7 Awesome Things to Do in Macau

By Two Monkeys Travel - Contributor September 12th, 2015 Posted in Asia Travel Blog, Travel Blog, Travel Guides 36 Comments

Just an hour away from Hong Kong by ferry, Macau is another special administrative region of China. The influences of its former Portuguese colonial masters have been successfully weaved into its Chinese heritage, as seen in its buildings, food, and tradition. Because of the presence of many casinos and high-end shopping centers in such a small peninsula, Macau earned the nickname ‘Las Vegas of Asia.’

But there is more to Macau than gambling until the wee hours. Here are seven awesome things you can do in this wonderful destination.

7 Awesome Things to Do in Macau

ACCOMMODATION: Where to stay in MACAU? Here are 89 HOTELS in Macau you can choose from or you can check our list of cheap Hotels in Hongkong where you can stay,

Munch on Portuguese egg tart

7 Awesome Things to Do in Macau

The Portuguese egg tart wouldn’t be Macau’s most famous food for nothing. Consisting of a flaky outer shell and a rich, creamy egg custard filling, this pastry is found everywhere, and can be eaten while strolling around the city. Price per piece varies, depending on where they are sold. Koi Kei Bakery, which has branches all over Macau, sells them at HKD $9 each. Of course, you won’t settle at eating just one.

Visit the Ruins of St. Paul at night

7 Awesome Things to Do in Macau

Anyone who includes the Ruins of St. Paul in their itinerary would usually visit it during the day, but why not check it out after sunset? The church’s front façade and grand stone stairs have a different charm when the sun goes down and the city lights are turned on. There’s a slight disadvantage though – the nearby Monte Fort and Macau Museum closes at 6:00 p.m., but you can always come back the next day and marvel on its daytime beauty.

Admission is free!

If what you’re looking for is a conveniently located luxury hotel in Cotai Central, Macau, you may consider booking your accommodation in one of the best 5-star hotels in Macau.

How to get there: Take the No. 3, 3A, 4, 8A, 10, 10A, 11, 18, 19, 21A, 26A, 33 buses to Senado Square. Once there, just follow the signs to Ruins of St. Paul. If you are coming from Sofitel Macau at Ponte 16, walk along Av. de Almeida Ribeiro until you reach Senado Square.

View Senado Square from Leal Senado building

7 Awesome Things to Do in Macau

Should you have time to come back to Ruins of St. Paul and Senado Square the following day, make sure to drop by the Leal Senado building right across the square. Its windows on the second floor offer an amazing view of Senado Square and neighboring structures. You may also check out the courtyard garden, as well as the ceremonial meeting room that leads to an elaborate library.

Admission is free!

7 Awesome Things to Do in Macau

Take advantage of the casinos’ free shuttles

Just because you aren’t interested in trying your luck in the slot machines doesn’t mean you can no longer avail of the free shuttles provided by the casinos. Whether coming from the Macau Maritime Terminal, Taipa Temporary Ferry Terminal, or Macau International Airport, you can ride any of the shuttle buses that wait for arriving guests.

Each casino shuttle has an assigned parking space; just choose where you want to go and hop on. The bus leaves once it is full, but don’t worry if you can’t make it on the first bus as another one would arrive in 5-20 minutes, depending on the hotel you want to visit.

Walk around Old Taipa Village

7 Awesome Things to Do in Macau

Before the huge hotels and casinos started sprouting like mushrooms in Macau, Taipa Island had narrow lanes and alleys and colored colonial houses. All these can be found in the Old Taipa Village, one of the two traditional ‘villages’ that still exist in the peninsula.

7 Awesome Things to Do in Macau
Rua do Cunha and Our Lady of Carmel Church

Just a stone’s throw away from The Venetian Macao, this tourist attraction is also the home to the Taipa Houses Museum, Rua Do Cunha, Our Lady of Carmel Church, and Carmel Garden.

Admission is free!

Address: Avenida da Praia, Macau

7 Awesome Things to Do in Macau
Carmel Garden

7 Awesome Things to Do in Macau

How to get there: The best way to get to Old Taipa Village is to walk from The Venetian Macao. Exit at the hotel’s West Lobby, then turn right towards the escalator. Once you are on the other side, you will see a moving walkway or walkalator that will take you directly to the village. Just follow the signs to the specific area you want to go to.

7 Awesome Things to Do in Macau

Go back in time in the Fisherman’s Wharf

7 Awesome Things to Do in Macau

Want to see The Colosseum but can’t afford to go to Rome? Then visit its replica in the Fisherman’s Wharf. Located across Sands Macao and near Macau Maritime Terminal, this 111,500 –square meter theme park is divided into three sections: Dynasty Wharf, East Meets West, and Legend Wharf. It also offers a wide array of shopping centers and restaurants, making it the perfect location for your Instagram-worthy photos.

Check out some of the cool and cheap tours you could do in Fisherman’s Wharf.

Admission is free!

7 Awesome Things to Do in Macau

How to get there: Take bus no. 1A, 3, 3A, 8, 10, 10A, 10B, 17, 28A, 28B, 28BX, 28C or 32, and get off at Macau Fisherman’s Wharf. If you are coming from Sands Macao, just cross the street and viola, you’re there!

7 Awesome Things to Do in Macau

Appreciate architecture by church hopping

The Ruins of St. Paul isn’t the only church worth visiting in Macau. In fact, there are numerous houses of worship that are closely located to each other.

Start your church architecture appreciation in St. Dominic’s Church along Largo de Sao Domingos, a few steps away from Ruins of St. Paul. Make your way towards Senado Square, cross the street, and then walk along Calcada do Tronco Velho. There you will see St. Augustine’s Church, followed by St. Joseph’s Church along R. do Seminario, and by St. Lawrence’s Church in R. de Sao Lourenco.

7 Awesome Things to Do in Macau
St. Dominic’s Church, St. Lawrence’s Church and St. Augustine’s Church

Don’t let the casinos and high-end hotels stop you from visiting Macau. There are a lot of tourist attractions that you can check out without burning a hole in your pocket. If you plan to visit Hong Kong, allot at least a day for a Macau tour. You’ll never regret it!

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About the Writer

Named after a The Beatles hit song, Michelle Caligan is a self-proclaimed expert when it comes to scoring cheap airline tickets, dubbing herself as a “seat sale slave.” This acquired skill has taken her to many places, exposing her to various cultures and tradition.
A CouchSurfing newbie, she is currently based in Manila, Philippines, where she works as a content producer for an entertainment website.

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36 thoughts on “7 Awesome Things to Do in Macau

  1. Hi Michelle Caligan,

    May I know which Jet that you used to travel from HK to Macao?
    I found 2 different jets (Cotai Water Jet and Turbo Jet). Both prices are very different too! Which one would you recommend? Thank you so much for your help : )

  2. hi michelle… first time to visit macau next week… for a day tour only… would u suggest tubojet or cotai? thnks in advance.

  3. Do we need visa from Macau going to Hong Kong? We are planning to visit Macau and wish to cross Hong Kong but not sure if we need visa going there. Thanks.

    1. No visa to Hong Kong for Philippine passport holders for 14 days. Macau is also visa-free for 30 days.

  4. Hi Michelle –

    I’ll be travelling to HK next week and I plan to visit for a day tour only. Can you suggest the best itinerary for me? I’m not sure what to visit first and I want to maximize my time when visiting Macau. I might not be able to visit all places but at least I can visit the best / recommended places. Also, this is my first time to travel solo so I am spending much time researching for my trip. Appreciate your help. thanks!

    1. Hi Faith, thanks for reading my article. For a day tour in Macau, I suggest you leave HK early. I think there are ferry trips as early as 5am. When you get to Macau, there are shuttle buses owned by casinos waiting for passengers. These are free, so you can take them (I recommend the Venetian Macao bus). Old Taipa Village is just nearby. Fisherman’s Wharf is also within walking distance from the maritime terminal so you can visit that too. From there, you can take a public bus to Senado Square, then walk towards Ruins of St. Paul.

      Feel free to email me if you have any other questions. 🙂

  5. My sister used to live in Macau and she loved going out to do yoga with the locals who were all a lot older than her but super supple and mobile & healthy. We could learn so much from them too x

  6. It looks like both an interesting and beautiful place to visit. I shall add that to my list of places to go when the kids are older.

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