It is no secret that our friendly neighbour just across the causeway has become our number one destination for a quick yet affordable getaway.
Johor Bahru is known for being a cafe-hopper’s paradise but aside from that, there are a plethora of other things to do. Instead of rushing a day trip just to be stuck in the causeway traffic at the end of the day, why not consider staying for a night or two? Not only are the things here cheaper because of the exchange rate, the city also has incredibly affordable accommodation!
From feasting on lok lok to feeling like a kid again at Legoland Malaysia, here is our Johor Bahru Guide on what to see, do and eat the next time you cross the causeway.
When it comes to exploring Johor Bahru, there are indeed endless cafes and cool places to check out. From the café-filled enclave of Jalan Dhoby to the hipster area of Taman Mount Austin, we’d totally understand why their café food appeals to the crowd, especially with its affordability.
But there is something about local foods that no amount of rainbow-coloured, aesthetically-pleasing café grub can level up to. Cheap, delicious and providing a sense of comfort unlike any other, local food in Johor Bahru is unparalleled. Period.
If you’re sick of cafe-hopping and are just looking for a few eateries to head to and simply enjoy the likes of char koay kak, kway teow and bak kut teh, here are 12 local eateries in Johor Bahru you should head to during your next day trip.
Situated just a 25-minute drive away from Woodlands Checkpoint in the area of Taman Mount Austin, Urban Artisan Cafe is a dessert cafe that serves aesthetically-pleasing, colourful soft serves that will be a feast for both your stomach and your eyes.
If you’ve been dying to try AquaS, a popular dessert parlour originating from Sydney, but have never gotten the chance to, this cafe is a pretty darn good (and reasonably cheap) alternative to try. Boasting multiple outlets across Malaysia in Kuala Lumpur, Penang and Johor Bahru itself, Urban Artisan Cafe is best known for its gorgeous soft serve that tastes as good as it looks.
Here’s what you can expect in this gorgeous dessert cafe in Johor Bahru!
All Singaporeans know that Johor Bahru is the place to go when you want a short escape from all things expensive in Singapore. Everything is cheaper there — shopping, massages, transport, and most importantly, food!
There are a plethora of well-known cafes near the causeway that many of us Singaporeans love to visit. Aside from that, however, there are a number of other fantastic eateries deeper within Johor that we feel you need to check out.
With that, here is our list of our 23 favourite cafes in Johor Bahru that you can refer to for your next day trip over the causeway.
If you’ve ever travelled to Europe, you’ll understand the joy that walking up to a pastry stand would entail. The aroma of freshly baked bread comes second to none and the endless varieties of brightly coloured tarts and pastries never fails to seduce the senses. Over at La’Farine located in JB’s Taman Mount Austin, you can experience just that with their many numerous French desserts and pastries.
For the love of Western pastries, local delicacies and everything in between, this is one place to visit to kickstart your JB day trip proper. For first-timers, Taman Mount Austin is just a short 15-minute drive from the checkpoint. We suggest hailing a cab or booking yourself a GRAB because it’s literally impossible to walk there. READ ON
Offering diners a spacious, charming respite from the midday heat, humble cafe, Restoran Tastea is one that deserves a stopover when exploring the cafe-laden enclave of Taman Mount Austin. Their menu focuses heavily on Western dishes, leaning more towards Italian comfort food with their wide spectrum of pasta dishes from the humble linguine to risotto.
If you’re on the prowl for a decent cafe-style brunch, we highly recommend coming here. Their food is delicious, portion sizes generous and above all, much more worth paying for than a cafe back in Singapore.
No trip to Malaysia is complete without a piping-hot plate of KL-style Hokkien mee stall.
Brimming with intense charred flavours and heady wok hei aroma, the famous KL version is special in that it is stir-fried over a charcoal flame and is infused (heavily) with pork fat, a smattering of crispy golden pork lard and a dark soy sauce that gives it its signature dark colour.
While prowling the food-laden streets of Taman Mount Austin in JB in search of solid local Malaysian fare, we stumbled upon Petaling Street Hokkien Mee—or Lai Noodle House as they are also called—an unassuming eatery specialising in Malaysian-style zi char. Only a few days old when we visited, their food was remarkable
Be it for a short 3-day staycation or a day trip, Johor Bahru has (and will always be) one of Singaporean’s top destinations to go for retail therapy, café-hopping and a short but relaxing respite.
Situated just a 15 to 20-minute drive away from Woodlands Checkpoint, Taman Mount Austin is the hidden gem of Johor Bahru. With over 70 cafes and eateries, massage parlours and KTV joints galore, to say that you’d be spoilt for choice is an understatement.
From Insta-worthy soft serve ice cream to lip-smacking KL-style Hokkien mee and ombre beverages, there is surely something to delight even the fussiest foodie in Taman Mount Austin!