A Little Nomad's Traveling Diary

I am not a writer. I am just the person who is addicted to travels and has passion for capturing every single piece of traveling memories in words

[Brunei] There is “NOTHING MUCH” in there

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I have been to Brunei twice for the past two months. At first, people told me that there was nothing in here and that it was just boring and ways expensive compared to Miri in Brunei. However, I need to go there anyways to do border run. So there I go.

– How to go there

For now, I am living in Miri, about 3 hours from the center of center of Brunei by bus. So I got there by bus. Bus ticket can be bought at Bus Station in Jalan Pujut in Miri.

+ From Miri to Brunei (City): 40 RM

+ From Brunei to Miri: 18 BND (You can also use Singapore dollars. Same value)

For Vietnamese people, we don’t need visa for staying in Brunei within 14 days.

– Where to stay

Before departure, I booked one night at Apek Utama Hotel about 3 km from City (Reachable by bus with 1 BND of bus fare). The room rate is 35 USD/ night. Yea, I know, its stupid price. Ridiculous much. However, my friend told me that it’s considered as a cheap room in Brunei, so I take it anyways. Having getting there, I realized that I could stay in dorm room at Youth Center with only 10 USD/ night. (For this choice, it depends on your luck whether you can get a bed or not, coz the place is always crowded)

– The language and the transportation

+ Language: English and Malay.

+ Transportation: Mainly bus. Don’t count on taxis which are normally all taken when you try to grab one. Another kind of transport is water taxi to travel to Kampong Ayer (Water Village): 1 BND/ each route.

– What to see and to do

Royal Regalia Museum (free entrance): Please don’t miss it. Amazing exhibition and a great effort to make the old days alive. You can walk here from main bus terminal.

 Sultan Omar Ali Saijuddin Mosque  (free entrance and stands within walking distance from bus terminal) and  Jame Asr Hassanal Bolkia Mosque (free entrance. To get there, you wait for the bus 01C at bus terminal)

Kampong Ayer (Water Village) (free entrance). To get there, you need to catch a water taxi with 1 BND for each one way route. At the entrance of village, you can visit the museum in which you will be given “I Love Brunei” badget for free. Awesome huh?

– There is “nothing” and “something” I have got from my trip

 + The full name of the country is “Brunei Darussalam” which means “The place of peace” in Malay. Actually, Brunei is quite under control. Except for the high living cost, Brunei made good impression on me with clean environment, friendly people,…

+ When I was waiting for my taxi near the hotel, there was one guy stopping by and asking whether I need a lift. He was so good that he spent one hour to drive me to the Sultan Tomb, then to Sultan Mosque, to the Dairy Queen Ice Cream shop (you should try the ice cream with 4 BND which the shopkeepers will serve you upside down. Well, it means, they will put the ice cream upside down in front of you to astonish you (well, for sure). If the ice cream falls down, you can get another one for free), then to Royal Museum

+ The custom officers were quite nice when they worked on my passport. Though, on the way back to Malaysia, the custom officer of Malaysian Immigration Department  asked me quite lots of questions before concluding “You’re Vietnamese but your English is so good huh?”

Well, I always have fun with the custom officers. Two weeks ago, I flew back here from KK (Kota Kinabalu) and the custom officer asked whether I felt scared when traveling alone. After all, he gave me his number and told me to text him if I needed any help that he could offer.

Hmm, I have been busy these days working as an editor and a writer. I am planning to visit Myanmar and Laos to complete my “SE Asia tour”. Anyways, next month, I will go back to Kuala Lumpur to pick up my sister then we travel to Singapore together. I have a lot of things needed to be written down here but I am too lazy. Haiz.

If you need any guide on traveling to Brunei or Malaysia or Manila (I will compose a post about this place soon), feel free to contact me by commenting here. Cheers!



4 comments on “[Brunei] There is “NOTHING MUCH” in there

  1. jasmine
    Tháng Sáu 16, 2014

    It’s great to see you are enjoying your trip. After you SEA tour, would you please share a comprehensive route (like where, when, how, do’s and don’ts, etc). I know there are a bunch of this kind of advice out there, but you know it’s always good to hear real thing (like I already “know” you somehow, not from some stranger).

    I hope I will have time and money soon enough to have a real journey like you did. FYI, I didn’t have time for the dream of being a freelance writer haha. I quitted my job, found a new one, and by now I am working in the jungle.

    • alittlenomad
      Tháng Sáu 16, 2014

      Cool. Hope everything is great with you. Surely I will write an entry concluding what I like and dislike about SE Asian countries after covering them all. Thanks for visiting my blog. Have a nice day!

  2. F.Mogheth
    Tháng Mười Một 9, 2014

    I decided to visit Brunei simply to add an extra stamp to my passport visiting from neighbouring Malaysia (Kota Kinabalu). I consider myself very well traveled and lucky to have been to more than 89+ countries and counting so I consider myself open minded when seeing other places. I grew up in a Muslim country so know the general train of thought of similar religious countries. I am as well someone who cannot get bored easily even if placed in the middle of the Sahara. So spending 2 nights in Bandar Seri Begawan was indeed an experience and in my book thee most boring place on the face of our blue planet. I tried so hard to figure out the best time when locals come out as I lived in the heart of the city. I failed to see anything that could be called a crowd. Not in the morning, not at noon and definitely none in the evening. Friday (weekend) that should have the main mall packed had 6 people inside at 6pm… Every shop with staff ready but no one buying anything. A couple of fast food outlets and always with no more than 2-3 people inside. The so called main street has a couple of shops with nothing to offer, forget about postcards, a couple of pharmacies, a Burger King and a KFC and The End…

    Nothing really of interest … Let’s say a couple of pointless museums, the mall, the river side, the mosque are all within one square bloc (no more than 500x500m). In a way its almost possible to photograph the whole place holding the cam and taking shots 360 and you got it! The center is manageable in less than 15 minutes walk with NOTHING interesting to see. The only audible thing was the main Mosque all day and all evening and nothing else. Even the Mosque isn’t that all impressive and you can find more interesting architecture elsewhere…

    I think the Sultan is definitely a smart guy and as he wants to create a true Muslim country, he found the best way to get people to follow. He is simply boring them to death! Having nothing else to do has them flock to prayers just to kill time!

    If Brunei is ever on your list… just pass it… Not worth the visit and I am surprising myself as I never had this experience anywhere else…

    In less than a day I gnawed my left leg from utter boredom and was wise to keep my right leg intact as I needed it to escape the next day!

    • alittlenomad
      Tháng Mười Hai 10, 2014

      Thank you for your comment hahah. I am living 4 hours from Brunei so sometimes I cross by that country for a short visit lol 🙂

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This entry was posted on Tháng Sáu 15, 2014 by in English.

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