Brunei Darussalam is well known for its lush and pristine tropical rainforest, home to many flora and fauna that are hidden in plain sight. The country has taken the steps and initiatives to preserve Brunei’s cherished jungles to avoid activities that might compromise its rich natural resources such as deforestation and habitat loss. By taking care of its greenery, Brunei has turned itself into one of Southeast Asia’s top ecotourism spots.
Temburong District is popular for its natural flora and fauna, and it has become increasingly popular since the opening of the Sultan Haji Omar ‘Ali Saifuddien Bridge. The majority of the pristine rainforest – at 70 per cent – is preserved as the Ulu Temburong National Park, while 58 per cent is under legal protection under the Heart of Borneo initiative.
Known as the ‘Green Jewel of Brunei’, Ulu Temburong National Park is known to host an unimaginable range of diversity and is home to some of the world’s rarest species. Exotic animals reside in the vast expanse of the park including long-nosed horned frogs, proboscis monkeys, flying lizards, crested firebacks and rhinoceros hornbills. The canopy walk is one of the park’s most notable highlights particularly among thrillseekers, with the highest tower standing at 43 metres above the forest floor to enjoy the breathtaking scenery of the cast green forest.
Another popular eco-tourism destination is the Sumbiling Eco Village, an eco-lodge offering a unique glamping experience with activities that include a guided herbal discovery track, foraging activity and the farm-to-table experience that serves an array of traditional Iban cuisine.
Labi in Belait District has much to offer with its rich bio-diversity. With an area of over 47,000 hectares, Mukim Labi is ideal for educational outings and adventures including summer camping, extracurricular and team-building activities, as well as getaways and outward-bound programmes. Mukim Labi is home to over 300 species of wildlife that are native to Borneo, 81 frog species, more than 10 species of snakes and reptiles, as well as over 150 species of forest birds. There are also trails for trekking towards two popular waterfalls, Wasai Wong Kadir and Wasai Teraja.
Within the lush forest are Teraja Longhouse and Mendaram Besar Longhouse which have become Kampong Labi’s main attractions. Each longhouse has its own unique activities allowing visitors to sample the culture and way of life of the Iban community. Teraja Waterfalls is a mild 45-minute trek from the Teraja Longhouse, with a variety of jungle treats, from wild-rooted plants, colourful butterflies and birds in their natural habitat along the trail.
Another key place of interest is the Labi Coffee Farm. Spread across a nine hectare wide plantation, the farm has over 18,000 premium coffee trees where visitors can sample locally grown coffee beans and better understand the growing and harvesting process.
Copyright 1993 Borneo Bulletin Yearbook All rights reserved.