7 Times That Singapore Skies Made Us Go Wow In 2021
STORY: Ng Kai & Sim Ding En
31 December 2021
Eh, say real - don't you find yourself complaining about our weather ("walao so hot" or "alamak raining so heavily and I've no umbrella") the same number of times you're awed by the breathtaking pictures of Singapore skies posted on your social media feeds ("omg that can't be Yishun!")?
We might not have the same variety of climate changes as temperate countries, but our temperamental tropical meteorology also quite wonderfully wow lah.
Majestic morning call
If you live high enough in an HDB block, sometimes, all it takes is to look straight ahead to stare beauty - and a stunning sunrise like this - in its face.
"I was lucky because the sun's position fell nicely between the buildings, so I could get the sunburst," says FreeMan Loke, the awesome fitspo handstander, who captured this shot on 19 Sep 2021.
"Actually, there’s beauty in our heartlands. We just need to pay attention to and appreciate it. People usually go day in, day out without noticing."
Nature's greatest light(ning) shows
Yishun resident Paul Lee has caught jaw-droppingly wow lightning displays with his lens.
"I live in Yishun, and capture most of the storms from my apartment. I personally think that the whole island has lightning storms, and anybody from anywhere in Singapore can enjoy these fantastic light shows. All they need is a high vantage point that has a good view, and is relatively safe," says Paul.
Pro-tip: Paul uses the myENV app, a one-stop platform by the National Environment Agency, to know which direction a storm is coming from.
Imagine the thunderous boom that came after this streak lightning! Here in Singapore, one degree north of the equator, we are privy to witnessing some of the most magnificent tropical storms.
Sam Chong's patience and photography skill definitely paid off during this lightning display above. "I had to stand in front of the window and look at the sky for the lightning, and press the shutter asap. It took about half an hour to get this shot," says Sam, who used a special feature called "Pro Capture Mode" on his Olympus Camera.
No-show Super Flower Blood Moon
The last time a blood moon appeared in Singapore skies was on 28 Jul 2018, so we were stoked when there was news that a Super Flower Blood Moon (the name of the first total lunar eclipse of the decade, not some deadly martial arts move) would appear on 26 May 2021. But due to massive cloud cover, the sky was as dark as, well, night.
When can you catch the next total lunar eclipse? Get your cameras ready on 7 Sep 2025, according to this forecast by Time and Date.
(And, btw, did you know that even though the blood moon didn't appear, a nocturnal rainbow did in Jalan Batu?)
All the National Day feels
Jacobs Chong, a 46-year-old hobbyist photographer who works as a sales and distribution manager, took this super swee shot to showcase the spirit of "Singapore Together", as we unite to recover and rebuild for a stronger, more sustainable tomorrow. The photo was shot from level 57 of Hotel Swissôtel The Stamford.
What an array of rays!
Anti-crepuscular rays and crepuscular rays. Simi lai? Well, they are the scientific terms for the "sun rays" you see. According to the National Environment Agency, "these are anti-crepuscular rays, which extend across the sky and radiate on the horizon. If the rays converge towards the sun, they are called crepuscular rays. Both phenomena usually occur at sunrise or sunset, due to the scattering of light by small water droplets or particles in the atmosphere." Orrrr... now you know.
Fascinating yet frustrating floods
When it floods in Singapore, it's really rabak. Too hot we complain, but too much rain also not ideal hor.
"Based on the rainfall averaged over long-term stations islandwide, August 2021 is the wettest August since 1980, with a monthly total rainfall of 426.2mm," according to a statement by the Meteorological Service Singapore.
As a result, on 24 Aug, parts of Singapore - including Upper Bukit Timah and Dunearn Road - experienced flash floods on that wet, wet, wet day.
Don't play play - we've even had hailstones and scary "tornados". Just check out this article for more crazy weather stuff in SG!