Macau, aslo called Macao, is located on the southeast coast of China. Macau is a special administrative region of the country which is quite small covering an area of just 27.5 square kilometers. The total population of Macau is 469,800 of which 95% are Chinese, the remainder being Portuguese and other westerners.
Known as 'Oriental Las Vegas', the gambling industry in Macau is booming and has already become an important feature of the local economy. Surprisingly, visitors do not find the kind of razzmatazz in the city's casinos as elsewhere; by contrast you can feel the expectations of gamblers from their polite manners and the peaceful atmosphere.Macau, a famous destination with prosperity and peace, fashion and history, oriental and western cultures, is deserving of a visit and a stay here is sure to revitalize the weary visitor.
Downtown Macau is situated on a tiny peninsula at the mouth of the Pearl River, on the southern coast of China’s Guangdong Province (although it is politically distinct from the province). It was once an island, but has been linked to the mainland through land reclamation which has also significantly increased the size of the settlement. As a result the terrain is largely flat, although with hilly portions which indicate the location of the original land.
Three bridges of 2.5km (1.5 miles), 4.5km (2.8 miles) and 2.2km (1.375 miles) respectively link the peninsula to its nearest island, Taipa, which in turn is joined to the island of Côloane by the 2.2km (1.3-mile) Cotai Strip causeway (an area of reclaimed land which effectively makes the two islands into one).
At the extreme northern end of the peninsula, on a narrow isthmus, is the imposing Portas do Cerco gateway (Border Gate), which leads to the Zhuhai and Zhongshan areas of the People's Republic of China. There is also a border crossing from the Cotai strip, designed to make access to the casinos even easier. Some 60km (37 miles) to the east-northeast, across the mouth of the river, is Hong Kong.
Construction began in 2011 on series of bridges and tunnels which will link Macau, Zhuhai and Hong Kong; the longest section of bridge will be a huge 22.8 km (14.2 miles) long. The start of the project had been scheduled to start in 2009 but had been delayed due to concerns about its environmental impact. The plan is still to finish the link in 2016, by speeding up construction.
Being Asia's well-known gambling Mecca, it is a place to find the traditional Chinese culture while enjoying the exotic Portuguese buildings. The name of the city is derived from the word Magao (A-Ma Temple), which was the shrine dedicated to Mazu, a sacred sea goddess respected by the local people....More
It was said that in the middle of sixteenth century when the Portuguese first set foot there, one of the officers asked a fisherman the name of the land. The man misunderstanding the officer's meaning, answered 'Magao' - the name of A-Ma Temple in front them. The word became the Portuguese name for the land and for nearly 400 years, the Portuguese ruled here prior to its official return to the People's Republic of China on December 20, 1999 as a special administrative region.
Macau's weather is generally warm and foggy in spring, hot and rainy in summer, cool and clear in autumn, and cold but sunny in winter. The average annual temperature is about 20 C (72 F) and there are about 100 days with high temperatures over 30 C (86 F). Less than 30 days have an average temperature about 10 C (50 F) in a year.
There is a total population of 469,800 in Macau of which 95% are Chinese, the remaining 5% being Portuguese and other westerners. The majority resides on the Macau Peninsular. Both Chinese and Portuguese are the official languages. Cantonese is popular among residents and most people can understand Mandarin. English is also widely used on most occasions, especially in scenic areas.
Various religions from both the western and oriental world coexist harmoniously in this city. Confucianism, Taoism and Buddhism with other traditional Chinese beliefs dominate among the Chinese residents of the city. The Buddhist disciples form the largest religious group in the region. Roman Catholicism and other Christian denominations became established here from the early days when the Portuguese first set foot on the land. Baroque churches and chapels throughout the downtown area are testimonials to the vicissitude of the city.