Brunei Darussalam, a sovereign Muslim sultanate in the island of Borneo, is home to a number of interesting tourist attractions. Such attractions include golden domes and towers, amazing mosques and palaces, rainforest reserves, natural resources, and national parks. Visitors make sure they check out as many of these destinations as they can. And one of the attractions that should make it on top of anyone’s list is Tasek Merimbun or the Merimbun Heritage Park.
Merimbun Heritage Park is beautifully located in the interior of the district of Tutong. The area is one the most serene locations in Brunei, marked with a lush forest, a couple of walking trails, two islands off the coast, and Brunei’s largest lake, Merimbun Lake. What’s so unique about this lake is its black water; something that cannot be found anywhere else in Borneo. The park is so tranquil that it is perfect for personal reflection and a better appreciation of nature. It is only an hour drive away from the capital city of Bandar Seri Begawan.
The country in general is relatively very peaceful. It is located in Southeast Asia, among neighboring mega metropolis such as Kuala Lumpur, Singapore, Hong Kong, Manila, and Jakarta who are known to be very noisy and extremely hectic. Bandar Seri Begawan is a blissful city and very dreamy for its golden palaces, majestic mosques and other heavenly structures.
These days, more and more foreign tourists are making their way to Brunei Darussalam. Officials say more than a million visitors come every year to see the country’s uncrowded beaches, untouched coral reefs and unspoiled natural resources. There is a number of well-preserved forests and parks, and Merimbun Heritage Park is just one of them.
The most common visitors to Merimbun are nature lovers, nature photographers, birdwatchers, botanists, researchers and students. They come to enjoy the beauty of Mother Nature and experience a peaceful ambience that is rare in this subcontinent. These visitors enjoy their time here but not as much as how the animals enjoy their natural habitat. The park serves as a safe haven where the wildlife and ecosystem are protected and conserved. Scientists study the flora and fauna to better take care of them. Such conservation efforts are sponsored by HSBC and the Brunei Museum.
Some of the rare animals that live and freely roam around this 7,800-hectare-wide park are the clouded leopard, slow Loris, sun bear, white-collared bat, tarsier, flying squirrel, Malay weasel, banded linsang, otter civet, banded palm civet, and the rare Bornean gibbon. Also protected are eight species of the Bornean hornbill, since the park is considered as one of Brunei’s seven important bird sanctuaries.
Guests enter the Visitor Center to get a better view of the rich biodiversity that exists inside the park. There are also indigenous peoples living here and visitors can watch them perform traditional dances or as they go about their day-to-day living. Visitors may also take a boat trip across the unique lake and hike through the forests. Clearly, Tasek Merimbun is Brunei’s biggest wildlife sanctuary and one of the country’s most important parks.