For travellers who are looking for a great holiday in Asia where they experience amazing architecture, an elaborate platter, rich cultural diversity and outstanding city life, Singapore is a great place to visit. But if you want to take it up a notch and explore some places near Singapore, you have to visit Johor Bahru.
About Johor Bahru
Johor Bahru is a world-famous border town of Singapore. The town is actually the capital of the state of Johor. Istana Besar, a royal palace built by Sultan Abu Bakar, sits on the waterfr ont of Johor Bahru. It is one of the most popular tourist spots in the world attracting thousands of visitors every year. The vibrant town is popular among travellers for its nightlife and fine cuisine.
So, if you are in Singapore and looking for a quick getaway, Johor Bahru is a great place to start. You will find a huge range of outstanding bars, restaurants, clubs, eateries, pubs and resorts. The street food is also amazing here. Some of the bakeries here offering lip-smacking confectionaries are operating for decades. Other than food, you can explore historical monuments here, such as the Grand Palace. This is a fine example of Anglo-Malay architecture that will fascinate you. Also, check out the Johor Art Gallery for some amazing artwork.
Let us look at some of the reasons why you must not miss a trip to the amazing town of Johor Bahru:
Tourism in Johor Bahru
If you stay in Johor Bahru, your trip will not be complete if you have not visited the following places:
Johor Bahru Old Chinese Temple
You can start exploring the place by visiting Johor Bahru Old Chinese Temple. It is a traditional temple that dates back to the 19th century and was built to honour the five deities of the Chinese community. The temple is a popular example of Chinese traditional architecture, where it has a bright red and white colour scheme that includes intricate artwork. Check out the exhibits that take you back to the time when the Chinese community first arrived in Johor Bahru.
Johor Bahru Zoo
Another major attraction in the town, Johor Bahru Zoo is one of the earliest zoos built in Asia. Dating back to 1928, the zoo is home to several species of animals, such as lions, elephants, and gorillas. You will also find many reptiles and birds here. A zoo is a great place if you are planning to visit here along with your children.
Johor Bahru Kwong Siew Heritage Gallery
Johor Bahru Kwong Siew Heritage Gallery is an interesting museum that is unique in its décor and architecture. The museum used to be the headquarters of the Kwong Siew Clan Association, which was established by Wong Ah Fook. The place is actually located in two adjoining shophouses that were built in 1907. The shops were donated by Wong Ah Fook, who used to work for Sultanate of Junior. As you enter the gallery, you will find the place studded with artefacts that depict the transition of Chinese immigrants to settlers. These artefacts will tell you the story of how these immigrants slowly built their life. You will find many pictures, opium pipes, jewellery, opera costumes, weapons, and other antiques that belong to the Wong family.
The magnificent Istana Besar is also known as the Grand Palace that belonged to the Sultan of Johor. The structure was built during the time of Sultan Abu Bakar and is a perfect blend of western and Malay architecture. You will feel like a royal as you walk along the neatly maintained courtyard. Gaze at the stunning structure, coloured in white, and experience the peaceful vibes. The huge dome is a significant highlight of the palace. Make sure you see the blue top of the palace. While you are here, check out Royal Abu Bakar Museum, which consists of photographs, artefacts and a collection of the royal heirloom.
If you have kids along with you and want them to have a good time, you have to visit Legoland Malaysia. The place is packed with more than 40 fun-filled rides and activities. With an area of more than 76 acres, it is the first international theme park that was opened in Johor Bahru. Enjoy roller coasters, such as the Dragon and Great Lego race. There are interactive Lego games and a Lego building, where you can try your hands on building houses and cars. Also, there is an adjoining water park that has many water rides for you to enjoy.
Nightlife in Johor Bahru
The town of Johor Bahru is famous for its colourful nightlife. The fast-growing city houses some of the best nightclubs, restaurants, bars, and pubs. There are several popular nightspots in Johor Bahru that have attracted tourists over the years. Read on to know more…
If you are looking for some affordable dinner or supper, you can start by visiting the Food Street at Meldrum Walk. It is a significant highlight of the Johor nightlife where you get amazing food at affordable prices! At Meldrum Walk, you will find local delicacies served by various Malay, Indian, and Chinese food stalls. Situated at the back alley of Jalan Meldrum, the place lets you try delicious food items, such as Ikan Bakar, Popiah, Fried Chicken Wings, Apam Balik Pancake, Char Kway Teow, and Fried Oyster Omelette. Do not forget to try out the lip-smacking Laksa!
Night Market Bazaar Karat
If you have filled up your tummy and want to do some shopping, head over to the night market situated between Jalan Segget and Jalan Tan Hiok Nee. It is an interesting place for shopping used items, electronics, perfumes, clothes, beverages, and even some tasty treats. Here, you will find that most of the stalls are open to bargaining. If you are lucky, you might be able to enjoy some live music in the area between OCBC and CIMB bank. Also, you will find other food stalls at the car parking space in Jalan Tan Hiok Nee.
Sin Kimdo Seafood Restaurant
Another popular nightspot in Johor Bahru, Sin Kimdo Seafood Restaurant is a paradise for seafood lovers. The restaurant offers a vast array of seafood to satisfy your taste buds. It is famous for its BBQ section, where you can select the food item you like and hand it over for grilling on the charcoal fire. Oyster Mushrooms and Chicken Wing Satay are some of the popular dishes served here. You must try Golden Fried Rice, Salted Egg Crabs and Crispy Fried Pork. You might find the crab a bit overpriced but certainly worth your money!
Famous nightclubs in Johor Bahru
Here are some of the most famous nightclubs in Johor Bahru where you can enjoy with friends and loved ones.
Sky 26 @ Holiday Villa
If you want to just chill out and drink with friends, Sky 26 @ Holiday Villa is the perfect spot! You can enjoy the 270-degree view of the town of Johor Bahru from the top while sipping on some cool beverages. You will find some fine wine along with other alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages here. Try out the delicious platter consisting of delicacies, such as Cheese Katsu Sushi, Asari Pasta, and Japanese spaghetti. The swanky nightclub is an amazing spot to hang out with your friends, colleagues, or loved ones.
Freedom Ultimate NightClub
The nightclub is located at the level 1 of Berjaya Waterfront Complex. It is a popular spot for drinking, dining, partying and playing games. The elaborate platter consists of an all-day breakfast menu, along with lip-smacking dishes for lunch and dinner. There are loads of options to choose from, such as oysters, crabs, meat, fish, snacks, pasta and barbeque items. Also, there are many options when it comes to Chinese and Western dishes. The nightclub offers you amazing live music across different genres like jazz, pop, funk, rock, and hip hop. So, if you want to enjoy drinking & nightlife in Johor Bahru, Freedom Ultimate NightClub is a must-visit place.
Aruku The Walk NightClub
One of the most visited Johor nightclubs, Aruku the Walk is a place for all party animals. The nightclub is open all days of the week and is great for partying, drinking and enjoying live performances. If you want to shake a leg to fast beats? The place has amazing guest DJs that will keep the party pumping! With fantastic music bands performing live coupled with fine dining and drinking options, the nightclub is a haven for partygoers. The place also has 5 KTV rooms where you can sing, dance and enjoy. It serves a huge variety of sumptuous dishes and desserts that you can enjoy while dancing.
The Replacement – Lodge & Kitchen
The Replacement – Lodge & Kitchen is an interesting place that is a minimalist café during the day and is transformed into a buzzing bar at night. So, the fun starts at The Replacement after sunset, where you can just chill with your buddies and close ones. With cosy and sophisticated ambience, it serves amazing snacks and drinks. Do enjoy some churros along with imported beer.
World Shaking KTV
If you are a party animal and a fan of KTV, then World Shaking KTV is a great place that you can check out. Located around 10 minutes from JB Sentral, the place is perfect for partying and singing all night long with your friends and loved ones. Here, all the rooms are equipped with the best sound systems.
Just a 30-minute drive from City Square Mall, Scions Club is yet another well-loved place to experience the nightlife in Johor Bahru. With nice ambience, it has rooms where you can enjoy singing and dining at the same time! Being a popular KTV location, the club has rooms which can pack 10 people and more that are usually booked during weekends. If you want to have an interesting and fun-filled night, Scions is the place.
Zon Regency Hotel
One of the most popular Johor nightclubs, Zon Regency hotel is a great place for those with sophisticated tastes and the ones who just want to escape their daily lives. To enjoy the nightlife in Johor Bahru, you can come here and relax. Here, you may witness amazing music performances by live bands.