Restoran Meldrum Lama Kopitan Johor Bahru Malaysia

Johor Bahru is a modern Malaysian city just across the water from Singapore. As one of the two land border crossings between Singapore and Malaysia, it is the busiest international land border crossing in the world. Known as JB for short, Johor Bahru has undergone a transformation in recent years and further development is still underway. This sprawling city is full of high rises, shopping complexes as well as an abundance of great places to eat. Furthermore it is one of the more affordable destinations in Malaysia both in terms of accommodation as well as food and other costs of living. Find out more in this Johor Bahru destination guide.

What is Johor Bahru Malaysia famous for?

Just across the border from Singapore, Johor Bahru is the southernmost city in Malaysia. The Malaysia-Singapore border crossing at Johor Bahru is one of the busiest border crossings in the world. Many people come to Johor Bahru for its great value shopping and its vibrant food scene. Johor Bahru is the capital of the state of Johor and is one of the largest and fastest growing cities in Malaysia. It’s also a popular destination for domestic tourism within Malaysia.

Why you should visit Johor Bahru Malaysia

Eating at Century Street Food Court Johor Bahru Malaysia
Eating at Century Street Food Court Johor Bahru Malaysia

Johor Bahru is a great introduction to Malaysia. Just a short bus ride away from Singapore, it’s conveniently located at the southern end of the Malaysian peninsula. Johor Bahru is a vibrant city with a great food scene, excellent shopping destinations as well as plenty of great areas to explore.

Johor Bahru Destination Guide: Know before you go

Basic info about Johor Bahru Malaysia

Medan Selera YJ Foodcourt Johor Bahru Malaysia
Medan Selera YJ Foodcourt Johor Bahru Malaysia

  • City name in other scripts – جوهر بهرو (Jawi), 新山 (Chinese), ஜொகூர் பாரு (Tamil)
  • Language – Malay. There are 10 dialects of Malay used throughout thought the country, with Standard Malay being the unifying language. English is also becoming more widely spoken in the country. However not everyone you meet will be able to speak English. Mandarin Chinese (Teochew, Hainanese, Hakka and Hokkien dialects), Tamil as well as other Indian languages such as Malayalam, Telugu and Punjabi are spoken by the various ethnic groups that live in Johor Bahru Malaysia.
  • Currency – Malaysian ringgit (MYR). This has been the official currency of Malaysia since 1967. Currency exchanges can be found in most cities and ATMs are also available widely throughout the country.
  • Population – 502,900 (2017)
  • Area – 220 km2 (85 sq mi)
  • District – Johor Bahru
  • State – Johor (Johor Bahru is the capital of this state)
  • Emergency number – 999
  • Police number – 999

Utilities in Johor Bahru Malaysia

Public Toilets Cedar Point Food Centre Johor Bahru Malaysia
Public Toilets Cedar Point Food Centre Johor Bahru Malaysia

  • Electricity – Malaysia uses Type G power plugs. The country operates on a 240v supply voltage at 50Hz. Power outages are reasonably common in Malaysia.
  • Water – the tap water in Malaysia is not generally safe to drink. Tap water is usually treated, but pipes may be old. Therefore most locals boil their water or use a water filter just to be safe.
  • Toilets – sit-down flushing toilets as well as Asian style squat toilets are common in Malaysia. Toilets generally come equipped with a spray hose (sometimes referred to as a Muslim shower). The spray hose is like a European bidet and is used for cleaning personal areas as an alternative to toilet paper. All of the accommodation we stayed in throughout the country was equipped with the western style sit-down flushing toilets with spray hoses. Toilet paper is also usually provided. Don’t flush your toilet paper – use the bins provided. The use of bathroom slippers is customary and is provided in accommodation and sometimes also in public bathrooms. Public bathrooms often offer both sit-down and squat style toilets. Public toilets are common in Malaysia. The charge is usually around 30-50 sens.
  • Telephone country code: +60

Where is Johor Bahru Malaysia?

Johor Bahru is in the Johor Bahru district of the state of Johor Malaysia. It the southernmost city on the Malaysian peninsula on the Straits of Johor.

Johor Bahru is close to the border with Singapore. The closest Malaysian city to Johor Bahru is Iskandar Puteri. Johor Bahru is less than 20 minutes by car from Iskandar Puteri.

How to get to Johor Bahru Malaysia

Johor Bahru destination guide: Arriving by land

Johor Bahru Malaysia intercity land transport

Ticket Counter Johor Bahru Sentral Railway Station Malayia
Ticket Counter Johor Bahru Sentral Railway Station Malayia

The main transport options for travelling overland to Johor Bahru Malaysia are:

  • Private vehicle
  • Private transport operator
  • Train
  • Shuttle Bus
  • Bus
  • Bike

Driving to Johor Bahru from Singapore

Johor Bahru is only 41 minutes drive (23km, 14 miles) from the heart of Singapore. However this involves an international border crossing, which will affect the total travel time. It’s possible to check the traffic conditions at the border through live traffic websites such as this one: https://www.jalanow.com/johor-singapore-live-traffic-cam.htm

Woodlands Check Point - Singapore Malaysia Land Border Crossing
Woodlands Check Point – Singapore Malaysia Land Border Crossing

Driving to Johor Bahru from within Malaysia

If you are driving to Johor Bahru, here are the travel times and distances:

  • Iskandar Puteri, Johor – 16 minutes (18km, 11miles) without tolls.
  • Kluang, Johor – 1 hour 20 minutes (104km, 65miles) with tolls or 1 hour 34 minutes (102km, 63miles) without tolls.
  • Mersing, Johor – 1 hour 57 minutes (128km, 80miles) without tolls.
  • Malacca, Malacca– 2 hours 35 minutes (216km, 134miles) with tolls or 4 hours (218km, 135miles) without tolls.
  • Kuala Lumpur – 3 hours 33 minutes (331km, 206miles) with tolls or 7 hours 3 minutes (386km, 240miles) without tolls.
  • Kuantan, Pahang – 5 hours 7 minutes (369km, 229miles) with tolls or 4 hours 50 minutes (324km, 201miles) without tolls.
  • George Town, Penang – 7 hours 31 minutes (688km, 428miles) with tolls or 12 hours 43 minutes (777km, 483miles) without tolls.

Intercity trains to Johor Bahru Malaysia

Train from Johor Bahru to Kluang Malaysia
Train from Johor Bahru to Kluang Malaysia

Intercity trains service Johor Bahru Malaysia. These are operated by the national railway company Keretapi Tanah Melayu Berhad (KTMB), also known as Malayan Railways Limited. Johor Bahru is on the Malaysia West Coast Railway Line. This Malaysian railway line extends from Padang Besar railway station near the Malaysia-Thailand border to the Woodlands Train Checkpoint in Singapore. At Gemas it also connects with Malaysia’s Jungle Railway (the East Coast Railway Line). Train travel in Malaysia is a cheap and scenic way to see the country. We caught the train from Johor Bahru to Kluang in 2022. Our train fare was 14 ringgit per person and the journey was a comfortable and enjoyable experience.

Intercity buses to Johor Bahru Malaysia

A common way to get around Malaysia is by using intercity buses. These are budget friendly and the network is also extensive. Intercity bus companies in Malaysia include Perdana Express, Maraliner, KKKL Express as well as Plusliner. Popular bus destinations from Johor Bahru include:

  • Singapore – travel time 40 minutes. Tickets start from 8 ringgit one way.
  • Malacca Malaysia – travel time 3 hours 15 minutes. Tickets start from 21 ringgit one way.
  • Kuala Lumpur Malaysia – travel time 5 hours 15 minutes. Tickets start from 29 ringgit one way.

Our experience travelling to Johor Bahru from Singapore – Overland border crossing from Singapore to Malaysia

Looking for the perfect day trip from Singapore? You MUST visit Johor Bahru city! In the Malaysia travel vlog below we travel from Singapore to Malaysia and cross the Woodlands checkpoint to JB Sentral. We give our Malaysia first impressions, provide a JB accommodation tour and show you how to catch the MRT train and the bus from Singapore to Malaysia. One of our favourite things to do in Malaysia is eat Malaysian food, so we couldn’t wait to sample all of the delicious Johor Bahru Food! We headed straight for the Malaysian hawker centre Medan Selera YJ for some delicious lok lok and mee bandung. This Johor Bahru vlog is a must for anyone who wants a Malaysia travel guide to Living in Malaysia.

Johor Bahru destination guide: Arriving by air

There is an international airport in Johor Bahru called Senai International Airport (Airport code JHB). This airport is 22km (14 miles) away.

Other nearby airports include:

  • Seletar Airport, Singapore (Airport code XSP). This airport is 13km (8 miles) away.
  • Singapore Changi Airport, Singapore (Airport code SIN). This airport is 29km (18 miles) away.
  • Hang Nadim Airport, Indonesia (Airport code BTH). This airport is 56km (35 miles) away.

The national airline of Malaysia is Malaysia Airlines.

Johor Bahru destination guide: Arriving by boat

International ferries to Johor Bahru operate from Berjaya Waterfront Ferry Terminal. Ferries go to Batam Island as well as Bintan Island in Indonesia. A one way ticket to Batam Island is 100 ringgit plus 21 ringgit surcharge and the journey time is 90 minutes. A one way ticket to Bintan Island is 130 ringgit plus 21 ringgit surcharge and the journey time is 180 minutes.

Johor Bahru destination guide: How to get around Johor Bahru Malaysia

Walking in Johor Bahru Malaysia

By far the easiest and also the cheapest way to get around Johor Bahru is to walk. Most of the main attractions in the city area are within easy walking distance.

Local buses in Johor Bahru Malaysia

JB Sentral Bus Terminal Malaysia
JB Sentral Bus Terminal Malaysia

Local buses service Johor Bahru.

Trams in Johor Bahru Malaysia

Johor Bahru does not have a tram system.

Local trains in Johor Bahru Malaysia

Johor Bahru does not have a local train line.

Metro trains (subway or underground) in Johor Bahru Malaysia

Johor Bahru does not have an underground train line.

Vehicle hire in Johor Bahru Malaysia

Motorcycle Johor Bahru Malaysia
Motorcycle Johor Bahru Malaysia

A wide variety of vehicles can be rented in Malaysia. This includes:

  • Electric scooters
  • Bicycles – you can hire a bike from a bike hire shop such as Dangabay bicycle rental centre.
  • Motorcycles
  • Cars
  • SUVs
  • Boats

In Malaysia they drive on the left side of the road.

Shuttles in Johor Bahru Malaysia

Twin Galaxy Residences Shuttle to JB Sentral Johor Bahru Malaysia
Twin Galaxy Residences Shuttle to JB Sentral Johor Bahru Malaysia

Shuttles make short repetitive journeys between two destinations. Our accommodation in Johor Bahru had regular free shuttles between the apartment complex and the city centre.

Taxis in Malaysia

Taxis are common in Malaysia. Fares are regulated and are usually metered. However taxi drivers in Malaysia do not have the best reputation, which is why alternative services like Grab are very popular.

In general your fare will include the following costs:

  • The pickup fee or minimum fee – this is charged as soon as you get into the vehicle.
  • Airport surcharge – this is an additional fixed fee for travelling to an airport.
  • Price per kilometre – the rate is double between midnight and 6am.
  • Price per hour – this is a price that gets charged when the taxi is stuck in heavy traffic.
  • Surcharge for more than 2 adult passengers – this is an additional fixed fee.
  • Surcharge for using the luggage compartment – this is an additional fixed fee.
  • Surcharge for booking by phone – this is an additional fixed fee.
  • Road toll charges

Check that the meter gets switched on at the start of your journey at the right rate. We also recommend bringing enough change in cash as drivers generally only accept cash and may not have change.

Alternatively, if booking in advance the fare may be a fixed price that is agreed on before the trip. Some taxis also operate on a pre-paid coupon system where the coupon is purchased from a counter at the airport.

It is not necessary or expected to tip taxi drivers in Malaysia.

Ride-share services in Johor Bahru Malaysia

Grab is the main app based ride-hailing service in Malaysia. Other ride-share services in Malaysia include MyCar, MULA, DACSEE, EzCar, inDriver as well as the women only service Riding Pink. Uber no longers operates in Malaysia after Grab acquired all of its Southeast Asia assets. Lyft services only Kuala Lumpur in Malaysia via its Grab partnership.

Johor Bahru destination guide: How long to spend in Johor Bahru Malaysia

Ikan Bakar Tampin Johor Bahru Malaysia
Ikan Bakar Tampin Johor Bahru Malaysia

Johor Bahru is a vibrant and rapidly developing city. It has a great food scene as well as plenty of places to do some retail therapy. Located just across the border from Singapore, it is perfect for a day trip or a weekend getaway. However if you have more time to spare, this is a great value destination that could easily keep you entertained for a week or more. We spent a week in Johor Bahru and we particularly enjoyed eating our fill at the various hawker centres, night markets, cafes and restaurants in the city. Additionally we loved exploring the city, going shopping at the various shopping centres in the JB Sentral area and finishing off our day by relaxing in the outdoor pool at our vary reasonably priced Airbnb.

Johor Bahru destination guide: What to do in Johor Bahru Malaysia

Johor Bahru is a vibrant Malaysian city with many activities on offer. It has a range of great free activities as well as paid activities.

Johor Bahru destination guide: Free things to do in Johor Bahru Malaysia

Johor Bahru Sentral Railway Station Malaysia
Johor Bahru Sentral Railway Station Malaysia

There are enough free activities in Johor Bahru Malaysia to keep you entertained for a weekend or even a leisurely week:

  • Johor Bahru City Square
  • AEON Mall
  • The Mall, Mid Valley Southkey
  • Paradigm Mall
  • KSL City Mall
  • Komtar JBCC
  • Johor Bahru Sentral Railway Station
  • Puteri Harbour
  • Bazar Karat
  • Tan Hiok Nee Heritage Street
  • Sultan Abu Bakar State Mosque – note that only Muslims are allowed to enter the building
  • Jalan Wong Ah Fook
  • Johor Old Chinese Temple
  • Istana Bukit Serene
  • Pasar Malam
  • Pulai Waterfall

Johor Bahru destination guide: Paid activities in Johor Bahru Malaysia

Connoisseur Food Generation Johor Bahru Malaysia
Connoisseur Food Generation Johor Bahru Malaysia

A number of attractions in Johor Bahru Malaysia charge an entry fee:

  • Legoland Malaysia – entry fee for adults is 189 ringgit for a day pass to the theme park (as at 2022).
  • Johor Zoo – entry fee for adults is 3 ringgit (as at 2020), however the zoo has been closed for renovation since 2020 and is still closed as at 2022.
  • Arulmigu Sri Rajakaliamman Glass Temple – entry fee for adults is 10 ringgit (as at 2022).
  • Kota Tinggi Firefly Park – entry fee for adults is 20 ringgit (as at 2022).
  • Danga Bay – entry fee for adults is 10 ringgit (as at 2022).
  • Austin Heights Water & Adventure Park – entry fee for above 120cm is 80 ringgit (as at 2022).
  • Johor Bahru Chinese Heritage Museum – entry fee for adults is 6 ringgit (as at 2022).
  • Pulau Kukup National Park – entry fee for adults is 20 ringgit (as at 2022).

Shopping trip to Johor Bahru – Malaysia travel vlog

Is Johor Bahru worth visiting for shopping? Find out what to expect shopping in Johor Bahru in the Malaysia travel vlog below. Shopping in Johor Bahru is a cheaper alternative to Singapore and a Shopping day in JB wouldn’t be complete without visiting JB Sentral, JB Bazar, R&F Mall and City square Johor Bahru in Johor Bahru city. In this Malaysia vlog we provide a taste of living in Malaysia, including things to do Johor Bahru such as visiting a Johor Bahru shopping mall as well as the Johor Bahru night markets. We end our Johor Bahru vlog with taste testing some Malaysian street food at Pasar Karat. This Malaysia vlog will be useful for anyone who wants to know what a Malaysia shopping mall is like as well as anyone interested in visiting Malaysia. We provide everything you need to answer the question – Is Shopping Good in JB?

Weather in Johor Bahru Malaysia

Skyscrapers Johor Bahru Malaysia
Skyscrapers Johor Bahru Malaysia

The climate for Johor Bahru is classified as tropical, with relatively uniform hot temperatures and high humidity throughout the year. The hottest month is June with an average temperature range of 25°C to 32°C (77°F to 90°F) and coldest month December with an average temperature between 24°C-30°C (75°F to 86°F). The period with the highest average rainfall in Johor Bahru is November to early January.

Best time to visit Johor Bahru Malaysia

Many of the best activities in Johor Bahru are indoor activities such as shopping and eating, which makes Johor Bahru a great destination all year round. However if you are coming from Singapore and want to avoid long lines at the border crossing we recommend avoiding weekends and public holidays. In terms of weather, the best time of year to visit Johor Bahru is late January and February when the weather is slightly cooler and less humid.

Internet and mobile phones in Malaysia

Major internet and phone companies in Malaysia – Celcom, Digi, Hotlink (Maxis), U Mobile, UniFi Mobile, Tune Talk, Yes, XOX Mobile / ONEXOX, redONE, Yoodo, Telekom Malaysia and Time dotCom.

5G has been in Malaysia since December 2021. 2G will not be be switched off in Malaysia. 3G is was switched off in March 2022.

Malaysia is ranked 61st fastest in the world for mobile internet speeds and 38th fastest for fixed broadband. For Fixed Broadband the average download speed is 90mbps and upload is 51mbps (as at October 2022).

Cell phone SIM cards can be bought in a numbers of places throughout Malaysia. These include phone stores, in shopping malls, at bus stations as well as at airports. Some form of ID, such as a passport, is required in order to purchase a SIM card in Malaysia.

Johor Bahru Malaysia destination guide: Is Johor Bahru Malaysia worth visiting?

As one of the most popular destinations for domestic tourism in Malaysia, Johor Bahru is certainly worth visiting. People come here to discover southern Malaysian cuisine, shop to their heart’s content in Johor Bahru’s many shopping malls and explore this rapidly changing city. Johor Bahru’s proximity to Singapore makes it the perfect day trip from Singapore. Furthermore, if you’re after a longer stay there’s plenty of great value accommodation to choose from.

How much to budget for Johor Bahru Malaysia?

Is Johor Bahru Malaysia expensive?

If you’re looking for an affordable travel destination in Malaysia, Johor Bahru is a great choice. The city offers modern apartments with excellent facilities at surprisingly low costs. Many people from Singapore come here for shopping trips, so depending on how much you like to shop, you can spend as much or as little as you want. The prices of goods are very reasonable here, and food and activities are also budget-friendly.

Johor Bahru destination guide: Daily spend for a couple travelling in Johor Bahru Malaysia

Performers at Connoisseur Food Generation Johor Bahru Malaysia
Performers at Connoisseur Food Generation Johor Bahru Malaysia

As a rough guide, we recommend the following budgets for a couple:

  • Low-budget daily spend – 150 ringgit per day for a couple will get you hostel accommodation, meals from bakeries and markets, local transport and free or cheap activities such as visiting shopping centres and markets
  • Mid-range daily spend – 300 ringgit per day for a couple will get you mid-range accommodation, local transport, restaurant meals and a few paid activities
  • Luxury spend – 4000 ringgit per day for a couple will get you a premium experience in Malaysia, staying at luxury resorts, travelling by private transport, doing a range of paid activities and eating at high end restaurants

Johor Bahru destination guide: Accommodation in Johor Bahru Malaysia

Airbnb Johor Bahru Malaysia
Airbnb Johor Bahru Malaysia

There is a good range of accommodation to suit most budgets in Johor Bahru Malaysia. Airbnb operates in Malaysia and we were impressed with the range of options available in Johor Bahru. Furthermore, we found that Airbnbs in Johor Bahru were some of the most affordable in all of Malaysia and the quality and facilities were excellent. One thing to keep in mind with hotels in Malaysia is that smoking in hotel rooms is often permitted.

Where to stay in Johor Bahru Malaysia

We recommend the following accommodation in Johor Bahru Malaysia:

  • Best budget accommodation in Johor Bahru Malaysia – Hashtag.Capsule.Hostel is a great value, clean and cute hostel. The hostel is in the trendy Taman Mount Austin neighbourhood of Johor Bahru, about half an hour drive from JB Sentral. There are restaurants and shops nearby as well as Austin Heights Water & Adventure Park.
  • Best mid-range hotel in Johor Bahru Malaysia – Z Hotel is conveniently located near JB Sental as well as Woodlands Checkpoint. Additionally, there are plenty of restaurants and shops within easy walking distance of the hotel. The rooms are spacious and clean with great views.
  • Best luxury hotel in Johor Bahru Malaysia – DoubleTree by Hilton Johor Bahru is the best 4 star hotel in Johor Bahru. It is centrally located in the heart of Johor Bahru, close to shops, restaurants and other attractions. The hotel also has modern rooms with comfortable beds and excellent amenities. Additionally, the hotel staff is friendly and helpful, making guests feel welcome during their stay.
  • Best apartment rental in Johor Bahru Malaysia – we stayed at the Twin Galaxy Residences during our trip to Johor Bahru. We absolutely loved this property. The building is modern and immaculately presented. We particularly enjoyed using the rooftop pool. The building is about 10 minutes drive from JB Sental but there is a free shuttle available on most days and there are plenty of restaurants, food centres and shops nearby.

How much is accommodation in Johor Bahru Malaysia?

For short-term accommodation, a general price per night is as follows:

  • Budget accommodation – 25-30 ringgit for a bed in a dorm
  • Mid-range accommodation – 60-180 ringgit for a private room
  • Luxury accommodation – 180-920 ringgit a night for a luxury hotel
  • Rental property – 200-1000 ringgit a night for a fully furnished 3-4 bedroom home

Tourist tax on accommodation in Malaysia

From 1 January 2023 there is a tourist tax of 10 ringgit per accommodation per night in Malaysia. This tax is collected by the property. Permanent residents and Malaysian nationals are exempt from the tax. Furthermore the tourist tax does not apply to homestays and kampung stays registered with the Ministry of Tourism.

Johor Bahru destination guide: Food in Johor Bahru Malaysia

How much does food cost in Johor Bahru Malaysia?

Toffee Latte-Connoisseur Food Generation Johor Bahru Malaysia
Toffee Latte-Connoisseur Food Generation Johor Bahru Malaysia

Our price guide for your food budget in Johor Bahru Malaysia is as follows (prices as at 2022):

  • Restaurant meal – 30-60 ringgit for a main dish
  • Night market or hawker market food – 5-15 ringgit for a dish
  • Ais kachang – 4-6 ringgit
  • Coffee – 1.50-2.50 ringgit

Regional dishes in Johor Bahru Malaysia

Food Vendor Meldrum Walk Street Foods Johor Bahru Malaysia
Food Vendor Meldrum Walk Street Foods Johor Bahru Malaysia
  • Johor laksa
  • Kacang pool
  • Nasi briyani gam
  • Mee rebus
  • Asam pedas
  • Longton kering
  • Roast duck
  • Banana cake from Hiap Joo Bakery
  • Pastries and cakes from Salahuddin Bakery
  • Deep fried durians from Wah Cai
  • Pepes
  • Nasi kukus ayam rempah
  • Nasi ambeng
  • Fish head curry

Cheap Eats in Johor Bahru Malaysia

Century Street Food Court Johor Bahru Malaysia
Century Street Food Court Johor Bahru Malaysia

  • Bakeries are a great place to get cheap and delicious food. One of the most iconic bakeries in Johor Bahru is Hiap Joo Bakery. You must try their banana cake when you’re there. It’s unbelievably light and oh so tasty! People drive from Singapore just to get this banana cake and there are usually long lines for their delicious treats. We paid 12 ringgit for a box of their delicious banana cake (price as at 2022).
  • Hawker centres in Malaysia are ubiquitous and have excellent budget friendly food. The variety of stalls available means that you have a good range of options to choose from. One of our favourite hawker centres in Johor Bahru was Connoisseur Food Generation (FGJB). It has a great atmosphere, a great mix of cuisines available and there are often live performances at night.
  • Night markets in Malaysia are another of our go to places for affordable and tasty food. There’s also usually stalls selling items like clothes, toys and shoes in addition to the food stalls.
  • Street food is also a very common cheap eat option in Malaysia. You can often find street food around transport hubs as well as scattered in various places around the city. We noticed a lot of lok lok steamboat street food in JB. Lok lok means “to dip”. You choose from a variety of food all on skewers and the skewer is dipped in hot boiling water to cook.

Johor Bahru Malaysia food vlog

The number one thing to do in Malaysia is eat! And we got off to a great start in Johor Bahru city! In the Malaysia travel vlog below we search for the best Johor Bahru food. We find amazing Malaysia street food at Meldrum walk, visit the JB Malaysian hawker centre Cedar point food centre, sample banana bread that’s worth travelling for at Hiap Joo Bakery and try mouth watering Malaysian food at some of the best kopitiams and cafes in Johor Bahru Malaysia. This Johor Bahru vlog includes Malaysia food like Kaya toast, Mee Rebus, Nasi lemak and Oyster omelete. This Malaysia food vlog is perfect for anyone interested in street food Johor Bahru.

Johor Bahru Malaysia culture

Weekends in Johor Malaysia

Byadelrosmi Restaurant Johor Bahru Malaysia
Byadelrosmi Restaurant Johor Bahru Malaysia

Which days are weekdays and weekend days vary in Malaysia depending on the state you’re in. In the state of Johor weekdays are Sunday to Thursday and weekends are Friday and Saturday. Keep this in mind as weekends can affect prices and availability (particularly for accommodation). Additionally weekends may impact opening hours as well as how crowded attractions are.

Johor public holidays

Malaysia has one of the highest number of public holidays in the world. In total, there are between 18 and 20 public holidays observed in each state. This includes national holidays as well as state based holidays. Public holidays for the state of Johor are as follows:

  • Thaipusam – full moon in the month of Thai, in January or February
  • Chinese New Year’s Day – 1st day of 1st lunar month, in January or February
  • Chinese New Year Holiday – 2nd day of 1st lunar month, in January or February
  • Sultan of Johor’s Birthday – 23 March
  • Labour Day – 1 May
  • Wesak Day (Buddha’s birthday) – May or June, date varies
  • Awal Ramadan – 1st day of Ramadan, date varies
  • Hari Raya Aidilfitri or Hari Raya Puasa – the last day of Ramadan, date varies
  • Hari Raya Aidilfitri Holiday or Hari Raya Puasa Holiday – day after the last day of Ramadan, date varies
  • Yang di-Pertuan Agong’s Birthday (King’s Birthday) – 1st Monday in June
  • Hari Raya Qurban (Aidiladha) (Feast of the Sacrifice) – date varies
  • Awal Muharram (Islamic New Year) – date varies
  • Hari Hol Almarhum Sultan Iskandar – 6 Safar on the Islamic calendar
  • Merdeka Day (National Day, Independence Day) – 31 August
  • Malaysia Day – 16 September
  • Maulidur Rasul (Prophet Muhammad’s Birthday) – 12th day of the 3rd month of the Islamic calendar
  • Deepavali – date varies, October or November
  • Christmas Day – 25 December

National symbols of Malaysia

  • Malaysia flag – 14 alternating red and white stripes with a blue canton with a yellow crescent and 14 pointed star. The Malaysian flag is called the Stripes of Glory.
  • Malaysia coat of arms – two tigers supporting a shield with a yellow crescent and a 14 pointed star on top and a yellow banner with words that translate to “Unity is strength” written in both romanised Malay and Jawi at the bottom.
  • National flower – hibiscus
  • National bird – rhinoceros hornbill
  • Malaysia national animal – the Malayan tiger

Malaysia pastimes

JB Mariamman Temple Johor Bahru Malaysia
JB Mariamman Temple Johor Bahru Malaysia

  • National dish – nasi lemak
  • Popular drinks – teh tarik, Ipoh white coffee, milo ais, sirup bandang
  • National sport – sepak takraw
  • Religion – 64% Islam, 19% Buddhist, 9% Christian, 6% Hindu (as at 2020)

Famous people from Johor Bahru Malaysia

  • Famous people born in Johor Bahru Malaysia – comedian Ronny Chieng, sultan Ibrahim Ismail of Johor, actress Yann Yann Yeo, politician Amira Aisya Abdul Aziz, actor Hanwei Chen, actress Fasha Sandha, politician Musa Hitam, former Prime Minister Hussein Onn, comedian Harith Iskander, politician Onn Jafar, film producer Afdlin Shauki, business magnate Robert Kuok, actress Vivien Yeo, crown prince Tunku Ismail Idris
  • Sports stars from Johor Bahru Malaysia – footballer Fandi Othman, Olympic archer Haziq Kamaruddin, motorcycle racer Kasma Daniel, footballer Ramadhan Saifullah, footballer Ruzaini Zainal, footballer K. Sasi Kumar, race car driver Tunku Abdul Rahman Hassanal Jeffri

Is Johor Bahru Malaysia Safe?

Malaysia travel guide: Safety in Malaysia

Daily Night Market Johor Bahru Malaysia
Daily Night Market Johor Bahru Malaysia

We have spent around 4 months travelling extensively through Malaysia over two separate trips. In our experience the country is extremely safe. Malaysia ranks 18th safest country on the Global Peace Index (as at 2022). As with any country, there are good areas as well as bad areas. Johor Bahru has a slightly higher crime rate than the rest of Malaysia, particularly in relation to muggings and robberies. Watch out for pickpockets and bag snatching particularly at crowded tourist attractions. In particular, when eating out don’t leave your bag, phone or wallet on the table or next to you where someone can quickly grab it and run away. Instead keep your belongings physically attached to you at all times. Make sure no-one is watching whenever you are entering pin codes and also never lose sight of your credit card when making a purchase.

General safety considerations in Malaysia

Other general safety considerations for travel in Malaysia:

  • Drinking water – tap water in Malaysia is not generally safe to drink. Tap water is usually treated, but pipes may be old. Therefore most locals boil their water or use a water filter.
  • Mosquitoes – mosquito borne illnesses are a significant risk in Malaysia, particularly dengue, Zika and chikungunya. Malaysia is in the pre-elimination phase of malaria. While malaria is a greater risk in Malaysian Borneo, there have also been cases on the Malaysian peninsula. Take precautions to avoid mosquito bites.
  • Altitude sickness – Malaysia has areas of high altitude and therefore altitude sickness risk. If you visit high altitude areas in Malaysia, allow sufficient time to acclimatise. If you experience signs of altitude sickness, including headache, nausea or vomiting, dizziness, tiredness, loss of appetite or shortness of breath, get help immediately.
  • Road safety – Road accidents are a significant risk in Malaysia. While road conditions in Malaysia are generally very good, traffic is often very heavy. Furthermore drivers in Malaysia tend to speed up rather than slowing down for amber lights. We also found that roads in Malaysia are not typically built with pedestrians in mind, and footpaths often stop unexpectedly in busy areas.
  • Water safety – take care when swimming as currents and waves may be stronger than you expect.
  • Earthquakes – Malaysia experiences both regional and local earthquake activity. In an earthquake, stay away from glass, windows, outside doors and walls and anything that could fall. If inside, get under a table, desk or solid furniture and hang onto it. Cover your head and torso to protect from falling objects. If outside, stay outside and go to an open area away from buildings.
  • Sun safety – Exposure to the sun can have adverse short-term and long-term effects on the skin, eyes and immune system. Sun protection such as sunscreen, a hat and sunglasses is very important to ensure you don’t get burnt.
  • Dogs – rabies from rabid dog bites is a risk in Malaysia. For more on dog safety while travelling, check out this video.

As with any destination, take all of your normal safety precautions.

Malaysia Blogs

You can find our Malaysia travel blogs below.

Prime Minister's Office Putrajaya Malaysia

Putrajaya Destination Guide: Everything You Need to Know (2024)

Malaysia’s administrative and judicial capital is the city of Putrajaya. This is a planned city that has wide boulevards, extensive ...
Satay - Cyberjaya Farmers Market - Rekascape Cyberjaya Malaysia

Cyberjaya Destination Guide: Everything You Need to Know (2024)

The Silicon Valley of Malaysia, Cyberjaya is a modern city with wide streets, modern high rises and an abundance of ...
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Kuala Lumpur Destination Guide: Everything You Need to Know (2024)

One of the world’s most recognisable cities, Kuala Lumpur is the ideal stopover in Asia. Kuala Lumpur, or KL for ...
Durian Mural - Laman Seni Art Lane Lorong Dato' Abdullah Raub Malaysia

Raub Destination Guide: Everything You Need to Know (2024)

The Malaysian capital of gold, Raub is one of the oldest towns in the state of Pahang. Gold in this ...
Kuala Lipis Streetview

Kuala Lipis Destination Guide: Everything You Need to Know (2024)

Kuala Lipis, also known as Lipis and Little KL, is a charming Malaysian town with a rich history. In its ...
Malaysia Flag - Gua Musang Malaysia

Gua Musang Destination Guide (2024): What You Need to Know

Famed as the birthplace of Musang King durian, Gua Musang is a small inland town on Peninsular Malaysia. Located on ...
Couple at God Light Gua Keris Cave Kompleks Gua Ikan Dabong Malaysia

Dabong Destination Guide (2024): What You Need to Know

Dabong is an inland Malaysian town surrounded by an abundance of natural wonders. Also known as Kuala Krai Selatan, this ...
Kuala Krai Sign Malaysia

Kuala Krai Destination Guide (2024): What You Need to Know

Kuala Krai is a convenient on the Jungle Railway in Malaysia. It is a relaxed town with a good food ...
Murals Kota Bharu Malaysia

Kota Bharu Destination Guide (2024): What You Need to Know

Kota Bharu is a city full of surprises. This city in the north east of Peninsular Malaysia is a place ...
Beach Umbrellas - Tuna Bay Island Resort Perhentian Islands Malaysia

Perhentian Islands Destination Guide (2024): What You Need to Know

The Perhentian Islands are a picture perfect set of islands on the east coast of Peninsular Malaysia. They are the ...
Boat from Kuala Besut to Perhentian Islands Malaysia

Kuala Besut Destination Guide (2024): What You Need to Know

Gateway to the Perhentian Islands, Kuala Besut is a small town with a number of hotels and eateries. The town ...
Beach Umbrellas-Laguna Redang Island Resort Malaysia

Redang Island Destination Guide (2024): What You Need to Know

Redang Island is a gorgeous Malaysian island which is famous for being one of the most beautiful islands in the ...
Malaysian Traditional Dress-Terengganu Drawbridge - Jambatan Angkat Terengganu Malaysia

Kuala Terengganu Destination Guide (2024): What You Need to Know

Kuala Terengganu is a modern Malaysian city with strong Malay influences. This beautiful city is located in the north east ...
Tourist Train on beach at Timurbay Kuantan Malaysia

Kuantan Destination Guide (2024): What You Need to Know

Kuantan is a riverside city with a relaxed atmosphere as well as warm and welcoming locals. It alo has a ...
Woman in Pool, Ancasa Royale Pekan Pahang Hotel Malaysia

Pekan Destination Guide (2024): What You Need to Know

The Royal Town of Pekan is a sprawling town set on the banks of the Pahang River. Home of the ...

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