Istana Change Of Guards

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Weather:

Time Required: 1-2 hours

Timings:

5:45 PM

Entry Fee:

SGD 2
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Istana Change Of Guards, Singapore Overview

The Istana Park is located in front of the Presidential residence, Istana. A gateway to Singapore's Civic District Trail, the park is an education and information hub of Singapore's rich history. Also being a prominent landmark, the Istana has an area of 13,000 square meters. The main highlight of park's main gateway is the Changing of Guards Ceremony that happens every month. Every month during the Ceremonial Changing of Guards, a squad of 20 guards from the Armed Military Forces Police Command takes over the duties of the former guards who were patrolling for the previous month, and a new unit of guards are stationed and signified by this ceremony.

Sentry duty is the primary role of the Istana Ceremonial Guards that are stationed at the entrance of the Istana building. This ceremony was first conducted in 1969. It is held on the first Sunday of every month except for July and August. Based on the ceremony of Changing Guards at the Buckingham Palace, this ceremony also has two commanders and a total of thirty-six guards involved in running the ceremony. These guards are especially chosen from many and are trained extensively for their turnout, bearing and drill. The new troop of guards march in from the Koek Road to meet the foregoing troop near the main gateway entrance of Istana, where the Changing of Guards Ceremony is conducted amidst military bands and Rifle Precision Drill Performance.

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There was no Changing of Guard ceremony during the time of Encik Yusof Bin Ishak's tenure. The combat troops were stationed and guarded the Istana only from the infantry regiment which they owned back then, which was also the 1st Battalion of the Infantry Regiment of Singapore. Posted around the clock, the guards where change within the Istana.

After the ceasing of the Combat troops in 1968, the Singapore Armed Forces Guards Unit was formed. It was then that the Changing of Guards Ceremony was decided to be conducted every month. Starting from 1969, this ceremony has been traditionally and consistently followed ever since, except in July and August. The entire concept of the Changing of Guards is influenced by the ceremony of Buckingham Palace.

To get to Istana through the bus, stop at B08138 which is just 5 minutes away. Buses 700, 971E, 972, 77, 106, 167, 171, 190, 700A, NR6, NR7, 1N and 2N halt here. To reach via MRT, alight at Exit D of Dhobi Ghaut MRT and walk for a distance of 7 minutes to reach Istana.

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