Independence Square Merdeka Square (Dataran Merdeka) This is the center point of all city attractions. National Independence Day is celebrated here, government buildings, several museums are located around, and what is remarkable, all these are not modern office skyscrapers, but old-style buildings in the national style. Among them are: Sultan Abdul Samad Building, National History Museum, Textile Museum, Memorial Library of Kuala Lumpur, Old City Hall, The Royal Selangor Club (Royal Club), St. Mary's Cathedral, each of which is in itself an architectural and cultural attraction. Also on the square are several notable fountains.
It’s worth visiting the Independence Square at least in order to take many beautiful pictures, and maybe even visit some of the museums. Moreover, the entrance to the square is free and available around the clock. And it is best to take a walk here during the day, and therefore return in the evening.
🕐 working time: round the clock
💵 Entrance fee / ticket price: is free
🚶 How to get there: Independence Square is located in the central area of the city, almost adjacent to the northeast side of Chinatown (Independence Square on the map). Nearby are the Masjid Jamek subway stations (the intersection of the Ampang and Kelana Jaya lines of the LRT Rail metro). A little in the distance, at a distance of one kilometer, is the Kuala Lumpur KTM suburban station.
Photo and description
Merdeka Square in translation means Independence Square. This is a historical place for Malaysia and is a symbol of an independent country. It was on this square that on August 31, 1957, the flag of a state free of British colonization was hoisted.
Nevertheless, the most beautiful architectural appearance of the square is the heritage of the colonial past. It looks like a single ensemble due to the fact that almost all the buildings were designed by Arthur Norman, a British architect, author of many historical buildings in Kuala Lumpur, which have become landmarks. This architect was extremely harmonious in combining traditional European and English styles with Moorish, Saracen and architectural elements of Southeast Asia. An example of this is the arched colonnades of the first floors of the buildings of the Merdeka Square, which emphasize the eastern flavor of Victorian buildings.
With the exception of the 40-meter clock tower of the building of the Sultan Abdul-Samad, all the houses of the square are low. The skyscrapers of the modern capital towering behind them emphasize the cosiness of these ancient buildings.
Another reminder of the British past is the grassy lawn in the central part of the square - in the spirit of traditional English golf lawns. Until 1957, this territory was used by members of the Royal Cricket Club, which were mainly English.
The square was rebuilt, fountains were equipped, and trees were planted around the lawn and benches were set up. The cricket club is still operating and its building is one of the attractions of the square, just a place for games is now located a little further away. Among other beautiful buildings, the palace of the Sultan Abdul-Samad, the Main Post Office and the City Hall are especially distinguished.
The landmark of the square is a hundred-meter flagpole in its southern part. Since 1957, the national flag of the state has been developing on it. There are parades in honor of Independence Day, other public holidays. On such days, the area overlaps. Without a traffic stream, it looks even more beautiful: a corner of antiquity in a megalopolis. In the evenings, the square becomes a walking place for citizens and tourists. And the original lighting of the fountains makes its surroundings even more magnificent.
But the area will also be interesting to tourists as a historical attraction. Around it there are many cultural and colonial buildings, for example, the Sultan Abdul Samad Building (built in 1897), the National History Museum, the Textile Museum, Masjid Jamek Mosque, Memorial Library of Kuala Lumpur, Old City Hall , The Royal Selangor Club.
All this is located around a huge green field, where solemn events take place on Independence Day, and concerts, sports competitions, etc. on the rest of the days. Sometimes cricket competitions are held here. Next to the field is a 100-meter flagpole - one of the tallest in the world, which was built as a reminder of the end of the colonial era and the beginning of the independence of Malaysia. Underground the Plaza Dataran Merdeka shopping center is actively developing. There you can not only make purchases, but also eat in the food court.
In our opinion, Independence Square is simply a must to visit, as it is surrounded by a large number of interesting sights. And the place itself is very beautiful, especially after sunset, when many colonial buildings are highlighted.
How to get there
Independence Square is located in the very center of the city, near Chinatown, the fastest and cheapest way to get to the LRT Rail metro station (Masjid Jamek station, which stands at the intersection of two lines - Ampang and Kelana Jaya). A little further (about a 10-minute walk) is the Kuala Lumpur subway station.
Naturally, you can also take a taxi from anywhere in the city.