Tis the season for … big Christmas trees!
Update Dec 2023: Here’s the 2023 edition. With even more entries!
Time for another quick festive post and this time it’s about …
Big Christmas trees.
Huge, towering Christmas trees in Singapore this festive year-end. Several, so tall, you’ll struggle to photograph them without a super-wide lens. (And thereafter struggle with lens distortion …)
Such giant trees are no strangers to Singapore, yes? For years, huge glittering ones have been standard fixtures at the annual Orchard Road year-end decorations. Since its opening, Jewel’s signature Christmas attraction each year is always a soaring Christmas tree too.
Without further ado, here are the largest and the tallest Christmas trees in Singapore to enjoy this year!
Before I begin, two pieces of good news for all. Other than the Horticulture tree at the Gardens by the Bay, all mentions below are free to enjoy. Most are the backdrops for artificial snow shows too.
The sight of flying “snow” against a majestic illustrated tree is surely one of the best free photo-ops this final month of 2022.
- VivoCity (15 m, With Snow Display)
- Jewel Changi Airport (16 m, With Snow Display)
- The Star Vista (20 m, With Snow Display)
- Flower Dome, Gardens by the Bay (6 m)
- Gardens by the Bay Main Entrance
- Ngee Ann City
- Suntec City (15 Metres)
- Tanglin Mall (With Snow Display)
- Great World City (8 Metres)
- The Shoppes at Marina Bay Sands
- Fort Canning Green (15 Metres)
- Raffles City (15 Metres)
VivoCity (15 m, With Snow Display)
VivoCity’s spectacular Christmas trees at their Sky Park have always been magical. Heading down to photograph them has also long been a favourite December excursion of mine.
This year’s version isn’t at the Sky Park, though. Instead, it’s right before the main entrance and next to the Jumptopia carnival. With all the cutesy figures surrounding the base, the tree is also quite kids-orientated. Especially fun and magical during the nightly snow displays.
Yup. There are snow displays right beside the tree each evening. Even if you’re an adult, stay for these sessions. All those dancing lights, squealing kids, and, err, positive ions (?) will brighten up your evening like nothing else.
Jewel Changi Airport (16 m, With Snow Display)
Jewel’s Christmas tree for 2022 is described as 16 metres tall on the official Changi Festive Village page. But somehow, it feels much taller. Much, much taller.
Could it be because of the arena-like Shiseido Forest Valley, for which the tree forms a gorgeous entrance for?
Like all other decorations at Jewel this Christmas, this huge tree is also aquatic-themed, part of the big welcome for Avatar: The Way of Water. It’s not just azure when illuminated, even the decorations are oceanic in inspiration. Look carefully and you’d see starfish are all about.
Tip: Don’t forget to head to the upper levels of Jewel after visiting the Forest Valley for the nightly light and sound shows. The viewing balconies offer equally spectacular views of the glittering tree. With lesser people, these spots are easier for photographers too.
The Star Vista (20 m, With Snow Display)
At 20 m height, The Star Vista’s yuletide masterpiece for 2022 is quite possibly the tallest Christmas tree in Singapore this year. Actually, I’m willing to bet that it is.
Its beauty is also traditional, simple, and utterly effective. There are no toy-like figurines or avant-garde concepts. Everything is just traditional colours, lights, and shiny baubles. And yet these work magnificently. Even during daytime, i.e., when unlit, the tree is a breathtaking sight to behold. The best part being, you can easily photograph it from a myriad of angles when on the upper levels of the mall.
Unlike most other Christmas mall displays in Singapore this year, the surrounding decorations for the huge tree are also more religious. There’s a large nativity scene. An angelic lit tunnel and an angel wing selfie backdrop too.
For kids, there are nightly snowfall shows too. (These are really popular here, aren’t they?) New Creation Church, which owns The Star Vista through its business arm, will furthermore be performing Christmas music every weekend from Dec 9 to Dec 25. Their stage is, of course, right before their amazing tree.
Flower Dome, Gardens by the Bay (6 m)
Flower Dome’s “Horticulture-Artistry Christmas Tree” is a smaller brother to the above giants. But what it lacks in height, it makes up for with creativity.
Creativity and power. Raw flower power. The entire tree is one stately pyramid of meticulously arranged red and white poinsettias. At night, it is capped by a shiny star too.
Being part of the Seasons of Bloom floral display, the flowery tree is, of course, surrounded by other festive sights. They are smaller Christmas trees all over the Flower Dome. Steps away from the poinsettia tree, enthusiastic reindeer soar into the sky.
Behind and around the horticulture masterpiece, miniature fields of seasonal blooms are aplenty. There are even an ice cavern replica and Japanese Ikebana displays.
Lastly, Gardens’ annual Christmas Wonderland is starting today! Posing beside the Horticulture-Artistry Christmas Tree after visiting the fairgrounds will be a fitting finale to any evening.
Gardens by the Bay Main Entrance
Updated Dec 6:
This was an unexpected surprise, which I only found out about when I visited Christmas Wonderland 2022.
There’s no festive walk at Gardens by the Bay’s main entrance this year. Instead, there’s a huge luminarie Christmas tree, one that rises some two-thirds of the height of the Supertrees there.
It’s utterly magnificent, a splendid kaleidoscopic spire reaching for the stars. Better yet, it’s not on the main grounds of Christmas Wonderland 2022, i.e., you don’t need a ticket to enjoy it up close!
If you’re visiting the Flower Dome or the festive grounds, don’t, don’t forget to head over to the main entrance for a photo with this dazzling wonder.
Ngee Ann City
This really requires no introduction, does it? Funny thing, though. I can’t remember when it became customary for Ngee Ann City to display a huge Christmas tree indoors. Did they only start doing it in the 2000s, or have they been doing it all along since the mall’s opening in 1993?
This year’s Ralph Lauren concept will likely appeal to both kids and adults too. The fashionable bears surrounding the base are adorable but classy, the perfect photo op for old and young alike.
Located at the heart of the Orchard Road light-up, Ngee Ann City’s impressive Christmas tree is also nearby several other impressive and creative ones. The festive gate at the Scotts Road junction has one. Just steps away from the gate is ION Orchard’s Dior Enchanted Star.
Further down Orchard Road is Nojima’s entrance showpiece. And over at Orchard Gateway is a yummy “Ice Cream” tree.
Directly opposite Ngee Ann City is also Paragon’s glittering blue and gold showpiece for this year. Almost the entire height of Paragon’s façade, this is just as tall as Ngee Ann City’s. Perhaps even slightly more.
Suntec City (15 Metres)
Everything is big at Suntec City, yes? The massive Fountain of Wealth. The soaring four towers. (Any evil wizards within?) The shopping mall aisle that stretches for half a kilometre…
Their Christmas trees have historically been big too; for example, in 2016. This year, another huge one full of shiny baubles stands before their North Wing entrance. One that is 15 metres tall and part of a mini festive carnival with games, a horsey carousel, and a Gravitron ride called the Meteorite.
Like I wrote above, if you have a go on the Meteorite, the golden Christmas Christmas tree will look extra, extra shiny and twinkling after you step off. I did so and I thought stars were swimming around the baubles.
How’s that for “AR” effects?!?
Tanglin Mall (With Snow Display)
Because of its location away from the heart of Orchard Road, the Christmas decorations at Tanglin Mall have always felt, how to put it, more enchanting and dreamy? There is seldom any real crowd. The mall also consistently puts in effort year after year to put up something truly beautiful. Last year, it was a big Christmas tree adorned with doves. The year before, it was a huge Santa Claus.
This year, it’s again a big tree, one that rises almost the full height of the mall and is graced by starry poinsettias. The festive walkway leading to the tree is also much more elaborate than last year’s decorations and from across the road, the entire cluster feels like a mini illuminated wonderland.
And then there’s Tanglin Mall’s signature snow show, which happens every night, twice on weekends. On the official page, these are split into different sessions of avalanche and snow. Take care not to be buried in “snow” if you’re attending these. (Avalanche?!?)
Great World City (8 Metres)
Titled Stars of Change, Great World City’s big tree for this year is not just beautiful and eye-catching, it’s also one of the most unusual and socially conscious.
A collaboration between the mall and Mercedes-Benz Singapore, the massive, suspended 8-metres installation features some 573 used plastic bottles. Part of an important sustainability message that Mercedes-Benz wishes to share with everyone.
To reinforce the message, the tree even includes wood cutoffs from decommissioned artworks. In other words, most parts of this unusual Christmas tree have seen life somewhere else before this year-end.
Like other indoor trees on this list, the tree’s location at the heart of Great World City’s atrium means it can be easily photographed from different heights and angles too. How about posing with it and declaring your concern for the environment this holiday season?
The Shoppes at Marina Bay Sands
The Shoppes at Marina Bay Sands have several large dazzling trees at the entrance facing the Rain Oculus, and some of these definitely look more than 5-metres tall. The real attraction, however, is neither their height nor how they are, err, decorated with golden coins. (Bling!)
It’s the number of such trees placed up this year. The central atrium is like a golden grove. There are even numerous golden trees hanging from the ceiling.
In fact, there’s so much gold colour everywhere, you seriously have to watch your camera’s white balance, especially if you’re photographing in the evening.
Needless to say, The Shoppes are also in comfortable proximity to several other celebrations and free attractions. The festivities at Gardens by the Bay are just a ten-minute walk away. Right opposite the golden trees is Spectra, which has finally resumed performance after a long break.
The ArtScience Museum has festive laser light projections on its dome. (Well, at least when I visited last Monday)
The Great Bay Fiesta has also started at Bayfront Event Space, with carnival games, circus performances, and a large ice tent. If you’re yearning for some real snow and ice after all the artificial snow displays mentioned above, there is no better place in the country to head to this December.
Fort Canning Green (15 Metres)
Update Dec 20:
I’d admit it. Fort Canning is not a location I’d think of when looking for Christmas festivities, and so I completely missed the big tree here till reading about it a few days ago.
It’s a very different visiting experience compared to the other entries on this list too, thanks to how spacious Fort Canning Green is. The simple but elegant design is a great match for the illuminated Fort Canning Centre right behind, and when I visited last evening, in the middle of a drizzle, there was an otherworld feel to the whole area. Not too unlike a fairy grove at the top of a misty hill. (Yes, there WAS mist about, thanks to the drizzle)
Well worth the trek or drive uphill for a look.
Raffles City (15 Metres)
Update Dec 20:
Raffles City’s “Fly to the Stars” golden Guerlain tree was one of the first big Christmas trees that I encountered this year; I saw it being set up in November. In other words, I long intended for it to be one of the entries.
But I ended up not being able to, because I just couldn’t get a decent shot of it. Every time I dropped by Raffles City to take a photo of it, rain would be pouring. Believe it, or not, this happened four times.
With Christmas just days away, I’ve given up, and so what’s above is my rainy shot from last evening. All that golden still looks great despite the rain, doesn’t it? With all those, erm, bees and the open concept, this is surely one of the most unique Christmas trees this year too, with a height that places it among the rest of the giants.
Come to think of it, I really ought to have settled for a wet shot weeks ago too. Those golden reflections on the floor didn’t dampen the look. I think they accentuated the magical feel of this creative masterpiece.