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About Macao

Location and Area | Time | Population | Language | Currency | Weather | Getting to Macau | More Information

Location and Area

Macao is a Special Administrative Region of the People's Republic of China currently. It is located on the southeastern coast of China, at latitude 22 14' North and longitude 113 35' East. Macao's territory consists of a peninsula and two islands called Taipa and Coloane in the Pearl River Delta of Guangdong Province.

The total area of Macao is 27.3 km2 (Macao Peninsula has 8.7 km2, Taipa has 6.3 km2, Coloane has 7.6 km2 and the reclaimed area between Taipa and Coloane has 4.7 km2). Three bridges of 2.5km, 4.5km and 2.2km respectively connect the Macao Peninsula and Taipa. Moreover, a causeway of 2.2km is used to connect Taipa and Coloane.

By the longest bridge (Friendship Bridge), people can go to the Macao International Airport directly. On the other hand, people can go to China Mainland through the Border Gate at the extreme northern end of Macao Peninsula or the Border Gate on the reclaimed area between Taipa and Coloane.

Time
Macao is eight hours ahead of GMT.
Population

Macao's population is around 461,000 residents with 95% Chinese and 5% Portuguese, Europeans and from other countries.

Language

Chinese and Portuguese are the official languages with Cantonese being the most widely spoken language. English is generally used in trade, tourism and commerce.

Currency

The Pataca (MOP$) is Macao's official currency. The denomination of banknotes have 10, 20, 50, 100, 500 and 1000 Patacas. The denomination of coins have 10, 20 and 50 avos, 1, 2, 5 and 10 Patacas.

In general, the exchange rate between US Dollars and Patacas is roughly 8 Patacas = 1 US Dollar. The exchange rate between HK$ and MOP$ is around HK$100.00 = MOP$103.20.

Foreign currency can be easily exchanged to Patacas in hotels, banks and authorized exchange dealers located all over the city. Most credit cards can be used in hotels, shops and restaurants.

There are no restrictions on the amount of currency which can be brought in or taken out.

Weather

Macao's weather falls into four distinct seasons: Spring(March to May), Summer(May to Mid-September), Autumn(Mid-September to Mid-December) and Winter (Mid - December to March).

In Spring, The weather is sunny and dry with an average temperature around 22oC. The Summer in Macao is hot, humid and rainfall is at its highest. Light clothing is recommended to visitors and an umbrella is necessary during this period. The weather of Autumn in Macao is best and most comfortable. The rainy season has ended, so the weather becomes warm and the humidity is low. But the period of Autumn is very short. It will return cool and dry when entering the Winter. Sometimes the temperature may drop below 10oC. Woolen clothing and jacket are required in this period.

Getting to Macao

By Sea (via Hong Kong to Macao)

There are two facilities for visitors to Macao from Hong Kong by sea. The main terminal is Hong Kong Macao Ferry Terminal located in Shun Tak Centre, on the waterfront West of Central District on Hong Kong Island. It is above Sheung Wan MTR station and adjacent to the terminus for public buses and minibuses from many parts of Hong Kong, including the A2 Airbus from the airport. There are some reservation offices of Macao hotels, travel agents and a Macao Government Tourist Office Information Counter in the terminal. You can find out more information about the ferries at this terminal through the website: http://www.turbojet.com.hk.

Visitors can use the following public transportation from Hong Kong Chek Lap Kok International Airport to the Hong Kong Macao Ferry Terminal:

Airport Express

First, take the Airport Express to the Hong Kong Station in Central.
Fare: HK$(100 (Single Trip)
Frequency: Every 10 minutes
Journey Time: 23 minutes
Operating Hours: 5:50a.m. - 00:48 a.m.

Then, take a taxi to the Hong Kong Macao Ferry Terminal at Sheung Wan.
Fare: HK$15-20
Journey Time: 10-15 minutes

Public Bus No. A11 (air-conditioned)

Passengers should get off at the third stop after departing from the airport, press the bell when "Hong Kong Macao Ferry Terminal" is being announced.
Fare: HK$40
Operating Hours: 05:00a.m. - 00:48am
Frequency: Every 15 minutes
Journey Time: 30-40 minutes

Taxi

Fare: HK$350 - 400
Journey Time: 30 minutes

Another terminal is the China Ferry Terminal located on the Tsimshatsui waterfront alongside Harbour City, on the Kowloon side of Hong Kong. You can find out more information about the ferries at this terminal through the website: http://www.nwff.com.hk.

Passengers are advised to be at the terminal at least 30 minutes before the scheduled departure time, in order to complete the immigration formalities.

If visitors want to go to Macao from Hong Kong Chek Lap Kok Airport directly without needing to enter Hong Kong, they can choose to take the TurboJet Sea Express service within the Restricted Area. Once they leave the Restricted Area, they can only use other way to Macao.

Time-Schedule:
Macao Ferry to Airport: 10:00, 13:00, 16:40, 19:30
Airport to Macao: 11:50, 15:30, 18:15, 21:15
website: www.turbojetseaexpress.com.hk

Whichever terminal the visitors choose, they will arrive at the Macao Ferry Terminal that is located in the Outer Harbour, close to the New Yaohan Department Store.

By Air

Airplanes

The Macao International Airport is located on Taipa Island and operates 24 hours a day. To find out more information about the airport or flight schedules, please visit the website: http://www.macau-airport.com.

Helicopters

East Asia Airlines co-operates with Helicopters Hong Kong Limited to offers daily helicopter shuttle service between Hong Kong and Macao. The Macao to Hong Kong service operates from 9:00a.m. to 10:30p.m. every half an hour, and the Hong Kong to Macao service operates from 9:30a.m. to 10:59p.m. Visitors can get more information through the website: http://www.helihongkong.com.

By Land (via Guangzhou in China Mainland to Macao)

The Kee Kwan Motor Road Co. offers bus service with air conditioning between Macao and Guangzhou between 8:00a.m. and 6:30p.m., approximately every an hour. For Inquiry: (853) 933888.

Please note that the Macao Immigration and Customs works from 7:00a.m. to midnight at the Border Gate on the Macao Peninsula, but the Immigration and Customs at the China Mainland side opens from 7:30a.m. to midnight. On the other hand, the Immigration and Customs works from 9:00a.m. to 8:00p.m. at Border Gate on the reclaimed area between Taipa and Coloane.

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