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Kampong Ayer - Venice of East

Bandar Seri Begawan, Brunei Darussalam
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Review Highlights
Venice it ain't

We were quite underwhelmed by Kampong Ayer. You can get quite a good view of the situation from the... read more

Reviewed 3 days ago
Kat G
,
London, United Kingdom
Strange Place

This wasn’t quite how we had imagined it; the tour description mentioned 30,000 people living in a... read more

Reviewed 4 days ago
ekimbry
,
Aurora
Read all 589 reviews
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Technically part of the Bruneian capital of Bandar Seri Begawan, Kampong Ayer has more than enough uniqueness and history about it to be considered separately. Meaning “water village”, Kampong Ayer is built on stilts above the Brunei river. More than 30,000 people inhabit Kampong Ayer, the largest water settlement in Southeast Asia, and travel about by boat or the extensive network of wooden walkways, footbridges, and boardwalks. Kampong Ayer’s 4,200 structures include homes, mosques, restaurants, shops, schools, and a even a hospital. People have been living here for more than 1,300 year. Many of the traditional lifestyles of its inhabitants; fishermen, traders, and artisans; have remained unchanged. Visitors can experience this heritage by taking one of the many water taxis in front of the Yayasan Sultan Haji Hassanal Bolkiah in Bandar Seri Begawan.
  • Excellent36%
  • Very good44%
  • Average16%
  • Poor3%
  • Terrible1%
Travelers talk about
“on stilts” (57 reviews)
“fire station” (40 reviews)
“water taxi” (61 reviews)
Suggested Duration: 1-2 hours
LOCATION
Bandar Seri Begawan, Brunei Darussalam
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Reviews (589)
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1 - 10 of 462 reviews

Reviewed 3 days ago

We were quite underwhelmed by Kampong Ayer. You can get quite a good view of the situation from the bank. Negotiate the water taxi fare!

Thank Kat G
Reviewed 4 days ago

This wasn’t quite how we had imagined it; the tour description mentioned 30,000 people living in a village over water in houses on stilts. Our guide used the number 18,000, but either way, it seemed a huge number for something we thought would be a...More

Thank ekimbry
Reviewed 2 weeks ago

Forget rickety old houses, dangerous planking and the squallor often associated with floating villages, Kampong Ayer has a very substantial feel. There are 35 villages, primary and secondary schools, a fire station, police stations, a mosque, shops etc etc. We were fortunate enough to visit...More

Thank paulormandy
Reviewed 3 weeks ago

There isn't a massive amount to do in Bandar Seri Begawan but this little boat tour around the floating village is well worth it. Costs about 10-15Brunei dollars (£7). It takes you all around the buildings and you can even get good pics from the...More

1  Thank Chris8111
Reviewed June 13, 2017

You will save money if you can share water taxi with other tourists, especially if you are only two or three in a group. If you cant, haggle the price. Best to get water taxi with roof, weather can be hot.

Thank online_dreamer
Reviewed June 12, 2017 via mobile

First time using a traditional speed boat to go around Kg Ayer even though am local. Finally got persuaded to do it! Thrilling speed and close to water and got sprayed a few times :) Rent a boat and driver and make a half day...More

Thank SmallButProud
Reviewed June 6, 2017

Like many other countries in South East Asia, Brunei boasts its own floating village. Easy to get to and nice to visit even on a hot day. Worth seeing and in easy reach of other tourist atractions so you can plan easily and cram a...More

Thank Luis S
Reviewed June 3, 2017 via mobile

Been on a big boat on the Brunei River several times but decided to try a water taxi. Found out why they're called "flying coffins", the boats' shapes are reminiscent of coffins and the tops are close to the water and the fast speed at...More

Thank Sweet L
Reviewed June 3, 2017

Don't book an overpriced touristic tour. Just get a local boat. The pilot is happy to tell you about local sites and traditions. You can even share the ride to get a better price and of course negotiate. This is the largest water city in...More

Thank Adrian S
Reviewed June 2, 2017 via mobile

This place would be a new experience. One of the biggest water villages in Asia. Suggest walking inside the village rather than boating. The entire place is interconnected.

Thank Athul N
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Questions & Answers
jjyy9907
January 2, 2017|
Answer Show all 2 answers
Response from Kyle H | Reviewed this property |
Greetings! You can book a tour online or simply show up where there are several boats available to take you around the village. I agree that you need to negotiate the price. Enjoy!
0
Votes
kgillies
September 12, 2016|
Answer Show all 6 answers
Response from Alter77 | Reviewed this property |
If you want a tour of Kampong Ayer, just head to the shopping centre in the centre, go to the back exit, cross the road and flag down a boat on the stairs that lead to the river to the right of the building where Kaizen... More
2
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Shazb65
January 28, 2016|
Answer Show all 7 answers
Response from seriaboy | Reviewed this property |
Muara Port is too far from the Water Village. I suggest you get a taxi. Once there just stand close to the water area and some of the boat drivers will see you. Don't worry, they'll spot you. They need to earn $$$. I paid... More
1
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