I had read a little about Dataran Merdeka, or Independence Square, also called Merdeka Square before arriving, and put it on my list of places to visit.
My accommodation, Hotel Maison Boutique in the suburb of Pudu, near Imbi Monorail station and Berjaya Times Square, offered a free shuttle bus drop off to any place in the city. So I decided to utilize the service and got dropped off at Dataran Merdeka on Saturday morning.
A couple speaking Mandarin Chinese (a language I studied, so understood) in the shuttle bus chose to get dropped off at Central Market. That was a place I would visit later.
Around or near this Square are some beautiful and iconic buildings, such as the copper-domed Sultan Abdul Samad Building (which was once used as the government administrative office during British colonial rule), KL Railway station, the Textile Museum and St Mary's Cathedral.
THE NATIONAL FLAG IS PROMINENT AT MERDEKA SQUARE
At the Square, the Malaysian National Flag flies boldly and proudly. The flag is called The Stripes of Glory, or Jalur Gemilang in Malay. There are 14 horizontal red and white horizontal stripes that represent the Federal Government and the 13 states. The yellow star with 14 points represents the unity of the states and the federal government. The yellow crescent moon represents the national religion of Islam. Yellow is the colour of royalty of the rulers of the Malay states, and the blue backround on which the star and crescent moon are, represents unity of the Malaysian people.
The flag was first raised at Mederka Square on 16 September 1963.
But Malaysia had gained independence from Britain in 1957. The Union Jack was lowered here at Merdeka Square for the last time on 31 August 1957.
There is a 100 metre high flag pole located at one end of the Square, flying the Malaysian flag.
Adjacent to the Merdeka Square is the Royal Selangor Club built in a Tudor style-façade. The original building had a thatched roof, but it was destroyed by fire and later a flood.
The grassy area was where cricket was once played by the British. It is not permitted to walk on the grass, and there are rules posted at one end of the square.
There is also a fountain named after Queen Victoria and built to commemorate the jubilee of her tenure. The fountain has a partner, but the partner fountain is in Melaka (two hours away by bus).
In Merderka Square the Malaysian flag flies atop one of the highest poles I have ever seen. It was this flag that was raised on the country's first day of independence from Britain, hence its name in English: Independence Square. It's quite a remarkable square for Kuala Lumpur, with some of the countries most beautiful and historic buildings, like the Sultan Abdul Samad Building, the Royal Selangor Club and St. Mary's Church.
The square is surrounded by historical buildings.The time I went The field was closed for maintenance..
It is the usual venue for the National Day Parade.
Malaysian Main Flag is Hoisted here.
Across the Square there's a National Art Gallery(Free Entrance),KL City Gallery(Free Entrance) and National Museum.
Merdeka Square is just a walking distance from most Hotels in the City. and Some of the City attractions like Chinatown,KLCC,Suria Mall,Bukit Bitang,KL Telecommunication Tower,Central Market can be accessed by foot.
Malaysia took a different path to independence from Britain than did it neighbours. The process took longer, but on 31 August 1957, independence from colonial rule finally came - granted, not taken, and with minimal civil disruption.
At midnight on 30 August 1957, the Union flag was lowered for the last time on the flagpole on the Selangor Club Padang, and in its placed the new flag of the Federation of Malaya was raised to chants of Merdeka, Merdeka, Merdeka by the gathered thousands.
Later that day, new Prime Minister Tunku Abdul Rahman reprised the cry at the official celebration at the purpose built Merdeka Stadium.
Today the green field is surrounded by the Mughal inspired public buildings left by the former colonial masters, and the mock tudor Royal Selangor Club whilst mosaic portraits of the participants are displayed on the podium surrounding the 95 meter tall flagpole. Underneath it all is a shopping centre, which seems curiously appropriate for modern Malaysia!
Merdeka Square includes the Sultan Abdul Samad Building, St. Mary's Anglican Cathedral and the former National History Museum. It was the site of the August 31, 1957 proclamation declaring Malaysia's independence from Britain. I like this place a lot gives you a insight into the history of malaysia and there struggle. I recommend this tour from gotourister.com . As it is the most popular site in malaysia for tours.
Hello World Travellers
There is this free guided tour from the Mayor of KL office which runs thrice weekly at the Dataran Merdeka area. It starts at the KL City Gallery Centre located near the tall Malaysian flagpost (you can't miss it, seriously). You can walk in at around 9.00AM on Monday, Wednesday or Saturday and meet the guide on duty.
This is a heritage walk going into 11 places , some of which the general public have no access to. In the two and half hours walking tour, the guide will relate some history, architecture, untold stories from the colonial times of pre independence Malaya and even a famous scandal of long ago in KL..... Also there is plenty, plentiful of lovely photo op on this walk !.
I love this "colonial quarter" tour - learning about the mix of events that make up the vibrant KL , the Kingdom of Love. - You won't regret having to wake up early for the tour !
the Independence Square of Malaysia wherein in 1957 this was the place that marked the independence of Malaysia from colonial rule on 31 August 1957.
It is here that the Union Jack was lowered and replaced with the flag of Malaysia. The Merdeka Square is beside the royal selangor club and the field where the square is located was appropriated from the Royal Selangor Club by the ferderal government of Malaysia. This Square continues to be a venue where many events are held. The National Day celebrations and New Year countdown are among the events that are held here. Beneath the square is Plaza Putra where you will be able to find food and entertainment. The Main Attraction here besides the large LCD screen is the 100 metres flag pole which is reputed to be the tallest in the world.
The Queen Victoria Fountain is located on one of the corners of Merdeka Square, not far from the textile museum. It is an old ornamental fountain and drinking trough. It was imported into Kuala Lumpur from England then reassembled locally in 1897. The fountain was originally meant to be placed in Market Square, but the police objected to this plan on the grounds that it would obstruct the flow of traffic there. The fountain was built to celebrate Queen Victoria's Diamond Jubilee. The ornamental centre piece of the fountain consists of eight winged lions spouting water from their mouths. These represent courage. There is also a Queen Victoria Fountain in Melaka.
Wandering around "Dataran Merdeka (Merdeka Square)" is a very interesting experience. This area had witnessed the British's Union Jack flag was lowered down and replaced by Malaysian's Jalur Gemilang in the midnight of 31st August 1957. Besides, there are many other important national events was held at this Dataran Merdeka as well.
This Dataran Merdeka or known as Padang Kelab Selangor is located at former administration centre of Kuala Lumpur. At first, it was a cricket field for Royal Selangor Club. Around this field are the historical Royal Selangor Club building, Bangunan Sultan Abdul Samad, National Historical Museum, National Textile Museum, Memorial Library and the St. Mary Aglican Cathedral, a church with Gothic style which was built over 100 years ago.
A 95-meter flagpole, one of the tallest in the world, marks that spot with a flat, round black marble plaque. It is located at the southern end of the square.
Nearby is also the original "Kuala Lumpur Railway Station" which is still operational. However the main hub has recently been moved to KL Sentral in 2001.
There are two public libraries that opened for public during working hours near Merdeka Square in Kuala Lumpur. They are located next to the KL City Gallery near the Royal Selangor Club. If you like reading, do go there to have a visit.
Dataran Merdeka is situated in front of the Sultan Abdul Samad Building. It was here the Union Flag was lowered and the Malayan flag hoisted for the first time at midnight (time: 12:00 AM) on August 31, 1957. Since then, Merdeka Square has been the usual venue for the annual Merdeka Parade (National Day Parade).
There are a few tourist attraction nearby, to name them : The Royal Selangor Club where the big field attached to, the historical Sultan Abdul Samad Building, The Public Library, The KL Children Library, The KL Gallery, The Textile Museum and many more as the Merdeka Square is in the city centre.
Merdeka Square is the place where the liberation from the British was declared in 1957. You can admire the tallest flagpole in the world, 100 m of height, at the southern end of the square.
Along the square is the Sultan Abdul Samad Building on one side, and the Royal Selangor Club on the other side.