Cycling to Elephant Rock (Bukit Batu Gajah)

Cycling to Elephant Rock in Senai Johor. This was what 14 of us did early September 2022.

We have seen the various trips undertaken by other cycling kakis, and the mesmorising green palm oil plantations from the top!

Elephant Rock, also known as Elephant Hill Rock is located at Senai, Johor. The official name is (Bukit Batu Gajah 柔佛州泗隆象石山).

Actually, this rock is more popular with hikers than cyclists.

Elephant Rock is about 40km from customs, and take note of the almost 1000m elevation (aka slopes) from my Strava screenshot. This tour is challenging for new riders, build up your fitness with slope trainings first.

Refer Google Map screenshot below, follow my GPX for links and tips to reach trailhead (gpx link). (Viewing experience is better on Desktop rather than mobile phones).

Tip 01 Refer to our Cycling to Elephant Rock YouTube clip below.

In summary we headed towards Elephant Rock, then Eco Spring for lunch before heading back (passing Mount Austin).

0600 set off from Esso Woodlands Road.
Took our customary photos at Causeway.

0730 Breakfast at Kedai Xuu Yau . Shop is very low profile, my favourite wanton noodle.

Kedai Xuu Wanton Noodle JB

Tip 02 Route J3 slopes!

Good workout for us, up down roller coaster slopes for up to 8km. The toughest parts are after Larkin Bus Terminal, sapping our energy.

For chaps who wish to explore beyond Johor, Larkin Bus terminal is where you hitch a ride to Malacca, Selangor, Mersing, Terengganu etc!

In comparison, J3 slopes are easily x2 x3 times tougher than Mandai slopes.

Actually the slopes begin once you touch J3 along Taman Merdeka (park). Checkout 30s from my YouTube clip . Good training 🙂

Endless slopes J3 route Johor

The slopes get easier when you are nearer to Starhill Golf and Country Club (or maybe we are numb already).

Do look out for two HUGE Boeings at the parking lot! (GPS estimate 1.558578, 103.713771). This is in Kempas neighbourhood.

Johor Kempas Boeing aeroplanes

Retired Boeings! Just curious who parked the planes there, and for what purpose?

Tip 03 Pitstop before Elephant Rock.

From the aeroplanes corner, we would recommend having a pit stop at Kampong Maju Jaya (GPS around 1.581363 103.718755). There are 3 to 4 coffeeshops here and a few convenience stores.

Take note road condition along Kampong is more bumpy and has more pot holes.

Refill your water, clear your bladder. You are less than 10 km from Elephant Rock. We noticed there are some roadside stalls selling drinks and snacks but we gave it a miss (would be cool to grab some coconuts).

Oh, we found out Kampong “squatting” toilets are clean 🙂

Tip 04 Trailheads and access

There are actually two trailheads to submit Bukit Batu Gajah.

(Refer photo below) Point 2 (GPS 1.639369, 103.734652) is nearer, you can park your car and walk less than 2km to submit. Point 3 is further (Petrol Felda Ulu Tebrau), follow directional signs and hike 6 to 7km one way .

Trailhead Elephant Rock

For point (2), those who are driving should park around the neighbourhood here (GPS 1.639206, 103.729393). We cycled to Point (2).

Bukit Batu Gajah car park area

From photo above, go up the left trail and you will encounter a “FUN” slope. It is important to enjoy the journey and pitstops, as this will make the trip more memorable.

Foldies cycling to Elephant Rock Johor

*After the slope, do look out for a side gate (GPS 1.639422, 103.732887), and trek offroad 400,500m to the rock.

If you overshot the gate, you will see “old hut” up the slope.

Once you pass the gate, start pushing and walking on trail. I suspect the trail will be muddy if it rains. If you have wider tyres or MTB, cycle in all the way!

Tip 05 Cleats are not welcomed here

You can try to climb the rock face with your Clipless  😅

We can see the ROCK infront of us, turn left at the T junction infront.

Bukit Batu Gajah off road trail

I still cannot tell which part of Rock resembles Elephant. After this portion, the last 100m offers a good workout with your bike! PUSH!

Park your bikes, go and explore the batu (rocks!).

Bukit Batu Gajah photo

The ROCKS are HUGE!

Take more photos! We spent almost 1 hour at Elephant Rock.

We can see beautiful green scenery 360 degrees. No wonder so many happy faces 🙂

Bukit Batu Gajah photos

From Elephant Rock, we only 13km from Senai airport, or 20km from Mount Austin. Pack up to next stop.

We detoured to Specialized bike shop. Window shop only, not enough budget 🙂

From here, we are only 7km from our lunch venue.

Tip 06 Lunch and photos  at Eco Spring.

This new corner has many Instagrammable spots and popular cafes.

Please order some juicy burgers at Woodfire.

Woodfire burgers Eco Sprint

We stayed 1 hour at Eco Spring(woodfire lunch and photos). This spot is popular with both couples and families, plenty of activities and cafes for everyone.

Best burgers Johor


Eco Spring Lab photos

The original plan was to pop by Mount Austin for coffee. But we decided we had enough fun for the day and decided to ride home.

Tip 07 Route Mount Austin to JB

Route 3 would be the fastest path. Take note minimum shoulders and faster cars. We would recommend Route 35 (through Permas Jaya) and Stulang for new riders.

Cycling to Elephant Rock Google Map

Do expect more SLOPES up and down along Route 3 towards Taman Sentosa direction. Do take note road condition is more rough and more pot holes too. (This is the same route 3 which can bring you North to Mersing)

Checkout YouTube of Route 3 below. There are always plenty of slopes for the return trip (towards SG custom).

If time permits, you can detour to Plentong Go Kart (off Permas Jaya). Read previous blog post here.

Gokart Johor

Credits and references:

a)Thanks to other pioneers for sharing their Strava or Google Map GPX. You can reference our own GPX link here. Just open in your mobile phone and follow turn by turn. Our Elephant Rock YouTube link is here

b) Cycling to Elephant Rock would not be possible without the rich resources from Facebook group Cycling SG to Malaysia Facebook group. This should be your one stop shop for your Johor/Malaysia cycling research. More photos and videos about Elephant Rock here

Meanwhile, you may read about other cycling trips below:

– Cycle to Pekan Nanas and Legoland
– JB food hunt (3 hours 30km)
– Cycle to Forest City
Cycle to Pontian (笨珍)
Cycle to Elephant Rock (Bukit Batu Gajah)
Cycling to Malacca
2018 Cycling Hualien to Taitung (with two kiddos)

YouTube: Chill at Pontian 笨珍

YouTube: 3 Hours in JB. Eat, see and Experience

YouTube: Cycling to Forest City and boat ride (my best Johor trip yet)

*Do follow our cycling adventures here -> https://sengkangbabies.com/tag/cycling

Cycle to Malaysia – Pekan Nanas and Legoland

Cycle to Malaysia and your playground upsized from 700km2 to 330,000km2. Yes, Malaysia is 400x bigger than Singapore!

The idea of cycling to Malaysia never crossed my mind. Primary reason could be road safety concerns.

Image credit FB “Cycling SG to Malaysia”
Image credit FB “Cycling SG to Malaysia”

I will be sharing my cycling experiences from Pekan Nanas and Legoland in this post. And I can confirm Malaysian drivers (motorbikes, cars and even trucks) are more accommodating towards the vulnerable cyclists!

*Do go to the end for video of my JB eat and see (in 3 hours)

For those interested to explore Malaysia cycling itinerary, pop over to Facebook group ‘Cycling SG to Malaysia’. They are organising free cycling events, with volunteer leaders and sweepers, but event slots are always in hot demand!

Carry bicycle over to motorbike lanes

My virgin trip brought me to the town of pineapples “Pekan Nanas“.

Bicycles can only use Booth 1 for manual passport processing

In case you are wondering, Tuas Causeway is off-limits to bicycles as both ends are expressway and highway.

The 1st assembly spot is at the middle of causeway. You can take EPIC Sunrise photos here!

Cycle to Malaysia

After the photos, team can climb up the bridge towards Malaysian Customs.

Cyclists with slim tyres have to watch out for the drain cover gaps. Do follow the red marking (photo below) to enter the “manual” booths.

Image credit FB “Cycling SG to Malaysia”

Second assembly spot would be after Malaysia custom, somewhere here (GPS 1.466946, 103.768354).

This is where the real Fun starts 🙂

We took the coastal loop towards Danga Bay. And the dark clouds chased us for a good 20 minutes!

I wish Singapore’s Shell 95 price will dip below $3 in the near future 🙁

Breakfast was at Skudai area, near Sutera Mall (popular spot with Singaporeans). We normally drive here for brunch, but two wheels are much cooler.

Not sure whether you are ready for Johor ride? We share a few tips:

1) Road confidence (You must have some road experience in Singapore)

2) Recommend cyclists covered at least 80km before (Johor has more slopes and bridges)

You will notice that Malaysian motorists are more accommodating and patient than Singapore drivers.

Malaysian motorists will wait (or slow down) for cyclists to clear junctions, change lanes or even roundabouts!

Kudos and thank you Malaysians for your patience.

Let us carry on with our Pekan Nanas pineapple adventure 🙂

Only tourists will do the pineapple pose haha (pineapple landmark infront of Public Bank).

Image credit FB “Cycling SG to Malaysia”

As you cycle Westward, Pontian and Kukup (SEAFOOD!) is beckoning. And Tuas Causeway is so much nearer than Woodlands Causeway.

Cycle to Malaysia, today Johor, tomorrow Melaka and Desaru.

Map below indicates estimated km from Bukit Indah. These spots are on my wishlist, example Forest City and Southernmost Tip of Mainland Asia (not Sentosa).

Delicious dim sum lunch at Tasixi 大四喜 and we met Chef Eric too.

Image credit FB “Cycling SG to Malaysia”

I would recommend newbies to ride along Danga Bay coast (ie follow directions to Hospital Aminah, then route 52, J1). Road is wider and there is less traffic.

*The stretch along Jalan Tun Abdul Razak (Route or Highway 1)back to Woodlands custom is sandy, narrow and packed with vehicles (ie Stress!)

Group is ready to roll back to Singapore. Our Pekan Nanas group consists of 30 cyclists, split into two groups.

Lots of fun and novelty for the cyclists, we went through two showers too. Many in the group were newbies at custom, but we brought back fond memories.

Just follow the motorcycle lane.

~~Sharing some photos from my Legoland trip 28May2022 ~~

This was the first time I led a cycling group into Johor. I was quite apprehensive but felt a huge sense of accomplishment too.

You have to ensure that everyone can keep pace and hopefully not bring them go “Holland”.

The actual distance in Malaysia (to & fro) from customs to Legoland is about 60km (This is peanuts for those who have completed RTI in Singapore).

Crossing both Singapore and Malaysia customs on our bikes is worth a toast! A novelty for most of the kakis.

Credit kakis
Credit kakis ( Part of the Crius foldie family)

Imagine the excitement when we spot Legoland Hotel over the horizon. Mission achieved 🙂

I cannot remember when was the last time I brought my kids here. They have since outgrown Lego bricks. Revisiting this epic hotel on two wheels, brings back a sense of dejavu!

Credit kakis

Artistic sculptures at Puteri Harbour (we did not visit Hello Kitty).

Do expect puncture/s among the group. Touch wood, but the probability is too high to ignore! Bring tube for your own tyre size.

Credit kakis

Khass Bicycles seems to be a popular pit stop for shopping. I have no idea about price comparison between Singapore and Malaysia.

Cold dessert at Yong Yong Dessert, which is 100m from Khass Bicycles.

Credit kakis

Always Safety first. We strive to enter and leave Malaysia as a group, looking out for each other. This trip has given me the confidence to explore more of Malaysia.

Should I cycle to Malaysia? where should I start?

For those interested to explore Johor on two wheels, do join Facebook group “Cycling SG to Malaysia” first. Do look out for future events to Desaru, Pontian, Melaka! Link up with friendly and helpful community for peer to peer knowledge sharing.

Like-minded cyclists are only interested to cycle, chill and eat (maybe share “poisons” too).  You might find buddies to embark on the next multi-day cycling adventure.

For newbies, your team will have a leader/captain and a sweeper. Leader will navigate and pull the team along, while sweeper ensures no one is left behind.

SHOUTOUT to sweepers Alan and Kiara for ensuring no one is left behind. Our ride would not be successful and safe without the hardworking sweepers !

*1) Step by step tips to cross Singapore Malaysia custom, refer Richard’s link (Take note no photography and video inside customs area)

*2)YouTube crossing Singapore Malaysia customs (Clips from Rueben and Alan). This will help you visualise the next turns and boost your confidence (I still hate the humps!)

3)Reference my cycling planning itinerary Gsheet here (Many items were first shared from Facebook group)

4) Open my Legoland Gpx (Google Map), and just follow turn by turn to Nusajaya

5) Updated 11 June 2022 – 3 Hours in JB. Eat, see and Experience

YouTube: Chill at Pontian 笨珍

YouTube :Cycling to Forest City and boat ride (my best Johor trip yet)

YouTube: Cycling to Elephant Rock (Bukit Batu Gajeh)

Additional tips:
– Always SAFETY first! Take care of each other

– My Sejahtera app (similar to SG’s traceTogether) is no longer needed, but do print out hardcopy vaccination status from https://www.notarise.gov.sg or HealthHub (just in case)

– Bicycles no need to pay toll, and Touch & Go cards are optional

– Not everyone might wish to cycle to start point at Woodlands custom. The nearest carpark could be at Marsiling Blk 22  (S730022)

– After your JB spin, cyclists can take the train from Kranji MRT

Meanwhile, you may read about other cycling trips below:
– Cycle to Pekan Nanas and Legoland
– JB food hunt (3 hours 30km)
– Cycle to Forest City
Cycle to Pontian (笨珍)
Cycle to Elephant Rock (Bukit Batu Gajah)
Cycling to Malacca
2018 Cycling Hualien to Taitung (with two kiddos)

*Do follow our cycling adventures here -> https://sengkangbabies.com/tag/cycling

*Do follow our cycling adventures here -> https://sengkangbabies.com/tag/cycling