Merlion Park, Singapore: How To Reach, Best Time & Tips
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Merlion Park Tours & Activities

About Merlion Park

Merlion Park is a Singapore based landmark that is a major tourist attraction here. The legendary Merlion is Singapore’s national icon with the head of a lion and the body of a fish. The 70-tonne concrete statue standing 8.7 meters tall is a great place to click umpteen photos. The Merlion which is a break up of a mermaid-like structure with the face of a lion talks about the humble beginnings of Singapore as a predominately a fishing based country. This landmark is the identity of the nation and is a must-visit when you are there.

The aesthetically carved statue of Merlion presents a host of activities that the tourists can engage in. The attractiveness of the location apart from the statue is the bay with water spouting out of Lion's mouth. Tourists can click many photos near the statue or hop on a bumboat to take the experience onto another level. You can explore the entire area by taking a stroll near the statue. If you plan to visit here in the evening then you have to witness the amazing show of colour lights that makes it a magnanimous watch. By the bay of the Merlion Park is a wide and expansive verdant garden adjacent to the Marina Reservoir.

Merlion Park is completely free to visit and has many restaurants, souvenir shops and cafes in its vicinity. The cafes and restaurants serve the most delicious and famous delicacies called Kopi, Laksa and Kaya which are unmissable. The hours seem to slip away when you are lost in the picturesque locale with live music playing by the banks of the river. The Statue at Merlion Park is situated at 1 Fullerton which is near the waterfront at Marina Bay. A short walk from Raffles Place MRT station, the park can also be visited through the day tours which also stop at other hot spots at Singapore.

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Essential information

Location: The complete address of the Merlion Park is 1, Fullerton road near the waterfront at the Marina Bay. The park is located at a short distance from Raffles Place MRT station. The nearest bus station is the Fullerton square.

Timing: There are no fixed timings for visiting Merlion Park as it is a part of the city and is open 24 hours. But officially the time to visit is from 10.00 AM to 8.00 PM. If you want to witness the fabulous light shows then ensure you visit from Sunday to Thursday at 8 pm and 9 pm respectively. If you are there only on a Friday and Saturday then the timing would be 8 pm, 9 pm and 10 pm. 

Price: You can visit Merlion Park complexly free of cost with the exception of paying for the individual activities that you engage in.

How to reach Merlion Park from Airport?

Marina Bay where this iconic spot is located is one of the prime destinations and the busiest parts of Singapore. It is the central area here which is accessible from all fronts. If you have to come to Merlion Park from the Changi airport then you can take a direct train from the Changi Airport station to Marina Bay. The machines will ensure that the tickets will be easily and swiftly accessed by the traveller. If you are looking to travel by the Airport shuttle in Singapore, then you have to reach the spot where the shuttle booking happen and choose your route accordingly.

Things to do in Merlion Park

Merlion Park is Singapore’s most famous tourist spots where you can spend an entire day happily and crave for more. A lot of things can be done while you are here, yet you never get enough of this amazing destination. For first time travellers to this land, Merlion Park will speak of its culture and rich heritage. Some of the things that you can do here are enlisted below:

Take countless pictures – You can take pictures with the Merlion statues, with the cub and the lion for keepsake. You can try out different tricks in photography especially the famous picture pose of showing that water is sprouting from your mouth and not the Lions!

Sunset by the Bay – It will be a crime to miss the sweeping sunsets of the bay while you can sit by the banks to engage your senses to seep in the evening sun. The sight is impressive for sure and if you are travelling there in the evening do not miss to capture this. 

Bumboat ride – Hop on the relaxing river cruises from Merlion Park and explore various other locations near the Merlion Park. The impressive skyline and the shiny Singapore river water is all you need to make this a memorable one. 

Spectra Light and water show and a live band – Enjoy the evening’s glittery light show with amazing laser technology to make your evening worth. You could also sit there comfortably and listen to the band of live music playing your favourite song.

Visit cafes and do some shopping – A lot of concept restaurants and cafes in Singapore offer great meals and snacks which are must to visit when you are there. Do not forget to fetch a great souvenir on your way back from the many stores offering vibrant collections.

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Best time to visit Merlion Park

In the night particularly the Merlion Park becomes the quintessential urban panorama along with the Marina Bay and the beautifully lighted Park that adds to the beauty of the place. Although the time at night is considered the best due to the vibrant crowds and spectacular light and water show, yet there are many people who believe that night time is heavily crowded and causes a lot of congestion with cafes and restaurants running full. Many visitors suggested day time as the best time to visit here if you want to avoid any traffic. Both times have their advantages and disadvantages.

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Tips for visiting Merlion Park

If you plan your trip between May and September you are set to enter a time with the maximum number of tourists. This is perhaps a great time to visit here because this is the main tourist season in Singapore with many ongoing festivals like a food festival and the Singapore Grand Prix. Do not plan your trip to Merlion Park during the period between October and January as your plans will be hampered with the intermittent showers and rains. If you have decided to go for the summer, do not forget to pack sunscreen and lotions to save you from the attack of heat. While you are there buying a souvenir is a must as you will get a wide variety of curated from different artists. Some of the cafes serve exemplary meals hence getting there and not having any will be a major loss. Nighttime is obviously a good time if you can manage the crowd but do not miss the light show which will be a fond remembrance for your memory.

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Places to visit in and near Merlion Park

Visit the Helix Bridge – It the most remarkable pieces of architecture is the doubt Helix Bridge which is also the world’s first curved bridge connecting the Singapore River between the business districts. One of the best things to do in Singapore at night is to visit this place for the sheer beauty of the Bridge, this will be a walk to remember.

Visit Chinatown - You can visit Chinatown for two reasons: Food and shopping. If you enjoy dining street style and literally gorge on real Chinese delights then visit China town. From hawkers to kiosks, from small mobile cafes to restaurants Chinatown has it all. A haven for foodies you can enjoy the mouth-watering dish in this ever-crowded market. There are plenty of things to do in China town if you love to go on binge shopping especially those items which are affordable and can give you inwards into a good bargain. Clothes, accessories, bags and much more, this place is ideal if you have those negotiation skills you are willing to use.

Amphitheatre – A peek into the amphitheater will open the doors to the culture and heritage of Singapore. Visit here and witness the 20-minute night show full of creatures painted and adorned to become and look attractive. This interactive show is surely one of the many visits you need to take to see something that is different and unconventional.

Universal studios – Don’t even think of missing this wonderfully put together a studio that has all the prime characters of the Universal studios merged into one journey full of fun rides and excitement. The Battle Star Galactica is easily the prime attraction amongst the several rides bound to keep your adrenaline pumping.

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Best Restaurants to eat in and near Merlion Park

Alt Pizza –
If you love your pizzas straight out of the oven then this is the place to be. A contemporary pizza place with not so exorbitant prices. The Pizza station also gives you the liberty to create your own pizza with the number of combinations exceeding your expectations.

Forlino – The Italian fine dining destination with elegant interiors and stunning views of the Marina Bay is your journey to the most genuine Italian dishes which are prepared and curated by award-winning chefs. The vast menu put together by the restaurant covers everything that you have ever asked for. 

The Lighthouse Restaurant and Rooftop bar – Get the grand views of Singapore at this restaurant serving authentic Italian cuisine with specialties. Get mesmerized with the breath-taking views of the skyline of Singapore and the Marina Bay waterfront. 

Saint Pierre – One of the most intimate dining options in Singapore the subtle Saint Pierre has a lot of French-inspired dishes along with Modern European and vegetarian-friendly options. The restaurant is also a kid-friendly zone as well as suitable for those who want to engage in personal conversations and romantic nights.

The 100th Starbucks Store Fullerton Water Boat House – Located close to the Fullerton Hotel and the Singapore River, Starbucks coffee shop is one of the most favourite hotspots to be visited. A great location for a quiet coffee and conversations, visit this star bucks for drooling snacks and rejuvenating coffee. 

Shoukouwa – An intimate fine dining located very close to Merlion Park, one can explore a great variety of seafood which it is famous for. The specialties here are the classic Japanese Sushi which comes prepared fresh and yummy. To heighten your gastronomic experience, visit this elegantly decorated restaurant which is a must-visit if you are a sea-food aficionado.

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Best Hotels to stay near Merlion Park

Ritz Carlton, Millennia – It is one of the best options for visitors who love a lavish sophisticated stay. Apart from the Merlion Park, the hotel is close to several other wonderful sight-seeing options. 
The decor of the rooms spells luxury with ultra-stylish interiors and amenities that will make you comfortable. 

Fullerton Hotel Singapore – The neo grand classical landmark of Singapore, the hotel offers diverse accommodation options, Rolls Royce Privilege, a lifestyle package and the assurance of an opulence stay. There are a lot of local attractions close by and its tour will be arranged by the efficient staff in the Hotel. 

Marina Bay Sands – One of the most popular and iconic hotels of Singapore, the sprawling hotel features 2561 rooms with a host of entertainment options like gambling, sampan rides and ice-skating. The prime attraction of this location is its rooftop infinity pool which is considered as the world’s largest infinity pool.

Pan Pacific -Located in the Central district of Singapore, explore this towering luxury with world class amenities and signature dishes served exclusively at the comforts of the hotel. This 5 star property offers dynamic views of Singapore and located close to the best sites in Singapore especially the Marina Bay.

The Westin – Located in the vicinity of Marina Bay, plan your stay at the Westin to experience bliss and peace. Great location with great food at the in-house restaurant is some of the added attraction of this wonderful hotel.

Fairmont – Located in the heart of Singapore, this upscale accommodation has 769 ultra-luxurious rooms and suite featuring comfortable style and international designs adorning the room. The spa at the Hotel has several treatment options available and also is Asia's largest Spa.

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Q1.How do I get to Merlion Park?

The Merlion Park is located near Marina Bay which is considered the most popular location in Singapore. The nearest station near Merlion Park is the Raffles Place MRT. From the Raffles place MRT, you need to cross certain streets to go towards Fullerton road. If you are coming from the airport, you will easily find airport shuttles that take you to and fro the locale. If you want to use the metro from Changi airport, then a Changi airport metro also will bring you to the Raffles metro.

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Q2. Where is the lion statue in Singapore?

The iconic half lion and half mermaid statue resides at the Waterfront Merlion Park. The statue is believed to bring good luck as it faces east which is considered auspicious. The Merlion Park is located in One Fullerton road in the prime location of Singapore. The lion statue also spouts water from its mouth and is a must-see icon. The location also has advantages because it has a host of other doable things and famous hotels and restaurants close by for you to enjoy and have fun.

Q3. Why is Merlion the symbol of Singapore?

The body symbolises the humble start of Singapore primarily being a fishing village called Temasek meaning Sea town. The head of the statue represents Singapura which is also known as the lion city in their local language. The statue was built by local craftsman Lim Nang Seng and is facing eastward marking the very auspicious nature of its positioning. The Earlier statue was located in a different location and when it was shifted in 2002 to the Merlion Park, the tradition of facing the statue eastward is still intact. It is considered in the significant landmarks of the world.

Q4. Why is Singapore called the Lion City?

The name Singapore comes from Singapura which means lion city. In 1299 a prince named Sang Nila Utama ruled the empire wanted capital for his region. In his quest to search for capital, he went to explore Sumatra and his expedition brought him to a terrain which was used for hunting. While he was chasing a deer, his attention was caught on a white beach and his minister enlightened that it was Temasek or the seaside town. In their journey to explore the land, they sailed on the boat which was caught in the storm. While they somehow reached Temasek, they spotted a strange-looking animal with an orange body and blackheads. His minister guessed it was a lion, which was considered a good fortune back then. This made him rename the city to Singapura.

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Q5. Where it is located?

The mythical statue of Lion and Mermaid is located at the Merlion Park located at One Fullerton Road near Marina Bay. The Merlion was originally located at the mouth of the Singapore River but its spot later got changed to its new and hopefully permanent home at Merlion Park. The Merlion Park attracts more than 1 million visitors per year and it is said that the eastward direction of the statue is auspicious and traditionally is believed to bring luck and happiness. When the statue was located by the Singapore River the direction was eastward, which was retained even after it got shifted.

Q6. How do I get to Merlion Park from MRT?

If you are at MRT and you are looking forward to exploring the Merlion Park then public transport is not a concern at all. To get to the Merlion catch the MRT to Raffles Place station on the East-West Line. You will have to take the exit towards the United Overseas Bank Plaza and when from the central part of the plaza you will clearly see the Fullerton Hotel which is one of the most sought after Hotels in Singapore. Behind the Fullerton Hotel is the Merlion Park.

Q7. Why does Singapore represent Merlion?

Singapore has become a developed place but it had started off as a fishing village where the primary and predominant occupation of people was fishing. Due to this, the older name of Singapore was Temasek. It is said that once the Prince wanted to find capital for his region and went on an expedition to find an appropriate territory. In the midst of all this, he landed to a hunting ground which was famous for deer hunting. One day while he was hunting a deer, on the opposite end he saw a white sandy beach which caught his attention. The moment he had set his eye on it, he decided that he will explore it. On his way, he and his crew met a strong storm and after having fought the storm they all reached this place and upon coming there the prince immediately spotted an animal. Upon describing the animal, the minister apprised the Prince that it could be a lion. After that, he changed the name of the place to Singapura in which singa means Lion. Hence the name Singapore represents Lion and fish because of its past history. 

Q8. How tall is the lion statue?

The Merlion is made up of cement fondue and the skin is made of porcelain plates and eyes from small red teacups. The Merlion statue stands tall at 8.6 meters high and weighs about 70 tonnes. 

Q9. What does the lion logo stand for?

The Lion head symbol was introduced in Singapore in 1986 and it was considered a good logo mainly because it represents the true meaning of Singapore as the Lion city. The national identity of Singapore is now the Lion logo because the original name was Singapura which means Lion. The logo is considered powerful and symbolic of Singapore’s real and true identity.

Q10. What are the timings of the Spectra – A light and Water show?

One of the best parts of being in Merlion Park is being able to attend and witness the lights and water show that is showcased. Every show of Spectra is a 15-minute wonder which will leave you in complete awe. The show runs on all days but the timings do vary. From Sunday to Thursday you can watch the show at 8 pm and 9 pm respectively. If you are not available on these days, then for Friday and Saturday, the shows take place in three different timings, that is at 8 pm, 9 pm and finally at 10 pm.

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