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March 10, 2008

A Dragon's Spell At Batu Belayar Singapore

Dragon’s Tooth Gate

Situated at the end of Port Road, off Labrador Villa Road, the Dragon’s Tooth Gate stands as a sentinel, overlooking the western entrance of Keppel Harbour. Also known as Batu Belayar (Sailing Rock), this rock outcrop, which looks like a giant tooth, was used by Admiral Zheng He 600 years ago during his maiden voyage from Nanjing, China to navigate his fleet into harbour. Currently the red coloured 6-metre high rock is a replica installed in July 2005. The original was destroyed in 1848 to widen the entrance to the harbour.

Nearby there is a pier at Tg Belayar which never fails to draw me whenever I visit. One can walk on the pier that slopes into the sea or a muddy seabed depending on the tides. Unlike other beaches with powdery-white sand, the shore is lined with rocks. When the waves lap the shore, white waves crash onto concrete and then dissolve into foam as they cling in retreat. I usually fall into a sweet hypnotic spell after a prolonged stare.

The breeze is benevolent and there is a shelter for wet weather. Views of passing ships and tugboats provide a visual feast. The usual visitors are often anglers and couples, with the occasional families. Due to the recent escape of a terrorist, military personnel appeared to be familiar scenery at this park too.

Above: The Belayar Beacon

In this state of heightened alert, take care and stay happy.

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