If you flew into the country and overlooked the fasting month, we have got you covered. Despite the limitations, Ramadhan deems to be the most serene time of the year to visit Brunei. One of the main things to consider is to avoid eating in public – most restaurants nationwide will not be operating until about 4.00pm.
Other than that, the opening hours for various tourist attractions in the country during the month of Ramadhan is shortened due to the fasting period. For example, the opening hours of museums such as the Royal Regalia are adjusted from 9.00 am to 3.00pm.
Even with the adjusted hours, tourists who wish to visit the country are able to experience a walkabout around the capital in the day. Attractions such as the Coronation Arch 1968, the stunning Sultan Omar ‘Ali Saifuddien (SOAS) mosque, Taman Haji Sir Omar ‘Ali Saifuddien, Taman Mahkota Jubli Emas, and Makam Raja Ayang are within walking distance with each other and hard to miss. It gives tourist a chance to learn more about the history of the monuments as there are reading plaques placed showing information on the monuments and landmarks.
There are many unique opportunities that can be done in the capital during the month of Ramadhan such as visiting the Gerai Ramadhan Bandar Seri Begawan and experiencing sungkai at SOAS mosque.
Gerai Ramadhan at the capital starts operating from 3.30pm until 6.30pm and is located at parking lot of Lapau DiRaja. Over 40 vendors are participating selling a variety of street food such as burgers, skewers, nasi katok, fried noodles, kebabs and many more.
Visitors who want to feel how it is like to experience the true essence of Ramadhan can attend a sungkai (break of fasting) session at SOAS mosque. People start to gather at the mosque at around 6.00pm and wait for the sun to set and the call of prayer before they start to eat. Visitors can talk with congregants around the mosque and get an insight on how muslims cope with fasting during the month of Ramadhan or get to know about the religion itself. Other than that, tourists can even donate food and drinks for people who are breaking their fast at the mosque if they wish.
During the month of Ramadhan, restaurants promotions are an abundance. Tourists can enjoy special prices when going to the eateries during the sungkai period, but be sure to book early as the popular restaurants are usually full during this time.
Other than the promotions, some of the eateries will stay open until around 1.00am or 2.00am to cater for people who want to get food for their Suhoor – the early morning meal which Muslims are encouraged to partake to help them get through the day.
Visiting the capital during the month of Ramadhan is interesting even though most of the restaurants are closed and the opening of various attractions are shortened. Checking out the attractions, mosque and Ramadhan stalls during this time is a valuable experience for tourists coming to Brunei.