Photographer's Note

‘Bandar Seri Begawan - The Jame' Asr Hassanal Bolkiah Mosque’

Borneo is the third largest island in the world and the largest in Asia.
The two larger islands are Greenland and New Guinea. (BTW, Australia is considered a continent.)
Broadly speaking, the island of Borneo is divided among Indonesia and Malaysia. However, there is still a third independent state, Brunei, which is in its entirety located on Borneo.

The full official name of the country is Negara Brunei Darussalam, meaning: Nation of Brunei, the Abode of Peace.
In the country you can find inscriptions / signposts in two writings: in Malay, with the Latin alphabet and in Jawi, an Arabic script for writing Malay (and several other languages from the larger region).

Brunei is only 5.765 km² (equivalent to the size of two Belgian provinces together).
In 2018 the country had 428.963 inhabitants.
This small country consists of two parts, each located on the South China Sea and further completely surrounded by Malaysia.

The government is an absolute monarchy under the sultan which implements sharia law and directs Islamic practices.
I heard that from May 2019, the Penal Code of the Sharia Law is not imposed on non-Muslim residents or foreigners visiting or living in the country.

Sultan Hassanal Bolkiah is considered the richest man in the world.
In 2019 there were international protests when Bolkiah wanted to change the legislation to introduce the death penalty for homosexuality and adultery. Ultimately, this was canceled.

I wondered what kind of country I would end up in. But met very friendly, helpful people who are mostly strict Islamic but a lot more open minded that one would suspect given the reputation of their sultan.
In the country of the richest man in the world, it seemed to me that the wealth was not evenly distributed, but on the other hand I saw no extreme poverty.
Just clarify: like so many visitors, I was only there for a few days, more precisely three.
But I enjoyed my visit very much.
On the three pictures here you see the Jame' Asr Hassanal Bolkiah Mosque in Bandar Seri Begawan, the capital of Brunei.
It is the largest mosque in the country. The construction began in 1988 and the inauguration was on 14 July 1994.
Together with the Omar Ali Saifuddien Mosque it’s the most famous building of the country.

Photo Information
  • Copyright: Paul VDV (PaulVDV) Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 6806 W: 24 N: 16069] (62944)
  • Genre: Places
  • Medium: Color
  • Date Taken: 2020-02-25
  • Exposure: 1/21 seconds
  • Photo Version: Original Version, Workshop
  • Date Submitted: 2020-04-28 7:10
Viewed: 0
Points: 48
Additional Photos by Paul VDV (PaulVDV) Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 6806 W: 24 N: 16069] (62944)
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