Choa Chu Kang Cemetery
Opened in 1947, Choa Chu Kang Cemetery is Singapore’s biggest cemetery and the only one left where burials are still allowed. It is located in the North West of Singapore.
In this post I will explain to you and show you why you should visit Choa Chu Kang Cemetery while you still can.
Each religion has its own section
On 318 ha of land, there are designated areas for Chinese, Muslim, Roman Catholic, Protestant and other religion graves.
Walking along the various sections, you can clearly see differences in the designs of the graves and in the way the graves are decorated.
Some graves are small and understated, others are more elaborate and ornamented. It’s really interesting to do this walk.
Oh, and are you aware of the fact that graveyards like this one are often great for bird spotting or other (small) wildlife? We saw three Kingfishers when we were there. And one dead snake.
When I visited Bukit Brown Cemetery years ago, we also spotted a Kingfisher and lots of monkeys.
(Be aware that for a big part there is no shadow, so bring sun protection, insect repellant and plenty of water.)
Visit Choa Chu Kang Cemetery while you still can
But land is scarce in Singapore. So Choa Chu Kang Cemetery has to give up a part of it’s land.
Choa Chu Kang Cemetery is not the first cemetery in Singapore that has to go, or in this case: to get smaller.
(Read my article about Bukit Brown Cemetery here.)
A part of the land is needed for the expansion of Tengah Air Base. The plot has to be reduced from 318 ha to 200 ha.
Those 200 ha will remain functioning as a cemetery until at least 2130, so I read.
In order to achieve that, a part of the graves (80.000 to be precise !) have been or are about to be exhumed.
Check out this small interview with one of the grave caretakers about his work and about the upcoming changes.
Reburial or cremation
Islamic laws prohibit cremation, so for them there is the option to be reburied on a smaller plot elsewhere on Choa Chu Kang Cemetery.
All others can choose for cremation and after that for a spot in a columbarium or temple.
And that’s where e.g. Nirvana comes in. My next blogpost is gonna tell you more about that place.
Have you visited any cemeteries in Singapore? Which one impressed you most?