Macau is a captivating region of China that many people are choosing as their next travel destination, and it’s not hard to see why. The area is rich with culture, combining mind-bending architecture with enchanting spectacles—like the annual Macau Grand Prix—alongside truly delicious local cuisine. If you’re in China for any extended period of time, it’s worth it to spend 3 days in Macau!
The city’s interesting history has created a unique blend of Asian and European cultures all in one place, making Macau a fascinating goal on any traveller’s list. The cuisine is to die for, the city’s design is impressive and the nightlife second to none; many now prefer Macau to the bright lights and seedy undertone of the USA’s Sin City. Whilst Macau is less raucous than its American counterpart, it makes up for it with opulence, luxury and class instead.
When to Visit
Before booking your trip to Macau, it is wise to consider just what you’d like to see and do whilst you’re there – since you only have a 3 day itinerary. The climate in this part of the world is subtropical, meaning that if you can’t handle the heat, it’s probably best to visit during the cooler months of October to May. However, if you crave temperatures above 30°C and don’t mind 95% humidity, then the rest of the year will be ideal for you, with the rainy season lasting May to October.
Macau is easily walkable in most areas, so bear this in mind when considering which weather conditions you’d be comfortable with; nobody wants to have to retreat into the nearest air-conditioned store every five minutes just to survive.
There are also plenty of events that happen at certain times of year, like the Lunar Chinese New Year, the Dragon Boat Festival and the Winter Solstice. So, if any of these are on your to-do list, make sure your visit coincides with the planned festivities.
Where to Stay
Once you’ve decided when to jet out, it’s time to choose a place to stay during your 3 days in Macau. Macau caters to all tastes, interests and budgets, so whether you want 5-star luxury (like that found in the incredible Venetian Macao) or accommodation on a shoestring (like the midweek deals available in the old town’s Sofitel), you’re sure to find the perfect match.
Old Macau is the place to be for history buffs who like to soak in the landmarks and heritage of a place; parts of the old town date all the way back to the 16th century, and the entire centre is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Cotai, however, couldn’t be more different. Located to the south of the region, it hosts Macau’s famous super-casinos, designer shopping centres and lively nightlife, and it is made up of brand-new buildings.
What to Do
The number one first thing to do when you get to Macau is: eat! Macau’s blend of Chinese and Portuguese culture has resulted in some truly tasty culinary treats. At the top of your list should be the Portuguese egg tart, called pasteis de nata back in Portugal; this delightful little concoction of custard and pastry will tickle even the least adventurous of taste buds. For the more savoury palate, there is tacho (a type of stew) or minchi (minced meat with diced potato and Worcester sauce).
After making sure you’re well-fed, it’s time to visit some of Macau’s most impressive landmarks. The ruins of St. Paul’s date back to the 16th century and include the remains of St. Paul’s College and the Cathedral of St. Paul’s; the ruins are one of the most popular tourist attractions in the area, but they’re well worth a visit.
There’s also the A-Ma Temple, dedicated to the goddess Mazu, whom Macau was originally named after. This structure is built in the traditional Chinese style and has been beautifully preserved since it was built in the 15th century.
Next, it’s time to hit the strip—the Cotai strip, that is. This collection of modern, extravagant resorts has everything you could ever need for entertainment; you can check out the ever-popular casinos, the massive shopping centres, the specially-built attractions (Miniature Eiffel Tower, anyone?) and the top-notch eateries, many of which are under one roof. This is entertainment on a staggering scale and needs to be seen to be believed.
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