You Haven't Been To Kuala Lumpur If You Haven't Been To Merdeka Square

The first step onto Merdeka Square leaves you mesmerized due to the glow of odd shapes and colours of a building so different to its city-scape backdrop. This is without a doubt an old emergence swallowed by age but still stands grandeur in front of the many high risers. The Sultan Abdul Samad building stands the test of time as the country slowly moves towards modernity. Merdeka Square is one of the most visited places in Kuala Lumpur by tourists and locals alike. The Sultan Abdul Samad building was actually an administrative complex built during the British rule in Malaya. It was amongst the most extravagant structures of its time in the whole of the Malaya. It was the heart of Kuala Lumpur which was then under British colonial rule in the late nineteenth to early twentieth century. The surrounding area is arrayed with numerous other buildings of the same resemblance, making a testament to the architectural evidence existent in the capital of Malaysia.

How to get there ?

Getting to Dataran Merdeka is easy. By Train : Hop on to the RapidKL Kelana Jaya Line and exit at Masjid Jamek station. The Sultan Abdul Samad building is a 5 minute walk from here. You will not miss it as there are many good signages to guide you along the way. Alternatively you can exit at Pasar Seni station. Here you can visit other iconic landmarks of the city such as Central Market & Petaling Street before you head to Dataran Merdeka which is a 10 minute walk from Pasar Seni Station

A visit to the heart of Kuala Lumpur is a journey that brings history into life if carefully treaded. It takes you back to the early nineteenth century where it all began for the capital city of Malaysia. A fact so crucial yet often overlooked even by the locals is that the city owes its name to a seemingly neglected spot, as it expands into a metropolitan. You may not see it from a distance because it is not a high rise monument. In fact, behind an iconic building is where you would find the historical spot that gives Kuala Lumpur its name until today. It’s a river! Or to be precise, a meeting of two rivers into one, creating a spot that spells the name Kuala Lumpur. It’s almost like a destined marriage. Imagine a meeting place of two loved ones, and as a result, born an offspring now grown up and known by the world. That kind of history lets you see the muddy river mingled a romanticised feeling. The Klang River The Klang River's confluence with the Gombak River gave rise to the name of Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia's capital city. Kuala Lumpur means "muddy estuary". The origin of Kuala Lumpur is located at the back side of the magnificent complex that is the Sultan Abdul Samad building. At this point, knowing the history, you might be overcome with romanticed feeling upon seeing the muddy confluence that gave this city its name. Nevertheless, you are not to blame if that romantic feeling does not exist here. Whether or not this river means so much for a city, it was the great men and women of old that made Kuala Lumpur the great city that it is. A coming together of two rivers greatly signifies what Kuala Lumpur is all about. A confluence of the mining industry & administrative central of Malaya back in the day which has turned into a central melting pot of cultures and urbanity today

The lowering of the Union Jack to Malaya’s new flag at this spot marked the first day of Malayan independence in 1957

The heart of Kuala Lumpur under British rule was a mix of work and play. Across the administrative buildings of Kuala Lumpur formed a club house called the Royal Selangor Club for socialisation purposes. The green that separates the two buildings served as a cricket field for the colonial administrators of the time and was part of the club. Today the field is a spot where tourist and locals alike would head out to for picnics, cultural shows and parades. It was at Merdeka Square (Independence Square) that the Union Jack was lowered and the Malayan flag raised as the country, under Tunku Abdul Rahman’s rule, received its independence.

Author: Koben Jamang

My name is Koben Jamang. I live in Kuala Lumpur for four years now. Kuala Lumpur is a culturally diverse city. Its history has the tenacity to revive our sense of romance to a whole new level if carefully treaded. I also like the lively aspect of this booming city. All these in one place keep your being going. I like taking photos using my DSLR Nikon D5000 and writing about what I see and feel to share to others.

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