your shoot during the early morning when the garden is less crowded, although it can be challenging to aim for an early morning shoot. The peace and tranquillity of the garden during that time will be worth it.
  4. Don't always head straight to the most popular spots, like the Supertrees or the Flower Dome. These locations can quickly become overdone and uninteresting. If you want to stand out from the crowd, it's best to avoid these mainstream spots and look for more hidden gems.

Conclusion

Wrapping up, I must say that Gardens by the Bay is more than just a location for a photoshoot; it's a place where dreams come true, where love is captured and where memories are made. With its breathtaking scenery and awe-inspiring structures, this garden offers a unique and unforgettable experience that will stay with you forever. So, don't hesitate to consider Gardens by the Bay as a location for your next photoshoot.

I hope that my guide has been helpful in planning your photoshoot and I welcome any feedback or suggestions you may have. I always strive to provide accurate and reliable information but if you find any errors or omissions, please let me know so that I can make the necessary updates.

As a professional photographer with a passion for capturing beautiful moments and memories, I love doing shoots at Gardens by the Bay. Despite moving further away from the garden in the year 2022, it remains one of my favourite locations to shoot at and I know that I can help bring your vision to life.

If you're interested in seeing more of my work or learning about my strengths in photography, I encourage you to check out the rest of my website. If my style resonates with you, don't hesitate to reach out to me. I'm always looking to collaborate with new clients and create stunning photos that will last a lifetime. So, let's make some magic happen together!

References

https://www.gardensbythebay.com.sg/



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Copyright © 2012-2024 Skai Chan. All rights reserved.
All articles and images remain the property of Skai Chan and should not be downloaded, reproduced, copied or used in any way without written consent.

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