By heating H3BO3 with urea in 1 : 6 molar ratio, nanoparticles and nanotubes of BN are obtained. The urea–boric acid reaction can also be exploited to obtain graphene analogues of BN, with the number of layers depending on the relative proportions of the two reactants. Synthesis with a high proportion of urea yields a product containing graphene analogues of BN with an average of 2 layers. The surface area of BN increases with the decreasing number of layers, and the high-surface-area BN also exhibits high CO2 adsorption. Few-layer BN can be solubilized by interaction with Lewis bases. Nanopans and nanosheets formed by graphene-like BN are generated by the vapor phase reaction of NH3 and BBr3 at 1223 K. Nanopans of BN, being reported for the first time, have a bottom comprising single-layer BN and a wall of 0.7 nm height. The average inner volume of the nanopan is around 400 nm3.