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Thursday, 9 January 2014

Travel: Exploring Johor Bahru :D

When I tell people that I'm from JB, some automatically think I'm from some kampung/ ulu place... NO. Johor Bahru is a city and while you're excited about taking a plane to visit Singapore, we can go over anytime we want by bus or by car because it's so near the Causeway. Yes, JB is quite unsafe and prices of food are getting jacked up but I still feel that the living cost here is still relatively lower than in KL. Plus, we don't have regular traffic jams at ridiculous hours. Most people visit Malacca or Penang for a short getaway but what they don't know is, you can have a lot of fun in JB too!

People always ask me, "What's there to do in JB?" Well, for one, you can eat a lot. And you can do lots of things instead of the regular Legoland or go over to Singapore. During the summer holidays in December, my friends from KL came down for a visit. We had a lot of fun, ate A LOT of good food and snapped wayyy too many photos. For 4 days 3 nights, we spent an average of less than RM100 per person! I myself spent RM96 only on food, and we even visited a few cafes, not only hawkers :D Of course, we saved on accomodation cos they bunked at my place and we split the cost for every meal (put RM100 or so with one designated friend who will use that pool of money to pay for meals). This is going to be a photo heavy post as I try my best to introduce places to go and must-try foods in JB :)

Disclaimer: I am just sharing my personal experiences and favourites. If you're a Johorean and you'd like to suggest more ideas, please feel free to! I love exploring my own hometown too!

All photo credits to Shiat Hui/ Shiang Horng the photographers and photos were taken from Sze Yen's camera!

Day 1. 


Sorry, forgot to snap a photo of our very first makan pitstop lol. Picked my friends up at Jusco Tebrau City and brought them to try some JB-style BKT. Too bad the good ones that I frequent were not opened so we settled for Old Sin Shua Bak Kut Teh at Taman Molek. As I know, JB BKT uses clear soup as compared to the ones in Klang, but has the same strong flavour. So I thought it'd be worth a try cos, you know, 
when in Rome, do as Romans do. :p My friends found the bakuteh tasted too "herbally" for their liking.

Thank you, boyfie for being my chaffeur, GPS and guide for that 3 days :p


The girls saw my previous post & photos taken here and requested that I bring them here. I frequently come here just for their tiramisu.. and to take photos :p Not a coffee-lover, but I've been told the coffee is good, especially the Rose Latte! Tried the waffles for the first time too & they were so good! Same for the brownies. If the weather is nice, you can opt to sit outside & enjoy the beautiful scenery, as they have limited seats indoors.

The sky was so clear that day!


It's worth dropping by if you have not seen this place. This place is a future posh residential area situated next to Danga Bay. Very pretty (and expensive) studio apartments in the showrooms, interesting landscape and there's even a man-made beach. We went in the evening so we could enjoy the sunset!



How can you go to JB Town and not try the famous & "Best Chicken Chop in Town" for the what, past 40 years? It's where my parents used to date when they were younger. XD Very traditional chicken chop that you cannot find anywhere. I prefer the grilled black pepper/ mushroom sauce chicken than the fried one. Each plate is priced at about RM13.90.


After dinner, we went around Jalan Tan Hiok Nee. You'd be surprised to find some quirky cafes and eateries along this street- Chaiwalla, Maco Vintage, Pot's Cafe, Bubbly Soda, to name a few. During the weekends, some stalls will open up along the road like a mini "Jonker Walk". Sometimes they'll set up a stage and have singing/ dance sessions. I really love the ambience and I would come here on weekends just to soak in the sights and sounds. More stalls should come and sell more quirky things here! There is also a Chinese Heritage Museum nearby if you're interested.

Thanks Hui, for always snapping group pics for us but not appearing in them yourself..


They only sell salad, frozen yoghurt and drinks here so it is a good place to go if you're looking for somewhere to chill after dinner. Everyone was so impressed by the decorations once they stepped through the door. Everything, from the lights to the chairs, were made of recyclable materials!

The lamp shade is made of hangers! Can you tell? 

DAY 2.


No, we didn't go to Kulai but there's a branch of the famous Yoong Lei Kulai Dimsum at Taman Austin Perdana so we went there for breakfast! Too bad no more har gao :( We ordered assorted dim sum, chee cheong fun, century egg congee, mee siam, lor mai kai, char siew pao & drinks and the bill was about RM60 only. o.o


If you're not sure how to kill time, you can always go to a mall and catch a movie. Hehe. Brought them to KSL cos Wee Shin wanted to get some cheap phone covers. I mean, CHEAP. Phone covers & accessories like screen protector here come in all shapes and sizes and can be as low as RM5. Not an awesome place to shop unless you're into Sungei Wang kinda clothes... So we went to the arcade to lepak before lunch.

Closest we could get to Zacharevic's drawing.

And the winner is......... AH HUI!!!!

Oh while you're here, make sure you try D' Laksa Assam Laksa & 505 Soya Beancurd at LG floor! My favourite two places to have snacks :3


Wantan mee here is different than in KL too cos it's served without black soy sauce. Doesn't mean it's tasteless. Not sure what they add but it's just so flavorful and the handmade noodles are so smooth. *slurp* I usually go to Ho Seng Kee but it was packed so this will do too. I especially love the spicy wantan mee. Nyam nyam.


The cafe is along Jalan Serampang, opposite Lavendar & next to Enya Mareine Bridal Salon. It's not only a cafe, but a spa, manicure salon and boutique as well. It was my first time there and I fell in love with the European decor. Sooo pretty! You can't NOT want to take photos here. The food were slightly pricey but the cakes were yummy! We had the walnut cake and everyone liked it. Afternoon tea scone set was about RM30, if I'm not mistaken.

My friends were our paparazzi that week lol.

Twinkle twinkle

Finally, a full group photo!

Go outside or upstairs, it's a nice place to take pictures too!


Another good place to watch the sunset. Too bad it wasn't windy that day! But still, a nice place to take photos. Drop by Little Big Club/ Sanrio Hello Kitty Land souvenir shop at Little Red Cube mall and Trader's Hotel if you can. :)



If you don't wanna go into Legoland for the kiddy rides, you can still take a touristy shot at the main entrance. Hahaha. I myself have not been to Legoland cos there's not many rides for adults so it's not really worth the money.. Legoland is just nearby Puteri Harbour.


Something you can't get anywhere else.. Kuay Teow Kia! My favourite supper food :3 It's basically plain kuay teow in gravy and you eat it with condiments like duck meat, pork, salted vegetables, tofu, egg and pig innards. Sounds scary? Johoreans love it. ;) It's not as intimidating as it sounds and actually tastes acceptable if it is prepared hygenically. Oh yes, must eat it with the specially prepared chilli sauce too! This particular branch is frequented by a lot of Singaporeans cos it's just a few minutes drive from the Causeway.

They seemed to enjoy it too.


The place where everyone goes to get cheap alcohol and chocolates or perfume lol. There's a lot of pubs, clubs and bistros here too so it's quite packed on weekeds. Kinda like the hip place for teenagers. We must be old cos we didn't club... Just went there to get red wine and snacks while we chit-chat that night.

Hehehe cute Yen :p


Haha, Danga Bay used to be quite 'hip' what with it's night market and boat rides but it's just a boring place now. Or so I thought. Usually I'd go there just to drink at Lazio Pub or walk along the harbour but I've never thought of going to the fun fair until Kevin suggested we go play bumper car. It's been so many years since we touched a bumper car and it was SO SO SO FUNNNN! Man, my friends are crazy drivers. XD The rides are quite pricey but my friends wanted to try the Spinner (?) and Pirate Ship so yours truly became the bag guardian + photographer.

Yes, I played bumper car in a dress. 

Losers on the Pirate Ship ahahhaha xD

DAY 3.


We were supposed to go for Cathay Laksa cos I wanted them to try JB-style laksa, but it was closed. Then mum decided to treat us to lunch next door for assam fish head. Apparently the Sultan likes to come here too.. I like the assam fish head and otak-otak the most.


My absolute favourite place to have afternoon tea and dessert! Cheap & good. The ice kacang is served with loads of chocolate sauce and atap chee (!!) and the best part is you can top up the choc sauce whenever you want! :9 Never had ice kacang with chocolate sauce before? Well, you SHOULD. 
My personal favourite is Ice Jelly!! Super refreshing and sweet for a hot day. Paired with the tauhu bakar and char kuay bakar, best combo EVER. This stall is also veteran as they have been around since my parents' days.

Spot my mummy, sis & bro.


After a heavy lunch & short nap, we went to Second Floor Cafe at Taman Adda Heights. It's called Second Floor because.. It's on the second floor lol. It looked different since the last time I came and the menu has also changed :/ This time the food and drinks selection are quite disappointing because the girl on duty did not know how to prepare most of them.. Deco is still pretty retro though!

Rainbow cake & crepe cake. Might have tasted good if they weren't obviously frozen and just taken out to thaw lol.


Luckily for me, I have friends who love cafe-hopping like I do. Next stop before dinner was Project A which was a short drive away from Second Floor Cafe. They only have their famous potted tiramisu and mango crumble pudding on weekends so we were in luck. Quite pricey though, it was RM15 for a tiny pot if I'm not mistaken.

Pot as in flower pots. Haha! So innovative, huh? Looks like real plants but it's actually completely edible dessert!

Very yummy mango smoothie.


Wanted to go to Kim Wah in town to have traditional kaya butter toast for breakfast but it was a Sunday and would've been too jammed so I brought them to Toast instead. I used to have my breakfast here all the time when I was in college. Best food is the egg mayo!! Oh yea no photos too, sorry. 
Last stop and it was time to bid goodbye to my friends for 2 months :'( Next time you guys visit JB again, I'll bring you to try more good food, I promise!!

Missing our trip already. This was my first time playing the host to a bunch of friends so I hope it was fun and exciting! Of course, we saved some money for meals because of my mum's treat and my grandma cooked. Also, I didn't take into account money we spent for the rides but all in all our makan money was about RM100. Cheap, huh?
 It was nice that I got to spend time with my good friends, boyfriend and family that few days before my internship started. How I wish I could turn back time!

Some miscible photos....

Breakfast & steamboat dinner prepared by gramma on day 3.

My girls <3

Drinks at my place that night. Spot my funny cousin.

Star-gazing. Stars are apparently a rare sight in KL lol.

In our PJs. XD


So next time you're on a budget but you want cheap and good food plus pretty scenery for a short getaway, why not consider Johor Bahru? This place is starting to become more modernised and photo-worthy! There are more food outlets coming up so if you know where to go, JB will no longer be boring. I hope this post has inspired you to take a good look around your hometown and actually see the positive sides of it. It's good to go out and re-explore your city; kind of like a mini adventure.
 Do let me know if you have any other suggestions on where to visit in JB and I'll be sure to check it out! (:


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  1. Aww <3 <3 Love this post. Love the losers on pirate ship shot too. Haha! <3 <3

    1. Thats cos I took the photo! :p Miss you all very much <3

  2. You definitely gonna be my tour guide if I got the chance to visit JB!! :D

    1. Hey! No prob! You're from Penang right? Will look for you when I'm there too! :p

  3. Wow so many places to explore! I've always wanted to visit JB but on the other hand, i'm quite worried about the crime rate there too....

    1. Hmm.. JB is an interesting place but yes, can be dangerous too. But everywhere is dangerous, just gotta be more alert and cautious wherever you go! :)

  4. Love this post babe! You're really doing a great job at blogging! <3

    1. Aww.. :') thank you for the encouragement! <3

  5. Tks for sharing. I love JB! I've probably done half of what u recommended. Can't wait to chk out Annie's Culture Club. Pls post more on JB!

    1. Aww thank you for your kind words! I will try my best to be more active once I shift back to JB! :) x

    2. Awesome tks. I noticed in ur blog u said u hop to KL too! Awesome. I bookmarked some of my faves of and KL in my 4Sq account if u use it. U may want to check it out. Not sure if the links work but for your reference:

    3. Yeap, I'm currently studying in KL so I spend most of my time here. Thank you for your suggestions! I will go through the list and maybe discover more awesome places to explore! :)

  6. I've just read your blog and it's very helpful! Thanks :D

    1. Aww thank you for dropping by my blog! Hope you've enjoyed travelling around JB :) x

  7. im planning to go to danga bay on a Tuesday? read a lot of posts bout it but those are few years ago. just wondring if it will be worth to visit with my hubby and 3yr old son. Is the place boring now?

    1. Hi! Apologies for the delay in reply. The place isn't boring now but they've honestly haven't upgraded it much since well, this blog post. It might be fun to go there for an hour or two for the funfair (though, I'm not sure if they operate on weeknights) but I recommend going to Country Garden which is just next to Danga Bay as well for some food and sight-seeing in the evening (you'd be able to catch the sunset and kill some time). Hope this helps! x

  8. Hi, I am dexter.
    I am from rockworld. It is a very first indoor climbing gym in Jb.
    I wonder that if can you drop by and help us to promote???

    1. Hi Dexter! Thank you for contacting me. Kindly drop me an email at and we can talk there :) Thank you!

  9. Hi, I am dexter.
    I am from rockworld. It is a very first indoor climbing gym in Jb.
    I wonder that if can you drop by and help us to promote???

  10. I read your blog before i visited johor bahru. Unfortunately, i did not have a chance to visit the placed those you have reviewed. I posted and reviewed some of the foods at Johor Bahru at my blog as well.

    1. Hi Tony, thanks for checking out my blog before visiting JB! Promise to do an updated version soon ;) Your post looks great btw!


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