The Best Holiday in Brunei is Hari Raya Aidilfitri

Hari Raya Aidilfitri is the Eid al-Fitr in Brunei, Singapore and Malaysia. It is a Muslim Festival that is celebrated at the end of Ramadan or what they called the Month of Holy Fasting. They do the "open-house" and most of them go back to their respective homestead to celebrate the Season - Malay people call it "balik kampung" which is literally translated as "back to the village."

Istana Nurul Iman Open-House During Hari Raya

Hari Raya Aidilfitri  holiday in Brunei is the best season to have a tour because in the first place, this is the time when the Istana Nurul Iman, the official residence and of course the palace of the Sultan of Brunei, is open for public.
The open-house in the palace often lasts for three days, and it only happens once a year.
During this time, the foods and drinks are free and you are also free take pictures in some areas inside the palace (some areas are restricted) plus a chance to shake hands with the Sultan of Brunei, His Majesty himself, along with the other members of the Royal family.

In addition to that, there are also gifts that are given to the visitors, but usually, inside the gifts pack for normal people like us are snacks.
When you visit Brunei in other months, you cannot enter even in the garden of the Istana Nurul Iman unless of course if you are invited guest, a diplomat or a VIP. On regular days, you are free to have a sight-seeing outside the gate and have a chance to talk with the security guard and have a photograph with them – if you’re lucky enough.

Nationwide Hari Raya Sale

For the people of Negara Brunei Darussalam, Hari Aifilfitri is the most awaited time of the year not only because this is the time when the their Holy Fasting ends but because there are lots of exciting activities happens during this holiday.
One of these exciting activities is the Hari Raya Sale which they can shop for less. Last time, the Brunei Grand Sale was done during the season, but later on, the Hari Raya Sale became known during the season.

Aside from, having a time to visit the palace of the Sultan, Brunei-wide sale or popularly known as Hari Raya Sale is also one of the highlight of the season. This sale often runs for one month and lots of new products imported from different countries are available in cheaper prices.
According to the stories I have heard, few years ago, Bruneians loves to have something new in their respective homes like new appliances, new set couch, furniture and other home furnishing items, but lately, they become wiser on spending their money.

Beautiful Hari Raya Display

How people celebrate Hari Raya Aidilfitriri holiday in Brunei is like  how people in US celebrate Christmas. Hari Raya is an extravagant celebration in Brunei Darusslalam. The originally known Christmas lights are also used during this very popular Muslim festival.

You will see large ketupats and different Hari Raya decorations being display in different places of Brunei. Most large business in Brunei spends enough budget to set up large beautiful display to attract both foreign and local tourist to visit their place.
Two of the known businesses in Brunei that do that are the Hua Ho Department Store and the Toyota (NBT) Brunei. Hua Ho sets up its displays indoor while NBT showcases its display outdoor.
Though electricity is not expensive in the country, the different types of colored lights, ranging from small LED light to large flood lights which add glamour to the display, are being turned off after 12:00 midnight to save energy.

More Things to Do

Aside from those things above which you can only experience during Hari Raya, you also do other exciting acting activities in Brunei which can be done on regular days like the following:
·         Tour around the Kampung Ayer (Water Village) while riding on a public utility boat which they call "water taxi";
·         Visit the Billionth Barrel Monument and the nodding donkey in Seria;
·         Experience the canopy walk Temburong National Park;
·         View the glow-in-the-dark Sultan Omar Ali Saifuddien Mosque; and
·         More if you in the country.
I look hope you like this post. Stay tune for more.

¹Bonggatious is a Filipino slang language which comes from the the Tagalog word “bongga” which means extravagant. It is a word being used by some Filipinoes who are trying hard to speak English yet do not know the real English equivalent of the word, so instead of using the English equevalent, they use the tagalog word then add it with English prefix or suffix to make the word sounds like English.

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