8 Amazing Places In Brunei That’ll Completely Change Your Mind About It


Syaeeza Liana Ramli •  Aug 19, 2018

Surrounded by the Malaysian states of Sarawak, Brunei is often overlooked by visitors around the world. But don't underestimate a country no matter how small it is!

Credit: giphy

Here's 8 things in Brunei that'll show you there's more to this beautiful country than you think. Get ready to add this to your travel bucket list?

1. Gadong Night Market

A local market offering a variety of local delicacies from grilled fish to malay kuih, Gadong Night Market is the place for you to have a taste of home in Brunei. The market is huge but it's open from 4pm till late so you have plenty of time to roam around!

Credit: @ridwan_wh on Instagram

And you don't have to worry about spending too much here as most of the items are priced at BND3 and below. I mean, where else can you enjoy grilled chicken liver for BND1 and lamb shank for BND2? ?What a steal!

Credit: @chibikt on Instagram

There's plenty of other local delicacies to try but if you're not up for food, check out their other products like local CDs that are bound to amaze you!

Credit: @sunshine.on.tour on Instagram

2. Jerudong Park

Opened in 1994, Jerudong Park is the largest and - wait for it - most expensive amusement park in South East Asia ? The park was recently re- opened after renovation in 2017. Now, there are rides and even attractions for you to check out!

Credit: @jerudongpark on Instagram

This is definitely not your typical amusement park. There's a water park, musical fountain and even housing estates! With over 34 attractions at the park like the pirate ship, double decker carousel and mini golf course, you'd have to spend at least a full day here to get your money's worth.

Credit: @jerudongpark on Instagram

Jerudong Park is closed every Monday to Wednesday. The opening hours on other days also vary. Check out their Instagram page for more details!

3. Sultan Omar Ali Saifuddin Mosque

Built in 1958 and designed by an Italian architect Rudolfo Nolli, the Sultan Omar Ali Saifuddin Mosque is one of the most beautiful mosques in South East Asia. One of the most amazing aspects of the mosque is that its main dome is covered in pure gold!

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The Sultan Omar Ali Saifuddin Mosque is also a major historical site and famous tourist attraction in Brunei. Local visitors and tourists alike often visit the mosque as it offers an insight to the modern Islamic architecture.

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This beautiful mosque is built on an artificial lagoon on the banks of the Brunei River. There is a marble bridge that leads to the mosque and you can see other tourist attractions from this point!

#HHWT Tip: If you wish to enter the mosque (which you should!), do remember to dress modestly! Shorts and short skirts are strictly not allowed in the mosque.

4. Celebrate Eid- ul Fitr at Istana Nurul Iman

To celebrate the festival of Hari Raya, the Sultan of Brunei, His Majesty Sultan Haji Hassanal Bolkiah and the royal family members open the doors of Istana Nurul Iman for three days. They welcome anyone and everyone who would like to visit them!

Credit: @lydiationg_0518 on Instagram

You'd want to head there early as many would arrive at the palace as early as 7am. The wait would be worth it though, as you have the opportunity to even shake the hands of the royal family members! But the best part is that visitors will receive souvenirs and the elderly and children will get also get Raya money ?

Note: You might not be able to meet every member of the royal family due to time constraints. And you can only meet the members who are of the same gender as you.

Credit: @lydiationg_0518 on Instagram

#HHWT Tip: Be sure to dress modestly and comfortably. There is always a massive crowd at the event and it might get stuffy.

5. The Venice of East: Kampong Ayer

A name that literally means ‘Water Village’, Kampong Ayer is a historical settlement area located in Bandar Seri Begawan. The village is home to around 30, 000 people and on the Brunei River. It even has its own schools, mosques and police stations!

Credit: @plugmeintravel on Instagram

Kampong Ayer is considered the largest stilt settlement in the world and you'd be surprised to know that 10% of the Brunei population live here. Getting to the village is an experience in itself as you can choose to walk on planks or sail through the river via their water taxi!

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We recommend staying the night at Kunyit7 Lodge just so you can really spend time at the village. Trust us, it'll definitely leave you with an unforgettable memory. I mean, where else can you find a hospital or fire brigade on water? ?

Credit: @kemnfrens on Instagram

6. Royal Regalia Museum

Previously known as the Royal Regalia Building, this museum keeps and documents the Bruneian Sultan’s life and successes. Most of the regalia of the Sultan and the royal family are also being housed at the museum.

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The museum houses important exhibits that describe the upbringing, education, marriage and more of the current Sultan of Brunei, His Majesty Sultan Haji Hassanal Bolkiah. Other than that, there are also other replicas on display like His throne, crowns, gowns, gifts and more. Pretty impressive!

Credit: @phagostini on Instagram

Note: The entrance to the museum is free. But you would have to leave your bags including your camera and phones in the lockers at the front desk.

7. Taman Mahkota Jubli Emas

This Sungai Kedayan Eco Corridor is Brunei’s new 12- hectare riverfront park! It was opened in October 2017 and is the new go-to place for those who would like to unwind after a long day of working or shopping ?

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The park's views are pretty stunning as you can see other famous attractions from here, such as the Sultan Omar Ali Saifuddin Mosque as well as Kampong Ayer! Stay till the night as the park would light up with different coloured lights, making it even more stunning.

P.S. Try out some of the food stalls nearby!

Credit: @chekudin on Instagram

For families, we recommend renting these bicycles to explore the park. The kids would love it! Plus it only costs about BND12 ?

Credit: @ummi_aidahanaafeya on Instagram

8. Empire Hotel & Country Club

For those seeking a truly luxurious resort getaway, the Empire Hotel and Country Club is just what you're looking for. It is located on Brunei’s pristine coastline, facing the waters of the South China Sea. Plus the golf course, designed by Jack Nicklaus, is known to be one of the best in South East Asia!

Credit: The Empire Hotel & Country Club Brunei on Facebook

And if the exterior of the hotel has blown you away, wait till you see the intricately-designed interior! Decorated with gold in every corner, your stay at this hotel exudes luxury. And you don't even need to worry about feeling bored here as the hotel has its own bowling alley and cinema ?

Credit: The Empire Hotel & Country Club Brunei on Facebook

There you go! Brunei may be a small country in the eyes of the world but it's filled with so many amazing things and people☺️ It's time to go forth and explore Brunei!