November of 2010, if my memory serves me right, Me and my family went and used our booked flight going to Macau. I never really expected anything when we left. I didn’t even know what to wear and what to see there. So a couple of days before we went there, I did a little research about the place and poof! 1 term stood out, Las Vegas of Asia, so I imagined, lights, gambling and night life. Was it all that I expected? Well, not really, it was heck more!
Arriving at Macau was one of the first reasons that my new passport (one that does not have my baby picture in it!) was stamped! and I felt ecstatic. No visa is needed when entering Macau (for Philippines), you just need your passport. Although most of the tourists who visit the place usually make it a side trip from when they arrive in Hongkong since its only a ferry boat away. We opted for a solo trip tour in Macau and nevertheless, it was still worth it.
For one, we had —I tell you!– the best Hotel accommodation. When we booked our flight, we also booked for a tour since we were not very familiar with the country. We were in a group tour and I don’t know how my mom booked us our hotel, but it was truly a blessing. Hotel Sintra is a really simple yet beyond excellent hotel to stay when in Macau. It is not very pricey but the location and the food is your best catch. As our tour master (I forgot the name) said, it is very accessible to the very places that tourists would like to visit when in Macau. The food is also REALLY great. Simple but their breakfast buffet is to die for! So moving on, the strategic location of the hotel is a walking distance from the different Casino attractions. The Grand Lisboa, known for the Lotus design building, the New Yaon which is a great high end shopping mall, only 15 minutes from the airport and, with its central location, you can walk around all you want to nearby attractions and casinos. It was really lucky for us to book there for our whole stay. It was an excellent choice.
Another thing to love about Macau is the transportation. They have taxis but their public train and their bus rides to various casinos is what makes it even better. They have organized public train (well, it was more like a bus that looks like a train really!) and you get to ride their Casino buses for FREE! crazy really! You get to visit the Venetian Hotel, Wynn Hotel, MGM, and all others, for free! Who wouldn’t be happy with that?! Speaking of the Venetian Hotel, that is one of the most humongous hotel/casino I have ever seen. The structure itself is Portuguese-medieval inspired. And for all those Asian peeps out there, do you remember Jun Piyo of the Boys over Flowers (Korean version of the hit F4)? There was a scene there where Jun Piyo and Jandi met in Macau, that heartbreaking scene at the Venetian right on the bridge? I stepped on that bridge and well, I was like a little girl asking my mom for a new candy bar when I saw it. It was that silly! On top of that? Who would have thought that you can ride a Gondola without having to visit Venice at all? You can find it and enjoy it at the Venetian hotel in Macau.
Another notable place in Macau is the Senado Square. This is the place to shop. From branded to local favorites, you will find it here. The place is usually packed but you will not be sorry you visited! There are also food restaurants and Fast food chains so you won’t worry about food. Oh, before i forget, you should also know that Macau accepts both Macau dollar and Hongkong dollar. But Hongkong does not accept Macau dollar. You might wonder that sometimes they give you a mix of Hongkong and Macau dollar as change, that is normal. Going back, another place is the St. Paul Ruins. Its an old church ruin that has been preserved over the years and sits atop a small hill. you have to go up a long flight of stairs in order to get there. The view up there was exceptional so we couldn’t miss it!
If you were to ask me about souvenirs and anything to bring home, well, of course Macau would not miss something like this. Most of the note worthy things to buy locally are actually the various local delicacies. They are very generous when it comes to taste testing there so you will know which ones are good! Spicy beef Jerky is one of my favorite there and their local Portuguese egg pie. Last on my list you should not miss when in Macau, that I unfortunately did not have the chance to try, is the bungee jump at Macau tower. It is said to be one of the highest towers for bungee, so for those who are adventurers at heart, might want to try it!
To end this escape, I would like to say that Macau is an exceptional place. That certain place where you can walk the clean streets and enjoy the cold air. A place that I surely would like to come back.