Hailed as the “Gambling Capital of the World,” Macau is a remarkable city located in China’s southern coastal area, approximately 37 miles west of Hong Kong. It’s known for having gigantic casinos, luxurious poker rooms and extravagant malls – but that’s only one part of this little city, and there’s so much more to see!
Millions of visitors come each year to explore the city’s rich culture and heritage, as well as the gaming. According to Statista, 7.7 million people visited Macau in 2021. If you’re planning to visit this amazing city, we’ve put together a guide of some things you’ll want to know before arriving.
What You Need to Know
1. Macau Visas
Generally, if you plan to visit as a tourist for less than 30 days, you won’t need a visa. This holds true, so long as you are a citizen of 66 countries, including the US and Canada. If you’re from other countries, the length of stay can vary from seven days up to one year. Before visiting Macau, make sure you check how long travelers from your country are permitted to stay.
Macau has two official languages: Cantonese and Portuguese. About 87.5% of the population speaks Cantonese, and only about 2.3% speak Portuguese. If you’re worried about how to get around, don’t fret! Macau is a major tourist destination, so English is also widely spoken around tourist areas.
Where To Go
1. Wynn Palace
Macau is renowned for its world-class casinos and if you’re looking for the epitome of luxury, make sure you visit Wynn Palace. This hotel has 1,706 beautifully furnished rooms, suites and villas. The casino has more than 1,000 slot machines and 350 live gaming tables that offer blackjack, roulette, and variations of poker. If you want to go shopping, there are more than 50 high-end labels to choose from, including Chanel, Gucci, and Cartier. For an amazing fine dining experience, make reservations at SW Steakhouse or Sushi Mizumi, and you’ll have your palate blown away!
2. St. Paul’s Ruins
Whilst Macau is known for casinos, such as the one we’ve just mentioned, it’s also an area rich in culture. One of the best things to do in Macau after a poker game is to visit St. Paul’s Ruins, which is famous for its 17th-century Catholic religious complex and is a relic of the city. The location originally held St. Paul’s College and the Church of St. Paul which was constructed from 1602 to 1640 by Jesuit priests. Today, only some parts of the ancient Spanish-style church remain, which makes it a popular attraction for tourists. After exploring St. Paul’s Ruins, tourists can enjoy walking through little shops or dining at restaurants in the area.
3. Macau Tower
Just as popular as St. Paul’s Ruins, the Macau Tower is the most notable structure of the Macau skyline. At the pinnacle of the tower, tourists can look out into the city from an observation deck with panoramic views of the Macau peninsula. After taking photos, there are shops to buy souvenirs from and restaurants to dine at. If you feel like going for a walk, you can take an outdoor stroll around the outer rim of the tower — at 764 feet up in the air! There is no place in the city like the Macau Tower.
Macau has something to offer every type of tourist – from shopping, poker, thrilling experiences to cultural immersions. No wonder it attracts millions of tourists each year!
We hope you’ve enjoyed learning a bit more about Macau, and for more articles like this one, please check out our guide to Torri Superiore, Italy.