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Cost & Spending

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What To See & Do

What To Eat

Where To Stay

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Brunei is a small nation on the island of Borneo, known for its serene landscapes and rich cultural heritage. It's a country where tradition and modernity blend seamlessly, offering visitors a unique experience. Although it’s one of the smallest countries, the Sultan of Brunei is the world’s richest monarch; the people have the highest per capita incomes in the world; there are no personal taxes; healthcare and education are free, and houses and cars are subsidised. Sounds too good to be true?

The Sultanate of Brunei is one of the richest nations in Asia and is the closest Southeast Asia comes to Utopia. Located on the island of Borneo, Brunei is a land of sandy beaches, forests and rivers. The country’s full official name is Brunei Darussalam, where the term “Darussalam,” means “abode of peace” in Arabic. From the opulent Sultan Omar Ali Saifuddien Mosque to the lush greenery of Ulu Temburong National Park, Brunei is indeed a place of peace and natural beauty. The nation's commitment to preserving its environment and culture makes it a fascinating destination for those looking to explore the treasures of Southeast Asia.


Quick Facts

  • Official Name: Brunei Darussalam ("Darussalam" means "Abode of Peace" in Arabic)

  • Capital: Bandar Seri Begawan

  • Government: Absolute Monarchy

  • Currency: Bruneian dollar (BND) (pegged 1:1 with the Singapore dollar, SGD)

  • Wealth: Brunei is one of the wealthiest nations in the world due to its abundant oil and gas reserves

  • Area: 5,765km²

  • Population: 455 491 (2024)

  • Language: Malay (official), English (recognised)

  • Religion: Muslim (official) 67%, Buddhist 13%, Christian 10%, indigenous beliefs and other 10%

  • Electricity: 240V, 50Hz (UK plug)




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Most destinations have different times of the year when they’re more or less popular with tourists. 


Peak Season

Shoulder Season

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Climate Chart with avergae monthly temperatues and rainfall


Best time to visit

The best time to visit Brunei is between March and October, during the drier months when temperatures are more pleasant and there is less chance of rain. However, Brunei has a tropical climate, which means that it is hot and humid all year round. 

Overall, the dry season from January to May is considered the best time to visit Brunei for favourable weather and to experience key cultural events. During this period, the country experiences less rainfall and lower humidity compared to the rest of the year, making it a more comfortable time for outdoor activities and sightseeing. The weather is relatively pleasant, with temperatures ranging between 23°C and 31°C. The dry season is ideal for exploring Brunei's natural beauty, including visits to Ulu Temburong National Park, beaches, and other outdoor destinations. It is also a great time for hiking, river cruises, and wildlife watching. These months will also allow you to experience several festivals and events such as Chinese New Year (January or February, depending on the lunar calendar), Brunei National Day (February 23rd) and Hari Raya Aidilfitri (between late April and early June).

It’s essential to note that June to August is the high tourist season in Brunei. So, if you’re planning a visit, consider the dry months of January to May for a more comfortable experience! 

The rainy season, which typically lasts from November to February, is characterized by heavy rainfall and thunderstorms. This can make traveling more difficult and some areas may be flooded.


Best Beaches

With just over 160km of coastline, Brunei has everything from activity-based beaches like Muara Beach to untouched, peaceful beaches like Tungku Beach. 

The best time to visit beaches in Brunei is between January and May when the weather is fairly dry, but not too hot. Although June to August is the peak tourist season, it is incredibly hot! The rainy season is from September to December. 

Be sure to check out these beaches: 

  • Muara Beach: Known for its long stretch of white sand, clear waters, and family-friendly atmosphere. The beach has picnic areas, barbecue pits, and a children's playground. Good for: Swimming, picnicking, and beach sports.

  • Serasa Beach: Popular for water sports and activities. The beach is home to the Serasa Water Sports Complex, which offers jet skiing, windsurfing, and kayaking. Good for: Water sports, picnicking, and fishing.

  • Tungku Beach: Known for its serene environment and beautiful sunsets. It is less developed compared to other beaches, offering a more tranquil experience. Good for: Beachcombing, picnicking, and enjoying sunsets.

  • Pelumpong Spit: A narrow spit of sand that extends into the sea, offering a unique beach experience. It is less crowded and ideal for those seeking solitude. Good for: Swimming, snorkelling, and picnicking.

  • Jerudong Beach: A quiet beach with scenic views and nearby facilities such as restaurants and a golf course. Good for: Walking, picnicking, and enjoying the nearby attractions.

Other beaches include: Meragang Beach, Berakas Beach, Seri Kenangan Beach & Tanjong Batu Beach.




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Travel Cost Section



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The cost of travelling to Brunei can vary depending on the time of year, your travel itinerary and your personal preferences. However, in general, Brunei is considered to be a relatively affordable destination.

Here are some estimated costs for various aspects of a trip to Brunei:

  • Accommodation: Prices for hotels in Brunei range from around $30 to $200 per night. Hostels and budget-friendly options are also available.

  • Food: Eating out in Brunei is relatively inexpensive, with meals at local restaurants typically costing around $5 to $10 per person.

  • Transportation: Public transportation in Brunei is relatively cheap, with bus and taxi fares averaging around $1 to $3 per trip.

  • Activities: Many of the top attractions in Brunei, such as the Sultan Omar Ali Saifuddien Mosque, the Royal Regalia Museum, and the Kampong Ayer, are free to visit.

It's important to note that the costs above are general estimates, and the actual costs of your trip may vary depending on your specific plans and choices. However, overall, Brunei can be considered an affordable destination for travellers.

Here is an example of a daily budget for a trip to Brunei:

  • Accommodation: $40 - $60 per night for a budget hotel or guesthouse

  • Food: $15 - $20 per day for meals at local restaurants and street food

  • Transportation: $5 - $10 per day for local buses, taxis and ferries

  • Activities: $10 - $20 per day for admission to museums and other attractions

Total daily budget: $70 - $100





  • Dress modestly: Brunei is a Muslim country, and it's important to dress modestly when visiting. Women should wear long pants or skirts and cover their shoulders, and men should avoid wearing shorts.

  • Be respectful of local customs: Brunei is a conservative country, and it's important to be respectful of local customs and traditions. For example, avoid public displays of affection and avoid taking photos of people without permission.

  • Alcohol: The sale of alcohol is prohibited in Brunei.

  • Bring cash: While credit cards are accepted in some places such as hotels, restaurants and larger shops, it's a good idea to bring cash as well, as many places still only accept cash.

  • Plan ahead for Ramadan: If you're visiting Brunei during the month of Ramadan, be aware that many businesses and restaurants will be closed during the day, and it's important to be respectful of those who are fasting.

  • Language: The official language is Malay. Although English is widely spoken, especially in business and tourist areas, learning a few basic Malay phrases can be helpful and is appreciated by locals.

  • Bring insect repellent: As Brunei is a tropical country, it's a good idea to bring insect repellent to protect yourself from mosquitoes and other bugs.

  • Plan for the rainy season: If you're visiting during the rainy season, be prepared for the heavy rainfall and potential for flooding in certain areas.

  • Try the local cuisine: Brunei has a unique and delicious cuisine, try out the local dishes like ambuyat, a starchy dish made from the trunk of the sago palm tree.

  • Dining Etiquette: Eating with your right hand is customary. In some traditional settings, you may be required to sit on the floor.

  • SIM Cards: Local SIM cards are available at the airport and in the city. Major providers include DST and Progresif.

  • Internet Access: Wi-Fi is widely available in hotels, cafes, and some public areas.

By keeping these tips in mind, you'll be able to fully enjoy your trip to Brunei and have a great experience.

Travel Tips Section


Brunei is divided into four main regions each offering unique attractions and experiences:

1. Brunei-Muara District

The Brunei-Muara District is the smallest but most populous district, housing the capital, Bandar Seri Begawan, and is the main hub for tourism.

Bandar Seri Begawan:

  • Sultan Omar Ali Saifuddien Mosque: An iconic mosque with stunning architecture and a picturesque lagoon.

  • Kampong Ayer (Water Village): The "Venice of the East" Kampong Ayer is one of the world’s largest stilt villages, showcasing traditional wooden houses and cultural heritage. Located on stilts over the Brunei River, a visit to Kampong Ayer is a must-see attraction when in Bandar Seri Begawan. The best way to experience this is to take a river cruise on the Kampong Ayer.

  • Royal Regalia Museum: Displays the royal regalia, artefacts, and gifts to the Sultan.

  • Istana Nurul Iman: The official residence of the Sultan of Brunei, which opens to the public during Hari Raya.

  • Jame'Asr Hassanil Bolkiah Mosque: The largest mosque in Brunei and is known for its impressive architecture and intricate details, it can accommodate up to 5,000 worshippers at a time.

  • Tasek Lama Recreational Park: A popular park with hiking trails, a waterfall, and a serene environment.


  • Muara Beach: A long, sandy beach ideal for picnics and relaxation.

  • Pantai Serasa Beach: A stunning 1.5 km long artificial beach located in Serasa Bay, known for swimming, sunbathing and water sports, including jet skiing and windsurfing.

2. Belait District

Belait is the largest district, located in the west of the country and known for its oil and gas industry. The region offers a mix of natural and industrial attractions.

Kuala Belait:

  • Oil and Gas Discovery Centre: An educational centre showcasing the history and technology of Brunei’s oil industry.

  • Silver Jubilee Park: A coastal park with recreational facilities and a pleasant beachfront.


  • The Billionth Barrel Monument: Commemorates the production of the billionth barrel of oil from the Seria oil field.

  • Luagan Lalak Recreation Park: Features a unique freshwater swamp that changes appearance with the seasons.


  • Labi Longhouses: Experience the traditional lifestyle of the Iban people by visiting longhouses.

  • Teraja Waterfall: A scenic waterfall located in the dense rainforest, accessible via hiking trails.

3. Tutong District

Tutong is located to the north of Bandar Seri Begawan and is known for its serene environment, diverse culture, beautiful beaches, lush forests and natural attractions.

Tutong Town:

  • Pantai Seri Kenangan: A scenic beach known as the "Unforgettable Beach" for its beautiful sunsets and relaxed atmosphere.

  • Bukit Patoi Forest Recreation Park: Offers hiking trails leading to the summit of Bukit Patoi, providing panoramic views.

Tasek Merimbun:

  • Tasek Merimbun Heritage Park: Brunei’s largest natural lake, ideal for birdwatching, picnics, and enjoying the tranquil surroundings.

4. Temburong District

Temburong is separated from the rest of Brunei by Malaysia and is renowned for its unspoiled rainforests, protected wildlife and eco-tourism.

Ulu Temburong National Park: This is the largest national park in Brunei and is known for its pristine rainforests, diverse wildlife and beautiful waterfalls. Visitors can explore the park on guided tours, which include jungle trekking, canopy walks, and river cruises.

  • Canopy Walkway: A treetop walkway that rises to a height of 50 meters above the forest floor offering breathtaking views of the rainforest canopy.

  • River Safari: A boat ride through the jungle, providing opportunities to spot wildlife and enjoy the lush scenery.

  • Adventure Activities: Hiking, kayaking, and exploring the pristine rainforest.


  • Bukit Patoi Forest Reserve: A captivating natural area located within the Peradayan Forest Reserve. To reach the park, you can take a 45-minute speedboat ride from Bandar Seri Begawan to Bangar, Temburong.

  • Sumbiling Eco Village: An eco-tourism site offering cultural experiences and nature-based activities.

  • Batang Duri: Starting point for river tours and access to Ulu Temburong National Park.

Each region in Brunei has its own unique attractions, so it's worth exploring all of them to get a complete understanding of the country. From the cultural and historical sites in Brunei-Muara to the natural wonders in Temburong, whether you’re interested in exploring vibrant cities, relaxing on beautiful beaches, or immersing yourself in lush rainforests, Brunei has something to offer for every traveller.

Sights and Highlights section


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The ideal duration for visiting Brunei depends on your interests and travel style. A 3-day visit covers the main attractions, while 4-5 days allow for a deeper dive into Brunei's culture and nature. An extended visit of 7+ days provides a comprehensive experience with ample relaxation time. Here are some factors to consider when planning your trip:

  • Interests: If you have a keen interest in nature, you might want to spend more time exploring national parks and outdoor activities.

  • Pace: Some travellers prefer a relaxed pace, while others might want to see as much as possible in a short time.

  • Events and Festivals: If your visit coincides with a major event or festival, you might want to allocate extra time to experience it fully.

  • Travel Time: Consider travel time to and from Brunei, as well as any potential jet lag recovery if you’re travelling from afar.

Here is a suggested 3-day travel itinerary to get you started:


Day 1: Discovering Bandar Seri Begawan
  • Sultan Omar Ali Saifuddien Mosque: Start your day at this iconic mosque. Its stunning architecture and serene lagoon make it a perfect introduction to Brunei’s culture and heritage. Spend some time exploring the mosque’s interior (if open to non-Muslims at the time) and the beautifully landscaped gardens.

  • Royal Regalia Museum: A short walk from the mosque, this museum offers a glimpse into the opulence of Brunei’s monarchy. See the regalia used during the Sultan’s coronation and various gifts from foreign dignitaries.

  • Eat like a local: Head to a local restaurant like Tarindak D'Seni for authentic Bruneian cuisine with a view of the Brunei River.

  • Kampong Ayer (Water Village): Take a boat tour of this historic water village, often referred to as the “Venice of the East.” Visit a traditional home to experience the lifestyle and culture of the villagers.

  • Tamu Kianggeh Market: Explore this bustling market where locals buy fresh produce, traditional snacks, and handicrafts.

  • Luxurious Dinner: Enjoy a luxurious dinner at The Empire Hotel & Country Club, such as Pantai or Spaghettini.

Day 2: Nature and Adventure
  • Ulu Temburong National Park: Take an early morning boat and longboat ride to this pristine rainforest. Participate in the canopy walk for breathtaking views of the jungle, and enjoy activities like river tubing or hiking. Enjoy a picnic lunch arranged as part of the tour. Discover more of the park’s flora and fauna, visit waterfalls, or simply relax by the riverside.

  • Return to Bandar Seri Begawan: Have a relaxed dinner at Kaizen Sushi for some of the best Japanese food in Brunei.

Day 3: Cultural and Historical Insights
  • Jame' Asr Hassanil Bolkiah Mosque: Visit the largest mosque in Brunei, known for its golden domes and magnificent architecture. Spend some time admiring the intricate details and serene environment.

  • Brunei Museum: Learn about the rich history, culture, and natural history of Brunei.

  • Traditional Lunch: Have lunch at Aminah Arif Restaurant to try Brunei’s famous ambuyat, a traditional dish.

  • Istana Nurul Iman (Sultan's Palace): Although not open to the public, you can view the grand palace from a distance. During Hari Raya, the palace opens to the public, and visitors can meet the Sultan.

  • Malay Technology Museum: Explore exhibits on traditional industries, crafts, and technologies used by the Malay people.

  • Visit Gadong Night Market: End your trip with a visit to this vibrant market, where you can sample a variety of local street food and snacks. Try some popular dishes like satay, grilled seafood, and kuih-muih (traditional cakes).


What To Eat Paragraph

Brunei offers a diverse range of delicious and unique dishes to try when visiting. Remember to explore local markets and eateries to fully immerse yourself in Brunei’s culinary delights! Here are some popular traditional dishes to try:

  • Ambuyat: This is considered the national dish of Brunei. It’s made from the inner trunk of the sago palm. It is a sticky dough-like substance, similar to tapioca, that is dipped into a variety of flavourful sauces.

  • Nasi Katok: This is a simple but delicious dish that consists of steamed rice served with a choice of curry or fried chicken. It's a popular street food and can be found at many local food stalls.

  • Kelupis: This is a Bruneian kuih (mini snack or dessert) made from glutinous rice cooked with ingredients like coconut milk and pandan leaves.

    The rolls are wrapped in Daun Nyirik leaves, steamed, and dried. It’s a common treat at wedding receptions.

  • Satay: This is a popular Southeast Asian dish that consists of skewered and grilled meat, usually chicken or beef. It's often served with a peanut sauce and is a must-try when visiting Brunei.

  • Laksa: This is a spicy noodle soup that is made with a variety of ingredients, including coconut milk, shrimp, and vegetables. It's a popular street food and can be found at many local food stalls.

  • Mee Goreng: This is a popular traditional dish that is made with stir-fried noodles, vegetables, and meat. It's a great option for those who love spicy food.

  • Ayam Penyet: This is another popular choice for lunch or dinner. It features smashed fried chicken, which is incredibly flavorful and affordable.

  • Soto: This is a traditional Bruneian soup made with chicken or beef and served with noodles.

  • Kueh: This is a traditional Bruneian dessert made from glutinous rice and is steamed, it is sweet and savory.

  • Takoyaki: This is a popular street food that is made with a batter that is filled with diced octopus.

  • Air Batu Campur (ABC): This is a popular local dessert that is made with shaved ice and a variety of toppings, such as fruit, red beans, and glutinous rice.

  • Roti: Brunei offers various types of roti, including flatbreads and stuffed versions. Try them with curry or other flavorful dips.

  • Ketupat: This is a type of rice cake wrapped in woven palm leaves and commonly enjoyed during festive occasions.

  • Local fruits: Try some of the exotic fruits that are grown in Brunei such as Durian, Rambutan and others.

These are just a few examples of the many delicious traditional dishes that you can try when visiting Brunei. Be sure to sample as many different dishes as possible to get a true taste of the country's cuisine.


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When visiting Brunei for the first time, choosing the right area or region to stay in is crucial for experiencing the country's rich cultural heritage, pristine rainforests, and Islamic architecture. Here are some recommendations along with accommodation suggestions for each category: budget, mid-range, and luxury.

Where to stay in Bandar Seri Begawan:

Bandar Seri Begawan, the capital city of Brunei, is where you'll find the country's most iconic landmarks, including the majestic Omar Ali Saifuddien Mosque and the opulent Istana Nurul Iman palace, making it an ideal base for exploring Brunei's cultural and historical treasures.

  • Budget: Badi'ah Hotel - Affordable hotel located in the heart of Bandar Seri Begawan, offering clean and comfortable rooms with basic amenities at a reasonable price.

  • Mid-range: The Brunei Hotel - Situated in the heart of Bandar Seri Begawan, The Brunei Hotel offers budget-friendly accommodations with comfortable rooms and basic amenities. Guests appreciate its central location, friendly staff, and proximity to attractions such as the Royal Regalia Museum and Sultan Omar Ali Saifuddien Mosque.

  • Luxury: Radisson Hotel Brunei Darussalam: Located in the city center, Radisson Hotel Brunei Darussalam offers luxury accommodations with modern amenities and personalized service. Guests can stay in spacious rooms and suites, enjoy access to a swimming pool, fitness center, and dine at the hotel's restaurant serving international cuisine.

Tips: For the best value accommodation in Bandar Seri Begawan, consider booking your stay during the weekdays rather than weekends, as hotels may offer lower rates due to decreased business travel.

Where to stay in the Tutong District:

Tutong District offers a peaceful retreat away from the bustling city, with its lush rainforests, pristine beaches, and traditional kampong (village) lifestyle, providing visitors with a glimpse into Brunei's natural beauty and rural culture.

  • Budget: Riverside Residence by Gina Suite - Affordable guesthouse located along the Tutong River, offering cozy rooms with river views and easy access to outdoor activities such as kayaking and hiking.

  • Mid-range: Jeruton Hotel - A charming boutique hotel set amidst tropical gardens, offering comfortable rooms, a swimming pool, and guided tours to nearby attractions like Tasek Merimbun, Brunei's largest lake.

Tips: To find the best value accommodation in Tutong District, consider booking directly with guesthouses or smaller hotels, which may offer special packages or discounts for longer stays or group bookings.

Where to stay in the Belait District (Kuala Belait):

Belait District is known for its oil industry and scenic coastal landscapes, with attractions such as the Billionth Barrel Monument and the picturesque Pantai Seri Kenangan beach, offering visitors a mix of industrial heritage and natural beauty.

  • Budget: Seri Belait Hotel: Seri Belait Hotel provides affordable accommodations with clean rooms and friendly service. Guests appreciate its central location and easy access to Kuala Belait's business district and recreational facilities.

  • Mid-range: Garden Sentral Hotel - A modern hotel featuring comfortable rooms, a restaurant serving local and international cuisine, and a central location near Kuala Belait's shops and eateries.

  • Luxury: Keoja Hotel: Keoja Hotel offers luxury accommodations with elegant rooms and upscale amenities. Guests can indulge in spacious suites, fine dining experiences, and leisure facilities such as a swimming pool and spa.

Tips: For the best value accommodation in Belait District, consider visiting during the off-peak season (January to March and October to December) when prices are lower, and there are fewer tourists, but the weather is still pleasant for outdoor activities.

For hassle-free bookings, use platforms like for competitive rates or Holiday Swap for unique homes worldwide. Ensure to book in advance, especially during peak seasons, and align your preferences with nearby activities such as surfing, snorkeling, or cultural exploration.






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ACCOMMODATION is our number one resource for researching and booking accommodation. In addition to, we have found to consistently returns the cheapest rates in Southeast Asia. For longer stays, find unique homes worldwide on Holiday Swap, the most affordable travel platform that allows you to book homes anytime, anywhere in only a few clicks.

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