Wildlife & Adventure in Brunei
Up Close with Brunei’s Wildlife
With our verdant rainforest, it’s only natural to expect loads of animals living in our midst. In support of conserving this blessed abundance of wildlife, travel and tour operators in Brunei offer packages for safe ways to visit our shy jungle inhabitants, but don’t expect a zoo filled with animals. Come dressed for warm weather and don’t forget the mosquito repellants, because you’ll be observing them in their natural habitat.
Here are a few popular ways to get up close with our furry, feathery and cold-blooded ‘natives’:
Borneo is home to over 622 species of birds, 49 of them are endemic to Borneo, and if there’s any spot on this big island where a bird-watcher can hope to spot a ‘lifer’ (a first-ever sighting of a bird species by the observer), then it will likely be in the rich, virtually untouched rainforest at the Ulu Temburong National Park. Start by cruising down the river in between the mangroves and keep your binoculars trained on the trees, and if you’re able and willing, climb 800 steps up a hill and another 200 steps up a steel ladder to the very top of our famous canopy bridge for the best bird-watching location in the park. 40 meters above ground with a 360 degree view of the national park and beyond, this is the favourite spot for birders and non-birders alike.
Proboscis Monkey Tour
Get on a boat and cruise down the mangrove-lined waterways. Many species of birds and animals can be spotted on this trip but if you keep your eyes peeled and your cameras focused, you can probably capture the elusive proboscis monkey on film. This endangered species native to Borneo can sometimes be seen chilling in the mangrove trees.
Brunei’s rich marine biodiversity and coral reefs mean healthy schools of fishes in Brunei waters. The calm waters of the Brunei Bay and its surrounding islands give fishing enthusiasts serene conditions to indulge in this sport. So whether you’re simply interested to try your hand at fishing or if you’re an expert in pursuit of a more challenging catch, put on a cap and hop into a boat with all your fishing gear.
Local travel and tour operators have packages that provide boats to take you out to sea. Fishing gear specialist, Captain Fred Fishing, also offers different packages to suit the experienced fisherman (e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org or call 673 222 895).
Let’s Have an Adventure!
Brunei may be known as the Abode of Peace but as a country that fiercely protects the pristine condition of its rainforest and the state of its marine habitats, this is also a land that is full of opportunities for exploration and excitement.
Here are some ways to go on an adventure trail in Brunei:
It is a little known fact that Brunei is a diver’s paradise with vast coral reefs and colourful marine life in the waters off the Sultanate’s coast. Ship wrecks scattered between Brunei and the Malaysian island of Labuan are teeming with sea life such as barracudas, peacock groupers and red snappers.
Local dive operators have packages for the experienced and new divers. For more information, contact:
Dive Tribe Borneo
Tel: (673) 873 7317
Tel: (673) 277 1778
Oceanic Quest Company
Tel: (673) 277 1190
If you’re looking for excitement above water rather than under, there are plenty of family-friendly water adventures to be had in Brunei! Water sports enthusiasts flock to Serasa Beach on the weekends where the Poni Divers Club at the Serasa Watersports Complex has all kinds of fun activities from waterboarding to banana boat rides.
For more information, the Poni Divers Club can be contacted at (673) 277 1778.
If you’re seeking a thrill for the senses, the Brunei ATV Tours may just be the thing for you. The tours, starting at Tungku Beach, take you on a scenic journey through secluded beaches along pristine coastlines, and ends at the emerald woodlands of the Berakas Forest Reserve. Safety equipment will be provided by the tour company.
For more information, contact (673) 887 6363.
Unbeknownst to some, there is a surfing community in Brunei – you just need to know where to surf, and when! Beaches like Tungku Beach, Berakas Beach, Meragang Beach and Taman Batu all are suitable for most levels of surfing – just make sure you come at the right time. The best time to surf in Brunei is during the Monsoon season (mid-November to February) when the waves have a consistent swell.
For more information, contact Izzi at (673) 864 7047.
Ulu Temburong National Park
This is the crown jewel of Brunei’s prized green spaces. This sprawling 50,000-hectare expanse of undisturbed primary rainforest stretches over most of southern Temburong. Considered one of the most diverse ecosystems in the world, the park encompasses a range of habitats, from lowland forests to jungle and mountain forests, and they are home to many unique species.
For ecological and practical reasons it’s best to visit as a part of an organised tour. Local travel and tour operators offer many packages for trips to the park.
For a list of travel agents and tour operators in Brunei, visit http://www.bruneitourism.travel/m_travelagents.php.