Straight from the source, it can’t get any better than seafood fresh from the kelong. For the ultimate fresh seafood experience, check out these rustic places around Singapore… before they’re all gone
Love your seafood buffets and farm-to-table dining? It all starts from the kelong. Kelongs are floating fish farms found in waters off Singapore, Malaysia, the Philippines and Indonesia. Only a handful remain around here due to rapid urbanisation, so if you ever need a respite from city life, pack light, dress down and hop on a boat. Heads up: at some of these spots you can dig into the freshest seafood meal you’ll ever get your hands on!
If you want the freshest seafood, well, you have to work for it! Dining at Smith Marine will definitely be an experience. Where else would you have to take 15-minute boat ride to have dinner on the water, quite literally, and catch your own dinner on top of that. As tedious as it may sound, it’s actually quite fun to really earn your dinner – even though it’s from a “sure-catch” pond. The best part is choosing how you’d like your seafood done and the restaurant will settle that for you. This unique restaurant is great spot for seafood if you’re getting jaded by choices on the Singapore mainland.
Smith Marine, between Pulau Ubin and Changi Point Ferry Terminal, Contact at +65 9792 7609 (reservation must be made at least 3 days in advance)
Uncle Tan’s Kelong
Just off Pulau Ubin, making a visit to Uncle Tan’s is like dropping by a family uncle’s house for dinner. Don’t expect slick restaurant fare, but you can look forward to a real authentic home-cooked meal here with the freshest seafood. An evening here for dinner will transport you to a simpler life – it’s tranquil and far from city life, the sea breeze takes the place of the standard air conditioning you’re accustomed to, and the seafood is super fresh. Bring your own wine for an after-dinner chill hangout!
Uncle Tan’s Kelong, 12 Pulau Ubin, Singapore 534667; call +65 8356 9547 (reservation must be made at least 3 days in advance)
Ah Hua Kelong
Talk about farm-to-table dining: Ah Hua Kelong takes its fresh seafood very seriously. This fish farm located off Changi and Sembawang specialises in farming seabass, pearl grouper, XL mussels and flower crabs which they distribute directly to restaurants, homes (there’s a fresh seafood delivery seafood on their website) and retail stores. Their restaurant Scaled in Haji Lane is not your regular local seafood restaurant. Enjoy miso butterscotch clams, smoked sea bass pâté, mussels with mantou and roasted fish. Doesn’t sound fishy to us.
Scaled by Ah Hua Kelong, 55 Haji Lane, Singapore 189248
Technically not in Singapore…
Chia Soon Kelong
If you want to boast that you had your dinner “overseas” to your colleagues, Chia Soon Kelong’s your spot. A short ride from Changi Ferry Terminal, Chia Soon Kelong is technically in Malaysian waters. Built to be a day trip and also a stay-over destination, there’s accommodation if you do decide to spend a night – nothing fancy and there’s no electricity from 8am to 8pm. Most visitors spend a day fishing (for their dinner) at the kelong before gathering in the evening to enjoy dinner together. And oh, you do have to bring a passport to get it stamped but that just makes it more interesting.
Chia Soon Kelong, Pasir Gogok, Johor, Malaysia
Blue Mountain Kelong
Take a slightly longer boat ride in the open waters and make a stop in the Riau Islands at Blue Mountain Kelong. Blue Mountain has all the facilities and amenities for an entire day of swimming, chilling, and fishing. If you really want to get away from the Lion City for a day (or three days and two nights), hop on the ferry to Riau Islands.
Blue Mountain Kelong, Subang Mas, Galang, Batam City, Riau Islands 29483, Indonesia
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