Saturday, January 25, 2014

Macau trip Day 2, Historic center's UNESCO Heritage sites & Casinos

Today marks the first official sightseeing day of our trip. We will be visiting the most touristy Historic center of Macau to look at the numerous UNESCO Heritage sites. And, after dark we will check out the Macau tower and the Casino cluster on the peninsula.

We kicked off the day with a nice lunch at Restaurante A Lorcha 船屋葡國餐廳, one of the most famous and touristy Portuguese restaurant. Food and service was pretty good, do call a week in advance to book a table as it is always full. Read more about our meal here.

After a hearty lunch, we walked to the first UNESCO heritage site, A Ma temple 媽閣廟. This 500+ years old temple is one of the most famous and touristy ones in Macau. Built in 1488, the temple is dedicated to Matsu 媽祖 (or 天后娘娘) , the goddess of seafarers and fishermen. The design of this Chinese temple is pretty much similar to the ones we have in Singapore.

We also walked around the vicinity and checked out the unique buildings typical to Macau. Do note that this area being the main tourist sight, free government WiFi is available (SSID wifigo, login wifigo), signal is not very stable though. There's also free wifi at the Historic center too.

We took a taxi to the Ruins of St. Paul and explore the Historic center on foot till evening. Some of the UNESCO sites we saw here are Ruins of St. Paul, Mount Fortress, Senado Sq, Leal Senado building, St. Dominic's church & the Cathedral. This area is freaking crowded on weekends!

After a couple hours of walking, we took a break and ate the local street snack Curry fishball 咖喱魚蛋. There's a tiny street behind the Cathedral that is lined with many curry fishball stalls. We bought ours from 咖喱榮 which tasted nice and spicy...yums. Read more about it here.

Our next place of interest in the itinerary was supposed to be the Macau tower, but due to poor visibility caused by the haze, we decided to skip it and wait for sun down to check out the X'mas lightings in town. One shot of the Macau tower while on taxi.

The street lights started to lit up at around 6pm. We enjoyed busking in the X'mas atmosphere..

Our last activity of the day is to check out the original Casino cluster on the peninsula. It is only a short 15-20mins walk from the Historic center to the Grand Lisboa which is visible virtually everywhere from town center. Some of the larger scale Casino hotels worth mentioning here are, Grand Lisboa, Lisboa, Wynn, MGM, Starworld etc. Wynn has a scaled down version of their famous musical fountain in Las Vegas, we waited in the rain for it!

The Macau tower and the Ponte Governador Nobre de Calvalho bridge view from Wynn.

Due to the rain is getting heavier, we decided to end the day and took a free hotel shuttle from Sintra hotel (5mins walk from Lisboa) back to City of Dreams 新濠天地. We're lovin' the free shuttles everywhere in Macau :D. We took some time to check out the animated mermaids at the Hardrock hotel's lobby.

The shoppes and DFS at COD

We then settled our dinner at the Festivita Foodcourt again. Read more about the FC here.

We had wanton noodles from Hei Kei...not bad. Back at the hotel room, we munched on the Bak Kwa we bought from Choi Heong Yuen, its nice but a tad too thick...still prefer the SG ones.

End of day 2, we'll be checking out the Coloane & Taipa sights tomorrow...stay tune.

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