Theme Week Brunei – Ulu Temburong National Park

Friday, 28 May 2021 - 12:00 pm (CET/MEZ) Berlin | Author/Destination:
Category/Kategorie: General, Palaces, Castles, Manors, Parks
Reading Time:  5 minutes

Visitor registration © Bruneimaju/cc-by-sa-3.0

Visitor registration © Bruneimaju/cc-by-sa-3.0

Ulu Temburong National Park is the first national park to be established in Brunei, protected since 1991. The park is in Temburong District in eastern Brunei, and covers about 40% of the district in the south at 550 square kilometres (210 sq mi). It is within the Batu Apoi Forest Reserve. The park contains unspoiled jungle and is known as the “Green Jewel of Brunei”, described as “the finest example of the sultanate’s successful forest protection policy”. The principal rivers are the Temburong and Belalong Rivers. It is an important ecotourism centre in Brunei and hosts the Ulu Ulu Resort. The Peradayan Forest Reserve is also located in the district.

Ulu Temburong National Park is situated in the extreme east of Brunei Darussalam, in the Temburong District. It is bounded by three other districts and the Sarawak state of Malaysia. It is a lowland rainforest covering an area of 212 square miles (550 km²). The park area is in the upper region of the eastern part of Brunei. The southern part consists of a hilly region with mountains rising to a height of 1,800 metres (5,900 ft) and the lowlands are in the northern slopes. The terrain is traversed by a number of rivers forming narrow valleys and includes the coastal region. The park, which can only be reached by river, is only accessed by longboats from Brunei’s capital city of Bandar Seri Begawan. The first destination by boat is Bangar town where the Limbang River emerges from Sarawak and drains into Brunei Bay with mangrove muddy deltas at the estuary. Travel from Bangar town to Batang Duri is by road and it is the starting destination for travel by longboats along the Temburong River into the Park. The boats are plied by experienced Iban people winding through sand bars, logs and boulders. An extensive network of boardwalks, bridges and stairways, 7 kilometres (4.3 mi) in length, have been constructed to visit all regions of the park. Interpretation boards provide information along the way. There is also a canopy viewing walkway. This walkway, built with steel towers supporting the cable way, rises to height of 50 metres (160 ft) above the forest floor overlooking the highest tree canopy and provides vistas of the forests.

Batu Apoi Forest Reserve © flickr.com - Brendan/cc-by-sa-2.0 © Christian Trede/cc-by-sa-3.0-de Suspension footbridge © flickr.com - SomeBaL_/cc-by-sa-2.0 Visitor registration © Bruneimaju/cc-by-sa-3.0
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Batu Apoi Forest Reserve © flickr.com - Brendan/cc-by-sa-2.0
The park is under the control of the Forestry Department of the Ministry of Primary Resources and Tourism. Offices of the National Park Headquarters are located near the confluence of Sungei Belalong with Temburong river. A research station (Kuala Belalong Field Studies Centre) was established by Universiti Brunei Darussalam in 1990. It is located about 500m from the mouth of the Belalong River on the west bank. The research centre served as a key research, teaching and training site for international research community and universities. It is used for various environmental awareness programs that include the school environmental education program runs by Universiti Brunei Darussalam. The park is also part of the Heart of Borneo international conservation agreement.

The only accommodation inside the National Park, Ulu Ulu Resort was opened in November 2008 with the privatization of the facilities in Ulu Temburong National Park under the authority of the Forestry Department. This is regarded as a historical milestone in Brunei tourism as this is the first Public-Private Partnership (PPP) between a private tour company (Sunshine Borneo Tours and Travel Sdn Bhd) and the Government of Brunei Darussalam. Due to Coronavirus, the resort is permanently closed since 2020. The 17-room resort is a low-density and environment friendly accommodation. There are three room categories; Standard (dormitory), Superior (twin share and family suites) and Deluxe (double bed). The resort has a conference room, auditorium, restaurant, gift and souvenir shop and games room. To stay at the resort, visitors are required to make advance booking of a Ulu Temburong National Park tour package, to and from Bandar Seri Begawan.

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