Sentosa Cove to Lazarus Island Ferry by Marina South Ferries
Marina South Ferries has launched ferry services between Sentosa Jetty @Cove in Sentosa Cove and Lazarus Island using Seringat Island Pier from 23 October 2021. On the first day of operations, I hopped over to Sentosa to try out this new Southern Islands ferry route.
Personally, I find it a bit strange to call this destination “Lazarus Island”. For context, St John’s Island, Lazarus Island, Seringat Island, and Kias Island have all been reclaimed and is now a single island. When reconfirming my thought on Google Maps, there is no jetty on Lazarus Island. Instead, the closest alternative is the Seringat Island Pier on, well, Seringat Island.
Well, Seringat Island Pier is on Seringat Island, so I’ll just call it that from here, or a combination of Lazarus Island (Seringat Island Pier). I hope Singapore wouldn’t have a London or Ryanair airports naming issue by calling things a big place away from where they’re actually at.
Sentosa Express Monorail
Alighting from the MRT at HarbourFront MRT Station, I headed up to the 3rd Floor of VivoCity to catch the Sentosa Express monorail to head in to Sentosa. Entry into Sentosa by the Sentosa Express monorail is free of charge until until 31 March 2022.
NOTE: The Sentosa Express monorail VivoCity station is located within VivoCity, a shopping mall. The Sentosa Express monorail VivoCity station thus can only be used by fully vaccinated passengers as you are required to enter the mall. All passengers, however, can use the Sentosa Cove Shuttle Bus Service from HarbourFront Bus Interchange for S$2.
Sentosa Bus B
Beach Station is the transfer hub of all internal Sentosa modes of transportation. From here, Sentosa Bus B goes to Sentosa Cove. Sentosa Bus B departs every 15 minutes, observed to be at 00, 15, 30 and 45 of the hour from 8.00am to 10.00pm daily.
Entering Sentosa Cove.
Don’t worry when Sentosa Bus B bypasses Sentosa Cove Village where you should alight for Sentosa Jetty @Cove. It will be the next stop.
Sentosa Bus B serves W Hotel/Quayside Isle before heading on to Sentosa Cove Village.
Sentosa Cove Village
Alight at Sentosa Cove Village for Sentosa Jetty @Cove. The Sentosa Bus B ride from Beach Station to Sentosa Cove Village took 17 minutes. I booked my Marina South Ferries ticket from Sentosa Cove (Sentosa Jetty @Cove) to Lazarus Island (Seringat Island Pier) at 1.00pm, so the safest bus to take was the 12.15pm departure from Beach Station.
From Sentosa Cove Village bus stop, head down the staircase following the sign to Sentosa Jetty @Cove
Head towards the waterfront.
There is a Cold Storage supermarket and 7-Eleven convenience store here which makes stocking up for supplies for the trip to the Southern Islands easier. Note that water is not drinkable from toilets in the Southern Islands, neither are there stalls selling food and drinks, so fill up your bottles or buy your drinks from the mainland first.
Marina South Ferries Sentosa Cove Ticket Counter
The confirmation email needs to be redeemed for the actual paper ticket at the Marina South Ferries Sentosa Cove Ticket Counter, about 15 minutes before departure. The Marina South Ferries Sentosa Cove Ticket Counter is located at a makeshift space in between Cold Storage and 7-Eleven, beside the Singapore Post SAM Kiosk.
Toilets are also available here.
Sentosa Cove Ferry Schedule
Weekends and Public Holidays only
Sentosa Cove to Lazarus Island (Seringat Island Pier): 9am, 11am, 1pm, 3pm
Lazarus Island (Seringat Island Pier) to Sentosa Cove: 10.30am, 12.30am, 2.30pm, 5.30pm
Sentosa Cove Ferry Fares
Child below 12 years old: S$15.00
Family Package (2A2C): S$60.00
Toddlers (0-2 years old): Free
Redemption was fuss-free, with the staff pairing my name with the paper ticket that they’ve written my name on.
I was also provided with a ferry schedule. Since I was on the 1.00pm departure, I could return back to Sentosa Cove from Lazarus Island at either 2.30pm or 5.30pm. This ticket cannot be used for the Marina South Ferries service from St John’s Island to Marina South Pier.
Sentosa Jetty @Cove
Sentosa Jetty @Cove is just down the stairs from 7-Eleven to the waterfront promenade.
The gates of Sentosa Jetty @Cove are closed until called for boarding.
As with ferry trips from offshore islands back to the mainland, ICA will conduct checks when returning to the mainland – no exceptions here.
The new public Sentosa Jetty @Cove which looks slightly out of place at this premier yachting harbour.
Yup, definitely not a yacht.
Marina South Ferries uses their harbour launches (or what they call express ferries and water taxies) for this Sentosa Cove service. This means a 12-seater boat, so pre-booking is highly recommended because I don’t think it will be difficult for tickets to sell out.
2 harbour launches were prepared though, with a crowd of more than 12 for the 1pm departure.
Boarding at Sentosa Jetty @Cove
With the small crowd, boarding was easily managed.
Boarding closes 5 minutes prior to departure.
Heading down Sentosa Jetty @Cove.
The 2 harbour launches heading to Seringat Island Pier for the 1pm slot.
Boarding is very easy from this floating pontoon with just 1 short step up to the harbour launch.
The seats in the sheltered part of the harbour launch were nicely padded.
On the outside deck, fake grass have been laid, similar to the open deck on board the MSF Natsu.
Personally, I like the harbour launch better since you can get up close and personal with all the workings of the boat whether you like it or not.
While the maximum capacity of the boat was 12 passengers, it did not feel very crowded, probably thanks to the illusion of the divided deck.
A notice inside the harbour launch reminds passengers to remain on board for security checks when arriving back at Sentosa Jetty@Cove.
Departing from Sentosa Jetty @Cove
With this batch of passengers all on board well before time, my harbour launch departed 5 minutes early at 12.55pm.
Look at all these yachts and condos that I won’t be able to afford.
The speed limit in the ONE°15 Marina is a slow 3 knots.
Lots of yachts parked here at the ONE°15 Marina.
Heading out of ONE°15 Marina.
I think this is the closest I can get to the residential area of Sentosa Cove.
Once out of the ONE°15 Marina, the harbour launch heads on to Seringat Island at a better speed of 12 to 13 knots.
Passing by Pulau Tekukor.
Speeding away from Sentosa Cove.
In no time, the Kias beacon can be seen. This is quite a short ride.
Passing by Sisters’ Islands.
The St John’s Island pier can be seen just ahead.
The harbour launch turns left towards Seringat Island Pier…
… away from the crowds at St John’s Island.
The waters off Seringat Island is a popular spot for yachts to anchor.
Arriving at Seringat Island Pier
Being my first time here, I’m surprised that the jetty and shelters here at Seringat Island are quite modern.
With the jetty full of yachts, the harbour launch had to disembark from the end.
Disembarking from the harbour launch. The ferry ride from Sentosa Cove to Seringat Island took 15 minutes.
The good guys of Discover Sailing Asia helped the harbour launch stay attached to the pier with their bare hands, with no bollards to tie the rope on.
Seringat Island Pier
Heading up Seringat Island Pier to the island.
A long shelter awaits on land. This is quite a good spot to take cover from foul weather.
Toilets and a rubbish bin are also available here, so there’s no need to walk all the way to St John’s Island for it.
The second harbour launch for the 1pm service arrived about 5 minutes later, this time with a proper alongside.
From here, the foot path leads on to Lazarus Island.
A sign along the way also point you towards the direction of each island.
I have mixed feelings about this ferry service.
Aside from Sentosa Cove residents, it’s actually quite a hassle to get to Sentosa Cove if looking at this ferry service purely as a form of transport. For reference, 99% to 100% of you reading this article are not staying in Sentosa Cove. After getting from your home to HarbourFront MRT Station, you require a paid shuttle bus or a free monorail-bus transfer (mentioned above) in order to get to Sentosa Cove, before catching the ferry to Seringat Island. If you are staycationing in Sentosa, aside from W Singapore Sentosa Cove, you will also require a bus transfer.
On the other hand, for the novelty factor, and perhaps combining it with a visit to Sentosa, this new ferry potentially links up the Southern Islands seamlessly, and give regular locals a glimpse and whiff of how luxury living might be, albeit with a low frequency of 4 return trips per day.
I say “potentially”, because going back to the ticket conditions, this pink Sentosa Cove ticket is not valid for Marina South Ferries to Marina South (white ticket). Which then means, the inter-island shuttle, which Marina South Ferries has a trump card over Singapore Island Cruise, does not come with the pink Sentosa Cove ticket, which is probably not coincidentally not advertised with this ticket. This means that you cannot go to Kusu Island and Big Sisters’ Island from Sentosa Cove.
If you want a whiff of luxury from a harbour launch, or just looking for a novelty day trip, go for the new ferry from Sentosa Cove to Lazarus Island. Otherwise, Marina South Pier is far more convenient, especially with the direct link to the North-South Line with frequent MRT train services. Also, it’s S$3 cheaper.
The good news for Marina South Ferries, and a smart move by them, is that each boat only fits 12 people. At S$18 a return ticket, each boat makes $216 for a return trip. A regular harbour launch charter costs S$180 return, so Marina South Ferries is technically making more money on this new service, assuming every boat gets full. It’s not a big risk, and it’s not difficult to fill up 12 seats.
With the low capacity, resulting in reasonable demand, I think this Sentosa Cove ferry service will be successful.