8 Merlion Park Singapore Tips to Know Before Your First Visit

Merlion Park

Merlion Park is a must-see on your trip to Singapore! It’s the perfect place to start your walk along Marina Bay and see the most beautiful views of the city. Enjoy a quick walk along the water with us or take the afternoon to circle the harbor. From the incredible history to the nightly light show, here’s everything to know about visiting Merlion Park in Singapore!

8 Things to Know About Merlion Park in Singapore

1. What Exactly is Merlion Park?

Merlion Park is a small green area right on the Singapore waterfront. Surrounded by massive high rises, is the iconic Merlion which spits out water to happy onlookers throughout the day! 

The Merlion has come to be the official icon of the city and no trip to town would be complete without visiting. The actual “park” is a very small area, but know that there is tons to see and do around it! 

Merlion Park Singapore

2. Legend of the Merlion Statue

The Merlion has become the national symbol of Singapore and that’s nowhere better seen than Merlion Park! Yet, there is a story behind this mythical creature you should know first. 

Also known as the Lion City, the story of the Merlion honors its roots as a fishing village. Legend has it,  the Prince of Sumatra was sailing through a vicious storm in the 14th century. When he finally made it to Singapore the Merlion greeted him out of the sea! 

Today, the half fish and half lion statue stands proudly 28 feet high (8.5 meters) in Merlion Park. It was originally built at the end of the Singapore River in 1972, but 30 years later moved its current location overlooking Marina Bay. 

Merlion Park Statue

3. How to Get to Merlion Park Singapore

Merlion Park will be super easy to find and get to from anywhere in the city. It’s located in the heart of downtown right along the water. For this reason, we had no problem including it in our ultimate 2 day Singapore itinerary!

Most places you can walk from or take the train to the Raffles Place MRT stop. Also, utilize apps like Grab taxi to get to Merlion Park. Just keep in mind the prices will be higher during rush hour!

On our last visit we found it to be a nice 25 minute walk from Chinatown. However, we could have easily jumped on the MRT and been there much faster.

Another option for the most adventurous traveler is to jump on a popular bike tour that takes you around Singapore and visits Merlion Park! 

How to Get to Merlion Park Singapore

4. Merlion Park Marine Life 

Did you know the Marina Bay is made up of freshwater? That’s right! In 2008, a damn was built across the Marina Channel which changed it from saltwater to fresh.

Now it’s home to a variety of marine life including catfish, snakeheads, and peacock bass. Keep your eyes peeled for fish in the water at Merlion Park. If you’re lucky you may even see smooth-coated otters along the boardwalk!

Merlion Park Singapore Marine Life

5. Where to Walk From Merlion Park 

After your visit to Merlion Park you’re sure to take a walk along the iconic Singapore waterfront. To the right of Merlion Park is a pedestrian only walking path that has some of the most beautiful views in the city. 

As you stroll along the boardwalk, you’ll have the sparkling Marina Bay at your side. Meanwhile, right across will be the world-famous Marina Bay Sands Hotel! This is the spot to be on a sunny day and is especially cool at night when the buildings light up.

There are a variety of restaurants, cafes, and bars all along the water near Merlion Park as well. On the far end sits the stunning Fullerton Bay Hotel. Just past the Fullerton the walking path will wrap around the harbor which we talk more about below! 

Merlion Park Harbor Walk

6. Circling Beautiful Marina Bay

From Merlion Park you can make one large loop along the gorgeous harbor. If you walk without stopping it would probably take a little over an hour to complete. However, we recommend making a day out of it!

This is the best way to not only see, but experience many of the best Singapore attractions firsthand. We’ve walked this loop many times and there’s always something new and exciting to do. It’s also amazing to see the city skyline from different viewpoints around Singapore.

Popular Singapore Attractions

  • Merlion Park
  • Fullerton Pavillion (Free Rooftop View)
  • Fullerton Bay Hotel
  • Marina Bay Waterfront Promenade
  • Marina Bay Sands (SkyPark Observation Deck)
  • Gardens by the Bay
  • ArtScience Museum
  • Helix Bridge
  • Singapore Flyer
  • Makansutra Gluttons Bay (4pm-11pm & Closed Mondays)
  • Jubilee Bridge

Marina Bay Waterfront Promenade

Singapore Harbor Walk

7. Boat Ride From Merlion Park Singapore

Not up for a long walk, but still want to get views of the Singapore Skyline? You’re in luck! You can actually take a quick boat trip from Merlion Park Jetty across the harbor to the Marina Bay Sands.

If you have more time there are also boats the run up the river to Clark Quay. This is a fun area where there are more restaurants and bars right on the water. The Singapore River Cruise is worth considering, too! The 40 minute boat tour teaches you the history of the city while cruising around the city.

Another option is to stroll along the Boat Quay Walkway on the Singapore River. This walk starts from Merlion Park and goes by countless waterfront bars and restaurants.

Merlion Park to Marina Bay Sands

8. Light Show at Merlion Park 

After you’ve seen the water spout from the Merlion’s mouth, make sure to come back at night! Every night at the times listed below the Marina Bay Sands Light and Water Spectacle takes place.

  • Sunday-Thursday: 8pm & 9pm
  • Friday & Saturaday: 8pm, 9pm, & 10pm

Without a doubt, the best area to watch it is on the boardwalk around Merlion Park in Singapore. If you have the time we recommend watching it at 8pm from Merlion Park. Then walk the loop to the Marina Bay Sands and catch the 9pm show from there! 

That way you get two different perspectives AND get to see the water show up close from the other side. Another spectacular light show is the one inside Gardens by the Bay.

This our favorite of all, as the giant Supertrees light up and sparkle in the sky. If you’re quick on your feet you can even see both shows in one night!

3 Epic Places to Watch Singapore’s Marina Bay Sands Light Show

Merlion Park Singapore Light Show

Where to Stay in Singapore

Luxury – Marina Bay Sands  – We stayed at the Marina Bay Sands for Jake’s 30th birthday and it blew away our expectations. Aside from the luxury amenities, swimming in the rooftop infinity pool will be the highlight of your visit! 

IconicRaffles Hotel – As one of the most historic hotels Southeast Asia, staying at the Raffles Hotel will be an experience like no other. Enjoy a Singapore Sling and take in the amazing architecture of this landmark built in 1887.

Fun VacationParkroyal on Pickering– It doesn’t get much more green and lush then Parkroyal on Pickering! This fun vacation spot is literally one of the greenest hotels in the world. Plant life covers the entire property to make for a unique stay in Singapore.

Boutique – KēSa House – Located in Chinatown, this fantastic hotel was built in 1920’s. Enjoy the incredible setting in the heart of the city in a traditional building on Keong Saik Road.  

Hostel Hipstercity hostel – Fun hostel in downtown Singapore with both private and dorm rooms. Great place to meet other travelers to explore the city with.

Where to Stay in Singapore

Have any questions about this article or want to share your own experience at Merlion Park in Singapore? Let us know in the comments below!  

Safe Travels,
Brigitte & Jake

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Merlion

Singapore Travel Planning 

Activities: 23 Fun Things to DoButterfly Garden – Supertree GroveGardens by the BayMarina Bay SandsHaji Lane – Singapore Sling at Raffles HotelSingapore JewelMarina Bay Sands Infinity Pool 

Hawker Centers: 8 Must Try HawkersMaxwellOld Airport RoadTekka CentreChinatown ComplexLau Pa SatLiao Fan Hawker Chan

Travel Tips: Singapore Airlines Review15 Wild LawsChangi Airport

 Flights: We always find deals using Skyscanner and Kayak. That’s how we got flights from Athens to Singapore for $230 USD, and Singapore to Thailand for less than $50! 

 Accommodation: Compare competitive sites for hotels such as Booking.com and Agoda. Also, Hostelworld should be your go-to source if you’re traveling on a budget. 

Tours: Check out Get Your Guide for activities all over Singapore. You can book everything from a Singapore Highlights Bike Tour to a Gardens by the Bay E-Ticket, and even a private food tour with 10 tastings

 Travel Insurance: Never travel abroad without being covered. We’ve been using SafetyWing for the last few years on the road and they are there when we need them.

 Packing Lists: Here’s all the inspiration you need with our Amazon packing lists! Including electronics and camera gear, must-have medical items, and long flight essentials

Singapore Travel

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2 Comments

  1. Kyrie
    November 14, 2023 / 6:30 am

    After stumbling upon this blog post about Merlion Park in Singapore, I am feeling much more confident and excited about my upcoming trip and first visit next week. The detailed insights provided in this post have given me a clear understanding of what to expect and how to make the most of my visit.

    The detailed schedule for the light show is a great bonus, and I’m already planning to catch it both from the boardwalk around Merlion Park and Marina Bay Sands. Really appreciate this guide thanks man!

    • Brigitte & Jake
      Author
      November 14, 2023 / 6:31 am

      So glad we could help!! Merlion Park is definitely worth a visit in Singapore 😀

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