Blogs from Bandar Seri Begawan, Brunei, Asia - page 5


Asia » Brunei » Bandar Seri Begawan October 5th 2011

So this morning Steve and Sarah went to the airport to sort out a rental car at the airport. They were gone for a while then returned at about 10am (And yes, I was up by that time... Nicole wasn't) before having to return yet again because the Steve didn't have my credit card to pay the deposit! We had the car sorted and home by about 10.45am. We spent the rest of the morning lazying around 'home' because we had no plans. In Brunei the workers go home for lunch so we met Simon at the local mall to have chicken and rice for lunch. We were definitely feeling the stares at the mall because we were the only white people and we were dressed very differently to others. After lunch Sarah and Simon took ... read more

Asia » Brunei » Bandar Seri Begawan September 15th 2011

After spending monday night in Miri I got up early and took a local bus to the express bus station where I hopped on a minibus bound for Bandar Seri Begawan, the capital of Brunei. I was pretty happy at the border when they gave me a single entry visa for B$20, because I was expecting to pay B$30 for a multiple entry. We finally arrived at Bandar Seri Begawan at midday and shortly after I had checked into my 4 bed dorm room at the youth hostel for $8 a night. I was a bit worried that they wouldn't let me stay after they had asked my age, but everthing was cool. The room also had a/c and for the 2 nights I stayed there I had the room to myself. After having lunch I ... read more
Omar Ali Saifuddien Mosque
Kampong Ayer - Water villages
Jame Asr Hassanil Bolkiah Mosque

Asia » Brunei » Bandar Seri Begawan July 15th 2011

There are not many people who can say they share their birthday with the Sultan of Brunei but some special people do and that was me! They must have known I was coming as the streets were lined with flags and the day had been made a public holiday so everyone was enjoying themselves walking the streets and eating out at the local food markets. So what better than to join in the fun and mingle with the locals. The stop over was a welcome breather between a fifteen hour flight and a further seven hours before arriving back in Brisbane and starting back at work the following day. We were able to find a hotel very central to the city centre and managed to crash for a couple of hours and enjoy a few hours ... read more
Gold Domes and Blue skies
Omar Ali Saifuddien Mosque.
Corridor alongside the main mosque.

Asia » Brunei » Bandar Seri Begawan July 14th 2011

Hello from Brunei! This is in fact our second visit in 2 weeks but as the Sultan is coming out to play tomorrow as its his birthday and we were so close we figured it would be a shame to miss the celebrations. So we’ve bought him a cake and are heading out into the crowds tomorrow to see if he will blow out the candles! I like Brunei. Yes it may not be the craziest place I have ever been, but there is something about the city centre I quite like. It has some amazingly beautiful mosques, some great sunsets, the drivers stop and let you cross the road just because they can, the people are lovely and it has ginger beer, waffles, beans on toast and masala dosas all in one street (anything that ... read more
sunset in brunei

Asia » Brunei » Bandar Seri Begawan June 30th 2011

In the middle of Malaysian Borneo, sandwiched between Sabah and Sarawak is the small, oil-rich nation of Brunei Darussalam. Being that we were so close, we just couldn't pass up the opportunity to check out its riches for ourselves (not to mention another stamp in the passport and a new country to add to the list). We took the 3-hour ferry from Kota Kinabalu to the island of Labuan where we transferred to another ferry which took an additional hour and a half to reach Brunei. We can't say that it was the most comfortable ferry as we were breathing diesel fumes the whole way and the en-route entertainment consisted of cheezy karaoke music or gory films. Brunei is kind of a quirky place but outside of a few extravagant sites it's actually quite ordinary. We ... read more
Dinner at Empire
Reflection in marble

Asia » Brunei » Bandar Seri Begawan June 1st 2011

5:40 AM, the alarm on my mobile phone starts beeping. Another early morning wake up call. Again!? In the last 10 days or so, this is at least the fifth time we got up around six in the morning. How can this be considered a holiday if I have to get up so early, so many times? Back in London I was getting out of bed after 8am and now, that I am on holiday, I am suffering through yet another mid-night wake up call? Polona has no problem with this, being a "morning person" (how I hate these "people"). We had to get up this early in order to catch the bus to Brunei. The bus is supposed to leave the station at 8 am, but we were warned that it can show up and ... read more
Omar Ali Saifuddien Mosque
Kampung Ayer - Floating village
Kampung Ayer

Asia » Brunei » Bandar Seri Begawan May 29th 2011

Today started like yesterday, breakfast by the pool and more conversation with the kiwi couple we'd met yesterday. Then we walked to the bus station to get a bus to the Brunei Museum and Brunei Technology Museum, one situated behind the other and easy to reach. The bus station has very clear signage and info so you can't go wrong really. I saw a lady looking at the route map for our bus and asked if she needed help - it turned out she lived here and was seeking out info for when friends arrive to visit. We had a bit of a chat and whilst doing so our bus pulled out of the station, however it circled it twice and when we waved it stopped for us outside the station, so less than 10 mins ... read more
RR Museum
RR Museum
Unusual side mirror!

Asia » Brunei » Bandar Seri Begawan May 28th 2011

Not really a 13-hour trekathon but definitely a 13-hour day today!! We are both aching, Mac more than me as he has cold which he says he got from me, can't believe either of us would ever get a cold in this heat! Anyway, today we began with breakfast by the pool, very pleasant, met a Kiwi couple from near Hamilton. We then travelled by bus (walked to the bus station first only to get on the right bus and see it pass our hotel......!) and visited the Jame Ásr Hassanil Bolkiah mosque (or JAHB mosque) in Gadong, about 3 kms away. I had to put on a full length black gown even though I'd ensured I wore long sleeves and 3/4 trousers; this made me even hotter but it's fair enough and par for the ... read more
JAHB mosque
JAHB mosque
JAHB mosque

Asia » Brunei » Bandar Seri Begawan May 27th 2011

OK, so carrying on from before, we took advantage of the duty free status of Labuan and purchased a bottle of Vanilla Absolut for NZ$12 (6 pounds - this keyboard doesn't have a pound sign so for all the Brits just halve the kiwi dollar amount!) - well, it would have been criminal not to. We ate dinner at Kedai Kopi Fah Fah, ginger prawns/chicken and rice plus two ice cold Tiger beers for 20 ringgit, about NZ$8. Not bad. Then we went back to the lovely (not) room at the Victoria and watched a movie where the sound kept going.............. otherwise a nice vibe to this island. Yesterday (Thursday) it rained for a week in about 30 minutes - it was bouncing, but over and dry again before you knew it. Had roti canai for ... read more
Victoria Hotel
Victoria Hotel
Peace Park, Labuan

Asia » Brunei » Bandar Seri Begawan May 22nd 2011

Unable to organise a tour to a long house in BSB I took the 45mins boat ride to Bangar in hope of finding one there. However upon arriving I remembered it was sunday and although the tourist information centre was open until 12 according to lonely planet it was infact closed for the day. Finding the Youth Centre I discovered that a school group had fully booked it out and I was unlikely to find a long house stay so I headed back to BSB for the afternoon and decided I would go to Miri tomorrow. At least the boat trip was nice through the jungle. After checking back into the youth centre I caught the bus over to the mall although it was nothing like the ones in KL I managed to find a good ... read more

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