Famous for its infused cuisine, freshly baked egg tarts and casinos, Macau is a slice of Europe in the heart of China. Macau, like Hong Kong, is an autonomous state of China, but you’d be forgiven for thinking you left the orient and arrived in Portugal! Don’t forget to pack your passport! It’s time to discover Macau.
Macau is located a one-hour turbo jet (or ferry) ride from Hong Kong, making it the perfect day trip. Upon arriving at the ferry terminal in Macau, you’ll have to pass through customs. Once you’ve cleared that, you’ll be greeted by many taxis and coaches, all wanting you to purchase a fare with them. Most of the more popular attractions in Macau are located too far from the ferry terminal to walk to, but there are courtesy shuttles that travel between the terminal and large casinos if you don’t want to pay for your journey.
I recommend buying a day pass on the open top bus which stops a number of times throughout the city and operates all day and night. You’ll be able to explore all of the major attractions and visit the most popular casinos, travelling by bus between each. A day pass costs $150 ($24 AUD). A total trip around Macau takes 70 minutes and there are ten buses operating the route all day.
The only annoying thing about the bus timetable is the lunch break between 12 and 1:30pm when buses won’t stop at some pick up points. Just be mindful of their schedule so you don’t get stuck!
By now we had seen most of Macau and we only had two hours remaining. But there’s one thing you can’t leave China without seeing… PANDAS!
Macau’s Giant Panda Pavilion is exactly as the name suggests, a pavilion housing giant pandas. It’s only $2 AUD to enter with enclosures both inside and out. It was definitely the highlight of our trip!
Take the time to explore one of the casinos the island is famous for. David and I were only here for the day and we wanted to get back to Hong Kong by 10pm to celebrate New Year’s Eve. Had we had more time, we probably would have spent the evening inside one of the casinos for dinner and some shopping.
And as with most countries in Asia, always travel with your own roll of toilet paper!
What do you love most about Macau? Do you love pandas as much as I do?
Let me know in the comments below.