Abu Bakar Museum
Yes, the museum has lots of the sultan's treasures, but it was nice to find there, in a great mixture of artifacts, a popular musical instrument from my small country, in the other side of the world.
The instrument is called Adufe, and it is used only in popular music in the northeast part of Portugal.
The collection? Well... Interesting but not remarkable.Related to:
- Museum Visits
- Castles and Palaces
- Arts and Culture
Legoland Malaysia is, obviously, an outpost of the international theme park based on the small plastic block everybody hates to tread on. Situated just outside Johor Bahru in Nusajaya (a smoke free city, apparently), this park is popular with locals, tourists and day trippers from Singapore. It has the expected miniature village made of Lego, but with an Asian focus. These are pretty impressive, with a lot of intricate detail, and include some local Johor and Selangor landmarks. Oddly, the models of the KL tower and the Petronas towers aren't there - I was told they burned down and would take 5 years to rebuild, though I don't think I believe that.
In addition, there are a few small roller coasters aimed at kids (though they're too unpleasant for me!), various fairground type rides, a 12m log flume, a '4D' cinema (like 3D, but they spray you with a bit of water), a live stage show of the Lego series Ninjago, an observation tower, a train ride, and a new exhibit which showcases all (currently) 7 Star Wars films in miniature. There are also a lot of shops selling Lego sets, including the 'Big Shop', the largest in Asia and with the biggest range. Alternatively the mall opposite the park has Asian brand non-Lego plastic building blocks for less than a quarter of the price...
One highlight for kids will probably be the chance to get their 'driving licence' - it looked like RM35 to get a photo taken then drive some small Lego cars around a circuit (3-5 year olds) or a mock town (6-13 year olds), at the end of which you get a fake licence.
Price is RM180 for non-Malaysian adult, RM144 for Malaysian adult (only available by presenting MyKad on the day), RM145 for kids - missed the Malaysian kids' price but I guess 20% off like adults, so about RM116. If you have a Maybank credit or debit card it's RM117 per adult, wherever you're from.
As ever, they don't want to bring your own food in. Inside the park they gouge you a little, but not as much as I expected (burger, fries, coleslaw, drink for RM25 - including a veggie burger; small pizza, soup and drink for RM35; pastries RM6-10), and it's not too bad either with the potato curry puffs being quite spicy. There are lockers to keep stuff in for RM5 an hour or RM20 all day.
Annoyances and other miscellany: the car park seems a long way from the gate (more than 1km by road, though there is a walking short cut which isn't well indicated) and is pretty run down. The ticket machine wasn't working properly which was a bit annoying when we tried to leave. Car park charge RM10 per day. Tickets are single entry only, so you can't escape the expensive food to go the mall opposite, and then return. There are drying machines for you to use after the flume, but they cost RM10 - instead, simply remember you're in the tropics and will dry off in 30 minutes anyway. I didn't use it, but there is a family toilet which might be helpful to you if you have small kids. Do take lots of suncream etc, as the shade is patchy. I got burned on a cloudy day, trying to stay in the shade... Open 10-6 normally, 10-7 on special days such as school holidays. You can check the website for confirmation of hours.
There is also a water park - we didn't visit but I intend to in future. It costs an extra RM58 per person, or you can pay a standalone price.Related to:
- Theme Park Trips
St Joseph's Church
St Joseph's is a Christian church with a school attached. It looks like an Ariane 5 launch vehicle from the European Space Agency, with rocket and boosters. You can find it close to the Double Tree Hilton Hotel.Add to your Trip Planner
Johor Premium Outlets
The Johor Premium Outlets is located in the outskirts of Johor Bahru City , near Kulai or Senai airport.Took about an hour to reach by taxi to this two storey Outlet building .
Its location was in the middle of nowhere ,in the middle of palm plantation.
They have a website ,so you can check the latest happenings on the Outlet.http://www.premiumoutlets.com.my/center-information
There's many exciting branded shops here like Armani ,Burberry ,Coach, Nike ,Guess ,etc, offering huge discounts as far as 70 %.At some stores, like the Coach , we have to Q to get inside. Stuffs here usually were stocks from the last season ,and not the newest arrival.
Some restaurants are lined between the shops ,reasonably priced.
Worth a visit.Related to:
- Family Travel
- Food and Dining
Garden in the City
Hutan Bandar (Johor Bahru, Malaysia) in Malay means “Jungle in the City”. Open daily with free admission, Hutan Bandar is located a 5 minutes drive from Larkin Bus Terminal (or a 20 minutes drive from the City Center). It is a popular spot for family and school excursions. In addition, young people come here for picnic, camping, a game of basketball as well as wedding photo shoots.
Most of the walking trails are man-made and should not pose a challenging to most people. There are presence of lakes, playgrounds, a basketball court and resting area.. and, it makes a romatic setting for wedding proposals (for those who wants it simple only! Not for brides-to-be who prefers a candlelight dinner at an Italian resturant, with a violin dedication.. big diamond ring yada yada..)Related to:
- Jungle and Rain Forest
- National/State Park
Overlooking the Johor Straits towards Singapore, the Istana Garden (Sultan Garden) in Johor Bahru (Johor Baru, Johore Bahru, Johor Baharu) is open to public everyday from 7am to 7pm. The Sultan Palace, owned by the Sultan of Johor, consist of several scattered buildings that sits just besides the garden. These buildings are closed to public.
With plenty of free parking lots available, the Istana garden is both accessible and a frequent hunt for family outings. Most people come here for jogging, leisure walk or a game of badminton at an open area in the park. It is also common see couples having their outdoor wedding photos taken here as well. It may get a little crowded during weekends but there are plenty of space for you to run about. A jog round the full garden trail is about 2.5km. Some trails lead up a knoll for more strenuous exercise routine.Related to:
- Budget Travel
- National/State Park
The Johor State Library has newly-opened in Johor Bahru. The book collection is new though modest. The library itself is a quaint, comfortable place to spend a few hours of reading. Unlike most other libraries in Malaysia, the atmosphere is relaxed without too much rules on food/drinks, dressing etc. The ambience if good.Add to your Trip Planner
Meldrum Walk is a pedesterian walkway in the middle of Johor Bahru city center. Along this stretch of road, are shops selling DVDs, bags, clothes as well as restaurants serving typical local fare. Also found here are money changers with some of the best rates in town.
However, the area is frequented more by foreign workers than locals. Beware of pickpockets and do not wander off into quiet and dark lanes.Add to your Trip Planner
Street of Harmony
The Street of Harmony is JB's hidden treasure of a harmonious and delicated balance region that is manifested by the juxtaposition of places of worship (mosques, temples and churches) and the proximity of its old charms and modern attraction...
The street of harmony covers several streets in the city centre around Jalan Trus and Jalan Wong Ah Fook... The starting point is the Sultan Ibrahim Building... There are interesting features or trades like the old bakery, barber, antiques, charcoal making and Chinese paper figuring... Pewters, fresh flowers, pubs, bookstores, second-hand magazines and books and a host of other products are found along this harmonious path... Local coffee, tea and food are also available in the many coffee shops and modern restaurants lining the street...Add to your Trip Planner
Indonesian Jamu And Cosmetics
Tri Andara is one of the biggest Jamu shop at Pasar Borong Pandan that sell a lot of Indonesian Jamu and cosmetics. Local herbs or medicines are also available here. If you are one of the users you can get the Indonesian Jamu or cosmetics even when you are in M'sia but the price is slightly more of course! There are shops at Komtar and other shopping center that sell this Indonesian Jamu too.
N.B:‘Indonesian Jamu’ are medicines or cosmetics that were made mostly from herbs.Related to:
- Road Trip
- Family Travel
Playground of JB - Danga Bay
A popular place to be for locals and tourists is Danga Bay.
Whether you want to take a boat ride, train tram or ride a bicycle or enjoy a stroll, this coastal public park with adequate car parks and no admission fees is the ideal place.
It can be hot during the day but in the evening with the cool breeze, it is ideal for family time or couples for the night out. There are many different eating places from cafes, restaurants to street style stalls.
There is also a night market to buy souvenir, bargains and trinkets.Add to your Trip Planner
JB Landmark Clock Tower
Overlooking the Tebrau Straits is another of JB famous landmark - the Clock Tower.
It is another Anglo-Victorian-Moorish style building.
In the eveninng, it is lighted up and a welcoming sight to all visitors to JB.Add to your Trip Planner
Walking around JB Downtown
JB downtown is relative small, the roads are narrow and with all the traffic crowding to cross the causeway to clear immigration to get to Singapore, it is better to park your car and walk around.
There are many private as departmental store security car parks right at JB downtown.
You can explore the many street stalls and eating places and supermarkets.
Beware of personal security especially at night. There have been cases of snatch thieves riding on motorcycles.
As well as the busy traffic day or night. Remember where you park as it is easy to lose your orientation.Add to your Trip Planner
Small Villages around JB
JB is a much poorer area than Singapore, but if you can get outside of the city you will see much, much poorer areas yet. I spent just a few minutes in a village where the people lived in small shacks built on stilts over the water. As you can see from the photos, this is just minutes from the city's tall apartment buildings full of middle-class families.Add to your Trip Planner
The Grand Palace and Sultan Abu Bakar Museum
This beautiful building on the water facing Singapore is the Istana Besar, or the Grand Palace of JB. It was built in 1866 and is used mainly for ceremonies and official functions today. Sultan Abu Bakar oversaw much of the construction by a European architect, he ordered the furniture from England, and he directed the placement of the gardens.
Since 1982 the Grand Palace has housed a fine museum with many historic pieces. Its features are the throne room, the treasure rooms, and the hunting room. Exhibits include coins, stamps, guns, stuffed wildlife, pottery ceramics, The cost is US $7 if you are foreign and only about US $ .50 if you are Malaysian.
The gardens are now a large, peaceful public park.
The Museum is open 9am to 5pm Saturday through Thursday.Add to your Trip Planner
Johor Bahru Hotels
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