Sembawang Hot Spring

The only natural hot spring on mainland Singapore, it was reported that the spring was discovered by a Municipal ranger W.A.B. Goodall in late 1908. Chinese businessman Seah Eng Keong, the owner of this plot of land, saw business opportunities in the discovery and went ahead to set up the Singapore Natural Mineral Hot Springs Company (the name was later changed to Singapore Hot Springs Limited) after tests proved that the water was safe for consumption.

A factory was built near the hot spring in 1909 to bottle the water and sell it under the brand “Zombun”. Fraser and Neave Limited (F&N) took over the Singapore Hot Spring Limited in 1921 and marketed their new branding as “Zom” and “Vichy Water”.

The area and the factory were also advertised as a tourist spot and opened to the public under the name “Seletar Hot Springs”.

During the Japanese Occupation (1942 – 1945), the area was turned into a thermal bath heaven for the Japanese officers, but the facilities were destroyed by Allied Forces’ bombing in 1944.

After World War II, F&N regained possession of the hot spring but it was only in the 1960s when some facilities were repaired to allow large volume of water to flow freely once more.

In 1967, F&N announced that they were looking at possibilities to covert the area into a recreational complex consisting of spas and restaurants but somehow the plans never materialised.

The Singapore government acquired the land in 1985 for military use. Initially the hot spring had to give way to the expansion of the Sembawang Air Base but after appeals from the public, MINDEF agreed to conserve the small area and open it to the public.

Standpipes channeling the water were finally completed in 2002, allowing the public to gain access to the hot water. During weekends, the area was crowded due to rumours that the hot spring was able to treat several skin diseases as well as rheumatism and arthritis.

However, its popularity has declined rapidly in recent years.

Visitors to the hot spring can freely use the buckets to contain the water, where there are no charges imposed. The area, which is about 100m from the main road of Gambas Avenue, is opened from 7am to 7pm.

Visitors can also catch a glimpse of the original well inside the small red-bricked building.

Published: 20 March 2011

23 Responses to Sembawang Hot Spring

  1. Theng says:


    Please can you tell me whether the hot springs is still open to public? Are we still able to touch the hot spring water? Thanks!

  2. An enthusiastic reader Richard Hale provided these rare valuable photos of how the Sembawang Hot Spring looked like way back in the late 1940s :)

    (Photo Credit: Richard Hale)

  3. crimson lily says:

    It was a childhood pastime to go to the hotspring and have fun^^, my dad usually bring my sisters and I whenever he had the chance,,, the sad thing is that I have moved out of sembawang and when I told my friends that a hotspring does exist in singapore,,, none believed me T__T

  4. xlash says:

    What is the,address ?

  5. elroygoh02 says:

    How do people get there?

  6. jb says:

    Wow memories…. remember going there during a school excursion. we could boil eggs in the drains and it came out hardboiled!

  7. othman says:

    It was at Jalan Mata Ayer ( Spring water ). This area occupied by Boyanese residents. Enjoying visiting my friends during Hari Raya. Few years ago, I used to cycle along the main road. Wah! a bathtub is ready to use.

  8. Devil says:

    reason why the water is hot usually is b’cos of volcanic activities, but as we know there’s no volcano here, so how come can splash out hot spring water ??? maybe got underground machines running nearby, LOL shd be renamed Hot Underground Machine Water, HUMW, LOL

  9. There is another hot spring in Singapore, not on the mainland but on the restricted island of Pulau Tekong.

  10. my uncle used to frequent this place until he chance upon ‘pontianak’ near there. i am for one can’t really say i believe or a non-believer in such matters because i have no personal encounters…but i know better not to dis-respect them, my uncle, the ‘spirits’ and anything related in-between.

  11. Kepha says:

    How about parking? Can the car go right in? Could anyone advise please? Thanks

  12. Shafiqah Nabila says:

    I would like to visit this Sembawang Hot Spring. Is this place still accessible? My aunt told me that this place got closed down.

  13. Angel Ang says:

    this is nearby my old kampung. Am very happy that they decide to save it and open to public! Thanks for the informative blog!

  14. Thomas Yong says:

    Where is the nearest place to park vehicle?

    • JQ says:

      Well, you have to park at the nearby HDB and walk over. about a 200-300m walk. definitely no way you can park along the busy roads

  15. Lyn says:

    Is it still open to public

  16. Lyn says:

    If yes ,is it open everyday cos so far I not yet see before….

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