Handicrafts and Souvenirs

October 23, 2010 by  
Filed under Shopping

Brunei is especially rich in its own style of traditional crafts, ensuring that any of your buys at one of the nation’s many handicrafts centres and shops will be unique items to be treasured for years to come. Some examples include the resplendent gold or silver-threaded material known as Jong Sarat and collector textiles called Kain Tenunan, both of which can be purchased from the Arts and Handicraft Training Centre at Kota Batu and also at the Brunei International Airport. Handmade with an ancient method passed down for generations, Jong Sarat is often worn during weddings or other formal occasions. Aside from traditional cloths, other items that reflect the rich craftsmanship of Brunei are brassware and silverware, replica canons, the traditional dagger known as the kris, gongs, basketry and other unique items.

Some of the best places in Brunei to find traditional handicrafts can be found at the shops and centres listed below:

NAME LOCATION
Asnika Gadong Complex, Gadong
FSAA Enterprise Bumiputera Commercial Complex, Bandar Seri Begawan
Galleri Izyan Yayasan SHHB Complex Bandar Seri Begawan / Jalan Sultan Omar Ali, Seria
Handy Handicraft / Sunju Enterprise Centerpoint, Gadong / Yayasan SHHB Complex, Bandar Seri Begawan
Impression Gifts & Souvenir Bangunan Haji Abdul Rahman, Bandar Seri Begawan
Jerudong Park Playground Souvenir Shop Jerudong
Ridah Handicrafts Kiulap, Airport Lama, Kampong Tasek Meradun
Mustaqim Enterprise Bangunan Haji Hassanin 2, Gadong
Malya Associates Airport Departure Hall
Hitara Enterprise Jalan Kiarong
Mesa Gifts & Souvenirs Gadong Complex
Sahabaz (Brunei) Sdn Bhd Pusat Bunut, Jalan Tutong, Bandar Seri Begawan
The Arts and Handicraft Centre Jalan Residency, Bandar Seri Begawan

Shopping in Brunei

October 23, 2010 by  
Filed under Shopping

Bruneians love to shop, and shopping is one of everyone’s favourite leisure time activities. These days, with shopping complexes popping up throughout the nation’s four districts, shopping opportunities in Brunei are beginning to draw an international audience as well.
Shoppers are generally spoilt for choice in Brunei. From traditional markets and tiny boutique shops to huge shopping complexes, visitors and locals alike will find opportunities to indulge their shopping fancy. Offering a wide variety of goods at incredibly competitive prices, shoppers can pick up anything ranging from market trinkets sold at 50 cents to chandeliers and antique furniture priced at a few thousand dollars.

There are many unique treasures that can be found in Brunei, including earthenware ornaments, gilded curios, exotic furniture designs, Chinese urns, brocade tablecloths, mats and door hangings, Indian finery, Thai haute couture, the latest electronics – all of these and more can be found tucked away in some corner of a dusty shop or glittering department store.

It is easy to shop in the Sultanate because all major credit cards (American Express, VISA, Diner’s Club and MasterCard) are widely accepted.

Other Activities

October 23, 2010 by  
Filed under Sports and Recreation

Brunei offers a wide range of sports and recreational opportunities. Among these are golf, bowling, squash, tennis, swimming, badminton, kite-flying, snooker, soccer, aerobics, and countless others. For traditional sporting activities, the Hassanal Bolkiah National Complex in Bandar Seri Begawan features a well-maintained athletic field as well as track, football stadium, tennis courts, squash courts, jogging tracks and swimming pool.

Bowling
The Empire Hotel and Country Club Bowling Lane is an 8-lane 10-pin bowling centre that provides challenging hours of fun and entertainment. Operating hours are 10:00am to 10:00 pm daily and prices are B$5 per game per person.

The Utama Bowling Alley is located on Jalan Tutong near Soon Lee Megamart in Bandar Seri Begawan. It opens daily from 9am to 11pm. Charges per game are B$4 on weekdays and B$5 on weekends.

Badminton
One of the nation’s most popular pastimes, badminton is a highly-attended sporting event in Brunei. Courts are available at the Hassanal Bolkiah National Stadium, the Youth Centre in Bandar Seri Begawan and at Mumong Sports Complex at Kuala Belait. A nominal entry fee is charged.

Horseback Riding

The Trijaya Equestrian Park offers first-rate facilities including the world’s largest indoor arena that can accommodate up to 50 horses at a time. With horses imported from Argentina, TJEP caters to all ages and abilities, offering lessons for beginners and trail rides and tandem rides through well-planned tracks leading through dense jungle to nearby beaches and Jerudong Park. Children can enjoy the novelty of being driven through the park by carriage and adults can enjoy polo lessons in a truly one-of-a-kind setting in Asia.

Tennis
For tennis fans, the courts available at the Youth and Welfare Complex on Jalan Berakas and at the Brunei Tennis Centre offer a choice of clay, synthetic grass and cement playing surfaces.

Swimming
Visitors may dive into the public swimming pools at the Hassanal Bolkiah National Stadium in Bandar Seri Begawan, and at the Mumong Sports Complex in Kuala Belait. Nominal fees are charged.

Squash
For a moderate fee, squash courts are available for hire at the Hassanal Bolkiah National Stadium. Bookings can be made at the Stadium. The courts are available daily except for Friday and Sunday.

Diving, Sailing and Water Sports

October 23, 2010 by  
Filed under Sports and Recreation

Sun worshipers and water sports enthusiasts will find Brunei to be an attractive new destination in the region with its deserted sun-kissed beaches, warm waters and gentle breezes.

Scuba diving devotees will be thrilled with the crystal-clear waters which hide such undiscovered treasures as beautiful coral reefs and old sunken shipwrecks. Brunei waters are brimming with colourful marine life and are a superb location for reef diving that is beginning to attract international attention. They are especially famous for shipwreck dives which enable divers to glimpse the relics of bygone days when Brunei served as a major shipping and commercial centre for the region.

If you’d prefer something a little bit more off the beaten track, take a boat tour to a secluded mangrove island and explore to your heart’s content. Other deserted beaches and beautiful bodies of water surrounded by rainforest and bamboo groves are easily found throughout in Brunei.

Full facilities are available for a wide range of water sports including sailing, water-skiing, windsurfing and snorkelling, Kayaks and windsurfing equipment can be hired at an hourly rate from the Royal Brunei National Windsurfing Association located at Serasa Beach.

Golf

October 23, 2010 by  
Filed under Sports and Recreation

One of Brunei’s most unexpected luxuries is its assortment of world-class championship-quality golf courses. Taking advantage of the stunning landscape of Borneo’s northern shores, Brunei’s golf courses offer more than just your average round of 18 holes. Teeing off from a beautifully manicured vantage point overlooking the South China Sea and surrounded by virgin rainforests, you’ll quickly discover that golf in Brunei is one of the nation’s unforgettable undiscovered treasures. Some courses even offer the truly unique luxury of floodlit night golfing for cooler evening play.

Golf enthusiasts and beginners alike will delight in the nation’s surprisingly wide ranging variety of courses with varying levels of challenge and onsite golf professionals to help hone your game. There are over five beautiful golf courses in the country, though some of these are exclusive to members and their guests. Still, all visitors can take a swing at some of the courses for which travel agents can arrange inbound golf tours.


The Empire Country Club

Those looking to unwind on the greens will find this course to be one of Brunei’s true unexpected treasures. Designed by Jack Nicklaus, this majestic 18-hole championship golf course has been called one of Asia’s best and even offers night golf as a way to beat the tropical heat in style.

Royal Brunei Golf & Country Club
Near Jerudong Park, this club caters to the most exclusive of golf aficionados — advanced bookings are required. The course has been described by its designer, Ronald Fream, as the “Augusta National of Asia”. It is considered one of the best courses in Asia, and is among the most exclusive in the world.

Mentiri Golf Club
Located in the Brunei Muara district, this is an international standard 18-hole, par 72 course cradled in lush, landscaped grounds. Greens fees are B$60 on weekdays and B$120 on weekends.

Royal Brunei Airline Golf Club
Probably the first course you’ll see in Brunei, this 18-hole public course designed by Max Wexler lies just five minutes from the Brunei International Airport and twenty minutes drive from the heart of Bandar Seri Begawan. It is characterised by a generally flat layout with manmade lakes spread out over the course, adding to its beauty.

Panaga Golf Club
Located in Seria district, this is another of Brunei’s well-equipped and lushly-maintained public courses available for visitors and popular with locals.