There are hotels in Johor Bahru where you can go to the duty-free shops. The city has a ferry terminal (from there ferries go to the Indonesian islands of Batam and Bintan) on Jalan-Ibrahim-Sultan Street.
In addition to restaurants and malls, visitors can visit the expansive market, and near the Lido Waterfront outdoor swimming pool, the Masjid Mosque of Sultan Abu Bakar, the Royal Abu Bakar Museum and the Gardens of Istana, an old palace with a Japanese tea house and a private zoo of the Sultan, sparkle with shimmering white marble. open to the public.
Istana Besar Palace (Grand Palace) , built in neoclassical style, is now used for various official ceremonies; the modern sultans moved further north to present-day Istana Bukit Serena with a 32m tower. Other attractions include the colonial-style clock tower overlooking the town square of Dataran Bandaraya. The Art Gallery (Galeri Seni) , built in 1910 in a style traditional for the period, displays clothing, weapons, coins and manuscripts, as well as calligraphy, ceramics and other works of art.
Neighborhoods of Johor Bahru
Endau-Rompin National Park
This park lies on the border between the states of Johor and Pahang. The area of the Endau-Rompin National Park is 870 km² of forests and rivers. It quickly gained an excellent reputation among travelers as an alternative to the popular Taman Negara Park. This park is home to Malay tigers, Asian elephants, wild boars and the largest population of Sumatran rhinos in the Malay Peninsula. Many representatives of other species of the animal world also live here, for example, binturongs (either cats, or bears) , white- armed gibbons (laras) – the only species of great apes on the peninsula. Among the huge number of bird species living here, the hornbill and the large argus pheasant should be mentioned. Endau Rompin is also home to the Jakung tribe of the Orang Asli people.
This park is less civilized than the parks of Sarawak and Sabah, therefore it looks more pristine. Endau-Rompin is, to a certain extent, a challenge for the most adventurous travelers. Accommodation options are limited to chalets, dormitories and three park campsites located at Batu Hampar, Upeh Guling and Boyya Sangkut. For a walk in the park, you must take a guide or participate in a general excursion.
From Johor Bahru you can take the North-South Expressway towards Kluang and stop for a walk around Kahang. From there, there is a 56-kilometer jungle road to the entrance to Kampung Peta National Park, which can only be reached by 4WD. There is a visitor center and the entrance to the national park. Alternatively, you can get there with a three-hour boat ride from Felda Nitar II. Entrance to the park is strictly controlled, there are very strict guidelines for behavior in the national park itself, they also determine the duration of stay there.
South coast of Johor
Johor has three sites protected by the RAMSAR Convention on Wetlands, which is of worldwide importance. Unlike Johor National Parks at Pulau Kukup and Tanjung Piai, Sungai Pulai Park does not have boardwalks from which to view the mangrove ecosystem, with countless wildlife such as smooth-haired otters, spectacled finches, mudskippers (genus fish) and kingfishers. Sungai Pulai is located fairly close to the second bridge connecting Malaysia (Johor) and Singapore (western border of the country) . The best way to see the park’s mangroves is by joining a river cruise with an Orang Seletar Orang Asli guide.
Desaru and the northern islands
Desaru’s 25-kilometer stretch of golden sands can be reached by road via Kota Tinggi or the Senai-Desaru highway starting at Senai International Airport. If you are traveling through Kota Tinggi and are an avid bird lover, you should pre-order your pass to the Panti Bird Sanctuary, located 8 km north of Kota Tinggi. But if you are driving along the Senai-Desaru highway, you should stop at Pasir Gudang. It houses the Layang Layang Museum, dedicated to the history of kites, and hosts the annual World Kite Festival at the start of the year, a colorful sight not to be missed. There are also interesting events for fans of car racing – Johor auto races are held here, where spectators can watch international competitions.
Desaru, 55 km further east, is the first major seaside resort for Singaporeans. There are several large hotels and golf courses here, but travelers on a more modest budget will also find reasonably priced chalets.
In the sea, not far from the resorts of Mersing, there are islands – Pulau Rawa, Pulau Tengakh, Pulau Besar, Pulau Tinggi and Pulau Sibu – with white sandy beaches, coral reefs and inexpensive housing. A boat can be hired in Mersing to take you to one of these isolated islands.