Bandar Seri Begawan Travel Guide
Sultan Omar Ali Saifuddin Mosque © Kurun
Bandar Seri Begawan (BSB) is something of an anomaly for a capital built on oil money, where the cityscape is virtually free of showy places trumpeting wealth. All it has along these line are a palace, an ostentatious hotel and a few enormous mosques. Still, it is the commercial and political centre of Brunei.
The city's stunning mosques should feature in any sightseeing trip. Culture lovers may want to prioritise visiting the gold-domed Sultan Omar Ali Saifuddin Mosque and the Jame-asr Hassanil Bolkiah Mosque. BSB's many royal buildings are worth stopping at as well.
No visit would be complete without seeing the Water Village (Kampong Ayer). Best reached by water taxi, the village comprises houses on stilts, with the community appearing to float on the water. Its museum, the Kampong Ayer Cultural and Tourism Gallery, exhibits handicrafts made by its skilled residents.
BSB also makes a good base for exploring Brunei and nearby Borneo. Travellers can arrange tours to Belalong National Park, and access it by boat. The reserve offers canopy tours of the rainforest. Brunei is an excellent scuba diving destination, too, where divers will find coral reefs, several shipwrecks and pristine conditions.