Keppel Harbour is the stretch of waterway between the Singapore mainland and Sentosa island. The water passage was used by ships and boats sailing from the Straits of Malacca to the South China Sea since the 13th century.

In 1848, Sir Henry Keppel travelled to Singapore and assisted the British colonial government with eliminating pirates from the Straits of Malacca. When he was based in Singapore, he discovered a deep, sheltered anchorage in Keppel Harbour for the expansion and construction of a new maritime port. He also recommended Singapore as a coaling station.

In 1865, the Tanjong Pagar Dock Company was established. In preparation for the new port, access roads between Tanjong Pagar and Telok Blangah were constructed in 1886 with the help of Indian convict labour. In the same year, steam trams which plied along Keppel Road, Pasir Panjang Road and Telok Blangah Road commenced.

On April 1900, the New Harbour was officially renamed Keppel Harbour by then Acting Governor, Sir Alexander Swettenham during Sir Henry Keppel’s final visit to Singapore.

By 1912 the Singapore Harbour Board were put in-charge of port operations until the Port of Singapore Authority was established in 1964.


Keppel Harbour was home to several of Singapore’s oldest docks.

In 1859, the first graving dock, No.1, measuring 396 feet was completed

In 1868, the Victoria Dock, measuring 484 feet, was completed

In 1913, the King’s Dock, which was then the second largest in the world, was opened.

In 1956, the Queen’s Dock, was opened

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