Museum and Gallery Guide

Reflections at Bukit Chandu

Events - 25 November 2009 12:00 AM | Updated 09 June 2010

Reflections at Bukit Chandu

Address:  31-K Pepys Road, Singapore 118458

Opening hours: Tuesday to Sunday 9am - 5pm. Closed on Mondays

Admission: Adult - $2, Student/Senior Citizen - $1. Group - (20 pax & above) Adult - $1.50, Student/Senior Citizen - $1.00. Family Admission- (5 pax, 2 adults max) - $5.00 (Please call +65 6332 7978 for group bookings)

Website: http://www.s1942.org.sg/s1924/bukit_chandu/homepage.htm

The Battle of Bukit Chandu was one of the fiercest and last significant battles of World War II in Singapore - fought just two days before the British surrendered island to the Japanese on 15 February 1942,.

Malay Regiment C Company soldiers led by British Commanders were forced to retreat to this hill as they defended the Western side of Singapore, and for 48 hours, they and remnants from the 1st and 2nd Battalions engaged the Japanese.

Despite being greatly outnumbered - 1,400 versus 13,000 Japanese soldiers - the Malay soldiers showed incredible courage, engaging in hand-to-hand combat once their ammunition ran out. Those who didn't die that day were captured and later executed by the Japanese.

Housed in a restored black and white colonial bungalow located in lush Bukit Chandu (Opium Hill), Reflections at Bukit Chandu commemorates this significant WWII battle.

The building itself is of great interest. It is one of the last remaining bungalows in Singapore that was built at the turn of the 20th century for British senior officers. During renovations to convert it into a WWII gallery, much of the original structure and design were preserved. The arches and windows are original, but for safety reasons the roof had to be changed.


Inside, the gallery is full of photographs, maps, dates and information detailing the Defence of Malaya and life in the Malay Regiment. There's also a vivid account of the Japanese invasion from 7th to 15th February 1942, complete with video and graphic animations interacting with a 3D model of Singapore Island - giving visitors a "blow by blow" account of the attack.

A pillbox containing a holographic multimedia presentation brings to life the anxiety of warfare. By using a Pepper's Ghost Effect (see sidebar), a holographic narrator is superimposed on a 3D model of the Bukit Chandu terrain, and you can witness the retelling of those last 48 hours in 3D effect.

Did you know?

The Pepper's Ghost Effect is a holographic visual effect that is created by reflecting images from a projector, placed at a 45 degree, onto a parallel suspended piece of glass. The glass is placed in front of a static model of the battle field. Visitors will, therefore, see the moving "ghost" telling the story of the final attack.

Also don't miss...

Take a leisurely stroll amongst the tree tops after your visit and learn more about the Pasir Panjang historical landscape or venture further to take in panoramic views offered by the Southern Ridges' 9-km trail of green and open spaces.