Macau is mainly known as ‘Vegas of China.’ It is the Special Administrative Region of Chinese people, and you will get there from Hong Kong in only an hour by ferry. Macau was colonized by the Portuguese, and it has a mixture of both the new and the old. You will find shiny towering casinos, gorgeous Portuguese houses and old streets that are paved with awesome looking tiles. Macau is a must visit when taking a trip to Asia. Below are tips to help you when touring Macau, check out all the best things to do in Macau.
Where To Stay In Macau
The places to stay in Macau will depend on the various sites you want to visit during your trip. Some of the most famous attractions for tourists in Macau like Senado Square and Ruins of St Paul’s are situated in Macau Peninsula which is among Macau’s older areas. There are magnificent hotels here to get accommodation like Hard Rock, Galaxy, Studio City, City of Dreams and The Venetian situated at Cotai.
If you are on a budget and you want some more convenient and cheaper hotels, then you can get them to Macau Peninsula. Some of these hotels are Metropole Hotel situated next to Senado Square, Golden Dragon located near Outer Habour Ferry Terminal and Hotel Sintra situated near Grand Lisboa and Macau Central.
Currency To Use In Macau
Tourists can use two currencies in Macau. They have their currency known as MOP (Macanese Patacas), or you can use the HKD (Hong Kong Dollars). The HKD can pay for almost everything in Macau like when playing in the casinos, buying tickets for museums, ferry tickets, paying taxis, paying for meals and also in hotels. This means that you do not have to exchange the money to MOP if you have HKD.
The ration of exchanging an HKD to an MOP is almost 1:1 and the difference is insignificant. The HKD and MOP are used interchangeably at Macau. You can make a payment in MOP and be given your change in HKD. You can however request the seller to give the HKD as change if you do not want the MOP currency. If you do not want to get the MOP, then it is advisable not to use big HKD currencies when shopping in smaller shops since they may not have the sufficient HKD currency with them.
Traveling From And To Macau
Traveling By Ferry To Macau
Tourists traveling from Hong Kong to Macau go by ferry. For instance, they can use the Hong Kong Tsui-Macau Terminal located at Sheung Wan, Hong Kong SkyPier situated at the Hong Kong airport or Hong Kong-China terminal situated at Tsim Sha Tsui. You can also use any other terminal that neighbors the China Ports like Zhuhai or Shekou.
- You can buy your tickets on the day of the travel at the terminal. Some of the Ferry routes such as Hong Kong – Macau are famous, and thus they have ferries departing in every hour.
- It will be prudent if you check to find out if any events are happening in Macau that might increase tourists visiting Macau. This way you will know if it is better to get tickets in advance or at the terminal when traveling. At times when there are events in Macau like Grand Prix, it may be chaotic to buy the tickets at the terminal, and you may even risk missing the flight or lacking a seat at the ferry.
- If you have bought a ticket for a particular time, you are allowed to travel with an earlier ferry. All you need to do is to request the operator of the ferry if there is any available seat.
Traveling By Flight To Macau
One can also take a flight to Macau for those who love traveling by air. Look for an airline that goes to Macau such as Korean Air, Air China, EVA Air, Cebu Pacific, Tigerair and Thai Air Asia will take you right to their airport.
- When coming from Macau and you wish to take a plane at Hong Kong Airport, one can travel by ferry to the SkyPier ferry terminal at the international airport. One, however, needs to ensure that the airline they are using has a counter either at HK airport SkyPier terminal or the ferry terminal.
- You will find the ferries to Hong Kong airport at both ferry terminals in Macau. They, however, don’t dispatch so frequently like the ones at Tsim Sha Tsui and Sheung Wan ferry terminals. Enquire from the operator of the ferry if they have your preferred timing and make an online booking in advance.
Traveling By Bus To Macau
It is also possible to get to Macau by bus from Shenzhen, Dongguan, Zhongshan, Guangzhou, and Zhuhai. These buses will take you to Gongbei Border Gate. Here you will get several free hotel vehicles to the major areas of Macau, but you need to be in line with the customs of the area.
Free Transport To Macau
This is an area where you will get shuttle services for free especially when going to main tourist spots. Most of these free shuttles are offered by hotels. The big hotels especially those with casinos offer free and frequent transport to the hotel. Small hotels and the ones with no casinos may not offer free transport, or it may be less frequent. The amazing thing is that you do not need to stay in a hotel to use their free shuttle services for no one will ask you. The aim of these hotels that offer the free transportation is to get tourists close to their casinos.
If the hotel you are staying in does not have the services of free shuttles, inquire about a nearby hotel that has the services and travel by their bus. Some grand hotels in Macau such as Grand Lisboa, Galaxy, The Venetianso, Wynn, and Sands can be very expensive, and thus most people prefer to get accommodation from a cheaper hotel which is near the big ones with casinos.
You will find a variety of the shuttles carrying for free at Gongbei Border Gate and Outer Harbour Ferry Terminal in Macau. You can also find the free shuttles at Taipa Temporary Ferry Terminal and Macau airport, but they are not many.
Signing Up For Free Casino Membership
Casinos happen to be Macau’s major attraction. It will be prudent to sign for a free membership in casinos if you want to enjoy going for casino hopping. You will be required to provide your passport when registering as a member and thus you should not forget to carry it. There are so many advantages you get from having a casino membership. For instance you can get lucky draws where earn points when playing in the casino or win a free room accommodation. You can use the redeem points earned when playing in casinos to get free gifts and you can also get discounts at the restaurant of the hotel. One will also be able to watch the various hotel deals given to members especially if you will visit Macau again.