Free walking tours in JB draw interest

Leong (centre) with members of Johor Baru Breast Cancer Support Group before a tour around Johor Baru city. — THOMAS YONG/The Star

SOME 500 visitors have so far benefitted from free walking tours around downtown Johor Baru between January and March.

Johor Tourist Guides Association president Jimmy Leong Wei Kong said the figure included Malaysians as well as foreign tourists.

“The city tour is a pilot project for us to know if there is a demand in the local and international markets for this initiative.

“We received sponsorship and support from the Johor Baru City Council (MBJB), Think City and Iskandar Regional Development Authority (Irda), allowing us to conduct the tour for free.

“Moving forward, we will continue to provide the tour with a fee of RM300 per group with a maximum of 15 people in each group,” he told StarMetro.

Leong said that besides visitors from countries such as Russia, the United Arab Emirates and Indonesia, they attracted students visiting from Singapore.

Tour guide William Ngo (right) 39, explaining to a group from the Johor Baru Breast Cancer Support Group about the history of Johor Baru.Tour guide William Ngo (right) 39, explaining to a group from the Johor Baru Breast Cancer Support Group about the history of Johor Baru.

“We received about 12 groups of students from Singapore’s Raffles Girls School during the three-month period.

“To make the tour more meaningful, our tour guides referred to information from our local history textbooks,” he added.

The association also invited the Johor Baru Breast Cancer Support Group to take part in the tour.

The group’s advisor Doris Boo said she was grateful to the association for giving its members an opportunity to join the walking tour for free.

“The tour allows our members, who include breast cancer survivors, patients and volunteers, to have a relaxing walk around the city while learning more about Johor Baru.

“This is not the first time we have received a free tour from the association. We have been invited before to take part in tours in other parts of Johor.

“We are grateful for the support as it has really helped motivate our members,” said Boo.

Some 60 members of the support group took part in the tour in conjunction with the group’s 20th anniversary.

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