Attractions and sights of Macau, China

Attractions and sights of Macau, China

Although best known for gambling, Macau is extremely rich in attractions and oozing with atmosphere, thanks to hundreds of years of fusion between European and Chinese cultures.

Macau is a fascinating place to just walk around as the place is packed with churches, temples, fortresses and other old buildings bearing an interesting mix of Portuguese and Chinese characteristics. Besides buildings, there are also hundreds of narrow alleyways forming a maze in the old part of Macau where the people of Macau carry out businesses and work. If the sheer density of humans get to you, take a break and enjoy several pretty gardens or head to the island.

One of the interesting things to see in Macau is a statue of the Bodhisatta Avalokitesvara (known as kwoon yam in Cantonese) located next to the sea near the Sands Casino and MGM Grand. Despite being a Chinese deity, the statue is distinctly European in design and resembles the statues of the Virgin Mary you can find in Europe.

And if history is not your thing, there is the Macau Tower of awesome views and adventure sports, or Fisherman's Wharf to enjoy some theme-park activities and shopping.

You'll find most of the attractions in Macau Peninsula, but Taipa and Coloane, each with a pretty village, also draw hordes of visitors. Visit the Cotai reclaimed land area to see its transformation into the "Las Vegas Strip of the East". The Venetian is the most famous with its Venice-styled shopping mall with rivers running through, and is also currently the largest casino in the world.

A large section of Macau Peninsula has been designated a Unesco World Heritage site and 25 buildings and sites within the area have been deemed to have cultural and historic significance. One of the best ways to cover the sights is to do the Macau Heritage Walk circuit.

Taipa Village and Coloane Village, previously inhabited by fishermen, are also interesting with their colonial-era shops and houses along narrow lanes.

Macau has several museums. The "Macau Museum Pass", which gives discounted entry to most of these, is currently off the market. The main museums, such as the Macau Museum, are in Macau Peninsula although there are two museums on Taipa - the Museum of Taipa and Coloane History and Taipa Houses Museum.

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