Friday, December 30, 2016

Johor Bahru Day 1: New York Hotel + Zoo Johor + KSL City Mall

Year end is my favourite period of the year where everyone is in a holiday mood and clearing all our outstanding leave, including me. With just 3 days to spare, we decided to visit Johor Bahru (JB) for our short getaway trip.

It has been half a year since my last getaway trip, totally miss the feeling where we put our work aside, just relax and have a good time spend together.

Travelling does not means that we have to travel to far places, it can also be done by visiting the neighbouring island or cities. There will still be lots of interesting places or beauty that we yet to visit.

On my way to JB via Kranji route. 
Even on a Friday late morning, the queue was still long. It took us about 2 hours to clear both customs including travelling time via bus 170. I guess many of us shared the same thoughts of spending the long weekend in JB which only require the booking of hotel. A suitable place for us since we only planned it last minute and travelling during new year eve period is expensive.

We were hungry by the time we reached City Square at 1.30pm. We settled down for KFC.
Their menu was different from the one we have in Singapore.

I have the nuggets meal that comes with fries and one piece chicken.
Feeling full and energetic, we were ready for what was awaiting us the rest of the day.

After the lunch, we took a cab down to our hotel as the hotel allowed check in after 2pm.

We were staying at New York Hotel situated at Jalan Dato Abdullah Tahir. The hotel is located in commercial district and 10 minutes drive from Johor Bahru City Square.

New York Hotel is a 4 stars business class hotel, an ideal stop-over for all leisure and business travelers.

A glimpse of the hotel lobby.
Though the hotel may look old on the outside, on the inside everything is modern and make us feel comfortable.

I brought a backpack and sling bag along for this trip.
Yay, we were at our doorsteop of our hotel room.

Tadah, our hotel room where we will be staying for 2 nights.
This is superior premier room which cost S$52 per night and it comes with free breakfast.

We were given a room that comes with a double bed and a single bed.
It was a big and cozy room that makes us don't feel like leaving the hotel room. Overall, we were happy with our hotel stay, all basic amenities are available and room is clean. Cleanness is an important factor for us when choosing a hotel, we want to stay in comfort.

The view from our hotel room. We were staying at level 14.
After a little rest and freshening up ourselves, we were ready to leave the room and explored the city. 

The first place we explored was Zoo Johor.

I actually didn't know that there is a zoo in JB until I was doing some research on places to visit in JB, I chanced upon Zoo Johor and decided to include it in my itinerary since it was just a 10 minutes drive distance from our hotel.

The best part about Zoo Johor is that the ticket admission only cost RM2 per pax. Where can you find such a price for zoo admission ticket?

One can see a lake upon entering the zoo.
The visitors can hop on a boat riding and come close to contact with the Pelicans.

Gloomy clouds can be seen, the weather don't looked promising. 

Passing by a stretch of bird cages.
Stopped by the peacock cage.

Usually in each cage, there is only 1 or 2 animals in the cage of each kinds. They looked quite lonely in it, kinda of sad to see this. They should be out in the wild roaming freely, but now they are closed in a cage that limit their movement.

Our close encounter with a yellow snake. The snake has a very silky texture, definitely not to my liking.

Glad that I wore something light and in shorts that day since we were out in the zoo. We enjoyed spending quality time exploring different places together.

Spotted a Chimpanzee.
Aww, it looked so skinny.

Moo moo cow.

The tiger den.
We could only view the tiger from the top.

View from the top of lion den.
Spotted 2 lioness, didn't see male lion.

They have 3 camels in their zoo.
There is my first time seeing a camel in my life, something new for me.

Close encounter with the camels, spent a few minutes observing the camels. I kept wondering if the barrier was high enough to block them from coming out.
You can purchase snacks from the zoo keeper to feed at camels.

We completed the trail of half the zoo, ready to start the other half.

The monkeys were all being caged too.
Poor thing, they should be roaming freely on the tree branches.

Spotted a crocodile, the largest reptile.
We didn't stop here for long before it started drizzling.

There was my favourite spot in Zoo Johor.
Looking at the greenery out there gave me a peaceful feeling. I felt really calmed and relaxed as though I am miles away from the stressful city.

Disconnecting from internet made me paid attention to the surrounding more closely, giving our focus to what is ahead of us.

The ostrich was coming close to us.
Zoo Johor allows us to get close to some of these animals, which is a good experience.

We purchases long grasses to feed the deer.

Knowing we have food for them, the deer started coming towards us.

I'm in stripe today.
I can never have enough of stripe tops, black and white combinations is my favourite.

They have lots of deer out roaming in the field, they seem to be the most happiest animals in the zoo where they are able to roam around freely. I love the time spent with the deer. They are so cute.

The rain started to get heavy so we seek shelter at the bridge area while waiting for the rain to stop.

If you are also interested in visiting, just a side note, don't place a high expectation on the zoo given that you only pay RM2. For the price paid, it is definitely worth the price to check out the zoo if you have ample time to spare. Do set aside at least 1.5 hours for exploring the zoo.

After exploring the zoo, we decided to go Danga Bay.
Upon reaching there, we discovered the beach area was closed for some renovation work. We then rent one of these vehicles to cycle around the bay area.

Since there was nothing much to do around this area, we headed down to our familiar spot, KSL City Mall, for dinner and shopping.

Dinner at D'Shanghai Dim Sum again.
I really love their dim sum. We ordered back some of the my favourite dishes we tried the other time and some new additions.

This deep fried mashed taro with scallop is not to our liking.
We won't order this again.

Prawn paste chicken that is crispy good.
We have yet another satisfying meal in JB.

Dinner is never complete without dessert. We went down to LG floor for Hawaii Coconut Desserts. We ended our dinner with the coconut ice cream at RM7. I love the smooth texture of the coconut ice cream, it tasted marvelous with the various toppings which includes cereal, corn and oreo bits. They have one of the nicest coconut ice cream I ever have. With this, there isn't a need to travel all the way to Bangkok just to have coconut ice cream.

With Chinese New Year just another month away, it's time to splurge on new clothes. I got myself 2 tops and a dress from my shopping at KSL. Shopping for clothes always make me happy. Time to get rid of some of the old clothes and make way for the new.

It was nearly 10pm when we left the mall, most of the shops were preparing for closing.
Right across KSL City Mall was a lok lok van selling deep fried or grilled skewered on sticks. We have some of these sticks before heading back to the hotel.

This marked the end of my day 1 in JB.
Stay tuned to the rest of my trip.

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