Look at your Asian map and see that the sultanate of Brunei is made up of two land masses separated by the Malaysian province of Limbang in the island of Borneo. You will find the main island and the capital city of Bandar Seri Begawan on your left (west), while the island on your right (east) contains Temburong and the Peradayan Forest Reserve. Eighty percent of these two pieces of land that make up the whole of Brunei is mostly forests and jungles, and most of these forests have been converted into recreational parks. The Bruneian government is spending a fortune to preserve these parks and their unique ecosystems. Below is basic yet important information about the Peradayan Forest Reserve.
Located about 15 km from the idyllic town of Bangar, the Peradayan forest covers a wide area of 1,070 hectares while the national reserve itself is only 997 square hectares. The area includes abundant flora and fauna, mysterious caves, unique land formations, and the twin hills of Bukit Peradayan (410 meters high) and Bukit Patoi (310 meters). The imposing twin peaks are very recognizable and often used to represent the park. There is also a forest trail that goes up and down the hillsides and all the way to the peak. The trail is 1.6 km long and may be completed in two hours. The path up Bukit Patoi is quite rocky but it is capped with a patch of flat stone that looks like a naturally sculpted helipad or viewing deck. It offers a magnificent view of South China Sea and the Malaysian province of Lawas in the state of Sarawak, as well as the trees, farms and villages below.
Trekkers are often delighted to encounter the park’s amazing wildlife, which may include a kijang (deer) or colorful hornbills. Brunei’s Forestry Department makes sure that not many shelters for people will be erected within the reserve since they can scare away the animals. Hikers and visitors are discouraged from picnicking, sitting or resting for long hours.
Temburong is Brunei’s most verdant district. It is home to three important national parks, which are the Ulu Temburong National Park to the south, Labu Forest Reserve to the north and Peradayan Forest Reserve somewhere in the middle. These parks are located within the jungles and so they are best accessed by helicopter or boat. Tourists can catch a water taxi from a port jetty in Jalan Residency, Bandar Seri Begawan going to Temburong. There are many water taxis or “perahu tambang” servicing this route. Fare is negotiable but the usual asking price is B$1. The 45-minute boat ride is very picturesque and itself an unforgettable touring experience. Local boats pass through a picturesque landscape of mostly palm trees and mangroves. The natural reserve may also be accessed by car but only up to the edge of the park. From here, travelers will proceed on foot.
Much like the boat ride to Temburong, the hike going to the Peradayan Forest Reserve area is very picturesque, making every step worth the sweat and exhaustion. Hikers get to see the rich and natural beauty of a lush Southeast Asian rainforest. The forests can be very serene, quiet and cool, which makes for a perfect nature adventure.