Tuesday, March 12, 2019

Bored in Brunei (with bonus Borneo)

The rumors are true! Brunei is a sleepy little kingdom on Borneo. My whole purpose in visiting was to meet up with a penpal friend of mine and, well, get that passport stamp,

On Brunei itself, well, it's very car focused (public transit is sparse) and the main "city" (Bandar Seri Begawan) is a collection of streets (some without sidewalks) and modest buildings. The Royal Regalia Museum was the most talked-up spot, which was just a collection of stuff given to the Sultan plus clothes he's worn. The library was great, but it closed at 6pm. Really, all there was to do in the country was eat (which I did) and go see the jungles (which I didn't). Oh, the water village was pretty nifty, though I wish I could have found a cafe with air conditioning.

On my final day I met up with my penpal and we had an absolutely delightful time driving around and eating a local food that I've forgotten the name of - I should edit this before it goes live.

I left only a few days after arriving to go to Labuan Island (part of Malaysian Borneo - another tax-free island) - my goal was to go, by boat, to Kota Kindabolu (spelling?) to catch a flight to the Philippines. Labuan itself was also very sleepy, but way more comfortable for me. I found a bar, made some friends, and had a generally nice time (much better than the other tax-free island, Langkawi).

Due to poor planning on my part, I only spent one day on Labuan (I should go back) and then took the ferry to KK for my flight. I didn't get to see KK, but it also seemed like a pleasant place to be. I would be in Manila in just a few hours.

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