Macau has become the premier gambling destination on the planet. While many of the visitors to Macau are from China, gamblers travel from all over the globe to play and stay in Macau.
Macau’s 41 luxurious casino resorts have something to offer everyone, but there’s more to Macau than the casinos. Let’s examine some of the best ways to spend a day or get away from the casino for a few hours when visiting Macau.
The Golden Reel
The Golden Reel Ferris wheel at Studio City Macau is almost as fun to look at as it is to ride. The unique attraction sits over 400 feet above the streets below and provides a fantastic view of Macau.
Golden Reel is not your grandfather’s Ferris wheel. The ride’s very odd figure-eight design catches the eye immediately.
The tallest, and first, figure-eight Ferris wheel in the world is operational five days a week. So, try to avoid visiting on Tuesday or Wednesday when the attraction is out of commission.
You’ll enjoy awe-inspiring views of Macau and the South China Sea. This is a view visitors to Macau capitalize on during their stay.
Be sure to take plenty of pictures from the top and buy your tickets ahead of time. Doing the latter will ensure that you have a spot, and it can save you money, too.
Day Trip to Macau
Many visitors to Macau will stay in Hong Kong for their vacation and make the day trip. This excursion can be a fun and easy way to experience life outside the Macau casinos in this vibrant region.
You begin with a smooth ferry ride from Hong Kong that takes about one hour. Then, from the moment you set foot in Macau, it’s non-stop sightseeing for some of the area’s finest attractions.
Before your final destination of the famed Macau Casino, you’ll visit the Gaia Circuit, home to the Macau Grand Prix.
This stop will be a once-in-a-lifetime thrill for many racing fans. However, the fun is just getting started. These exciting and affordable trips are a crash course in all things Macau, and you’d better have your camera ready.
You won’t want to miss a single moment captured for the bragging you’ll enjoy when you return home.
Las Vegas has the Fremont Street experience, Macau has Senado Square. While the two are miles apart, they share many similarities.
Senado Square has long been a busy hub for merchants and performers alike. In the settlement’s early days, flea markets would flood the square, and residents would buy many of their essentials during trips to the courtyard.
Today, dozens of shops still line the historic site, and tourists cram into the small shops to buy heavily discounted items.
You may not find a better place in Macau to load up on trinkets and gifts to take home to friends and family than Senado Square. It’s a beautiful place to get away from the casino for a day and enjoy the rich culture Macau has to offer.
Taipa Village is the Las Vegas Strip of Macau. Located just a short walk from many of Macau’s busiest casinos, Taipa Village is a can’t-miss for anyone traveling to Macau.
Taipa Village is where its two rich heritages, Portuguese and Chinese, meet head-on, and the result is fabulous.
You’ll stroll by an immaculate Chinese temple and, in another minute, find a beautiful colonial church in front of you. Taipa Village also offers some of the finest shopping in Taipa, and many high-end retailers have set up camp here.
O-Moon is the quintessential souvenir shop. This quirky shop draws tourists in and uses fun to keep the eyes shopping and the money flowing. It’s definitely touristy, and sure, the wares are overpriced, but it’s such a neat experience you don’t mind.
You’ll find some of the most fantastic dining options in Macau at Taipa Village. There are too many for me to mention, but you cannot go wrong.
Some of my favorites are the Blissful Carrot and Goa Nights. Now, I’m a meat-eater, but the vegetarian cuisine from Blissful Carrot will not have you asking, “Where’s the beef?”
Goa Nights is an Indian fusion restaurant with shared plates that will be emptied before you know it. There’s no shortage of outstanding options, and you’re almost guaranteed to make a new favorite during your visit to Taipa Village.
Well, who says you can’t get away from casino life at the casino?
Sometimes, there is enough detail and effort into the casino itself that it transports you into another world; the Venetian Macau is one of these places. Every inch of the resort has been painstakingly planned out for the ultimate in relaxation and fun.
You can rest your weary feet with your spouse or friends and enjoy some of the best people-watching anywhere in the world.
If sitting on the sidelines doesn’t appeal to you, grab your tickets and enjoy a gondola ride of your own. The highly-talented gondoliers will be happy to serenade and point out the unique features of the resort. At the same time, you kick back and enjoy the journey.
Don’t overlook the shopping here. Coach, Gucci, and Rolex are only a few of the divine retail options you’ll find at Venetian Macau.
Regardless of where you choose to stay during your Macau casino trip, The Venetian is a fantastic spot to spend an entire day away from the casino floor. If you’re traveling with non-gamblers, The Venetian maybe your best option on a stay and play one-stop in Macau.
Macau’s Fisherman’s Wharf is not your typical seafood market. This brilliantly thought out attraction bills itself as Macau’s first theme park.
Macau Fisherman’s Wharf has not one but two large hotels. Here, its guests can enjoy casino gaming, excellent spa amenities, gourmet dining, and more.
The Wharf’s amphitheater has seating for over 2,000 guests. The convention center at Fisherman’s Wharf is one of the most popular in Macau. It’s regularly full of visitors attending trade shows and other conferences.
Legend Boulevard brings exciting elements from coastal cities around the world to Macau. You’ll be greeted by dining and gaming twists from cities like New Orleans, Amsterdam, and Miami, in addition to the large selection based on the Italian Riviera.
Fisherman’s Wharf has plenty of fun activities for a day trip without breaking the bank.
Grand Prix Museum
The Grand Prix Museum had its grand opening during the 40th Macau Grand Prix. The museum is a history lesson on not only the Grand Prix but racing in general. The museum is filled wall to wall with some of the coolest race cars and motorcycles from different eras.
If you’re a car or motorcycle enthusiast, you’ll feel like you’re in an art museum. The immaculate machines aren’t just for race enthusiasts. The interactive exhibits will entertain children for hours as they examine the brightly colored and odd-looking automobiles.
Possibly the rarest and most valuable cars in the museum’s collection are a pair of Bugatti race cars on loan from a private collector. Suppose you can appreciate the rich history of racing or just the natural beauty of a multimillion-dollar automobile. In that case, you should not pass on the Grand Prix Museum.
Rua do Cunha
For the ultimate “local for a day” experience, you must visit Rua do Cunha. This small pedestrian street in Taipa is only about 15 feet wide and less than one-quarter of a mile in length.
Still, the feeling of authentic daily life is in abundance. You’ll be so caught up in the sights and sounds of the bustling thoroughfare that you’ll skip the smell of almond cakes all around.
Then, when the smell hits you, you’ll feel pure euphoria. You’ll be forced to stuff your face with peanut candy, phoenix egg rolls, and coconut flakes before you even settle in for almond cakes!
Make no mistake, Rua do Cunha is unashamedly commercial. Still, you can’t help but feeling like you’re getting the real thing. That’s good enough for most, and it’s a ton of fun regardless.
As you can see, there’s more to Macau than the casinos. That doesn’t mean a trip to Macau is complete without exploring some of the most beautiful casinos in the world.
However, your trip will be a far more significant success if you take time to move away from the casinos and spend time embracing all that Macau has to offer.
You’re far more likely to remember the delight on your loved ones’ faces as they ride on a figure-eight Ferris wheel than the $200 you won playing baccarat.
Want to know our recommendations for the top resorts in Macau? Read our review for the top three luxurious resorts around Macau.