The Istana opens to the public only 5 times a year. Open House today is on account that it is Hari Raya Puasa public holiday. We started early and joined the queue to get in at 8.30 am. Singaporeans and PRs go in free. We only need to pay $2 when visiting Level 1 of The Istana. Besides seeing the various exquisite gift items from various nations, we get to visit the Reception Hall, the State Room, and the Banquet Hall. For majority of us who have no reasons to be present in the State Room or the Banquet Hall, this is the closest we can get to feel the environment of this stately place.
I was impressed with the landscape and grounds of The Istana. It is a miniature Botanic Garden but very well maintained. You can see: The Grove, Japanese Garden, The Swan Pond, Victoria Pond, The Gun Terrace, The Lawn and the Centre Gate.
The weather was fine and not hot this morning. We got out of The Istana before the heavy rain came, feeling satisfied. At least we had a chance to visit The Istana and mark off our list of places to visit.