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Macau

macau

Die chinesische Sonderverwaltungszone Macau ist, seit der Rückgabe der Stadt von Portugal an China, aus ihrem Dornröschenschlaf erwacht. Dort wo in den. Jan. Macau ist die perfekte Synthese aus China und Portugal. Kurzbesuche sind visumfrei. Hier unsere Tipps für 2 Tage Kultur, Sightseeing und. Im Süden der Peninsula Macau findet man den A-Ma Tempel in der Rua de Sao, der die Göttin Tin Hau ehrt. Der A-Ma Tempel ist der nicht nur der älteste. Wer Durian kauft, sollte wissen, dass die stacheligen Riesenfrüchte aufgrund ihrer starken Geruchsentwicklung in vielen Hotels verboten sind. Das kantonesische Restaurant wird vor allem für seine herausragenden Dim Sum bekannt. Big and very comfortable beds. Sie sind jetzt angemeldet. Öffentliche Verkehrsmittel und Taxis kosten in beiden Sonderverwaltungszonen etwa gleich viel. Die schnellen Fähren fahren etwa alle 15 Minuten und benötigen ungefähr 50 Minuten ab Ähnlich wie Hongkong lässt sich auch Macau der subtropischen Klimazone zurechnen. Ein Restaurant mit Aussicht aufs Wasserspiel, das man vom Vegas kennt. Es kommt gelegentlich vor, dass jemanden die Geldbörse geklaut wird, lang nicht so oft wie in Zhuhai, wo dies ein richtiger Volkssport ist. Beim Verteilen von Visitenkarten beachten Sie bitte, dass diese grundsätzlich mit beiden Händen übergeben und auch mit beiden Händen entgegengenommen werden.

The economy since then has continued to prosper with the sustained growth of tourism from mainland China and the construction of new casinos.

The government in Macau is headed by the Chief Executive of Macau , who is appointed by the central government upon the recommendation of an election committee, whose three hundred members are nominated by corporate and community bodies.

The recommendation is made by an election within the committee. Fernando Chui is the current Chief Executive. The legislative organ of the territory is the Legislative Assembly , a member body comprising 14 directly elected members, 12 indirectly elected members representing functional constituencies and seven members appointed by the chief executive.

In February , the Legislative Assembly passed the Macau national security law based on a withdrawn security legislation previously introduced in Hong Kong.

The original framework of the legal system, based largely on the Law of Portugal , the Portuguese civil law system, was preserved after Judges are selected by a committee and appointed by the chief executive.

Foreign judges may serve on the courts. The legal system of Macau is essentially based on the model of Portuguese law , and is thus part of the family of continental legal systems Roman-Germanic.

Following the transition, major reforms in the legal system continued, such as the use of Chinese language in courts and legislations.

At present, they are eleven and deal with matters not included in the autonomy of the Special Administrative Region, such as national defense and external relations.

The gambling sector, being a fundamental economic activity for Macau, is subject to a very developed regulation, thus having a good and developed right of the game.

There is no death penalty or life imprisonment in Macau, as they are not covered by the Macau Criminal Code. Under Portuguese rule, Macau often served as an expeditionary base to Japan and other regions of East Asia from the 16th century onwards, while maintaining a strong garrison mainly to repel Dutch and mainland Chinese attacks.

However, since the allied British settled Hong Kong, the need for a strong military presence in Macau dimmed and it became limited before ceasing in However, despite having no Portuguese garrison left on the territory, a small security force managed by the local PSP was kept, which proved useful with the escalating triad warfare tensions towards the last decades of Portuguese administration.

Also the Capitania dos Portos kept operating a coast guard and the Portuguese airforce kept airfields active until the opening of Macau International Airport in the mids.

The garrison remains, with a large portion of the forces stationed in neighbouring Zhuhai as well. Except diplomatic relations and defence, nonetheless, Macau has retained considerable autonomy in all aspects, including economic and commercial relations, customs control.

In addition, Macau can participate in international organizations and conferences not limited to states. Macau is divided into 8 parishes.

View of Taipa from Science Center. Macau Peninsula was originally an island, but a connecting sandbar gradually turned into a narrow isthmus.

Land reclamation in the 17th century transformed Macau into a peninsula with generally flat terrain, though numerous steep hills still mark the original land mass.

The average annual temperature of Macau is The coolest month is January, with a mean temperature of However, winter is mostly dry due to the influence of the vast Siberian High affecting much of East Asia.

Autumn in Macau, from October to November, is sunny and still pleasantly warm with lower humidity. Humidity starts to increase from late March.

The hot weather is often followed by heavy rain, thunderstorms and occasional typhoons. Other chief economic activities in Macau are export-geared textile and garment manufacturing, banking and other financial services.

Macau is a founding member of the WTO and has maintained sound economic and trade relations with more than countries and regions, with European Union and Portuguese-speaking countries in particular; Macau is also a member of the IMF.

After the Handover , China eased travel restrictions and visits from the mainland rose rapidly. In a World Tourism Organization report of international tourism for , Macau ranked 21st in the number of tourists and 24th in terms of tourism receipts.

The monopoly ended in and several casino owners from Las Vegas attempted to enter the market. Reasons for this fall of revenue are related to the slowdown that the Chinese economy is having and a corruption crackdown by Chinese officials which has constrained lavish spending.

Today, there are 16 casinos operated by the STDM, and they are still crucial in the casino industry in Macau, but in , the opening of the Sands Macao ushered in the new era.

The number of performances performed in Macau has also shown an increasing trend since the early s, including the show House of Dancing Water , [92] concerts, industry trade shows and international art crossovers.

Macau is an offshore financial centre , a tax haven , and a free port with no foreign exchange control regimes. As prescribed by the Macau Basic Law , the government follows the principle of keeping expenditure within the limits of revenues in drawing up its budget, and strives to achieve a fiscal balance , avoid deficits and keep the budget commensurate with the growth rate of its gross domestic product.

In , the pataca was introduced in both Macau and Portuguese Timor as a unit of account for the Mexican dollar and the other silver dollar coins in circulation.

However, the pataca was not the official currency when it was first enacted. From to , fractional coins of the pataca were minted for issue in Portuguese Timor; and, in , similar issues were minted for Macau including an actual pataca coin for the first time.

Macau is the most densely populated region in the world, [] with a population density of 21, The growth of population in Macau mainly relies on immigrants from mainland China and the influx of overseas workers since its birth rate is one of the lowest in the world.

By the Macau government was publishing English language documents, and beginning in the Macau Government Information Bureau GCS has been releasing several portions of its policy address in the English language.

Andrew Moody, an associate professor of the University of Macau , argued in his essay "Macau English: Since Macau has an economy driven by tourism, Some also claim that the problem of illegal labour is severe.

It is higher than those of neighbouring regions, such as mainland China 0. Macau residents are endowed with considerable religious tolerance and freedom.

Most Chinese in Macau are profoundly influenced by their own tradition and culture. While most are not religiously affiliated, many take part in Chinese folk religion Taoism and Confucianism.

A fifteen-year free education is currently being offered to residents, that includes a three-year kindergarten, followed by a six-year primary education and a six-year secondary education.

The literacy rate of the territory is Macau does not have its own region-wide education system; non-tertiary schools follow either the British, the Chinese, Portuguese, or the Canadian education system.

There are currently 10 tertiary educational institutions in the region, four of them being public. According to the by-census, among the resident population aged 14 and above, only As prescribed by the Macau Basic Law Chapter VI Article , the Government of Macau shall, on its own, formulate policies on education, including policies regarding the educational system and its administration, the language of instruction, the allocation of funds, the examination system, the recognition of educational qualifications, and the system of academic awards so as to promote educational development.

The government shall also in accordance with law, gradually institute a compulsory education system. Community organizations and individuals may, in accordance with law, run educational undertakings of various kinds.

Macau is served by one major public hospital, the Hospital Conde S. In addition to hospitals, Macau also has numerous health centres providing free basic medical care to residents.

Consultation in traditional Chinese medicine is also available. None of the Macau hospitals are independently assessed through international healthcare accreditation.

There are no western-style medical schools in Macau, and thus all aspiring physicians in Macau have to obtain their education and qualification elsewhere.

The Macau Corps of Firefighters Portuguese: The Macau Red Cross also operates ambulances Toyota HiAce vans for emergency and non-emergencies to local hospitals with volunteer staff.

The organization has a total of uniformed firefighters and paramedics serving from 7 stations in Macau. The Health Bureau in Macau is mainly responsible for coordinating the activities between the public and private organizations in the area of public health , and assure the health of citizens through specialized and primary health care services, as well as disease prevention and health promotion.

It also handles the organization of care and prevention of diseases affecting the population, sets guidelines for hospitals and private healthcare providers, and issues licences.

As of [update] Macau healthcare authorities send patients to Queen Mary Hospital in Hong Kong in instances where the local Macau hospitals are not equipped to deal with their scenarios, and many Macau residents intentionally seek healthcare in Hong Kong because they place more trust in Hong Kong doctors than in Mainland-trained doctors operating in Macau.

In Macau, traffic drives on the left , unlike in either mainland China or Portugal, but like neighbouring Hong Kong. Buses and taxis are the major modes of public transport in Macau.

Macau has two public bus operators: Transmac and Transportes Coletivos de Macau, which operate routes covering most of the city, making it the best public transport for traveling inside Macau and its islands.

Free Casino Shuttle Buses are everywhere in Macau. Due to tourism being the main economic industry in Macau a majority of the larger hotels provide free round trip shuttle bus services which cover the major tourist sites including the airport, Outer Harbour Ferry Terminal, Taipa Temporary Ferry Terminal and other sites.

Some larger hotels such as Venetian Hotel and Holiday Inn even provide a free shuttle between them. The frequency for each route is usually 15 minutes.

The taxi system is noted for having a notoriously poor reputation among tourists and even locals. Common complaints include "constant overcharging, refusal of passengers when the destination or passenger type does not suit the driver, circuitous routes and even violent behaviour".

It is planned to open in Macau has one active international airport, known as Macau International Airport located at the eastern end of Taipa and neighbouring waters.

The airport used to serve as one of the main transit hubs for passengers travelling between mainland China and Taiwan , but now with the introduction of direct flights between those two regions, passenger traffic in this regard has lessened.

In , the airport handled about 5 million passengers. The mixing of the Chinese and Portuguese cultures and religious traditions for more than four centuries has left Macau with an inimitable collection of holidays, festivals and events.

The biggest event of the year is the Macau Grand Prix in November, [] when the main streets in Macau Peninsula are converted to a racetrack bearing similarities with the Monaco Grand Prix.

The Lunar Chinese New Year is the most important traditional festival and celebration normally takes place in late January or early February.

All events and festivities of the year end with Winter Solstice in December. Macau preserves many historical properties in the urban area.

Local cooking in Macau consists of a blend of Cantonese and Portuguese cuisines. Many unique dishes resulted from the spice blends that the wives of Portuguese sailors used in an attempt to replicate European dishes.

Pork chop bun , ginger milk and Portuguese-style egg tart are also very popular in Macau. In general, football soccer has the greatest popularity in Macau, which has a representative international side, the Macau national football team.

Another common sport is rink hockey , which is often practised by the Portuguese. Macau also has a basketball team , which qualified for the Asian Basketball Championship twice.

The automobile racing event Macau Grand Prix is arguably the most important international sporting event in Macau, mainly with Formula 3 , motorcycle road racing and touring car races.

The racecourse has a 15,seat grandstand. Macau is twinned with: Administrative divisions of the Republic of China instead. From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.

Special Administrative Region of China. For other uses of "Macau" or "Macao", see Macau disambiguation.

Show map of China. Cantonese a Portuguese b. Traditional Chinese b Portuguese orthography English orthography de facto.

Portuguese shares equal status with Chinese in all official proceedings. The government of Macau calculates its own HDI.

Legal system of Macau. Foreign relations of Macau. View of the old city in Macau with tenement housing in the foreground. Economy of Macau and Gambling in Macau.

Sands Casino , Macau. Governador Nobre de Carvalho Bridge, Macau. Demographics of Macau and Macau people.

List of hospitals in Macau. Macau Security Force and Macao Garrison. Public Security Police Force of Macau. Corpo de Bombeiros de Macau. Commission Against Corruption Macau.

Clockwise from top right: Na Tcha Temple , Macau. This section does not cite any sources. Please help improve this section by adding citations to reliable sources.

Unsourced material may be challenged and removed. December Learn how and when to remove this template message.

Macau portal China portal Asia portal Geography portal. Retrieved 15 September — via Google Books. Archived from the original on 3 January Retrieved 1 January Statistics and Census Service.

Archived from the original on 30 December Retrieved 3 January Archived from the original on 12 September The New York Times.

Retrieved 5 July Archived from the original on 30 July Archived from the original on 10 June Archived from the original on 3 May Archived from the original on 20 January Retrieved 12 March Archived from the original on 6 October Retrieved 15 September Archived from the original on 6 September Retrieved 8 September An examination of early Portuguese and Western archival materials.

Archived from the original on 13 October Retrieved 2 January Dictionary of dates, and universal reference. China was given to the Portuguese as a commercial station in in return for their assistance against pirates , subject to an annual tribute, which was remitted in Here Camoens composed part of the "Lusiad.

The Chinese were obliged to restrict the commerce of Portugal to the port of Macau, in A partnership was then formed with some Chinese dealers in Canton, who were to furnish exports and take delivery of imports at Macau.

This scheme did not suit the Chinese; they were dissatisfied with their partners, and speedily dissolved the connection. The Survival of Empire: Atlas of languages of intercultural communication in the Pacific, Asia and the Americas.

The Portuguese population of Macau was never very large. Macau History and Society illustrated ed. Hong Kong University Press.

This is a time when there were most African slaves, about In comparison there were about to during the later Portuguese rule in Macau.

Archived from the original on 24 December Retrieved 6 January Slavery and South Asian history illustrated ed.

He concluded; "The Portuguese beat us off from Macau with their slaves. A miscellaneous assemblage of Portuguese soldiers, citizens, African slaves, friars, and Jesuits managed to withstand the attack.

Volume 1 of African diaspora research. Michigan State University Press. Jan Coen, who had been sent to establish a Dutch base on the China coast, wrote about the slaves who served the Portuguese so faithfully: A year later, Captain Coen was still harping on the same theme: Fidalgos in the Far East — 2nd, illustrated, reprint ed.

A year later he was still harping on the same theme. The Defences of Macau: Sovereignty at the Edge: Archived from the original on 1 February Retrieved 18 January Archived from the original on 24 October Archived from the original on 30 October Retrieved 7 January Archived from the original on 20 March Archived from the original on 5 January Archived from the original on 8 November Retrieved 5 September Archived from the original on 21 May The Legislative Assembly of Macau.

Archived from the original on 3 March Archived from the original on 9 January Archived from the original on 22 May All of your saved places can be found here in My Trips.

Log in to get trip updates and message other travelers. Log in Join Recently viewed Bookings Inbox. Formerly administered by the Portuguese, this high-energy city on the South China Sea is world-famous as a gaming destination and has also begun attracting visitors with an increasing array of shows, entertainment, and nightlife.

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Retrieved 14 December The Sports Prototypes, Volume 1, — Racing has become more strategic". Retrieved November 22, List of world sports championships.

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Carom billiards Three-cushion individual team five-pin individual team artistic English billiards amateurs Crokinole Pocket billiards eight-ball nine-ball ten-ball straight pool Snooker six-red women amateurs.

Retrieved from " https: Macau Grand Prix Formula Three races. Webarchive template wayback links CS1 Portuguese-language sources pt Articles containing Chinese-language text Articles containing Portuguese-language text Articles containing traditional Chinese-language text Interlanguage link template link number Articles to be split from November All articles to be split Articles to be split from March Commons category link from Wikidata Official website different in Wikidata and Wikipedia Coordinates on Wikidata.

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Dan Ticktum Motopark Academy. Lotus 15 - Climax. Lotus 22 - Ford. Lotus 23 - Ford. Lotus 18 - Ford. Lotus 20B - Ford.

March 72B - Ford. Ralt RT1 - Ford. Chevron B40 - Ford. Chevron B42 - Ford. Ralt RT4 - Ford. British Formula 3 Championship. Transmac and Transportes Coletivos de Macau, which operate routes covering most of the city, making it the best public transport for traveling inside Macau and its islands.

Free Casino Shuttle Buses are everywhere in Macau. Due to tourism being the main economic industry in Macau a majority of the larger hotels provide free round trip shuttle bus services which cover the major tourist sites including the airport, Outer Harbour Ferry Terminal, Taipa Temporary Ferry Terminal and other sites.

Some larger hotels such as Venetian Hotel and Holiday Inn even provide a free shuttle between them. The frequency for each route is usually 15 minutes.

The taxi system is noted for having a notoriously poor reputation among tourists and even locals. Common complaints include "constant overcharging, refusal of passengers when the destination or passenger type does not suit the driver, circuitous routes and even violent behaviour".

It is planned to open in Macau has one active international airport, known as Macau International Airport located at the eastern end of Taipa and neighbouring waters.

The airport used to serve as one of the main transit hubs for passengers travelling between mainland China and Taiwan , but now with the introduction of direct flights between those two regions, passenger traffic in this regard has lessened.

In , the airport handled about 5 million passengers. The mixing of the Chinese and Portuguese cultures and religious traditions for more than four centuries has left Macau with an inimitable collection of holidays, festivals and events.

The biggest event of the year is the Macau Grand Prix in November, [] when the main streets in Macau Peninsula are converted to a racetrack bearing similarities with the Monaco Grand Prix.

The Lunar Chinese New Year is the most important traditional festival and celebration normally takes place in late January or early February.

All events and festivities of the year end with Winter Solstice in December. Macau preserves many historical properties in the urban area.

Local cooking in Macau consists of a blend of Cantonese and Portuguese cuisines. Many unique dishes resulted from the spice blends that the wives of Portuguese sailors used in an attempt to replicate European dishes.

Pork chop bun , ginger milk and Portuguese-style egg tart are also very popular in Macau. In general, football soccer has the greatest popularity in Macau, which has a representative international side, the Macau national football team.

Another common sport is rink hockey , which is often practised by the Portuguese. Macau also has a basketball team , which qualified for the Asian Basketball Championship twice.

The automobile racing event Macau Grand Prix is arguably the most important international sporting event in Macau, mainly with Formula 3 , motorcycle road racing and touring car races.

The racecourse has a 15,seat grandstand. Macau is twinned with: Administrative divisions of the Republic of China instead.

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. Special Administrative Region of China. For other uses of "Macau" or "Macao", see Macau disambiguation.

Show map of China. Cantonese a Portuguese b. Traditional Chinese b Portuguese orthography English orthography de facto. Portuguese shares equal status with Chinese in all official proceedings.

The government of Macau calculates its own HDI. Legal system of Macau. Foreign relations of Macau. View of the old city in Macau with tenement housing in the foreground.

Economy of Macau and Gambling in Macau. Sands Casino , Macau. Governador Nobre de Carvalho Bridge, Macau. Demographics of Macau and Macau people. List of hospitals in Macau.

Macau Security Force and Macao Garrison. Public Security Police Force of Macau. Corpo de Bombeiros de Macau. Commission Against Corruption Macau. Clockwise from top right: Na Tcha Temple , Macau.

This section does not cite any sources. Please help improve this section by adding citations to reliable sources. Unsourced material may be challenged and removed.

December Learn how and when to remove this template message. Macau portal China portal Asia portal Geography portal. Retrieved 15 September — via Google Books.

Archived from the original on 3 January Retrieved 1 January Statistics and Census Service. Archived from the original on 30 December Retrieved 3 January Archived from the original on 12 September The New York Times.

Retrieved 5 July Archived from the original on 30 July Archived from the original on 10 June Archived from the original on 3 May Archived from the original on 20 January Retrieved 12 March Archived from the original on 6 October Retrieved 15 September Archived from the original on 6 September Retrieved 8 September An examination of early Portuguese and Western archival materials.

Archived from the original on 13 October Retrieved 2 January Dictionary of dates, and universal reference. China was given to the Portuguese as a commercial station in in return for their assistance against pirates , subject to an annual tribute, which was remitted in Here Camoens composed part of the "Lusiad.

The Chinese were obliged to restrict the commerce of Portugal to the port of Macau, in A partnership was then formed with some Chinese dealers in Canton, who were to furnish exports and take delivery of imports at Macau.

This scheme did not suit the Chinese; they were dissatisfied with their partners, and speedily dissolved the connection. The Survival of Empire: Atlas of languages of intercultural communication in the Pacific, Asia and the Americas.

The Portuguese population of Macau was never very large. Macau History and Society illustrated ed. Hong Kong University Press.

This is a time when there were most African slaves, about In comparison there were about to during the later Portuguese rule in Macau.

Archived from the original on 24 December Retrieved 6 January Slavery and South Asian history illustrated ed. He concluded; "The Portuguese beat us off from Macau with their slaves.

A miscellaneous assemblage of Portuguese soldiers, citizens, African slaves, friars, and Jesuits managed to withstand the attack. Volume 1 of African diaspora research.

Michigan State University Press. Jan Coen, who had been sent to establish a Dutch base on the China coast, wrote about the slaves who served the Portuguese so faithfully: A year later, Captain Coen was still harping on the same theme: Fidalgos in the Far East — 2nd, illustrated, reprint ed.

A year later he was still harping on the same theme. The Defences of Macau: Sovereignty at the Edge: Archived from the original on 1 February Retrieved 18 January Archived from the original on 24 October Archived from the original on 30 October Retrieved 7 January Archived from the original on 20 March Archived from the original on 5 January Archived from the original on 8 November Retrieved 5 September Archived from the original on 21 May The Legislative Assembly of Macau.

Archived from the original on 3 March Archived from the original on 9 January Archived from the original on 22 May Archived from the original on 10 May Retrieved 18 September Stop the National Security Bill now".

Archived from the original on 30 April Archived from the original on 8 May Retrieved 24 May Archived from the original on 8 September Retrieved 27 October Archived from the original on 12 January Archived from the original on 19 May Archived from the original on 22 December Retrieved 21 December Many businesspeople work in Macau and live in Zhuhai, resulting in a morning rush hour into Macau, and an evening rush hour out of Macau.

Mid-afternoon might be the shortest wait, with times down to about 30 minutes. The massive underground Portas do Cerco bus terminal is beneath the pretty garden in front of the border checkpoint plaza.

As most people crossing the Barrier Gate are either mainland or Macau residents, foreign passport holders may get a short queue at the Zhuhai immigration clearance as they do not pass through the same counters as Chinese nationals.

There are money changers at the Barrier Gate that give very good rates so you can change your money into Chinese renminbi before crossing the customs.

Although you are not allowed to walk on the Lotus Bridge between Wanzai and Cotai, you can board a bus to cross it. This is arguably the best way to get around the Macau Peninsula, which is small, compact and full of things to discover.

Most streets have a pedestrian sidewalk making walking easy, although you will have to fight the crowds going in all directions.

Traffic rules are not very well adhered to, so ensure that you look both ways before crossing. In and around the Senado Square, the pavements will be made of hand-laid limestone pieces made into simple designs, something that will surely catch your attention.

Macau is also hilly, be prepared to struggle up and down steep lanes and steps. The bus system in Macau can be difficult to use.

It is often difficult to gauge which direction the bus is heading and the routes through the city center are very curvy, making a long ride out of a short distance.

Bus drivers usually only speak Cantonese, very little English or Mandarin and certainly no Portuguese at all. Most bus stops contain no English, although you can sometimes figure out the destination from Portuguese words.

Nevertheless, the websites of all three companies have good route guides. The TCM website [25] is only in Chinese, while the Transmac website [26] depicts routes schematically.

But like the buses in Hong Kong, your fare is according to the bus stop you board, not by the length of the journey.

You need the exact fare as drivers do not give change. However, it may be hard to purchase one as the distribution points are limited.

Scooters will seat one or two people and can provide the convenience to see some of the more beautiful and less crowded spots in Macau, such as Coloane Village, Cheoc Van Beach or the Portuguese fort.

Macau is very small and it is easy to navigate around, while driving is much less hectic and more civilized than in other places in Asia.

Macau Scooter Hire [27] provides scooters for rental, though it is best to make reservations online prior to your arrival.

Driving licenses from most countries covering mopeds or motorcycles are accepted. The buses to Hotel Lisboa, for example, drop you off just a few blocks from Largo do Senado.

You generally have to be at least 18 years old to use them. You may have to get a ticket from Lisboa Casino in order to leave the casino by shuttle but most of the casinos offer totally free to take their shuttle buses.

Largo do Senado to the border is about 45MOP. It is a good idea to have your destination written in Chinese as most taxi drivers know only Chinese.

Most taxi drivers carry with them a list of casinos and other important places so refer to it on the sunguard of the front passenger seat. Macau has a taxi shortage problem, and aside from long queues for taxis, taxi drivers often illegally ask inflated prices without turning on the meter, or refuse to take passengers to undesirable destinations.

Beware of dishonest taxi drivers who often approach tourists just off the legitimate taxi stands or casinos, offering rides for times more than the legal metered fares, practice known in Macau as "fishing".

During weekday rush hours If you are lucky enough to catch one, some drivers may ask you to pay extra upwards of 50MOP on top of the normal fare to your destination.

It is not uncommon to see a huge line for taxi queues during peak times. Avis [28] provides car rental services in Macau and you have the option of renting the car with or without a driver.

Roads are generally well maintained and directional signs are in both Chinese and Portuguese. If you wish to drive to mainland China, your vehicle must have a second set of number plates issued by the Guangdong authorities, and you would need to carry an additional Mainland license, as the Chinese government does not recognise Hong Kong, Macau or foreign licenses.

You would also need to change sides of the road at the border. One of the oddities of Macau is that some Cantonese names and words that are pronounced with what in English is a "W" sound, and that in Hong Kong are transliterated with a "W", are transliterated with a "V" instead, such as in Cheoc Van which in Hong Kong would be Chuk Wan.

This can also be seen in the surname Vong in Hong Kong Wong. No doubt Portuguese pronunciation has had an influence on this choice of transliteration.

Mandarin is not widely spoken, though most locals are able to comprehend it to some degree. Staff working at major hotels and tourist attractions will usually be reasonably competent in Mandarin.

English is spoken by most front-line staff in the tourism industry. Nearly all museums and casinos have some staff with excellent English, as do many hotels, shops and restaurants, especially the up-market ones.

However, English is not as widely spoken as in Hong Kong, so outside the main tourist areas, especially in establishments catering to the average working class, you will find that most people are not conversant in English.

If you have to ask someone on the street of directions in English, your best bet is to approach a young adult who is likely to be a college student or having graduated from it which is not difficult to find given the fact that more and more young people in Macau are now entering universities.

There is plenty of informational material for tourists available in Portuguese as well. As Portuguese continues to be an official language of the SAR, government offices are required by law to have Portuguese-speaking staff on duty; for tourists, the most commonly used is the Macau post office, Correios de Macau.

All official signs in Macau are bilingual in traditional Chinese and Portuguese. Note that under the "one country, two systems" policy, Macau continues to use traditional Chinese characters and not the simplified Chinese characters used in Mainland China.

Although best known for gambling, Macau is rich in attractions and oozing with atmosphere, thanks to hundreds of years of fusion between European and Chinese cultures.

Macau is a fascinating place to just walk around as the place is packed with churches, temples, fortresses and other old buildings bearing an interesting mix of Portuguese and Chinese characteristics.

Besides buildings, there are also hundreds of narrow alleyways forming a maze in the old part of Macau where the people of Macau carry out businesses and work.

If the sheer density of humans get to you, take a break and enjoy several pretty gardens or head to the island.

Despite being a Chinese deity, the statue is distinctly European in design and resembles statues of the Virgin Mary one can find in Europe.

Rua da Tercena is the most popular art, antique, and flea market street in Macau, a little off the beaten track with less Chinese tourist crowds and a lot of character.

Go past the shops selling antiques, the tailor shops, and other small shops until the road reaches a fork. Visit the Cotai reclaimed land area to see its transformation into the "Las Vegas Strip of the East".

The Venetian is the most famous with its Venice-styled shopping mall with rivers running through, and is also currently the largest casino in the world.

Ushers give the front few rows of the audience towels. Free shuttles from the main ferry terminal leave constantly. A large section of Macau Peninsula has been designated a UNESCO World Heritage site and 25 buildings and sites within the area have been deemed to have cultural and historic significance.

One of the best ways to cover the sights is to do the Macau Heritage Walk circuit. The heritage Buildings, the Sao Paulo Cathedral, the Fort and the Macau Museum are all adjacent to each other and can be conveniently seen individually even if one cannot catch the Heritage walk timing.

Taipa Village and Coloane Village , still inhabited by some fishermen, are also interesting with their colonial-era shops and houses along narrow lanes.

Macau has several museums. The "Macau Museum Pass", which gives discounted entry to most of these, is currently off the market. In addition, many Hong Kongers arrive on weekends with the same aim.

For many years, the Casino Lisboa was the most famous and a landmark well known to people outside Macau, but it is being eclipsed by Sands Casino which opened in Nevertheless, the original Casino Lisboa is still worth a visit as its halls contain many original antiques on display from the private collection of gambling tycoon Stanley Ho.

Most casinos are located along the waterfront on the southern side of Macau Peninsula. North of the Lisboa is a strip with many smaller casinos, a number of hotels and bars, and quite a few restaurants.

This can be one of the more interesting areas of Macau; among other things it has quite a good Indian restaurant and several Portuguese ones.

However, parts of it are also fairly sleazy, with lots of hookers and touts, so some caution is in order. All this is going to be overtaken by the new development on the Cotai Strip , which is being made into "The Las Vegas Strip of the East".

The biggest casino in the world, Venetian Macao, opened its doors in August and the not-much-smaller City of Dreams followed in , with many more still to come.

There are also several casinos on Taipa, including the Crown Macau. There are ATMs available at either casino as well as Forex facilities to change your money.

Gamblers are required to be at least 21 years of age, as of 1 November to be allowed to play. Interestingly, local civil servants are not allowed to enter the casinos with the exception of the first three days of the Chinese new year.

Another popular form of gambling in Macau is greyhound racing, where people bet on dogs in the same way that many people in other countries bet on horses.

At a height of metres, the bungy jump from Macau tower, maintained and operated by A. Hackett is the 2nd highest in the world.

See the Macau Peninsula page for details. They are very popular and are frequented by locals and visitors, especially at the weekend. Besides beaches, there are several public swimming pools all over Macau.

All high-end hotels also have swimming pools. There are opportunities for hiking and cycling on the relatively rural islands of Taipa and Coloane.

The official currency of Macau is the pataca MOP , which is divided into avos. If you pay using Hong Kong dollars, you may receive patacas as change, or a mixture of patacas and Hong Kong dollars.

If you pay in HKD and receive change in MOP, the vendor has, in effect, taken a small amount of foreign exchange commission from you. Consider it a convenience fee and if wanting to stretch your MOP as far as it can go, visit a currency exchange counter.

You may find businesses refusing the HKD10 coin, due to the fear of counterfeits. Although dollars and patacas may be used interchangeably almost everywhere, there are two main exceptions.

Transactions made at government offices may only be made in patacas, and most casinos will only accept Hong Kong dollars. Chinese yuan CNY are also accepted in some businesses, often at a poor exchange rate, but they can easily be changed to patacas at bureaux de change and banks.

Getting money is quite easy as there are banks and ATMs cash machines on nearly every street. Holders of a debit card on one of the international networks will have no issues withdrawing money.

Chinese holders of Chinese Union Pay cards will need to have their "shenfenzheng" ID card to be able to withdraw local currency from their accounts.

ATMs usually dispense patacas or dollars and notes and some will also dispense Chinese renminbi currency.

Changing to or from patacas outside of Macau is almost impossible even in Hong Kong, so any patacas should be spent or changed before leaving the SAR.

The money changers at the Barrier Gate provide good exchange rates; however, if you wish to change money before you arrive then change into Hong Kong dollars.

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