|Although best known for gambling, Macau is merely rich in attractions and oozing with atmosphere, thanks to hundreds
of years of fusion between European and Chinese cultures.
Macau is a fascinating place to just walk around as the place is packed with churches, temples, fortresses and other old
buildings bearing an interesting mix of Portuguese and Chinese characteristics. Besides buildings, there are also
hundreds of narrow alleyways forming a maze in the old part of Macau where the people of Macau carry out businesses
and work. If the sheer density of humans get to you, take a break and enjoy several pretty gardens or head to the island.
One of the interesting things to see in Macau is a statue of the Bodhisatta Avalokitesvara (known as 觀音 kwoon yam in
Cantonese) located next to the sea near the Sands Casino and MGM Grand. Despite being a Chinese deity, the statue is
distinctly European in design and resembles the statues of the Virgin Mary you can find in Europe.
Rua da Tercena is the most popular art, antique, and flea market street in Macau, a little off the beaten track with less
Chinese tourist crowds and a lot of character. It is located near St Paul's, behind Senado Square. Follow Rua de São
Paulo to Rua das Estalagens and turn down the hill to the next narrow street. Go past the shops selling antiques, the
tailor shops, and other small shops until the road reaches a fork.
You'll find most of the attractions in Macau Peninsula, but Taipa and Coloane, each with a pretty village, also draw
hordes of visitors. Visit the Cotai reclaimed land area to see its transformation into the "Las Vegas Strip of the East".
The Venetian is the most famous with its Venice-styled shopping mall with rivers running through, and is also currently
the largest casino in the world.