As beaches in this part of Malaysia go, DESARU isn’t bad, though there are better places up the coast. This sheltered, casuarina-fringed bay is the nearest major resort to Singapore and thus gets busy during weekends and holidays. During the monsoon months, when the current on Desaru Beach is dangerously strong, don’t go in the water if the red flag is flying, and use caution at any time; fatalities have occurred even in the shallows. On nearby Balau Beach, which holds a couple of cheaper resorts, there’s no swimming at any time; you have to walk 1km to a public beach.

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