It's no longer a secret that visiting Johor Bahru is a weekly ritual for some of us! ? Situated in the southern tip of peninsular Malaysia, there's so much to love about Johor Bahru (JB, for short), also known as the capital city of Johor. Surrounded by delicious halal food, charming cities, and amazing theme parks, it's also no surprise you'll find many and the best places in JB. If you're planning a road trip to this destination soon, check out these best things to do in Johor Bahru to make your holiday worthwhile!
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1. Savour delicious halal food in Johor Bahru
Johor Bahru (also known as JB) is a vibrant city filled with a variety of attractions, shopping hotspots and a little bit of history. But in between all these, lies an amazing food scene catering to almost every level of taste buds! ?
So, if you're planning a food trip, make sure to check out this list for the best halal food in Johor Bahru! From hearty biryani at Roslin Beriani House to teh tarik madu at Ads Corner, remember to save some room for breakfast, lunch and dinner.
2. Plan a cafe-hopping adventure in Johor Bahru
Street food scene and delicious laksa aren't the only things that Johor Bahru is known for. Truth be told, it's pretty hard not to talk about their thriving indie cafe scene that's longing to be on your Instagram feed. With many hidden gems and cafe spots to explore, you'll never have to worry about getting bored! ?
If you're heading down to JB, you absolutely have to set aside a day for a cafe-hopping adventure using this list of halal cafes in Johor Bahru! From Thai milk tea at Chaiwalla & Co. Container Cafe to the all-day deli and yummy cakes at August Cafe, it's going to be a day to remember!
3. Hike to this secret blue lake in Johor
Just a 15-minute drive from Johor Premium Outlets, plan a morning hike to see Tasik Biru, Kangkar Pulai. Situated in Johor Bahru, this scenic lake is an abandoned mine filled with water that turned bright blue. While this lake is not safe for swimming, the locals can take a short hike to catch a glimpse of it.
If you come on a clear day, you can capture the reflection of the surrounding limestone formation, adding a mirror-like depth to your Instagram photo. Do note that the weather gets really hot and sunny in the afternoon, so it's best to come in the morning or evening. You can read more about Tasik Biru Kangkar Pulai here!
4. Get new books from this Instagram-worthy bookstore in Johor
Say hello to one of the newest BookXcess store at Sunway Big Box! Situated in Nusajaya, Sunway Big Box is the first hybrid retail park that opened in February 2020. Besides having a warehouse-style branded store, dining options and kid-friendly play area, it comes with a brand new bookstore too.
Packed with one million titles, ranging from self-help and autobiographies to non-fiction and children's book, the well-illuminated bookshelves are a sight to behold and it's hard to resist taking a photo for the 'gram. You can read more about BookXcess Sunway Big Box here!
5. Take snapshots at the Desaru Sky Mirror
The Desaru Sky Mirror has attracted its fair share of visitors as it's a great place to snap picture-perfect photos! You can spice up your pictures with some jump shots or bring a prop to create that "illusion" shot. Visiting the sky mirror is also a great idea, whether you're on a trip with your friends or family. You can read more about Desaru Sky Mirror here!
6. Plan a beach vacation in Desaru Coast
There's a reason why a weekend getaway in Desaru is favoured by some city travellers. Landscaped by the serenity of the South China Sea and white sandy beaches, it's a great way to escape the city grind and step into absolute solitude.
Since there are a number of top beach resorts in Desaru you can stay in, we've sorted out the accommodations according to budget. Whether you're planning a fun family getaway or a romantic retreat, there's a resort out there that's perfect for you to spend the night.
7. Savour fresh seafood in Johor Bahru
Explore a medley of the finest that the ocean has to offer in Johor Bahru! Crabs, cockles, mussels, fishes of numerous varieties and other seafood all make for a scrumptious meal and what better way to enjoy such delectable food than with your loved ones? ? So gather your family and friends, and show them this list of halal seafood restaurants in Johor Bahru for an irresistible feast the next time you're in town!
8. Feel like a kid again in these theme parks in Johor Bahru
Luckily for us, there are plenty of theme parks in Malaysia that are within driving distances from main cities, making it an ideal short getaway for family vacations! And when in JB, you can visit Asia's very first Legoland in Johor Bahru and splash about at Austin Heights Water & Adventure Park.
9. See the city after dark
You could do lots of things in JB when night falls! The capital city becomes a whole different place with new sights to see. This is why it's the perfect time to visit Skyscape at Menara Jland, JB's first-ever aerial entertainment space! ?
Perched 149 metres above ground, step onto the curved observation deck with glass flooring that will offer you stunning panoramic views of both Johor and Singapore from up high! You'll need to take your shoes off while on the bridge so come prepared with a pair of comfy socks.
Address: Level 34, Menara JLand, Johor Bahru City Centre, 80000 Johor
10. Make room in your belly for supper at street food stalls
Anytime you visit JB, there's one thing you can't miss out on and that's their supper! After all, the best way to truly understand a culture is by enjoying its food, right? While you may be wondering just where you can go for delicious midnight munchies, you'll be excited to know that Medan Selera Meldrum Walk is a foodies' paradise just waiting to be discovered. ? Find local delights like BBQ chicken, fried kway teow, satay, ikan bakar, and much more!
Address: No. 23, Jalan Meldrum, Bandar Johor Bahru, 80000 Johor
11. Go shopping at Johor Premium Outlets
Something that JB will forever have the upper hand at is their Premium Outlets which are perfect for window shopping with your friends and family. You'll find branded goods like DKNY, Coach, Michael Kors, and much more! Keep your eyes peeled for discounts and promotions because you may find alot of them at these Premium Outlets!
12. Test your bargaining skills at Pasar Karat
On the topic of shopping, you have to get the best deals when in JB which means you can't skip the night markets! One of which is known as the famous Pasar Karat. The market opens only in the evenings and usually gets bustling with life after 8PM with vendors and visitors chatting it up! Head over after dinner for a casual stroll, you might even catch some live performances by talented street buskers here.
13. Get a Relaxing Massage
Credit: Thai Odyssey
Pamper yourself on your next trip to JB with a relaxing massage! From foot and neck massages to back massages, there are so many ways to kick back and relax. If you want to ease your tensed muscles, go for a full-body traditional Thai massage at Thai Odyssey at JB City Square or KSL City Mall.
14. Ice Skate at Paradigm Mall JB
If you didn't know, you can find Blue Ice Skating Rink at Paradigm Mall JB which is the first Blue Ice Rink in Malaysia! For those who don't know how to skate, you can sign up for their ice skating classes! But do remember to bring your own socks and gloves if you don't want to pay extra for them.
15. Do An Escape Room with Friends
Planning to visit Malaysia with your friends? Take up the challenge and test your friendship inexperience in escape room! Lost in JB is one of the best escape rooms in Johor if you're looking for an immersive experience. Be it horror or fantasy, you and your friends are bound to have an enjoyable experience!
From exciting theme parks to delicious halal food, there are many awesome things to do in Johor Bahru! For more activities across Malaysia, check out our recommended reads!