In this latest series, I will be going through all the countries I’ve travelled to on my mission to visit every single country in the world. In this article, we will be covering country #18: Brunei. If you haven’t gotten a chance already, read this story first to find out why I’m trying to visit all 193 UN-recognized countries.
VIDEO – Country #18: Brunei
- My Complete Singapore, Brunei, and Malaysia Spending Breakdown
- What to Do and See If You Only Have 24 Hours to Explore Brunei
- How to Cross from Brunei to Kota Kinabalu Malaysia by Ferry
Arriving in Brunei after a brutal 40-hour transit
Karen and I had a brutal transit to reach Brunei. First, we took a connecting flight going from Cape Town to Johannesburg. This was followed by a long flight going to Perth Australia where we had a 5-hour layover. Afterward, we flew to Singapore and had an overnight layover with just enough time to get 6-hours of sleep before going back to the airport and flying to Brunei.
Altogether, we have been flying for 40-hours and we were near death by the time we arrived in Brunei.
After clearing immigration in the Bandar Seri Begawan, we quickly withdraw some money before getting a taxi to take us to our hotel. By no means, this country is cheap so be prepared to shell out money and not get high-quality accommodation at the same time.
Exploring Bandar Seri Begawan
We spent the first day just resting as we were dead tired and tried a local restaurant.
The next day, we ate at another restaurant before heading out to explore the capital city. I’ve got to say that food in Bandar Seri Begawan is pretty good.
After doing a quick briefing to check out what sights to see, a local offered us a ride to the city for a price cheaper than taxis. We took him up on the offer and off we go to the palace.
As far as the most picturesque thing to see in Bandar Seri Begawan, it’s definitely the palace. Karen and I spent a good chunk of time here taking some awesome pictures before moving on to other parts of the city.
After the palace, we decided we wanted to visit the sultan’s museum next. Unfortunately for us, it was already closed by the time we got there.
We wrapped up our city tour by eating Jollibee which is Karen’s first! Honestly, it doesn’t taste as good as the one in the Philippines. But if you’re craving for Jollibee, that option is there for you.
Running out of money
Because sightseeing in Bandar Seri Begawan is not cheap, Karen and myself ran out of the local money. Originally, we were going to take a water taxi to see the water village. Unfortunately, we ran out of money. So, started walking along the side of the road. This turned out to be a fun side adventure! It took us over 30 minutes but we eventually made it back to our hotel.
Close call going to the ferry terminal
On our third day in the country, our goal was to go to the Serasa ferry terminal and take a boat to take us to Malaysia. We contacted a taxi driver who was nice enough to drive us to Serasa. By the time we reached the ferry terminal, I had Karen line up to buy the ticket while I lined up to withdraw some cash.
Talk about a close call! By the time Karen reached the front of the ticketing counter, the money from the ATM just came out and we managed to buy tickets! We got so lucky to purchase the last two tickets left!
We then paid the taxi driver and boarded the ferry going to Malaysia.
If you go to YouTube, you might see that a lot of Vloggers don’t like Brunei. Their reasons are mainly because of strict Muslim laws that includes being stoned to death.
I personally had a good time exploring this country. Would I ever go back? I personally don’t see why I wouldn’t go back again. People were friendly and it’s a nice little side trip if you’re in Borneo.
Just a word of warning that it is quite pricey to travel in this country. So, if you are a budget traveller, it might not be the best travel destination for you.