Borneo is the third largest island in the world and is located north of Java, Indonesia, at the geographic centre of Maritime Southeast Asia. Borneo island is divided among three countries: Brunei, Indonesia and Malaysia. Approximately 73% of the island is Indonesian territory. The Malaysian states of Sabah and Sarawak in the north occupy about 26% of the island. The sovereign state of Brunei, located on the north coast, comprises about 1% of Borneo's land area.
Sabah, the second largest state in Malaysia, is located on the northwestern tip of Borneo and shares a border with the Indonesian province of Kalimantan.Once known as North Borneo, Sabah was under the British colony during the late 19th century till the early 20th century. Sabah gained its independence through Malaysia on September 16, 1963. Sabah is best known for its adventure and ecotourism attractions, such as Mount Kinabalu, pristine rainforests in the Danum valley, proboscis monkeys along the Kinabatangan River, the world's largest orangutan sanctuary at Sepilok, and many beautiful islands and beaches with excellent diving sites offshore.
Sarawak, the largest Malaysian state, shares borders with the province of Kalimantan on its south side and with the sultanate of Brunei Darussalam on its northeastern side. Sarawak's economy is largely driven by its abundant natural resources such as oil, gas and timber, but since the 1980's, Sarawak began diversifying and transforming its economy. The manufacturing sector is now the focus and catalyst for future economic growth and development of the State. One of the most attractive features of Sarawak is its cultural diversity, which has helped establish the state as one of the most popular tourist destinations in the region. Sarawak is also known for its adventure and eco-tourism. Among the popular sites are the Mulu Caves (one of the largest limestone cave systems in the world), Niah Caves, inland rivers, and several excellent national parks.
Brunei Darussalam The sultanate of Brunei Darussalam is a young nation-state, having gained independence from the British only in 1984. The country lies at the northwestern corner of Borneo Island. Bandar Seri Begawan is its capital. Brunei Darussalam's economy is dominated by the oil and liquefied natural gas industries. The country is the third largest producer of oil in Southeast Asia and the fourth largest producer of natural gas in the world. Brunei Darussalam gives priority to sustainable management of the natural environment. All its development sites are free from pollution and are ecologically balanced. Brunei Darussalam has a rich culture and royal heritage dating back some 500 years. Local attractions include the world's largest water village, Istana Nurul Imam, and the Ulu Temburong National Park.