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7 Hours Road Trip from Kota Kinabalu to Brunei

Just came back from Phuket, Thailand last week and working for 2 days, I off to Brunei again with my family to attend my cousin's wedding. (My 2nd trip for the year 2012) It has been so many years that all of us has anticipated for his big day and now it's finally arrived. Instead of taking flight, my daddy decided to take a long 7 hours drive from Kota Kinabalu to Brunei. He has been doing that for hundreds of time since I was a little gal. Even my aunty and cousin from Kuching, Sarawak, who took a flight to Kota Kinabalu decided to join us too for this long road trip.

KK Road Trip to Brunei 01
Packed all the things and we are ready to go.

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Brought along my leftover Brunei Dollar from my previos trip in case wanna buy anything there

This is not the first time my family and I experienced this kind of road trip because we ever drove all the way from Kuching, Sarawak and pass through expensive sultanate Brunei before arrive Kota Kinabalu for a week. The longest road trip I ever had in my life!

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Stopby Papar to pump petrol fuel before going for a long long journey

Luckily my dad did pump his vehicle to the maximum because in Brunei, there is a limit amount of petrol fuel given to a Malaysian vehicle by the petrol station; some only allows $5 and even the max will be $20 only.

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The stretch covered by this route known as "Borneo Overland Trail" can be both challenging and fascinating; challenging because it involves traveling through some of the more remote corners of Sarawak and Sabah where some of the roads are not being repaired or improved yet (Sigh! This is how our government treat those live in remote areas).

But I guess the most challenging part is where this route brings us across several state and international borders. Don't be surprised when the next thing you enter the border, you will be in one of Brunei District and once you enter another border, you are somewhere around Sarawak. Try imagine a drive from Kota Kinabalu to Brunei, you will need to passthrough 6 IMMIGRATION!

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After 2 and half hours we reached the 1st immigration: Sindumin, Sabah

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2nd immigration: Lawas, Sarawak

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Just a few miles away, we reached the Brunei's border. Quite a long queue because besides inspect passport, they also require to fill in vehicle form.

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The 3rd immigration: Temburong, Brunei Darussalam

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There even a public bus if you are lazy to drive

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Another Brunei's immigration: Puni

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The thing you'll probably need the most is patience especially waiting for the lines to get into ferry crossings across the river which can accommodate 6-7 vehicle at a time.

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The price list. Which will be more cost saving?
Paying in Ringgit Malaysia or Brunei Dollar? You do the maths

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See, now back to Malaysia again. The 5th immigration: Limbang, Sarawak.

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Finally the last immigration for this trip: Kuala Lumrah, Brunei and we're officially in Brunei.

There are actually up to maximum of 8 IMMIGRATION if continue the journey to Miri, Sarawak which we did came across in our past road trip. My family and I ever experienced road trip in Peninsular Malaysia too from Penang to Kedah, Perlis and reached Hatyai, Thailand but never encounter so many kind of immigration. Deng!

KK Road Trip to Brunei 16
Once we saw this, we realised that we had reached my aunty's place finally.

7 hours ride is really damn tiring and exhausting journey but the most fascinating throughout this journey was we were enjoy each and every pretty interesting Sabah rural life all along the journey, and see the differences of some district which has developed within the past few years especially Temburong, Brunei. But probably the best part for a part-time traveller like me was "PASSPORT STAMP COLLECTION".

KK Road Trip to Brunei 17
Just a 3 days visit and already occupied 2 pages of my passport


  1. oh, coincidentally i just read another blogger also travel from Miri to Brunei and collected 8 stamps too :)

    I'm so gonna do this when I go to Miri.

  2. Interesting. I've never been there even though it's the neighbour. Can't wait to see what's there in your blog posts ;)

  3. 8 immigration stops?

    but seriously, i love such road trips. my longest was last year when we took 15 hours from phuket back to kl. amazing fun!. can't wait to do anotehr of such drive this year too.

  4. ho ho ho.. nanti la sa pigi sana.. padahal dekat sudah dari sipitang ni..

  5. wow.. the long duration of travelling time really turns me off if i were to travel. lol.

  6. Nice captures along the way! Would be useful to would-be-travelers.

    Me and a bunch of my colleagues wanted to go on convoy from K.Kinabalu - Brunei - Miri but we never get to find a suitable time to gather all the kaki, yet.

    I see from the Ferry service that B$1 is charged = RM2, i'll pay in Brunei currency then. Hehe

  7. kewl .. i never know that we can travel to brunei by car ... LOL...
    In Malaysia I seldom go for road trip .. but back in the states I used to have a lot of road trips.
    Now mayb couldn't get the kaki and it is a bit hard to travel with kids....

  8. Wow. That's a long road trip. O_O

    I wish to visit Brunei someday, but no kaki wor. :/


  9. So close, yet so far... sama juga macam mo naik gunung Kinabalu. Hahahaa. But this trip is very long oo.

    Happy Monday, DDT!

  10. Looks like you travel a lot :). I've not been to brunei yet. No Visa is required right? Btw, all the best in the Travel Award ya?

  11. What a long journey you had but I guess you enjoyed the trip.

  12. wow,7 hrs journey! D: wow,i see u have been to many beautiful countries like paris and italy! so jealous ah! XD

  13. Wow, u seem to be always travelling..... I haven't been to Brunei for ages. I used to go there for flight training :)

    Thks for bringing back fond memories!

  14. Very interesting!
    Experience a trip is definitely deep memories.


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  16. For your info, Brunei Temburong Ferry no longer in operation. It was replaced by newly built bridge since last December 2013. That may shortened your road trip to 4-5 hours only.

    1. Thanks for the info. If only you could leave your name here =). Looks like I need to plan for another road trip with my friends and family.

  17. You should try and eat Brunei's local famous food... The "Ambuyat".. maybe its an awkward experience for you if its your first time :), but surely you will find it nice...


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