1UpTravel


 

You are here > 1Up Travel > Countries of the World > Asia > Brunei



ADVERTISEMENT

Country

 At a Glance

  Introduction

  Topography

  History & Culture

  Life

  Cuisine

  Holidays

  Festivals

  Embassies

  Administration

  Newstand


 Worth a Visit !!

  Cities

  Attractions

  Maps & Cities

  Shopping

  Eating Out

  Recreation

  Essentials

  Travel Links


 Country Facts

  Introduction

  Geography

  People

  Government

  Economy

  Communications

  Transportation

  Military

  Transnational issues


Related

  Brunei Guide
  Brunei Maps
  Brunei Hotels
  Brunei Flag
  More Brunei Flags
  Brunei Geography
  Brunei Travel Warning



Travel & Tourism . Tourist Guide to the Country

Brunei History and Culture




History
During the 15th and 16th centuries, Brunei was considered as one of the regional great powers, controlling Borneo and substantial parts of the Philippines as well.
The Spanish and the Portuguese were the first Europeans to arrive, but it was the British, who arrived in the region in the 17th and 18th centuries, who began to erode Brunei's influence. Sarawak was ceded to the British in the 19th century and a series of 'treaties' were forced on the Sultan as James Brooke, the first White Rajah of Sarawak, consolidated his power base.
In 1888, the sultanate became a British protectorate.

Brunei was gradually whittled away until, with a final dash of absurdity, Limbang was ceded to Sarawak in 1890, thus dividing the country in half. In 1929, just as Brunei was about to be swallowed up entirely, oil was discovered. British plans to make Brunei a part of the Malaysian Federation were upset by a revolt in 1962.
The Sultan suspended the constitution and opted for independence. The country has been under emergency laws ever since and mooted elections have never eventuated. In 1984, Brunei became completely independent, and underlined its new independence from Britain by joining ASEAN.
Since then, it has moved towards Islamic fundamentalism. In 1991, the sale of alcohol was banned and stricter dress codes have been introduced.

Culture
Brunei Darussalam is one of the oldest kingdoms of the region, and Islam has a great influence on the culture, customs and manners in Brunei (very similar to those of Peninsular Malaysia).
The Ministry of Religious Affairs fosters and promotes Islam. Nevertheless, the constitution does allow for other religions to be practiced.
Gentleness, politeness, decorum and hospitality are important elements in Malay culture. In normal day-to-day social interactions, a Bruneian is expected to be polite, trustworthy, tolerant, kind and understanding. Normally, Bruneians shake hands lightly and bring their hand that shakes the other person's hand to the chest to show their greetings are from their hearts.
It is not customary to shake hands with a member of the opposite sex. One should not point with the index finger, as it is considered rude; instead one should use the thumb.

To beckon someone with repeated downward wave of the hand, as in the western way, can be considered disrespectful. The proper thing to do is to call politely by name or title or by appropriate questions or requests.
In Brunei, it is customary to pass gifts, food, or any article with the right hand, although the left hand can be used to support by placing it under the right hand.
When visiting a person's house or mosques, one should remove one's shoes and leave them outside at the steps. Especially in the mosques one should not pass in front of a person at prayer, or touch the Qur'an while women should cover themselves from head (with a veil), arms, body and knees.

The traditions are highly valued in the Bruneian society, and they are still very much a part of every Bruneian's life. One should see the colorful and friendly ceremonies of engagements, weddings, investitures or other traditional occasions.
The people believe in working together to accomplish a certain feat. As such, it is normal to see big groups of people at these celebrations, doing their bits to help the host. Dances are a form of traditional amusement and recreation in the old days.
They normally tell the society a story of the Malay legends and mythos, always accompanied by graceful and fluid movements in harmony with traditional music.


 

Acknowledgements: ASIATRAVELMART.COM








Make 1Up Travel your HomepageSend this Page to a FriendGo to Top of PagePrint this PageAdd 1Up Travel to your Favorites


CHANNELS

Compare Country Info Hotel Directory Geography Flags World Maps Travel Warnings National Parks

DESTINATIONS

Asia Africa Caribbean Middle East North America South America Central America Oceania Pacific Europe Polar Regions

PHOTO SPECIAL

Destinations Monuments Ancient Wonders Modern Wonders Natural Wonders

UTILITIES

World Time ISD Codes Travel Links Link Exchange

 



Disclaimer: Although we've tried to make the information on this web site as accurate as possible, we accept no responsibility for any loss, injury or inconvenience sustained by any person resulting from information published on this site. We encourage you to verify any critical information with the relevant authorities before you travel.

Copyright 1Up Travel All Rights Reserved.
Go Up

Privacy Policy