Museum and Gallery Guide

Fort Siloso and Battle Box

Events - 10 March 2010 3:00 PM | Updated 09 June 2010

Fort Siloso and Battle Box

Fort Siloso

33 Allanbrooke Road, Sentosa, Singapore 099981

Opening hours: 10am to 6pm daily, last admission at 5.30pm

Admission: Adult - $8, Child - $5

Telephone: 6214-2451

Website: www.sentosa.com.sg

Directions: By public transportation – take MRT to Harbourfront station; By car – exit AYE at Keppel Road or Lower Delta Road; Take Sentosa Express monorail in VivoCity (Level 3) or Sentosa Bus at Harbourfront Interchange to get to Sentosa; On Sentosa, take Blue or Red Line buses, or Siloso Beach Tram.

Battle Box

2 Cox Terrace, Singapore 179622

Opening hours: 10am to 6pm daily, last admission at 5pm

Admission: Adult - $8, Child - $5

Guided tours: Headsets providing commentary in English, Mandarin, Malay, Tamil, Japanese or Korean are available.

Website: www.legendsfortcanning.com

Directions: By public transportation – take MRT to Dhoby Ghaut or City Hall station; By car – exit CTE at Clemenceau Avenue or ECP at Rochor Road.

 

Two memorials in Singapore pay tribute to the trials and tribulations of the Second World War.

The country’s only preserved coastal fortress, Fort Siloso, was built during the 1880s by the British in the hopes of protecting the Singapore Harbour. It was part of twelve coastal artillery batteries that made up ‘Fortress Singapore’ at the start of the World War. Some of the remains of the other batteries can still be found on various parts of the island.

Located on the western tip of Sentosa, Fort Siloso was one of four coastal gun batteries which were constructed on the island.

Walking through the restored complex today, the authentic experience of the Second World War is conveyed through the detailed attention to making sure everything is “as they were” during the war, from the original Guardroom that shows to the life-size replications of the guns and tunnels of the fort. Some of the guns on display were actually fired during the war, and are decommissioned battery guns.

But it’s not just the pitted walls and original cast iron doors that take one back into history. Even the aromas are replicated - from the smells of detergent in the Laundry Room to the whiffs of sizzling bacon in the Cook House.

Visitors also get a glimpse of the life a soldier endured then, both of what it was like to be stationed at the fort, as well as being on a ship coming from Britain to the far east.

A permanent exhibition, A Soldier Remembers - The History Of Blakang Mati, provides the background and context, while a wealth of memories are displayed through more than 245 photographs, documents and film clips that compliment the reali-life exhibits.

Tucked into the hillside of Fort Canning, one other WWII site captures the imagination as vividly as Fort Siloso.

centre for generations of Singaporeans today.

 

The Battle Box was the largest underground command centre of the British Malaya Command Headquarters during the Second World War.

Comprising 22 rooms linked by a corridor, this complex is bomb-proof and also capable of recycling its own air supply. The underground bunker was where General Arthur Ernest Percival and his officers had their headquarters before the Japanese Occupation of Singapore began.

All the bunkers are still preserved in their original condition, complete with metal doors, the walls and ceiling with rusted steel plates.

Similar to Fort Siloso attraction, the Battle Box uses special audio-visual effects and high-quality animatronics to transport visitors back to the morning of 15th February 1942, when Singapore fell to the Japanese.

Visitors will witness the drama of the British surrender to the Japanese, as wax figurines come to live, re-creating that fateful day.

The atmosphere, sounds and smell of the underground bunker itself lend to the whole authenticity of the experience too, as one moves through the bunker and wartime air raid sirens and bomb blasts resound through the 22 rooms.

Did you know?

‘Siloso’ is a Philippine word meaning ‘Jealous Person’.

The 24 life-sized officers at Battle Box were clothed by the people who worked in Madam Tussaud's Wax Museum in London.