Turtle Museum owner urges visitors to return, says they may not be able to last next few months

Live Turtle & Tortoise Museum owner appeals for more visitors

The Live Turtle & Tortoise Museum, a Singapore mainstay for over 20 years, is facing an existential crisis, according to its owner.

In a video posted on its social media accounts yesterday (20 April), the museum’s owner, Connie Tan, urged people to come back and visit the turtles as she is running out of funds to keep the place open.


This is our very hard truth… When we first founded Turtle Museum, it meant tremendously to my dad and I as a community project so that we can share the love of turtles to everyone. Today, we’re in trouble… Since the construction of Lor Chencharu started last year, many people had thought that Turtle Museum, along with our neighbour GUI, are closed…🙏🏻 With the rising costs, ongoing construction, dramatic fall in visitors, and mandated to move to the new place, we hope that you can share this video and visit us. Thank you.. #ourhome #truthoflife #ourstory #turtles #tortoise #worldrecord #animallife #loveanimals #exploresg #singaporelife #singaporean #supportus #careforsg

♬ оригинальный звук – Aizh

She also said that the museum is still at Lorong Chencharu and has not moved yet, even though the place is being redeveloped.

Turtle Museum owner urges visitors to come

In the TikTok video about the Turtle Museum’s predicament, Ms Tan revealed that she is running out of funds and has been “in trouble” over the past few months.

This is partly because of the perception that the Live Turtle & Tortoise Museum is closed.

Since construction began in 2023 to redevelop the site where ORTO used to sit, the museum has seen a sharp decline in visitorship as the area around it appears closed.

“It’s the third week of April and we are less than 30% into our operations cost,” Ms Tan said.

Source: @turtlemuseumsg on Instagram

Among the reasons for this fall is the apparent ambiguity of the museum’s location.

The area is filled with green fences and the road is narrow, making it difficult for visitors to come over.

In fact, many appear to believe the museum is closed, said Ms Tan.

Among other reasons cited were “rising costs, ongoing construction, dramatic fall in visitors” and a mandate to move to the new location.

Museum needs funds to stay afloat

Having to move to a new location requires a great sum of money.

In the meantime, Ms Tan has had to dip into her savings just to keep the business open. If current visitation figures remain, she fears she may not last the next few months.

She thus decided to make the video to get people to visit the turtles and tortoises.

Source: @turtlemuseumsg on Instagram

“Your visitation is very important for us,” Ms Tan said.

Ms Tan told MS News she isn’t sure when they’ll move to their new place as there have been “many delays”, giving an estimate of the first quarter of 2025.

She said that there are many variables to consider regarding operating costs.

Many people have stepped up to support the museum since the post, pledging to visit.

In response, Ms Tan said she feels grateful and is “still feeling [her] heart being tugged” as she no longer feels alone.

“I really hope I can pull through.”

Museum has been around since 2001

The museum began life in 2001 as a side community project for Ms Tan and her father to showcase their turtle and tortoise collection.

Over the years, it has achieved a place in the Guinness Book of World Records for housing the largest collection of turtles and tortoises anywhere in the world.

While the museum was at its home in ORTO, the area became earmarked as a site for future residential developments.

As a result, the Live Turtle & Tortoise Museum had to move. It managed to strike a deal to remain at the ORTO development last year and is awaiting the time when it can move.

There is also a fundraiser to help the museum move to its new place. You can check it out here.

If you’d like to drop by for a visit, here’s how you can find the museum:

Live Turtle & Tortoise Museum
Address: 81 Lor Chencharu, #01-16, ORTO 769198
Opening hours: Monday to Sunday, 10am to 6pm. Closed on Tuesdays.
Nearest MRT station: Khatib

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Featured image adapted from @turtlemuseumsg on Instagram and Google Maps.

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