Macau, special administrative region of China, on the country’s southern coast. Here are my facts about amazing Macau. Macau is located on the southwestern corner of the Pearl (Zhu) River (Chu Chiang) estuary. At the head of which is the port of Guangzhou formerly Canton. Macau stands opposite the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region. Hongkong is only 40 miles (60 km) away on the eastern side of the estuary.
The Black Sandy Bay beach is Macau’s largest natural beach. Recently 4,000-year-old ceramics were also excavated from this beach also known as Hac Sa Beach.
95 percent of the total population of Macau is Chinese.
Gambling is illegal in China but not in Macau.
The Cathedral of St. Paul was built by Jesuits around 1580-1625 AD. The cathedral formed Macau’s ‘acropolis’ and was the largest Catholic church of its time in East Asia.
It has its own dialect of Portuguese called “Macanese Portuguese” and a distinctive creole generally known as “Patuá”,
The Historic Centre of Macau became a UNESCO World Heritage site in 2005. It is actually a collection of 25 historic monuments and public squares. These bore witness to the assimilation and co-existence of Chinese and Portuguese cultures in Macau.
It has one of the world’s highest population densities with about 21,000 people per square kilometre.
More than 50% of the residents living in Macau regard themselves as Buddhists.
It was initially leased by Portuguese merchants in 1557 and functioned as a trading centre. Shipping Asian gold, silk and spices back to Europe well into the 18th century.
The Venetian Macao, owned by the Las Vegas Sands, is the largest casino in the world. It’s also the largest single structure hotel building in Asia and the sixth-largest building in the world by floor area.
It has a fast-ageing population. By 2050 there will be 8 non-working residents (including children and elderly) for every 10 active workers.
Portuguese and Cantonese are the official languages of Macau.
It is the world’s fastest growing economy in 2012 according to the Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU).
More Facts About Amazing Macau
Monte Fort (also known “Fortaleza de Nossa Senhora do Monte de São Paulo” in Portuguese and the “Fortress of Our Lady of the Mount of St. Paul” in English) were constructed from 1617 to 1626. They were the principal military defense structures and held off the attempted invasion of Macau by the Netherlands in 1622.
It was ruled by the Portuguese for about 400 years since 1557. Returned to China in 1999.
One of the most convenient and affordable ways to travel between Macau and Hong Kong is by ferry. The Hong Kong International Airport even allows visitors to bypass Hong Kong Immigration. They can transfer directly onto a ferry to Macau.
St. Paul’s College was Asia’s first Western-style university. It offered academic programs that prepared missionaries. They would then serve the Roman Catholic church in China, Japan and other parts of Asia.
It is the first and last Asian country to remain a European colony. The Portuguese first arrived in the 16th century and the last Portuguese governor left in 1999.
50% of Macau’s revenue comes from gambling and 20% of its population are employed by the casinos.
Possibly the most famous landmark in Macau. The baroque five-tiered façade and the 66 steps leading to it are all that remain of the Cathedral of St. Paul.
It once served as the human trafficking point for Chinese slaves to Portugal.
People in Macau have the 2nd longest expected life span in the world at 84.43 as of 2012.
New hotel rooms were constructed at a rate of 16 a day until 2009 to supply Macau’s booming tourism industry.
The original Casino Lisboa and 15-story round Lisboa Hotel tower built in 1970 are Macau’s oldest casinos.
It is officially known as the Macau Special Administrative Region.
One of its most famous residents is “The King of Gambling”, Stanley Ho Hung Sun. He had a 40-year government-granted monopoly over the Macau gambling industry.
Macau was known as ‘Haojing’ (meaning Oyster Mirror) or Jinghai (which literally means Mirror Sea). Before the Portuguese occupation in the 16th century.
Keep Reading Amazing Facts About Macau
The A-Ma Temple existed in 1488 long before the city of Macau came into being. It is an exemplary representation of the true diversity of Chinese culture. It is inspired by Confucianism, Taoism, Buddhism and multiple folk beliefs.
Locals believe that the name ‘Macau’ was derived from the deity Matsu (the goddess of seafarers and fishermen). Matsu is worshipped at the A-Ma temple which was built in 1448.
It attracts over 30 million visitors a year that’s more than the population of Australia.
Trishaws now used for tourists were once the primary transport method in Macau.
With the non-stop development of casinos in Macau, it has become the world’s biggest gambling market, outgrowing Las Vegas.
The one-off purchase price of a car park berth can be as high as 1 million patacas (around USD125,000).
The Grand Canal shopping centre located in the Venetian Resort Hotel is the largest indoor shopping mall in Macau. It covers an amazing 968,000 square feet.
Often referred to as the biggest tourism project in world history. The Cotai Strip, named after the Las Vegas Strip is a major land reclamation project joining the two islands of Coloane and Taipa.
The Guia Lighthouse dating from 1865 was the 1st modern lighthouse on the Chinese coast.
Gambling brings in more than $33 billion of revenue. This is more than 5 times the amount on the Las Vegas Strip, and accounts for more than 40% of GDP.
Even if you pieced together the land masses Macau has added to its territory since 1998, it would only be equal to the size of 700 football arenas.
There are more than 4 times as many gambling tables per 1,000 residents than hospital beds.
The Macau Grand Prix famously known as one of the most demanding circuits in the world was originally conceived in 1954. It was a treasure hunt around the streets of the city.
High-rolling VIPs account for more than 2/3 of the casino takings.
It will be governed under the “one country, two systems” for 50 years from 1999 by an elected local authority. After which it will revert to Beijing’s full control.
Food Facts About Amazing Macau
Portuguese egg tarts are Macau’s most famous and popular local snack.
Local cooking in Macau consists of a blend of Cantonese and Portuguese cuisines. The cuisines ingredients and seasonings are from Europe, South America, Africa, India, and Southeast Asia and local Chinese ingredients.
Almond cookies are regarded as the king of the local specialty Macanese snacks. Everyone visiting Macau must try these yummy treats.