Experiencing Brunei

I’m going to Brunei for a few days to attend a cousin’s wedding. Brunei is a small sultanate on the island of Borneo. It’s capital, Bandar Seri Begawan (sounds really exotic!) is about a two-hour flight from Kuala Lumpur and Singapore. Brunei’s long coast faces the South China Sea while it borders the Malaysian state of Sarawak on three sides. Its population of several hundred thousand is predominantly Muslim and they live a comfortable, prosperous life, thanks to many freebies (there’s no income tax here and medical is free) and subsidies (from housing to higher education to cars…) from the state, which in turn, earns billions each year from oil and gas. In the 1980’s, the Sultan of Brunei was widely known as one of the richest people in the world.

Oil and gas are the mainstays of the economy though services, especially tourism, are gradually being developed. Aside from bits about its history and economy, I don’t know much else about Brunei. I’ve heard about the Sultan’s massive palace and the floating village in the capital, Bandar Seri Begawan, and that’s about it. Oh, one more thing I do know… Brunei is a ‘dry’ country – the sale and consumption of alcohol in public are strictly forbidden. Yikes! 🙂 That’ll be another first for me – I’ve never been to a ‘dry’ country!

I’ll be tweeting about my trip to this country which most people know little of (well, unless you’ve been there and/or you work in the oil industry and/or you’re a geographile :-). Follow me on my trip by checking out my Twitter feed below or conducting a search on Twitter – I’ll be using a terribly fancy hashtag: #bruneitrip.

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7 Responses to “Experiencing Brunei”

  1. velvet 09/03/2010 9:27 am
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    Hi Adriana,
    I’m back in Kuala Lumpur now. Brunei was certainly interesting. Off to Bali next week. Woohoo! 🙂

    Cheers,
    Keith

  2. Adriana 08/03/2010 9:45 pm
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    wow! sounds VERY exotic! looking forward to Brunei tweets and posts!

  3. Fly Girl 07/03/2010 10:37 pm
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    Brunei sounds really fascinating. I’ll be following your tweets!

  4. BaliYummyBlog 05/03/2010 2:43 pm
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    My next trip should be (hopefully) : Malaysia, Brunei, Vietnam, Thailand, Cambodia. Share us with the culinary story, Keith, will you (beside that ‘dry’ situation), does Brunei has speciality in terms of gastronomy

  5. cumidanciki 05/03/2010 12:04 am
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    yea, and because of the ban on alcohol, the crime rate in brunei is really low too. The only place you can drink are certain hotels. No pubs = no pub brawls = safer streets. I like Brunei, but it can get pretty boring;)

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