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Mersing is a small town on the east coast of Johor that is perhaps best known as the departure point for ferries to Tioman (which is in Pahang). It's a bit bigger than you might expect and is quite an expensive place aside from accommodation but is fine to spend the night. There is very little to see or do here, however if you are interest in exploring, Air Papan to the north offers quaint little Malay villages by the sea and some interesting landscape.

Get in

Get around


If you have a few hours to kill during the day, Mersing has a Chinese and a Hindu temple both worth a visit (both near the first roundabout by the bridge)


If you are going to be on Tioman for a prolonged period of time it is recommended you check your internet before leaving Mersing as the internet facilities there are sparse, unreliable, and expensive. There are a few internet cafes in town, all of them around RM2 per hour.


Its best to buy anything you may need for Tioman in Mersing as prices are a little inflated on the island.


  • Restoran P1, 20, Jln. Dato Mohd. Ali, 86800 Mersing, (just opposite the wet market, near the roundabout in center town), [1]. Every day 11:00AM to Midnight, break from 3 to 5pm on weekdays. An alternative to the local cuisine: pizza, pasta, sirloin steak, schnitzel, salmon steak, all prepared by a Swiss chef, at "local" prices. Fantastic food. And a second-hand books exchange.
  • The Port (right by the jetty). Western food, tourist prices.



There are numerous hotels and motels around the town of Mersing. Early reservation is recommended especially when your travel coincides with holidays in Singapore or Malaysia.


The smaller hotels are most suitable for budget conscious travelers and they are usually run by family. Prices range from RM20 per night for non-aircon rooms to RM50 for air-con.

  • SariMawar Chalets & Campsite Lot 114, Kampung Mawar, Teluk Sari, Penyabong. Stargazers, astro-photographers and amateur astronomers flock to this spot between May and August each year to enjoy what is probably the clearest view of the universe.
  • Fishing Bay Resort Lot 525, Teluk Buih, Air Papan +07-799-6753 (fax: +07-799-7102) [2] is a secluded resort that offers peace, quiet, and serviced activities. Rates on their website start at US$28.


These hotels are most suitable for business and family vacation travelers. Hotel quality ranges from about 1- to 3-stars standard.

  • Raja Villa Resort & Hotel [3]
  • Seri Malaysia Mersing
  • Timotel Hotel [4]

Get out

  • Tioman - everybody's real destination
  • Pulau Besar - closer to the mainland than Tioman, very quiet, no night life. Swimming, snorkeling, beach and jungle walks.... Don't forget a good insect repellent as there may be sandflies around! A few budget and mid range hotels. Book in Mersing at one of the travel agents in town or at the jetty - no regular ferry service! During the monsoon season (November to February/March) you still get accommodation, but food wise the choice may be reduced to instant noodles....

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