The Ultimate Guide to Desaru Beach, Malaysia [2024]

Published Categorized as Desaru
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With its 22 kilometre stretch of beautiful coastline and fabulous beaches, Desaru Beach, Malaysia is perfect for a holiday away from it all.  Unlike other areas of Malaysia, the area is not bustling with tourists or filled to the brim with a stack of must do attractions.

Rather, the area has an untouched feel to it and seems to attract local and Singaporean tourists looking for a quieter type of getaway away from the crowds but with a great beach and awesome waterpark. It’s easy to be more active here or just have a nice resort break by the beach.

Apart from the various gorgeous Desaru public beach options, there are a few attractions and activities to keep visitors entertained.  There is a fabulous Golf and Country Club as well as some fantastic first class resorts for a fraction of what you would pay in nearby Singapore.

Desaru beach
Desaru public beach

If you have been thinking about a holiday to Desaru Beach then this is the perfect guide for you.  In this guide, we cover everything you need to know when planning a Desaru holiday.  The guide includes suggestions for the best beach resort in Desaru, as well as tips on things to do in the area and how to get there.

After reading this guide, all you’ll need to do is book your Desaru beach resort, pack your bags and be on your way to a wonderful relaxing holiday in Desaru Beach.

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Where is Desaru Beach?

Desaru Beach is located at the southern end of the east coast of Malaysia facing the South China Sea. It’s just a 90 minute car ride from Singapore or just over an hour’s drive from Johor Bahru.  Given its proximity to Singapore, Desaru Beach is a very popular holiday destination for Singapore tourists.

The nearest airport to Desaru Beach is either Senai International Airport in Johor or Changi International Airport in Singapore.

Hard Rock Desaru beach
Beach out the front of the Westin

The easiest way to get here is either by ferry from Singapore (read about it here) or by private taxi.

We can organise a safe and reliable local driver to take you from anywhere in Singapore or peninsular Malaysia right to your hotel (or the waterpark or wherever you want) in Desaru.

From Singapore, the cost is only S$160. Click here to book now.

A taxi from anywhere in peninsular Malaysia is easy for us to arrange. Prices start at just RM370 from Johor Bahru.

Click here to get a quote for your taxi within Malaysia here.

Find out more about getting to Desaru Beach from Singapore here or read our full guide to travelling from Johor Bahru to Desaru here.

The beach has soft sand, beautiful water and it’s very easy to enjoy.

Best Time to Visit Desaru Beach

Desaru Coast
Desaru Coast Beach

Like most of the coastal destinations in Malaysia, Desaru Beach is highly seasonal.  The monsoon season is between November and February which sees winds and rain. However, there is still plenty of sunshine so you’ll still see plenty of visitors around during these months. This area does not shut down during this time like some of the east coast.

The most popular season to visit Desaru Beach though is from June to August – this is prime time for Desaru Beach activities.  However, to avoid the busiest times, April and May or September and October are ideal times to visit – as long as you avoid school holidays.

We were last there on a long weekend which was in the school holidays. It was busy, but not awful, so even at peak times, it’s a good place to visit.

The Best Beach Resort in Desaru Options [2024]

As mentioned above, despite being a quieter holiday destination in Malaysia, Desaru Beach is well known for some wonderful first class resorts. 

Below, I’ve provided some brief information about some of the more popular options for the best Desaru Beach Resort.

Click here for our full guide on where to stay in Desaru.

Hard Rock Hotel Desaru Coast★★★★★$$$$Click here
Lotus Desaru Beach Resort & Spa★★★★$$Click here
Tiara Desaru Resort★★★$$Click here
Tunamaya Beach & Spa Resort Desaru Coast★★★★$$$ Click here
The Westin Desaru Coast Resort★★★★★$$$$$Click here
Pulai Springs Resort★★★$$Click here
Sand & Sandals Desaru Beach Resort & Spa★★★★★$$$Click here

Hard Rock Hotel Desaru Coast

Hard Rock Desaru
Hard Rock Desaru

Address: Jalan Pantai 3, Bandar Penawar, Desaru Beachfront, Desaru

The Hard Rock Hotel Desaru has everything you’d expect in this famous, 5-star hotel chain. From the underwater sound system in the pool to the kids’ club and Hard Rock merchandise shop, there is a lot to love here.

The location isn’t right on the beach, but you can be here quickly by walking through its sister hotel, the Westin. There is a great private beach area here that Westin and Hard Rock guests can use. What it is right next to is Adventure Waterpark, and you can access this park directly from the hotel with your ticket.

There are a range of room types with either a king bed or two doubles. There are also a couple of suites especially for families with a king sized bed and a bunk bed. Upgraded rooms can be very special – some even have their own plunge pools.

All rooms are well furnished and comfortable and have everything a 5-star resort should.

There are many other facilities at this hotel including a day spa, a gym and a cool lolly and toy shop.

There are also three restaurants and cafes as well as a lounge bar. This is handy as there aren’t that many places to eat in the area. You can also get room service.

Click here for more information and the latest prices.

The Lotus Desaru Beach Resort & Spa

Address: Lot 1854, Jalan Desaru, Bandar Penawar, Johor

The Lotus Desaru Beach Resort & Spa is a destination in itself with family activities and a luxurious spa on-site. Located in the Kota Tinggi district, it’s hard to miss this 3.5-star Desaru Beach Hotel with its distinctive fairytale-castle look.

At the Lotus Beach Resort Desaru hotel, the rooms are apartment-style. Options include spacious one bedroom suites right up to a huge three-bedroom penthouse. All rooms have air-conditioning, free WiFi and kitchenettes.

Read any Lotus Desaru Beach Resort review and you’ll see that the best part about staying here are all the facilities.  There is a huge Splash Park that has water-feature playgrounds, a lazy river and a lagoon-style pool.  Or if the waterpark isn’t your style, there is also a separate swimming pool.  Other activities include table tennis, beach volleyball, tug of war and paintball.

In terms of on site restaurants at the Lotus Desaru Beach Resort and Spa, there is a seafood and Indian restaurant, a cafe and Beach Hut Bar with table-side barbecue.

The downside is that some rooms are in need of renovation and some facilities look a little dated. Still, the facilities here are very temping!

Click here for more information and the latest prices.

The Tunamaya Beach & Spa Resort Desaru

Address: 81930 Bandar Penawar, Johor

The Tunamaya Beach & Spa Resort Desaru hotel has 134 rooms, each with views of the water. Room options include rooms or suites and are spacious. All rooms come with air-conditioning, TV, free WiFi and a refrigerator.

The Tunamaya Beach Resort Desaru hotel has a stack of great facilities to keep guests entertained.  There is a large outdoor infinity pool, a gym and a kids’ playground. You can sing karaoke at the indoor lounge or appreciate the sea breeze while you sip a drink at the Beach Bar.

The Desaru Tunamaya Beach Resort offers a range of places to eat and drink on the property including a Thai restaurant, seafood restaurant and bar.

Unfortunately, rooms and facilities are looking tired, some advertised facilities have shut and food quality could be improved.

Click here for more information and the latest prices.

The Tiara Beach Resort Desaru

Address: Tiara Desaru, Jalan Tanjung Lompat, Bandar Penawar, Johor

Tiara Desaru Beach Resort is a 3-star resort in Desaru Beach Johor Bahru vicinity located on the beachfront. There are a range of room options for all different holidaymakers including studios, family suites as well as fancy penthouses.  All Tiara Beach Resort Desaru hotel rooms have free WiFi and air-conditioning.

The resort offers a range of facilities including an infinity swimming pool and a golf course.  You can also rent bicycles, play tennis and ping pong. There is also a children’s play area with board games and puzzles.  On-site is a coffee shop, restaurant and convenience store.

The downside is that the resort is old and needs updating. Maintenance issues can be ignore. Housekeeping is hard to reach and not very good.

Click here for more information and the latest prices.

Sand & Sandals Desaru Beach Resort and Spa (Previously The Pulai Desaru Beach Resort & Spa)

Address: Jalan Desaru, Bandar Penawar, Johor

The Sand & Sandals Beach Resort (previously known as the Pulai Desaru Beach Resort & Spa) is a contemporary development nestled on Desaru’s beachfront area. Every room of Pulai Desaru Beach Resort Johor is beautifully furnished and equipped with excellent amenities.

At Sand & Sandal’s, guests can either stay in the garden and sea/pool rooms, loft rooms or presidential suites. All rooms include air-conditioning, cable TV, tea/coffee making facilities and a private balcony.

The hotel recreational facilities include a private beach area, outdoor pool, spa, and a fitness centre. Other facilities include complimentary WiFi internet access, a taxi service, a souvenir shop and 24-hour security on the property.

Overall, the resort’s proximity to Desaru, its fantastic amenities, and its friendly, and helpful staff are some of the main reasons why you should stay in Pulai Spring Desaru Beach Resort.

Click here for more information and the latest prices.

The Westin Desaru Coast Resort

The Westin Desaru Coast Resort Review
Westin Desaru Coast Resort

Address: Desaru Coast, Jln Pantai 3, 81930 Bandar Penawar, Johor

The Westin Desaru Coast Resort is nestled in an unspoiled position being right by the beach on Malaysia’s southeast coast.

Guests can choose to stay in one of the premier, deluxe or executive suites. There are also larger one bedroom suites including the immaculate presidential suite. All rooms are provided with air-conditioning, a hot shower, TV, desk, WiFi and tea/coffee making facilities.

Guests at the Westin enjoy access to the hotel’s private beachfront area and access to amenities at the resort including a fabulous pool with a view, a 24 hour fitness center, a spa offering multiple treatments with a steam room and a kids club.

The beach here is fabulous, and it’s worth staying here just for this.

The resort also offers two bars (one by the pool, and one by the beach), a lounge and two restaurants. We particularly enjoyed eating a great meal and happy hour drinks at the Beach Bar.

Whether you’re staying for leisure, or business, a stay at The Westin Desaru Coast Resort will be one to remember.

Click here for more information and the latest prices.

Pulai Springs Resort

Address: No. 20km, Jalan Pontian Lama, Pulai, Johor

Surrounded by lush tropical greenery, the Pulai Springs Resort offers you panoramic views of the South China Sea and modern comforts and facilities that are international standard.

All of its hotel rooms and suites come with air-conditioning, cable TV, telephone, mini-fridge, safety deposit box, ensuite bathroom, tea/coffee making facilities, WiFi and a key card system.

For golfing enthusiasts, the Desaru Golf and Country Club is just 5 minutes away from the property. Guests can also enjoy a variety of water sports activities at the resort such as snorkelling, parasailing, diving, jetskiing and so much more.

The resort also offers an in-house cafe and restaurant. Moreover, there’s a sunset bar or lounge where guests can wind down and watch the glorious sun set after a long day. There is also a massive free form swimming pool complete with a shallow baby pool area.

Unfortunately, the resort is quite tired with some maintenance issues. Some rooms need renovating badly.

Click here for more information and the latest prices.

Want the Easiest (and BEST) Way to travel between Singapore and Desaru?

We can book a taxi for you from anywhere in Singapore to anywhere in Desaru for a great price.

A taxi is the best way to cross the border as you don’t have to leave the air-conditioned comfort of your vehicle.

Click here for prices and online booking.

The Best Things to do in Desaru Beach

Desaru Coast Adventure Waterpark Tidal Wave Beach
Tidal Wave Beach at Adventure Waterpark

If you can pull yourself away from the fabulous facilities at your Desaru Beach Resort chalet or from the stunning Desaru Beach, there are a few great places to check out while you’re staying here.

  • Of course the number one thing to do here is to relax at Desaru Beach. With 22 kilometres of coastline to choose from, there are no crowded beaches here!
  • Visit Dash Outdoors on the beach for some watersports.
  • Cool down at the Desaru Coast Adventure Waterpark (full guide here).
  • Go shopping at Desaru Riverside.
  • Learn about tropical fruits at Desaru Fruit Farm (full guide here).
  • Have a close encounter with an ostrich at Desaru Ostrich Farm (full guide here).
  • Play a round of golf at the Desaru Golf and Country Club.
  • Take a Desaru Firely Cruise.
  • Visit the Tanjung Balu Fishing Village and Musuem.
  • Get up close to crocodiles at Teluk Sengat Crocodile Farm (full guide here).

Click here for more information about the above things to do in Desaru Beach.

Weekend In Desaru Video Walk-Through

In the following video, you can experience what it’s like to visit the Desaru Coast for a weekend with a walk-through of all the top attractions and a stay at the Hard Rock Hotel Desaru. At the end, it also shows you Desaru beach.

Make sure you subscribe to our channel for more Malaysian travel videos.

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Hopefully you found this complete guide to a holiday at Desaru Beach helpful.  You can check out our guide on catching the ferry to Desaru here.  If you’re looking for other Malaysia holiday destination ideas click here.

Planning a trip to Malaysia? Have any questions? Join our Malaysia Travel Planning Facebook group here now! It’s the perfect place to ask any questions and to be inspired!

By Sharon Gourlay

Sharon is a certified Malaysia travel expert and can't get enough of travelling and talking about Malaysia since she first visited 21 years ago. She travels around Malaysia multiple times a year both alone and with her kids. She used to call Penang home and especially loves this food paradise. Sharon also has a Bachelor of Arts in Asian Studies, a Certificate III in International Travel Sales and has been certified by Tourism Malaysia as a Malaysia Travel Expert. Through this site, she'll help you have the perfect trip to this amazing destination.