Macau is a city that is situated on the western bank of the Pearl River Delta on the border of the Guangdong Province. It is was once a colony of Portugal, and as such is one of the few cities in China that is a special administrative region, the other one being the city of Hong Kong. In December of 1999 the city was officially handed over to the People’s Republic Of China.
Macau is considered to be one of the richest cities in the world. This is due to its thriving manufacturing industries which include electronics, toys and textiles. Another thing that adds to this cities economic prowess is its thriving tourist trade which brings in money from tourist visiting the various attractions and staying in the area’s hotels. The last thing that adds to this cities bottom linis its booming gambling industry. Macua makes more money from its casinos than the city of Las Vegas does.
One of the most popular attractions in Macau is the Ruins of St. Paul Church. The building was erected between the years 1602 and 1632. After its construction it suffered from three separate accidents that reduced it to the ruins that it is today. All that’s left of the original church is the front wall, which would later be named the Great Sanba Archway. The Great Sanba Archway stands eight-one feet high, is seventy feet wide and eight feet thick.
Another tourist attraction that is fairly popular is the Barra Temple, also known as the Zhongjue Buddhist Temple. This temple was built in dedication to Ma Zu, a fortune teller from the Fujian Province.
The St. Paul Monte Fortress was constructed in 1626 and is another must see sight that should be on the world travelers list. The gate of this fortress stands to the south and each side of this complex is about three hundred feet long. This fortification was originally built to be the residence of the Chief of Staff on City Defense and Superintendent of Macao. But, after 1740 it went through a number of changes in function. Its last incarnation was a weather station for the city of Macau. It has since been turned into a museum.
Every visitor to Macau should make a stop at the Lian Fong Temple, otherwise known as the Guanzha Temple. This temple was built in the year 1592 under the Emperor Shenzong during the Ming Dynasty. This building has been used as everything from a temple to a place for city officials to live. In the rear of the building is a small garden complete with lotus pond. To the front of the temple is a square. In the center of the complex is Tianhou Hall.
Another temple on the list of tourist attractions is the Puji Buddhist Temple. This temple has a history that spans over four hundred years, all the way back to the Ming Dynasty. This temple consist of three courtyards. The first one is named Daxiong Grand Hall. The second courtyard is called Longevity Hall and the third Bodhisattva Hall. Each of the halls has very distinctive statues of Buddha on display.
A recent addition to Macau’s list of attractions is the Macau Wine Museum. This museum dedicated to wine is divided into three distinct sections. These include a section of the history of wine production, a wine exhibition section and a section dedicated to wine collecting. Visitors can try their hand at wine tasting during the tour offered here. The cellar of this museum houses over eleven hundred brands of wine, half of which are for sale to the public.
The Macau Marine Museum is a museum dedicated to the rich sailing tradition of the city. It is composed of three main sections, the exhibition hall, a library and a tea house. The museum was erected in 1996. At the museum visitors can see exhibits chronicling the history of Chinese fishermen both in ancient and modern times. There is also a detailed history of the strong relationship and political ties between the people of Macau and Portugal.
Macau is also a city that is beginning to dip its toe into the area of car racing. It first started with the 40th annual Grand Prix was held within the city. The city has since constructed the Macau Great Prix Museum. Tourist can see exhibitions dedicated to the Grand Prix, as well as watch educational slide shows. There are also several formula cars for visitors to see.
If shopping is your thing than Macau has you covered there as well. Thanks to its great trade location and the influx of inexpensive items from the rest of Asia shoppers are almost guaranteed to find a great deal. And there are plenty of markets, shops and roadside vendors to choose from. Some of the more popular shopping locations include the Grand Canal Plaza, Red Market & Av. de Horta e Costa and the Rua Pedro Nolasco da Silva.
But, if the nightlife in Macau is your cup of tea, than you have many options available to you. If your looking for some of the most exciting gambling in the world then you can visit locations such as the Lisboa Casino, the Galaxy Waldo Casino, the Sands Macau and the Mandarin Oriental Casino. If the many pubs of Macau are your thing then you can choose from some of the best in the city such as the Fishman’s Wharf.