Macau deserves to be appreciated more as a travel destination. Just saying.

With a show of hands (assuming I’m TED-talking here), how many of you have actually traveled to Macau? With ‘actually traveled’, I mean not as a day tour from Hong Kong. I’m asking because a lot of people I know treat Macau as nothing but a side trip from Hong Kong.

Last year, I had one wonderful term with a good set of students and thought of rewarding myself with… *drumroll* a trip! “Okay, so which destination here I could fly the shortest, I haven’t been to, and there’s no visa required?” After an aimless browsing, I decided to choose Macau. I told some of my friends how excited I was about this ‘school break trip’, and here are some of their responses:

“Macau is not that interesting to me. I only went there for a day when I visited Hong Kong.”

“Macau? Are you sure? What are you gonna do there? Play in casinos? See that fake Eiffel Tower?”

“A week is too long for Macau. Just go to Hong Kong.”

Responses of this kind make me sad. No matter how boring a place was for some, it might be a hidden gem to people like me, right? Idk about you, but I believe ALL places have something beautiful to offer to the table, no matter how small, boring, or simple they appear to be.

Obviously, I did not listen and went on. I wish I could write everything here, but I had a very great time in Macau. It has a lot of street art and museums! Those Lord Stow’s Bakery egg tarts are very good. I could buy The Cheesecake Factory slices at their 7-Eleven stores. I love their public bus system. There’s a lot of remnants of the Portuguese colonization (in their language, architecture, food, etc.). Macau has got me obsessed with the Portuguese colonial conquest to the point that I’ve prioritized visiting Timor Leste, another former Portuguese colony (with an even more interesting history) in the near future.

In the photo is St. Francis Xavier Church in Coloane, an island in Cotai at the southern tip of Macau. I’ve observed that aside from the azulejos, yellow is a very common theme among Portuguese architecture. I seriously want to travel more to get to know more about it. *books flight to Lisbon in my wildest dreams haha*

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