MacRitchie Reservoir is the oldest of the 17 reservoirs in Singapore. Though construction started in 1867, it was not until 1907 that the reservoir reached its present-day capacity.
Together with three other reservoirs (Upper Peirce, Lower Peirce, and Upper Seletar), MacRitchie Reservoir is part of the Central Catchment Nature Reserve (CCNR). Over 150-ha of primary forest that still occurs in CCNR is largely found around MacRitchie. Characteristic plants of MacRitchie’s surrounding forests include Keruing (Dipterocarpus spp.), Ten Man Trees (Ixonanthes reticulata), and Jelutong (Dyera costulata). Striped Tit Babblers (Macronus gularis), Sun Skinks (Mabuya multifasciata), and Long-tailed Macaques (Macaca fascicularis) are common fauna of the forest.
Offering both land- and water-based recreation, MacRitchie Reservoir is a popular destination for walkers, joggers, as well as kayakers. Boardwalks offer scenic views of the reservoir. The forest may be accessed via several walking trails, ranging from 3–11 km. A paddle across the reservoir is also possible, with kayaks available for rent. Recent upgrading works to the nature area, which included the addition of a green two-storey carpark and an amenities centre, was completed in two phases. MacRitchie Reservoir is open from 7 am to 7 pm daily.