Macao, Hong Kong
Asia's Gambling Capital and the number one Gambling Revenues in the world is ust an hour away by ferry from the three ferry terminals in Hong Kong and is a popular side trip for people who go on day tours to this tiny formerly portuguese enclave at the mouth of the Pearl River, about 70 kilometers away. you can take a day tour of Macau From Hong kong from the various tour companies or via your own by just taking the various ferry rides to Macau that costs from HKD $ 320 to 380 for a round trip ticket, just bring your passport and then prepare to see the various sites of Macau like Penha Hill, Leal Senado Square, the Iconis St. Paul Ruins, Ama Gau Temple, Macau Tower, the Casinos of Taipa, portuguese egg tarts and a lot more.
If you have some extra time in Hong Kong, you should go to Macau for a day trip (check visa issue). Take a fast ferry either from Sheung Shau (HK Island) or from Kowloon China Ferry Terminal.Maybe some gaming ;-)
It is possible to do a day trip to Macao thanks to highspeed catamaran (sailing time aboout 55 minutes). The comfortable journey lasts less than one hour as in a plane. Don't forget to take a light jacket or pullover to prevent the freezing A/C...
In Macao, enjoy the Portugese architectures or Casinos, which are in expansion (the Venitian of LasVegas is currently constructing a brand new casino, same for the Lisboa).
Macau or Macao is one of the two special administrative regions of the People's Republic of China, the other being Hong Kong. It was the first European colony in the region settled by Portugese traders in th 16th century. It was also the last, being handed over to PRC in 1999.
Macau lies across Pearl River Delta from Hong Kong and has easy access via a ferry system. Although notable as a centre for gambling, it supports industries such as textiles and toys and a rapidly growing tourist industry.
As Hong Kong is a separate country from China so is Macau. You need to bring your passport to be cleared through immigration before entering into Macau.
The name is said to have originated in a misunderstanding by the Portugese traders when they first came to the area. 'Macau' is thought to be a derivative of Maa Gao an A-Ma temple built in 1448. When the sailors landed at this site they asked the name and were told Maa Gao. They named the peninnsula Macau.
Macau is a fascinating mixture of Portugese and Chinese tradition which can be explored at the Museum of Macau. The museum is next to the facade of St. Paul's Cathedral - all that remains of the once magnificent building.
For a bird's eye view, a trip to the top of the Macau Tower is in order.
I succumbed to a Macao day trip. They are heavily touted in the hotels but I found it a bit of a dissapointment.
Its a popular place and the ferry was very crowded. Our tickets were already bought but I read stories in the paper that to just turn up can mean a wait of hours if there is a popular event on so maybe wise to purchase in advance.
The tour went to a church (dull) and Chinese Fishermans temple (interesting) and had a rather boring hotel buffet lunch. The bit I was looking forward to the most was the Jesuit Portugese Cathedral and fortress, you could have spent a good couple of hours there but no , we had 45 mins. Then, they took us to a Casino and allocated 1 hour there! (I went for a coffee instead having no interest in that sort of thing)
They tout Macao as being a cross btween China and Portugal, its clearly not. There are a few Portugese buildings but most of the island consists of ugly blocks of flats and casinos. Its being developed into the Vegas of the east with as many ridiculous buildings as its nakesake.
In hindsight I should have just gone there myself, its easy enough although the sights a bit strug out and not really walkable but it probably would not have cost much to get a taxi.
oh well, you live and learn!
Macao/Macau is a great day trip from Hong Kong. The Portuguese government gave their colony back to China in the late 1990's and Macau has kept their Portuguese culture intact. Most people know Macao for the casinos. Once sleazy casinos along the main road. Today, large Las Vegas developers are moving in to cash in. A new Sands casino is finished. In the next year or two there will be a Venetian and Wynn casinos. Supposedly, in the next few years the gambling revenue from Macau will actually surpass Vegas' amounts.
But don't just come here for the gambling. Macao has many interesting sites. Also, the old town with all the colonial buildings and large avenue will really make you feel like you are in Europe. Many natives still speak Portuguese and you can find some amazing Portuguese food here.
-Walking along the Largo de Senado-surrounded by lovely colonial buildings
-Ruinas de Sao Paulo-Only the front of this grand church survives. There is a crypt in the back.
-Forteleza do Monte-the beautiful old fort
-visit the Buddhist temples
-Macau Tower-resembles Seattle's sky needle. The tower has a revolving restaurant.
-Sun Yat Sen Memorial House
-Go to Fernando's -for Portuguese fare. Succulent chicken and pork dishes. Famous for their sangria. This restaurant is worth the trip.
If you're in HK don't miss the opportunity to discover also Macau...
For those with little time, the city can be fairly well visited in one day. You leave HK by hidrofoil and around one hour later you are in Macau, arriving in the Ferry Terminal. Round ticket is around US$40.
Worth visit are the Sao Paulo Ruins, Macau Museum, various churches and the city itself, an interesting mix of Chinese and Portuguese cultures.
Macau is a gorgeous Island, technically it is it's own state, just like Hong Kong. Only a hour ferry ride away (and quite luxurious) and about $100 HK. Half the island is Portuguese influenced, and the other half is Chinese. Mainland China is right across the canal. Must see the casino (very incongruous!) and of course the St. Peter's facade (used to be a cathedral on a hill, until it burned down, leaving only the facade today).
You can easily go for a day trip to the ex-Portuguese colony of Macau. It only takes about an hour to get there and costs between $100-200+.
It's good to see another place, especially if you've travelled far to HK.
You can join an inexpensive day tour from the port at Macau which will show you the main attractions there.
I think it was well worth going to Macau just to see what it was like there.
Must go to all the churchs! Don't go to casino! althought I know its famus for that but you'll miss the real bueaty of Macao!
Take the hyydrofoil from Kowloon to Macau, the ride is a blast and a wonderful way to experience the harbor.
Take the ferry to someplace like Macao, it's be a great trip for a day or two. Unfortunatly we didnt have time but it's a must-do!!