Whenever one thinks of Macau, automatically endless casinos enter the mind but there’s more to it than just simply playing a game of Baccarat all night. Visiting the Asian city, the quaint quiet charm of Taipa captured my heart as it is quite a depart from the pinging sounds of slot machines, smokey casino bars and laughter of people surrounded by money and gambling.
A walking tour of Taipa
The quieter neighborhood of the Taipa Village where colonial architecture and traditional community meets. Rua do Cunha, a pedestrian-only narrow street comprising of small stores, restaurants and two story colonial buildings awaits you.
A walking tour of this part of Macau is ideal as the charming small boutiques, Portuguese coffee shops, museums and such are perfect for easy navigation.
Early morning on a quiet solo walking trip, it was pretty cold at 10 degrees and the smell of croissants wafted in the air and led me to Antonio’s, a cozy Portuguese coffee shop tucked in one of the narrow alleys of Taipa Village. Their friendly waiters serve pretty good coffee and pastries. And so, these are enough for me to begin my solo walking tour of the area.
A favorite place of mine in Macau is the quaint mixed Macanese-Portuguese Taipa Houses-Museum built in 1921. Located beside the lake, it’s a quiet place where you can stroll and enjoy the nice view that’s definitely a depart from the usual noise of casinos in Macau. Macanese families in the 1900s used to own these five colonial-style houses beside a shoreline which is facing a reclaimed land called Cotai.
The mixture of European and Chinese design of the houses makes it quite interesting with its large verandas and colorful flowers encircling each house. These houses contains relics of Taipa and Colôane history, Portuguese traditional costumes and also, the fourth house is used for special functions. Some locals use it for wedding pictorials like the one I stumbled upon when I went there. A perfect backdrop indeed for a romantic pre-nuptial photoshoot.
The Taipa Houses-Museum admission is MOP$5 for adults, MOP$3 for students, and free for seniors and children 11 and younger.
Also tucked at the end of Rua Correia da Silva in Taipa is the Museum of Taipa and Colôane History which you can visit for MOP5 for adults but on Sundays the admission is free. Also known as Museu da Historia da Taipa e Coloane, it is located in a Neo-Classical building.
The ground floor of the museum encases the prehistoric artifacts from Coloane while the second floor exhibits about fishing, agriculture, firework factories and ship building of the locals. Guide books and audio guides are available in English, Portuguese, and Chinese.