Macau was the first and therefore the oldest European colony in Europe in China. The city of Macau was founded in 1557 by the Portuguese who controlled the region until 1999. Since the return to China, Macau has the same status as Hong Kong. The official name of the region is Macau Special Administrative Region of the People’s Republic of China.
According to wholevehicles, Macau is the most populous place in the world. Almost 600,000 people live in the region’s only thirty square kilometers (figures from 2012) and this number is still growing. The population of Macau is mainly Han Chinese. The Portuguese who lived in this region left the region after the return to China. Mostly out of fear of the communist regime of China. The free places this created were soon taken by Chinese from Hong Kong who come here in large numbers to look for work.
Macau’s main sources of income are tourism and casinos. More than twenty million tourists come here every year, mainly for the many casinos. In addition to the traditional casinos that can be found here, more and more branches of the large casinos in Las Vegas are establishing here.
Macau in itself is actually one big attraction. Throughout the city you can still feel the former colonial influence of Portugal and you also have typical Chinese culture. This whole is covered by the neon light of the casinos, which makes for a very special combination. Most tourists come to Macau for the casinos. These will not be disappointed here. Especially the Cortai strip, named after the strip in Las Vegas, on the artificial island of Cortai is popular with the players. However, this is not the only place where you can find casinos, you will also find several casinos on the Macau peninsula. The hideous skyscraper Gran Lisboa can also be found here.
Those who want more than just visiting the casinos can visit one of the museums in the region. The Maritime Museum and the Macau Museum are among the most popular museums in the region. In the old center of the city are the old ruins of the Saint Paul’s Cathedral built in 1602. The remains of this cathedral are known here as the Ruinas de São Paulo. Rua de Palha and Rua de San Paulo are Macau’s most popular shopping streets.
One of the oldest buildings in the city is the A-ma Temple. This temple was built at the end of the fifteenth century for the patron saint of sailors and fishermen. According to some sources, the Macau region got its name from this temple.
Macau has one inscription on the UNESCO World Heritage List. Its official inscription is ‘Historic Center of Macau’ and has been on the list since 2005. It’s included on the list because Macau’s Old Town is a special mix of European and Asian culture. In the center of Macau there is still an old Portuguese fortress and the oldest lighthouse in China. It is above all the unique combination of the Portuguese colonial influence and the old Chinese traditions that make Macau’s inner city so special. This part of Macau is a great contrast to the newer parts of the city.
Macau has a warm maritime climate that in the summer months is very similar to the tropical monsoon climate due to the large amounts of precipitation that fall there. However, the temperatures are too low for this and the precipitation figures in the winter months are too low. However, this does not alter the fact that the climate in Macau is very similar to the tropical monsoon climate. The high precipitation figures combined with the high temperatures ensure high humidity in Macau. On the hottest days of the year it is only pleasant here in the vicinity of an air conditioner.
In the winter months it is a lot more pleasant here, these are generally the best times to visit Macau. In the evening and night it can cool down considerably here, but temperatures below ten degrees Celsius are rare here.
From April to November you have a chance of tropical storms and hurricanes. However, these rarely come ashore in Macau, but you should take them into account.
Macau originally consisted of one peninsula and two islands in the South China Sea. Because there was an increasing need for more land, a third island, Cotai, was built between the two original islands of Taipa and Coloane. This island connects the three islands, creating one large island. Macau International Airport is located off the coast of this island. The Macau Peninsula is the namesake of this region and this is where the old part of Macau can be found. The peninsula and the islands of Macau are connected by several bridges. In all, Macau is only thirty square kilometers in size.
To the north, Macau borders the Chinese city of Zhuhai. The Coloane Alto hill on the island of Coloane is the highest natural point in the region at 172 meters high. The Macau Tower is the tallest in Macau at 338 meters. There are no rivers in Macau, but there are a number of natural lakes and some man-made lakes.
There are no special security risks for a visit to Macau. The region is generally seen as safe and crime rates are very low. Tropical storms and hurricanes can occur here from April to November. However, it is rare for a tropical storm to swell to hurricane strength here. However, the risk is always present during this period.
There are no mandatory vaccinations for a visit to Macau. Only if you have been to a yellow fever area in the seven days before arrival should you have taken the necessary vaccinations.
To be able to visit Macau you must be in possession of a valid passport that is valid for at least six months after departure. A visa is not necessary. Upon arrival in Macau, you must fill out an Arrival Card with your personal details and the place where you are staying in Macau. At passport control you will receive one part of this paper yourself. Keep this well because you will need this paper again if you want to leave Macau.
|Phone (country code)
|Portuguese, Standard Mandarin and Standard Cantonese
|Portuguese, Standard Mandarin, Standard Cantonese and several other Chinese dialects
|Time difference summer
|In Macau it is 6 hours later than in the Netherlands
|Time difference winter
|In Macau it is 7 hours later than in the Netherlands
|Daylight Saving Time Control