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Macau Transportation


Macau transportation is convenient and well developed so that Macau is a popular and easily accessible destination in Southeast Asia. Located on the western shore of the Pearl River Delta, Macau is the gateway to mainland China from the South China Sea. Connections with Guangzhou, Shenzhen, Hong Kong and other centers in southern China as well as countries on the Pacific Rim are provided by numerous domestic and international flights, ferries and buses. However, it should be remembered that the city's status as a free port means that there are immigration procedures to be observed prior to entry to the mainland of China.


By Air

Macau International Airport is located on the eastern side of Taipa, the northernmost of Macau’s two connected islands. Taipa is linked to the peninsula by three bridges. From the airport, several bus services run to destinations on the islands and on the peninsula. Taxis are also easily available. 

Airport Code: MFM. Location: Website: http://www.macau-airport.com. Public transport description: Another airborne access route is provided by Heli Express, which operates a frequent daily helicopter service from the Shun Tak Centre in Hong Kong to the Macau Ferry Terminal. (tel: 2872 7288; www.heliexpress.com).

Flight times: 

Entry is usually via Hong Kong from Europe and North America.

To Hong Kong: from London - 12 hours; New York - 16 hours.

Macau has its own airline, Air Macau (en.airmacau.com.mo), which operates regional flights. Visitors from outside of Asia are more likely to fly into Hong Kong and then visit Macau by ferry; Hong Kong is served by numerous airlines including Cathay Pacific (www.cathaypacific.com).

For those with plenty of disposable income, it’s also possible to arrive in Macau by helicopter. Sky Shuttle (www.skyshuttlehk.com) operates services from the Hong Kong Ferry terminal – the flight only takes 15 minutes. It also operates flights from Shenzen airport.


By Train

There are no train services between Macau and mainland China. There are, however, trains to Hong Kong from Guangzhou, Dongguan, Foshan, Zhaoqing, Shanghai and Beijing.


By Boat

Services run to Macau from Hong Kong, Shenzen, Wan Chai and Guangzhou. Ferries from Hong Kong dock at the Jetfoil Terminal on Avenida da Amizade, while those from the Chinese mainland arrive at the China Ferry Port on Avenida de Almeida Ribeiro.

Cruise ships:

Cruise companies operating routes to Macau include Star Cruises (www.starcruises.com) and Princess Cruises (www.princess.com).

Ferry operators:

There are three main departure points in Hong Kong: Shun Tak Centre (Hong Kong Island), China Ferry Terminal (Kowloon) and Hong Kong International Airport. Services from all three are operated by TurboJet (tel: +853 2855 5025; www.turbojet.com.hk) and CotaiJet (tel: +853 2885 0595;www.cotaijet.com.mo). Most TurboJet services are to the Outer Harbour Ferry Terminal in Macau, while CotaiJet mostly uses the Taipa Temporary Ferry Terminal (close to the international airport).

There are also several routes from the Chinese mainland, from Shekou in Shenzen run by both TurboJet and Yuet Tung Shipping (tel: +853 2893 9944, www.ytmacau.com), Wan Chai in Zhuhai (Yuet Tung Shipping) and Guangzhou (TurboJet).


Macau Transport.jpgBy Road

Macau is linked by road to mainland China, with two main points of arrival. One is the Barrier Gate, also known as the Portas do Cerco which is open daily 0600-0100 on the peninsula. The other is the newer Cotai Frontier Post, open 24 hours a day, on the reclaimed land between Taipa and Coloane. Kee Kwan Motor Road Co operates buses from Guangdong province, stopping at the end of Avenida Almeida Ribeiro and Rua das Lorchas.

By road note:

Macau has its own immigration rules and the crossings from mainland China are treated like international border crossings.


Getting Around Macau

Air:  Macau is too small for domestic flights to be useful.

Road: The island is accessible via three bridges running from the peninsula to Taipa Island. Another connects the Cotai Strip (the reclaimed land between Taipa and Coloane) to the Macau-China border at Zhuhai.
Side of road:  Left
Road quality: Although generally well surfaced, many roads in Macau are narrow, winding and steep; traffic can be congested throughout the day.

Car hire: Since the territory is small, with good public transport and affordable taxis, it is generally not necessary to hire a car. If it is required, however, car hire is easily available through several agencies including large international companies; drivers must be over 21. Chauffeur-driven limousines are also available.

Taxi:   Taxis are either black with a cream-coloured top, or all-yellow (the latter are radio taxis). They generally have a destination guide written in Chinese, English and Portuguese, which is helpful since many drivers speak little English and may know only the Chinese names for key sites. Prices are reasonable and meters are used. There are surcharges for luggage carried in the boot, for taking a taxi from the airport or travelling from Macau to Coloane.

Rickshaws and pedicabs (cycle rickshaws): These are available for hire but many of Macau's attractions are located on hilltops, beyond the reach of even the strongest-legged pedicab driver. Prices should always be agreed in advance.

Bike:  You can hire bikes on Taipa and Coloane but can't take them to the mainland. Bear in mind that parts of Macau are quite hilly, so cycling can be hard work; generally speaking, Coloane is the most suitable area for cycling.

Coach: Buses run between the peninsula, Taipa and Coloane, as well as to the airport (you can catch bus AP1, MT1, MT2, N2, 26 or 36).

Regulations:  The speed limit varies according to the road type. In built-up areas it can be as low as 20kph (12mph) or as high as 60kph (37mph), while on open roads and highways the highest limit is 80kph (50mph).

Breakdown service: Car hire agencies should be able to provide contact details for breakdown services.

Documentation:  An International Driving Permit is recommended.
Getting around towns and cities:  The main areas of interest to tourists are compact enough to get around on foot, while longer journeys (including those between the peninsula and the islands) are easily made by taxi or bus.
By water:   A harbour sightseeing cruise offers the opportunity to sail along the city’s coastline while taking in the views of attractions including the A-Ma Temple and the Macau Tower. The Macau Harbour Cruise runs daily from the historical Inner Harbour.

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