Located in Mersing, the Johor state of Malaysia, the hike up Gunung Arong (275m) is simple by definition and offers intricate views and experiences for those who make the trek. Taking around an hour to get to the top, hikers will have plenty of time to take in the scene and enjoy the journey which is really what hiking is all about. If this isn’t enough to convince you to tie on the hiking boots and get started, here are 6 more reasons why you must explore Gunung Arong and its surrounding places.
1. It’s Only Two Hours From Singapore
Driving by car or coach, access to this hiking trail is only about two hour drive away from Singapore. What’s better than starting your trip with road trip through vast landscapes, tree plantations and rustic villages to the east coast of Johor? Take some time to stop around some old towns to sip in a traditional cup of coffee and interact with occasional cyclists from Singapore making their way to Pulau Tioman (a small island well known for its scenic cycling routes and diving spots) via the old Mersing Road.
We chose to hold our 2nd Trek For Hope Family Edition at Gunung Arong mainly due to its easy trail – suitable even for small children, the elderly or those without much hiking experience. Trekking is a fantastic experience and this trail allows all types of people to try their hand at hiking and also to experience some gorgeous scenery. Plus, with the kid friendly route, it gives outdoor loving parents the chance to travel without giving up some of their favorite activities.
3. The View From The Top is Incredible
Nothing is worse than taking a hike only to be rewarded with a lackluster view. Luckily for trekkers on the Gunung Arong, the view from the top is nothing less than stunning. Looking out over the South China Sea, you will want to reserve plenty of time to take in the scene as your reward before descending back down the trail.
4. You Can Enjoy The Beach
It’s not every hike that you get to spend some time at the beach. After the hike, many trekkers decide to take a break at the nearby shore. Sometimes the waters can be a bit rough, but it is always breezy. It’s a fantastic place to cool off and relax your weary feet after making the climb. Look out for tide times. During low tide, walk on its sandy white shore and look for revealed coral rocks, shells and even starfishes!
Make sure to pack a lunch and perhaps a blanket so that you can settle into the sand and satiate your hunger after an energy filled and active day. Plus, if you are planning on doing an overnight trip, there are a number of holiday chalets options available. There are also opportunities to spend the night on the beach in a tent making it a unique experience for everyone!
5. Pulau Mawar
Located quite close is Pulau Mawar, a small restricted island that is only accessible by foot during low tide. Hiking through its small jungle and mangrove areas can add just a little bit more action onto your trip and provide educational value for the eco-lovers. Access to certain parts of the island requires skillful manoeuvring on big rocks, therefore it may be a bit more difficult for kids and the elderlies. However, the views are certainly worth the effort.
6. The Local Food and Produce is Amazing
Don’t forget to make a stopover at Mersing town, a small populated charming area that retains the culture of old Malaysia despite the passing of time. It is home to some pretty delicious food and produce. There are vegetarian food stalls, fresh fish markets, western food restaurants and a couple spots for delicious BBQ seafood too!
Here are some of the places we visited:
Loke Tien Yuen 乐天园酒家
Address: 55, Jalan Abu Bakar, Mersing, Johor
GPS: 2.433029,103.838374 / 2°25’58.9″N 103°50’18.1″E
Hours: 12:30pm to 3:30pm and 6:30pm to 8:30pm
Restaurant review by Tony of Johor Kaki Blog
Buy local produce, cakes and snacks at Penghasilan Laut Kuantan Bersatu Sdn Bhd
Do consider Gunung Arong your next hiking location if you need a quick getaway from Singapore, and don’t forget to check out our recommendations of what to do at Mersing after your hike!
The event “Trek For Hope Family Edition – Arong Arong”was organised by ADVENTURES UNLIMITED (TA 02844).
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