The "Merlion" (also known as heraldic sealions) is the welcoming symbol of Singapore. It has been used since July 20, 1966. It is a mythical creature composed of a lion head and a fish tail (mermaid's tail). The prominent Merlion statue of Singapore is located fronting Marina Bay Sands and the Singapore Bay standing at 8.6 meters tall.
Its name combines "mer" meaning the sea and "lion". The fish body represents Singapore's origin as a fishing village when it was called Temasek, which means "sea town" in Javanese. The lion head represents Singapore's original name — Singapura — meaning "lion city" or "kota singa".
It was designed by Fraser Brunner, a member of the Souvenir Committee and curator of the Van Kleef Aquarium, for the logo of the Singapore Tourism Board.
Trivia: Pertaining to the Merlion at Merlion Park
1. Singapore has more than 3 Merlion statues across the country. Can you guess where are the others located?
2. The Merlion statue has been relocated quite a few times due to scene obstructions.
3. From July 5 to July 10 of 2006, the Merlion statue underwent maintenance due to naturally caused damages.
4. On Saturday, February 28, 2009 at about 4.26 pm the Merlion in the Merlion Park was struck by lightning.
Remember: Before leaving Singapore, never forget to visit Merlion Park and see its magnificence. It is quite a view.