Blogs from Bandar Seri Begawan, Brunei, Asia - page 3


Asia » Brunei » Bandar Seri Begawan April 15th 2014

Brunei occupies 1% of Borneo is one of the wealthiest country depending on an oil production. Bruneians get free education and health care, subsidized food and housing, and they do not pay personal income taxes. The Sultan of Brunei is ranked amongst wealthiest people in the world. He lives in a palace with more than 500 rooms and has a collection of more than 500 luxury cars. Sultan Hassanal Bolkiah, 29th sultan of Brunei, owns thousands cars, including around 20 Lamborghinis, 160 Porsches, 130 Rolls Royces, 360 Ferraris, 170 Jaguars, 180 BMWs, 360 Bentleys, and 530 Mercedes-Benzes. Sultan Hassanal Bolkiah belongs to the same family that has ruled Brunei for over six hundred years. Traditionally, Bruneians don’t shake hands with the opposite sex. Belalong Tree Frog (Rhacophorus belalongensis)can only be found in Brunei. The Malay name ... read more
Sri Lanka 3793
Sultan's Palace
Sultan's bedroom

Asia » Brunei » Bandar Seri Begawan July 19th 2013

This morning we had a little bit of unfinished business in BSB to attend to; the Royal Regalia Museum and we wanted to do a tour of the Water Village (called Kampong Ayer in Malay). We had to get this all done by 12 (even though we were going to leave for the airport at 2) because by the Sultan's decree, everything must close between 12 and 2 every Friday for the Muslims to go to the mosque and pray. Not everyone goes to the mosque, but everything, including coffee shops, restaurants, tourist attractions, banks- everything, must close. So other than walking around we would have nothing to do for those two hours. This is a practice that feels very foreign to us; a little bit of a culture shock. This very different routine is probably ... read more
Outside the Royal Regalia Museum
Cruising through the Fishing Village
The Fishing Village

Asia » Brunei » Bandar Seri Begawan July 17th 2013

Today was a neat day. It all started in the little town of Miri. Things improved steadily from then. We woke up early to catch the bus along the coast to Brunei. Miri is surprisingly close to the border - it only took about half an hour to get out of Malaysia, but then it took about three hours to drive to Brunei's capital city Bandar Seri Begawan. The drive was very interesting. Dotted along the coast was the occasional oil drill site. We could see them flaring off gas as we drove by on the highway. When we arrived in the capital, we checked into our hotel, the Brunei Hotel. It was very nice, but by far the most expensive hotel on our entire journey ($100 a night). We then decided to explore a little ... read more
Some Oil Fields On The Way In
The View Of Borneo From The Bus
I Guess Not All Of Borneo Is Rugged...

Asia » Brunei » Bandar Seri Begawan May 9th 2013

It was just a short 1h ferry ride from Labuan before I arrived in Muara, the port town in Brunei, population-wise the smallest country in Southeast Asia. And it was just another 30 minute bus ride before I was in Bandar Seri Begawan, the sultanate's capital. This was my second time in the country, but my first had been a work trip where I was pretty much holed up in the hotel, and shuttled from meeting to meeting in office buildings, so I was determined to explore more of the city independently this time. Brunei has a rather sterile reputation, and in some ways its quite deserved. Being a staunchly Muslim country, the place is entirely "dry" i.e. alcohol is forbidden to be publicly sold. Having a relatively small population, especially in relation to the physical ... read more
Kampong Ayer
Bruneian Cuisine
The Quiet, Quiet Streets of Downtown BSB

Asia » Brunei » Bandar Seri Begawan March 10th 2013

DeManilafying 11-12 March 2013 Andrew got food poisoning at Manila airport on our way out of the Philippines. Fortunately by the time it manifested itself we were safely ensconced at the freshly renovated, marvellously airconditioned, super quiet Radisson Hotel Brunei in Bandar Seri Bagawan. Anyone who says Brunei is sterile and boring should spend three days in Manila before arriving in the tiny sultanate. It is the best place on earth for deManilafying. Bandar Seri Bagawan is the antithesis of Manila. The traffic is benign; it is spotless; there is no pee on the pavements; everything works; it is a small and wealthy city; and the food is great. No more pot noodles purchased from the 7eleven, YAY!! The hotel is quiet, and there is no construction site around the corner using angle grinders at midnight. ... read more
Golden Dome

Asia » Brunei » Bandar Seri Begawan January 31st 2013

My friend and I arrived in BSB around 4pm. We exchanged money at one of the few exchange places--conveniently located next to the bus station--and then set out to find Pusat Belia. Pusat Belia is the cheapest accomodation in all of Brunei ($10 USD a night for a bed) and if we couldn't get beds there we knew we'd need more money since everywhere else is quite expensive. We found Pusat and waited around a bit for someone to help us. While we waited, middle school children ran all around us with fencing equipment. I finally checked in around 5pm and my friend... well, he was told to come back around 10pm and they might have a bed for him. With the fencing tournament it seems most beds were occupied, even though there are twice as ... read more

Asia » Brunei » Bandar Seri Begawan January 30th 2013

You get a tan in the days, It's sunny in the rays, but meantime South of the river, you stop and hold everything A man is callin' prayers double four times, You feel alright when you hear his voice ring... And now you step inside, but you don't see to many faces, Comin' out of the sun to hear the muezzin go down, Competition in other holy places... Oh but the faithful are blowin' that sound, Way down south, way down south BSB town You check out Sultan Bolkiah, he owns all the oil, But he is strictly Muslim, he don't want to make it shine or bling They say a grand ol' palace is all he's got for all his toil, With only 1800 rooms to do his thing And Bolkiah doesn't mind if he ... read more
Bandar Seri Begawan
Bandar Seri Begawan
Bandar Seri Begawan

Asia » Brunei » Bandar Seri Begawan January 24th 2013

I slept a little better the previous night and after breakfast I made my way back to Kuala Lumpur with Uncle Han. The driver wasn’t the best, he never indicated, drive way too fast, I don’t think a minivan was meant for high speed turns but we eventually made it to KL and I checked in to the Step-In guesthouse for my last night in KL. I had previously booked my ticket for the skybridge for 20:00 but just before I was due to set off one of the regular thunderstorms commenced so I got a little wet on my walk to the Petronas Twin Towers. I decided to take a detour to Bukit Bintang which is one of the main tourist hotspots of KL, its full of hotels/hostels, restaurants, bag-snatchers, whores and drug dealers what ... read more
View from skybridge
View from skybridge

Asia » Brunei » Bandar Seri Begawan December 31st 2012

THIS BLOG WAS WRITTEN BEFORE MY PICS REAPPEARED MIRACULOUSLY 1,5 YEARS LATER.... UPDATED NOW! --------------------------------------------------------- This blog entry is not so much about my trip to Borneo which i spent my last christmas on, but rather on the strange habit that we travellers have developed, namely taking pictures. Why am I thinking about this specific argument? Well, when I came back from my trip I got a new adapter in a small local shop in Hong Kong to transfer my pictures from my camera to my computer. Unfortunately, as often it goes in this parts of the world, the adapter was not really what I was looking for. After transferring about 10 of my pictures the whole thing just go blocked and suddenly... all my hard earned photographs were gone! Of course this is not a ... read more
Bandar Seri Begawan
Bandar Seri Begawan
Bandar Seri Begawan

Asia » Brunei » Bandar Seri Begawan November 22nd 2012

When it comes to settling on a holiday destination, there are usually a set number of criteria which might influence a destination's choice. Among these factors feature a plurality of shopping options, proximity to a theme park of some description, evening entertainments options a-plenty, a wide variety of beachside settings nearby, relative familiarity with the overall culture, and so on and so forth. In the case of a visit to Brunei, very few of the above might actually apply, which begs the question - why Brunei, and why opt for such a relatively non-tourist-oriented nation? The answer is that, in many respects, a trip to Brunei constitutes real travel, and was expected to score on account of being a travel destination which had intrigued me for quite some time prior to visiting. Staying in the Kiulap ... read more
Local mosque (Bandar Seri Begawan; Brunei)
Kampong Ayer (Bandar Seri Begawan; Brunei)
Entrance gate (Bangar; Brunei)

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