Sir Stamford Raffles, the founder of Singapore and a keen naturalist, set up the first Botanic Garden on Government Hill at Fort Canning in 1822 mainly to introduce into cultivation economic crops such as nutmeg, clove and cocoa. This Garden was closed in 1829.
The Gardens at its present site was founded in 1859 by an Agri-Horticultural Society, and was later handed over to the government for maintenance. From an ornamnetal garden with roads, terraces, a bandstand and even a small zoo, it has come a long way in evolving into a leading equatorial botanic garden of 52 hectares.
Today the 139-year old Singapore Botanic Gardens is a star visitor attraction for the sophisticated traveller as well as the local resident. This Gardens possesses an array of botanical and horticultural attractions with a rich history and a wonderful plant collection of worldwide significance. Complementing these unique resources are sensitive developments providing visitors educational and recreational facilities.