Old Johor Fort (Kota Johor Lama), Johor
Kota Johor Lama (Old Johor Fort), was the site of fierce wars amongst the local Malays and outside invading forces.
The Old Johor Fort was built in 1540 during the reign of Sultan Alauddin Riayat Shah II (1528-1564). This fort was the best defence fort among the defence forts built along the Sungai Johor.
After the fall of the Malay Sultanate of Malacca in 1511, Sungai Johor became the reigning centre and the defence fort to counter attack the Portuguese position in Malacca.
The natural environment of the fort makes it easier to supervise the movement of the ships especially the threat from the Achinese and the Portuguese.
In 1587, the fort fell to the Portuguese. The whole fort was burnt down and all assets including weapons were taken.
Ostrich Farm, Johor
The farm just opened in March 2001, and offers an enjoyable tour to see these fascinating birds. The public will be able to know more of these birds, while being able to see them up close.
Children and adults alike will love the educational tour and to find more about these flightless birds.
Did you know that ostriches also lay the largest eggs in the world? On average it can weigh 1.5 kg and is equivalent in volume to 2 dozen chicken eggs.
Ostriches are farmed not only for their eggs, but also their meat, feathers and can be made into leather products.
Native to Africa, ostriches can be found living in countries around the world.
Pineapple Museum, Johor
The pineapple museum has interesting information on the growth of the fruit in Malaysia.
Situated in Pontian, the museum has a collection of artifacts and exhibits on the pineapple industry in Malaysia.
Discover several fascinating steps towards the processing of pineapples, including a peek into the various types of pineapple.
The fruits are planted right in the museum’s own backyard, and visitors are able to learn much about the fruit from planting, processing, canning as well as labeling until it becomes a finished product.
An informative visit to the Pineapple Museum, is sure to leave you with wonderment at this sweet fruit.
Pulau Aur, Johor
The island off Mersing, along with Pulau Dayang, Pulau Lang and Pulau Pinang, are rated among the best diving destinations within the Johor Marine Park Area. The deeper waters around the area ensure good visibility and a large variety of marine life, the island is popular among weekend divers.
The rich pelagic action also attracts numerous sport fishermen, hoping to try their luck with the marlins or sailfish outside the marine park island. Many private yachts anchor in the calm waters between Pulau Aur and Pulau Dayang.
The main reef is located towards the southern end of Pulau Aur and Pulau Pinang. The top of the reef begins at about 12m and slopes in excess of 25m, making it ideal for diving.
Pulau Kukup Johor National Park, Johor
Pulau Kukup is one the largest uninhabited mangroves in the world. It is also the only one situated in Johor waters.
Today, Pulau Kukup has received international recognition as the island has been granted the status of a ‘Wetland of International Importance’ (RAMSAR site) by the Geneva-based Ramsar Convention Bureau.
A local folklore tells a tale of Pulau Kukup, an abode for five celestial princesess. One day, one of the princess fell in love with a sailor and they eloped. A curse was set upon the island of Kukup and it was submerged by sea.
The island later resurfaced, but it was covered in mangroves. Many have tried to settle on this island, but without success. Some say this is because the island is inhabited by spirits.
Pulau Kukup is today the home of countless species of wildlife. Among these are the playful monkeys, the quiet mudskipper or the nosy wild boar.
Enjoy the beauty of the national park, and be immersed in a delightful natural ecosystem, right here in Johor.
Pulau Rawa, Johor
Sixteen kilometres off the coast of Mersing is Pulau Rawa. Famed for its white coral sand, tall palm trees and coral reefs with neon-coloured fish and other exotic marine life.
This quiet island only has 2 choices of accommodation on it. The wooden chalets nestled amongst coconut groves complement the island’s reputation as a quaint hideaway.
Pulau Sibu, Johor
Pulau Sibu is a pleasant hideaway with its lush tropical vegetation, endless stretches of golden beaches and clear blue waters. The island is also dotted with numerous sea caves carved out of rocks. The constant pounding of the sea during the monsoon season has given the island a beautiful yet rugged appearance.
The surrounding waters contain fascinating coral reefs teeming with colourful marine life. Shipwrecks off its coast can also be found. In the olden days, Chinese junks and pirate vessels often exchanged cannon fire around this island, and the remains of these battles lie scattered around the seabed.
There are facilities for scuba diving, snorkelling, windsurfing, sailing and angling. Visitors can go for a hike through the jungle leading to unspoilt mangrove swamps or visit the kelong, or jetty, where anchovies are caught. Alternatively, head for the kampong, or village, to get a first-hand look at how coconuts are smoked to make copra
Royal Abu Bakar Museum, Johor
The grand building is an architectural wonder and was completed in 1866. It was commisioned by His Royal Highness Sultan Abu Bakar and is also known as the Grand Palace (Istana Besar Johor).
Built in the Renaissance style, built by local artisans under the supervision of an European architect. The original furniture of the palace was made in England and ordered by Sultan Abu Bakar in 1866.
The palace became the Royal Abu Bakar Museum in 1982, but today, it is still used for state ceremonies and official functions.
Catch the many silverware, ornaments as well as souvenirs by diginitaries at the museum. There are also pictures of the royal family from the reign of Sultan Abu Bakar.
Visit the museum today for an interesting historical journey of Johor’s famous royal family.
Sultan Abu Bakar Mosque, Johor
On top of a hill in downtown Johor Bahru, overlooking the Straits of Johor and neighbouring Singapore, stands the magnificent Sultan Abu Bakar Mosque, one of the most beautiful old mosques in Malaysia.
The construction of the mosque marked the start of the Johor’s modernisation process in 1892, which was commissioned by the “Father of Modern Johor”, Sultan Abu Bakar. It took eight years to build and was completed in 1900. The mosque can accommodate 2000 worshippers.
The mosque is a mix of architectural styles, but principally Victorian! It is said that the minarets look like British watch towers
Tanjung Balau Fishermen Museum, Johor
Fishermen living in the east coast used several ancient techniques to catch fish; some used to look at the moon or looked at the skyline for weather changes.
The museum is located north of Desaru, and was developed by the South Johor Development Authority (KEJORA). This is part of a development project in the local fishermen’s village at Tanjung Balau.
Many artefacts are on exhibit, including fishing nets, tackles with authentic replicas of the tools used.
There are also gaily decorated traditional boats, rafts and vessels used by local fishermen.
Learn more of the local superstitions and other fascinating stories of fishing and its techniques at this quaint museum.
Visit the Fishermen’s Museum to find out more!
Tanjung Piai National Park, Johor
Ever dreamed of listening to the lilting sounds of the ocean, and waking up to the splendour of the universe? Come to Tanjong Piai, a natural wonderland at the southernmost tip of Asia.
It’s like being transported to a different era, far way from the respite of city-life. Frolic with wide-eyed mudskippers, funny macaques, wild birds and much more!
Located 90km south of Johor Bahru’s city centre, Tanjung Piai’s natural wonders have been gazzetted into a National Park. Visitors can see different habitats here, especially for enthusiasts interested in mangrove dwelling.
Mangroves, important for their resilience, are also one of the maintstays to sustainable growth of the various mangrove wildlife. It also serves to protect land from the fierce onslaught of the wild sea.
Make sure to bring good walking shoes, to enjoy the beautiful mangroves. Platforms are built through the park so visitors can walk around in comfort.
When in Johor, come visit exotic Tanjung Piai National Park.
Desaru is located 100 kilometres from Johor Bahru, and is a very popular destination for its clean beaches, excellent golf courses and unique attractions.
Although it is better known as a beach and resort area, its other name is the ‘Land of Casuarinas’. This is because one can see casuarina trees along the beaches, hence its name.
Its natural forest beauty, with views of the South China Sea definitely makes it an exciting destination, captivating tourists from near and far.
Amongst the attractions at Desaru include Desaru Beach, Fishing Village Museum at Tanjung Balau, Desaru Fruit Farm and the opportunity to see fireflies at Lebam River.
Desaru Fruit Farm, Johor
Desaru Fruit Farm is planted with a variety of tropical fruits such as starfruit, jackfruit, soursop, honey orange, the king of fruits the durian and much more.
There are 160 acres farmed with tropical fruits here.
Desaru Fruit Farm also has a mini zoo, fish pond and many other exciting attractions!
Ride on a bullock cart and explore the the huge fruit farm, or spend a night or two with the available packages.
The farm also received the Ministry of Agriculture national level awards including the Special Award Malaysia Agriculture, Horticulture and Agro-Tourism(MAHA), in the Agro-tourism category in 2006.
Come over for a visit, and hop on to the agro educational tour. Take a tour of the farm and sample the fruits, or buy some to take home.
Endau – Rompin National Park, Johor
Endau Rompin, straddling the Johor/Pahang border, is the second National Park, after Taman Negara. It covers an area of approximately 80,000 hectares of rich and exotic flora and fauna, encompassing the watershed of the rivers Endau and Rompin, from which it derives its name. In other words, this place is huge.
The park is home to a vast range of species of birds, mammals, frogs, insects and exotic varieties of orchids, herbs, medicinal plants and trees. It seems that every time a scientific expedition returns from Endau – Rompin, they discover a new species!
Regular treks through the jungle will give adventurers sightings of leaf monkeys, long-tail macaques, white-handed gibbons, elephants, deer, tapirs and the occasional tiger and leopard. For adventure lovers and river trekkers, there are exhilarating rapids and fairly substantial waterfalls.
To protect the pristine environment, only limited areas of the park are open for ecotourism. Entry to the park requires a special permit from the Johor National Park Corporation.
Fireflies watching at Sungai Lebam, Johor
Firefly-watching is one of the main attractions in Sungai Lebam Wetland Preservation area.
Catch the blinking lights and keep silent while watching the fireflies, to view the magical lighting wonders!
The fireflies congregate at a vast mangrove swamp, especially at the Berembang trees.
They are harmless, and seeing it for the first time is always a magical experience!
Come over and see for yourselves the amazing fireflies of Sungai Lebam.
Gunung Ledang/Mount Ophir, Johor
Shrouded in mystical legends and folklore, Gunung Ledang continues to charm and intrigue locals and visitors alike. According to the legend of the Princess of Gunung Ledang, the Sultan of Melaka wanted the Princess’ hand in marriage and she, not wanting to marry him, demanded that the Sultan present her with seven jars of women’s tears, seven trays of mosquitoes’ hearts and seven bowls of the sultan’s son’s blood. After he was unable to meet these impossible requests, she fled to the mountain and continues to live in a hidden cave, to this day.
The mountain is ideal for a myriad of outdoor activities with challenging mountain trails, icy waterfalls, and exotic flora and fauna, including many species of birds. At the relatively flat summit, which is 1,276m above sea level, a panoramic view of the Straits of Melaka and even the Sumatran coastline can been seen on a clear day. Also, Sagil Waterfall is a popular picnic spot at the base of the mountain.
Kota Tinggi Museum, Johor
Built in 1997, the museum traces the history of the Johor Sultanate.
The site was chosen for a museum due to its historical significance as the seat of the old Johor Sultanate.
The valleys of Johor River was also the start of the new era of the Malay Sultanate after the fall Malacca in 1511 to the Portuguese.
It was here also, at the valley of Johor River that the famed writer Tun Sri Lanang wrote the annals of ‘Sejarah Melayu’ (Malay History), a histography of Malay excellence.
Among the exhibits at the Museum include the glorious history of Johor River, starting with the reign of Sultan Allauddin Riayat Shah II until Sultan Mahmud Shah II.
The story of the King (Sultan) who was killed while being carried on a royal litter, refers to Sultan Mahmud Shah II.
He is famously referred to in historical books as ‘Sultan Mahmud Mangkat Dijulang.’
Discover also the paintings, historical dioramas, weaponry and much more on display only at the museum.
Kota Tinggi Waterfall, Johor
The waterfalls are located at the foot of Gunung (Mountain) Muntahak. It cascades down some 34 meters from the mountain.
The natural beauty of the area is refreshing, and provides an escape for busy city-goers. The cooling river waters also provides an ideal place for swimming, and a nice spot for picnics.
It is a great place for nature lovers’ who often spot birds, and numerous insects around the area. Those wanting to spend a night here, can also opt to stay at the Kota Tinggi Waterfalls Resort.
Mawar Gallery, Johor
The first of its kind in Malaysia, the gallery showcases the ‘Gracious and Famous Ladies of Johor’.
This permanent gallery is to honour the gracious and famous ladies of Johor, who have contributed immensely to the knowledge and achievements of Johor.
Portraits of all past Sultanahs of Johor since 1886 until the present day, as well as ladies of the Royal Family and grand ladies of Johor are displayed here.
It serves as a tribute to ladies from all walks of life and professions, and as honour to their great achievements contributing to the growth and excellence of Johor.
Housed in a building about 100 years old, the gallery is an amazing achievement towards the recognition of women in Johor.
Teluk Sengat Crocodile Farm, Johor
Get up close with these crocodiles, more than 1,000 of them in this farm!
Did you know that the crocodile farm was established in 1979, and it may be one of the oldest in the country.
The further one ventures into the crocodile farms, the bigger sized they get!
The crocodiles at the farm belong to the Crocodylus Porosus species.
Catch also a glimpse of the 130 year old crocodile, lazing around its pen.
Do be careful not to throw sticks and stones at the crocodiles.
Don’t forget to catch a glimpse of some excitement make sure to see the keeper’s fast actions!
Leave the farm with interesting facts on crocodiles, and take home some souvenirs.
Zoo Johor, Johor
Established in 1928, Zoo Johor is the place to meet flamingos, elephants, horses and much more.
The late Johor King, Sultan Ibrahim Ibni Almarhum Sultan Abu Bakar, established the zoo and called it an ‘animal garden’. It was believed to be the first zoo in Asia at the time.
The name of the zoo was later changed to Zoo Johor and is now under the administration of the Johor State Government.
Visit the zoo today and get a glimpse of the friendly love birds from Africa, or stare into the large eyes of the ferocious lioness. Smile at the huge, silent crocodiles, and take a stroll around the lake at the zoo.
Take time to unwind at this unique zoo, and come back with wonderful memories and a day well spent!