Tips and Useful Information
Macau might sound like a difficult place to go for a trip since the place is too culturally foreign especially for Western visitors. However, guests do not need to be worried. Macau is famous for being a blend of Portuguese and Chinese culture, which is evident in their architectural styles, food and even mannerisms. It is more than evident that the overall appearance of Macau is of both oriental and Mediterranean in nature. As one of the world class tourist spots in Asia, there are more than enough choices of hotels, resorts and restaurants to warrant multiple visits to this magnificent region. It is best to know which place to go to first and how to avoid being dragged into a tourist trap.
The amount of wonder in this city is absolutely fascinating. The major part of Macau’s tourism isn’t just their world-class resorts and hotels; it’s also their cultural heritage, refined colonial architecture and graceful glitz. With so many options available, you could easily make a mistake in your trip without the proper know-how. Due to Macau's unique history, what awaits you in Macau is something that you will never see anywhere else. Also, with these following tips, you will be able to find your travel to Macau significantly more convenient and frugal.
going to macau
There are two main ferry terminals in Macau—Outer Harbour Ferry Terminal located at Macau Peninsula and Taipa Temporary Ferry Terminal at Taipa.
If you are traveling from Hong Kong, you may take the ferry to Macau through the following terminals:
The ferries are run by two different companies, Turbo Jet and Cotai Water Jet. Both of these run regular services, usually taking less than an hour to reach Macau.
Three options when buying tickets
Usually, it is fine to buy ferry tickets directly at the ferry terminals(on the day of travel) as some ferry route; especially the Hong Kong to Macau trips, are so popular that the ferries set off every hour. However, it would be best to do a quick check to see if there are any events happening in Macau that may increase the influx of tourists. This would mean long queues at the terminal and possibility of full sailings. For example, Going to Macau during the Grand Prix and making the mistake of not buying the ferry tickets online in advance.
You may also board an earlier ferry, if you wish, after you have purchased your ticket with an allocated time. All you need to do is to ask the ferry operator about the seat availability.
Many different airlines provide their services to Macau. Some airlines that fly to Macau include the following:
Airports in Macau:
There are also several nearby airports than you can fly into to conveniently get to Macau:
Macau also has a helicopter service to and from Hong Kong and Shenzhen. It departs from the Macau Ferry Terminal. The travel time is around fifteen minutes.
BY BUS AND/OR TRAIN
From mainland China, the two main ways to enter Macau are: either through the bus at the border checkpoint or the taxi to the Hengqin border checkpoint on Hengqin Island. This is typically faster than Gongbei, but is more difficult to get to.
Most visitors go through the border checkpoint located in Zhuhai’s Gongbei district. This is also very convenient, though it can become very busy during peak hours. Once you are finished arranging your documents on both Chinese and Macau customs, you can catch a free shuttle bus to your hotel.
Though with fewer number of operating free shuttles, it pays to take note that there are also free-ride services at Macau International Airport and Taipa Temporary Ferry Terminal. For more variety of free shuttles, check out Macau’s Outer Harbour Ferry Terminal and Gongbei Border Gate.
Traveling via Taxi
Macau’s taxis come in two color schemes: one is yellow and the other is black and cream. Both colored taxis charge the same fees, so do not worry about any difference in prices. Taxis stands are located near hotel lobbies.
For the base price or the charging standard (upon the first 1.6 km), the fare starts at 17 MOP$. 2 MOP$ is added for every 260 meters. As for the other extra fees, take note of the following:
Traveling via Public Bus
Public buses in Macau are generally comfortable. There are screens available displaying the name of the next bus stop and announcements in English, Portuguese, Cantonese, and Mandarin — convenient and cool feature to cater for every traveler.
For a more ideal travel experience, download the MacauMap app. Why? Because it is equipped not just with a map, but also with a directory of all the bus lines, which makes everything easier for wanderers. If you opt to use Google Maps, hover at the nearest bus station and it will display the bus lines that will stop at that station.
Fares are also cheaper if you have a MacauPass. The MacauPass is an electronic pre-paid travel card that you can hover above the reader upon boarding.
You can also pay in cash, but make sure you have the exact amount. Buses have a strict NO CHANGE policy. To pay in cash, just drop your coins into a box right after the entrance beside the driver.
The “Open Top Bus Tour” is Macau’s hop-on-hop-off sightseeing bus which stops at sixteen of the city’s key tourist attractions. This bus operates from 9:30AM to 4:15PM. Moreover, personal guided commentary in English or Mandarin as well as headphones are provided. Insurance is also included. To use this bus, you need an unlimited one-day pass which costs HKD 125. For more information regarding the tour, visit the official Macau tourism website.
Going Around The CIty
Below are some of the most popular fine-dining places in Macau:
Going out in the night
Macau becomes an international nightlife destination with venues for every budget, mood, and need during the night. From small bars to enormous clubs! Macau is quietly evolving into a nightlife destination to match other major cities around Asia.
The best time to visit Macau is between October and December, when the weather and temperature is most comfortable. The summer months often bring stifling temperatures, and most people tend to stay indoors in the cool air-conditioning because outside, you just sweat buckets! Macau has a moderate to hot climate; humidity is also generally high. Typhoons are possible from May to September.
Spring in Macau (March to May) is a typical oceanic monsoon climate with a mild March, rainy April, and humid May. It most likely rains, making May the wettest month of the year.
The changeable weather in spring will cause few sunny days while few rainy days later. An umbrella is most necessary during this season.
Clothes to pack: A light sweater and a light coat is generally enough. You will need summer clothing such as a T-shirt as it could get hot .
Summer in Macau (June to August) generally has high temperatures, a humid climate with summer showers and occasional typhoons and thunderstorms.
Clothes to pack: Summer clothes such as T-Shirts and shorts must be included in your luggage. Swimming in the sea and having a leisure day on the beaches can be recommended activities in Macau, so bring swimwear too.
Autumn in Macau (September to December) is the best time to travel to Macau. Bright sky and cool temperature with rare typhoon weather make tourists have a joyful Macau tour in this period.
Clothes to pack: Besides summer clothes such as T-Shirt and shorts, a sweater for evenings is needed especially towards the end of the autumn.
Autumn is the best time for outdoor activities and for strolls around the city.
Winter in Macau (January to February) is not a harsh cold season. Snow is unheard of in Macau, and frost occurs only once or twice a year.
December is peak travel time for Macau, the 20th of December is an important day for people from Macau to return to the motherland. Many celebrations and activities fill this day. Because it is also Christmas period, you will also enjoy the festival atmosphere in the city.
Clothes to pack: Bring a sweater, a light jacket, or a coat for evenings. Gloves and scarves are only needed for those more susceptible to the cold.
Before you travel