Bandar Seri Begawan

The Sultan Omar Ali Saifuddien Mosque.

Bandar Seri Begawan, also known as BSB or just Bandar, is the capital of Brunei.

Get in

See Brunei#Get in for Brunei's entry requirements.

By plane

Brunei International Airport is the main airport in Brunei. See Brunei#By plane for airline details.

Getting there/away: A taxi from the airport to the city centre takes 20 minutes and costs around B$25. Some hotels (like Grand City Hotel) may provide complimentary transport between airport and hotel. A covered walk down to the end of the car park away from the Terminal (turn right when exiting from Arrivals) leads to a bus stop for Purple buses to the city centre (B$2).

By car

All main roads in Brunei (save for those in isolated Temburong Districts) lead to Bandar Seri Begawan. The main road into/out of Bandar Seri Begawan connects to the coastal road to/from the Sarawak border via Tutong, Seria and Kuala Belait. Other main roads lead to Muara and Kuala Lurah where there is a border crossing into the Limbang division of Sarawak. Take this road if you are driving to Temburong but you will have to go through two sets of immigration checkpoints - at Kuala Lurah (Tedungan on the Sarawak side) and Puni (Pandaruan on the Sarawak side) - before you reach the district administrative center, Bangar.

By bus

The main bus terminal where all long-distance and local buses leave from and arrive is at Jalan Cator in the city centre. It occupies the ground level of a multistory carpark.

View from above Bandar Seri Begawan.

By boat

Please note that the ferry terminal is quite a distance from actual Muara town where the container port is located. The terminal is about 25 km from Bandar Seri Begawan.

Speedboats also operate between Bandar Seri Begawan jetty in town and Limbang. They depart only when full.

Getting there/away: Purple buses leave for the ferry terminal from the Bandar Seri Begawan bus terminal in Jalan Cator. Please note that not all Muara buses go to Serasa.

The main ferry terminal in Brunei is the Serasa Ferry Terminal at Muara, where there are several ferries daily to/from Labuan and one daily ferry each to/from Lawas and Sundar, both in Sarawak.

Get around

Try to pick up the official map of Brunei Darussalam, as it is easy to read and the public bus lines are easy to follow. The people of Brunei are very helpful to visitors, so don't be surprised after a few minutes of conversation they offer a ride to one of the attractions, as they know how much easier it is to drive there than get there any other way.

By water taxi

You can hail a few water taxis at almost any dock but the most popular place to find one is at a stand behind the Yayasan Sultan Haji Hassanal Bolkiah mall or at the canal market. They are great fun to ride in.

By bus

Public buses are the cheapest way to travel in the city even though they do not operate at frequent intervals (usually 20-minute intervals) and end service quite early (at about 6PM). All of them begin and end service at the bus terminal at Jalan Cator. They cost $1 regardless of distance and stop anywhere along the route to drop or pick up passengers (so if you want to stop, just indicate it to the conductor on the bus, and the same thing if you want to get on). The buses are actually in the form of purple-colored large vans which can seat about 20 people at the most, and are generally clean and comfortable to ride. Main bus routes include bus service 01 (Circle Line) and 20 (Business Centres Line). The detailed routes of the bus services are written on a board placed on the front window of the buses and are also drawn on the information board at the Jalan Cator terminal.

By tour van

Try asking the counter tickets for a tour van to drive you around Brunei and bring you to the places. Discuss the price first before you agree to board the van.

See

BSB at Twilight

Don't expect to find much tasteful and stunning architecture like you would normally find in Southeast Asia. Here, most of the buildings are just plain and box-shaped. However, an interesting twist to the billboards around here, is that the "Jawi" (Arabicized Malay writing) are prevalent among them. Sometimes, foreign names are translated literally, e.g. "Pizza Hut" to "Pondok Pizza".

After visiting the Brunei Museum, walk along the road toward BSB to visit two tombs: the first is the Tomb of Sharif Ali, the third sultan of Brunei. The green sign by the road is written entirely in Arabic lettering. Further down the road is the Tomb of Sultan Bolkiah, the fifth sultan of Brunei. Both tombs are in easy walking distance from the Museum.

Buy

Eat

There are plenty of small local Kedai Kopi (coffee shops) in town that sell simple, cheap and tasty food and are frequented by locals.

Drink

Sleep

Most hotels in Brunei are in the middle to higher price range.

Budget

Midrange

Splurge

Stay Safe

Crime is very uncommon in this tightly controlled small country.

Cope

Embassies and High Commissions

No. 1, Jalan McArthur,  +673 222 0043, fax: +673 222 0040, e-mail: . M-Th 8:30AM-noon and 1PM-5:30PM, F 8:30AM-2PM.

Go next

Elsewhere in Borneo

This article is issued from Wikivoyage - version of the Saturday, March 26, 2016. The text is available under the Creative Commons Attribution/Share Alike but additional terms may apply for the media files.