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Merdeka Square

Visit this impressive square for a glimpse into Kuala Lumpur's colonial past and to see the place where the Malaysian flag was raised for the very first time.

This square in the centre of Kuala Lumpur holds particular significance for locals, as it is the place where Malaysian independence was officially declared – hence the name Merdeka (literally "Independence" Square). This important moment in Malaysian history is commemorated in the square every year as part of the country's Independence Day celebrations.

Although Merdeka Square now plays host to concerts and events, its carefully tended lawn and hedges were once the cricket pitch of the Royal Selangor Club. Check out the Royal Selangor Club building itself, one of the many fine examples of colonial architecture that surround the square. This Tudor-revival structure was originally a meeting-place for prominent British military officers, where they could socialise and hold cricket tournaments.

Directly opposite stands the magnificent neo-Moorish Sultan Abdul Samad Building, which was completed in 1897. The architect Arthur C. Norman drew inspiration from his time in India for this government building, hence its domed turrets, highly decorated archways and beautiful red and white brick façade. Marvel at the 41-metre clock tower as you walk past.

You'll find a number of other gems just off the square, including the 19th-century St. Mary's Cathedral, mother church of the West Malaysia Diocese, and the National Textile Museum. The latter is a treasure trove of weaving and embroidery exhibits. The Kuala Lumpur City Gallery is also well worth a visit for its wealth of historical photos and artefacts.

The main attraction, however, is the 95-metre flagpole in the south of the square. One of the tallest in the world, it marks the spot where, in 1957, the Union Jack was lowered and the Malaysian National Flag raised for the first time, thereby officially marking the start of Malaysia's independence from the UK.

You'll find Merdeka Square right in the centre of Kuala Lumpur, just west of the Gombak River and a short walk from the Jamek Mosque. Public transport is an easy and cheap option but, if you want to drive, there's a paid underground car park at the southern end. The square is open every day and entry to it, the city gallery and the textile museum is free of charge.

There are so many fun ways to get the most out of Merdeka Square. Here are some of some of the top ones:

If you'd like more options, examine our Kuala Lumpur things to do page.


Guide to Exploring Merdeka Square


Map

Top Merdeka Square Hotel Deals

See all 2,735 properties near Merdeka Square
Hilton Garden Inn Kuala Lumpur Jalan Tuanku Abdul Rahman North SG$39
Hilton Garden Inn Kuala Lumpur Jalan Tuanku Abdul Rahman North

Hilton Garden Inn Kuala Lumpur Jalan Tuanku Abdul Rahman North

449, Jalan Tuanku Abdul Rahman, Kuala Lumpur, Kuala Lumpur
     
    4.0 out of 5.0 Stars

    Located in Kuala Lumpur City Centre, this hotel is within a 15-minute walk of Putra World Trade Centre and Sunway Putra Mall. SOGO and Merdeka Square are also within 1 mi (2 km). Chow Kit Station is only a 5-minute walk and PWTC Station is 9 minutes.

    Aloft Kuala Lumpur Sentral SG$78
    Aloft Kuala Lumpur Sentral

    Aloft Kuala Lumpur Sentral

    No 5, Jalan Stesen Sentral, Kuala Lumpur Sentral, Kuala Lumpur
       
      4.0 out of 5.0 Stars

      This family-friendly Kuala Lumpur hotel is located on the boardwalk, just steps away from NU Sentral and Kuala Lumpur Sentral. Petaling Street and National Mosque are also within 2 miles (3 km). KL Sentral Station and Kuala Lumpur Sentral Station are within a 5-minute walk.

      Hilton Kuala Lumpur SG$93
      Hilton Kuala Lumpur

      Hilton Kuala Lumpur

      3 Jalan Stesen Sentral, Kuala Lumpur
         
        5.0 out of 5.0 Stars

        Located in the heart of Kuala Lumpur, this luxury hotel is within a 15-minute walk of Kuala Lumpur Sentral and NU Sentral. Petaling Street and National Mosque are also within 2 miles (3 km). Kuala Lumpur Sentral Station is only a 2-minute walk and KL Sentral Station is 6 minutes.

        Shangri-La Hotel - Kuala Lumpur SG$127
        Shangri-La Hotel - Kuala Lumpur

        Shangri-La Hotel - Kuala Lumpur

        11 Jalan Sultan Ismail, Kuala Lumpur
           
          5.0 out of 5.0 Stars

          This family-friendly Kuala Lumpur hotel is located in the entertainment district, within a 15-minute walk of Kuala Lumpur Tower, Kuala Lumpur Convention Centre and Petronas Twin Towers. Suria KLCC Shopping Centre and Aquaria KLCC are also within 15 minutes. Bukit Nanas Station is only a 5-minute walk and Dang Wangi Station is 7 minutes.

          Traders Hotel Kuala Lumpur SG$115
          Traders Hotel Kuala Lumpur

          Traders Hotel Kuala Lumpur

          Kuala Lumpur City Centre, Kuala Lumpur
             
            5.0 out of 5.0 Stars

            This family-friendly Kuala Lumpur hotel is located in the shopping district, within a 5-minute walk of KLCC Park and Aquaria KLCC. Kuala Lumpur Convention Centre and Suria KLCC Shopping Centre are also within 10 minutes. Raja Chulan Station is 11 minutes by foot and Bukit Bintang Station is 15 minutes.

            Mandarin Oriental Kuala Lumpur SG$175
            Mandarin Oriental Kuala Lumpur

            Mandarin Oriental Kuala Lumpur

            Kuala Lumpur City Centre, Kuala Lumpur
               
              5.0 out of 5.0 Stars

              This family-friendly Kuala Lumpur hotel is located in the entertainment district, within a 15-minute walk of Petronas Twin Towers and Pavilion Kuala Lumpur. Aquaria KLCC and Kuala Lumpur Tower are also within 1 mi (2 km). KLCC Station is 9 minutes by foot and Raja Chulan Station is 13 minutes.

              Sheraton Imperial Kuala Lumpur Hotel SG$91
              Sheraton Imperial Kuala Lumpur Hotel

              Sheraton Imperial Kuala Lumpur Hotel

              Jalan Sultan Ismail, Kuala Lumpur
                 
                5.0 out of 5.0 Stars

                Located in Kuala Lumpur City Centre, this luxury hotel is within a 15-minute walk of Maju Junction Mall, SOGO and Masjid India. Kuala Lumpur Tower and Merdeka Square are also within 1 mile (2 km). Medan Tuanku Station is only a 2-minute walk and Bukit Nanas Station is 9 minutes.

                Oasia Suites Kuala Lumpur SG$67
                Oasia Suites Kuala Lumpur

                Oasia Suites Kuala Lumpur

                No. 10, Lorong P Ramlee, Kuala Lumpur
                   
                  4.0 out of 5.0 Stars

                  Located in Kuala Lumpur City Centre, this hotel is within a 15-minute walk of Kuala Lumpur Tower, Kuala Lumpur Convention Centre and Petronas Twin Towers. Suria KLCC Shopping Centre and Pavilion Kuala Lumpur are also within 1 mile (2 km). Raja Chulan Station is 8 minutes by foot and Bukit Nanas Station is 8 minutes.