Tag Archives: China
Macau is an SAR (Special Administrative Region) of the People’s Republic of China, but it wasn’t always so. Macau like so many other Asian countries and regions fell under the rule of European invasion and Colonization. In Macau’s case it was the Portuguese that set down roots and remained in the region for a period 442 years. It was only in 1999 that the control of Macau was ceded to the People’s Republic of China and made the region go down in history as the “Last European Territory” in all of Asia.
Before the Portuguese and the Chinese came to Macau, it was populated people that had a unique culture of their own. Archeological evidence suggests that human life started to settle in Macau as far as 4,000 to 6,000 years back. The Macau Peninsula served as a shelter for sailors and refugees that were seeking a place to rest and restock before embarking on their journey once again.
Macau under Imperial China
Macau, like so many other regions close to Imperial China fell under the country’s rule and prospered as a shipping port. It wasn’t until the 16th century, during the Age of Discover that the Portuguese found their way into the peninsula and there set up influence that would last for over four long centuries. The Imperial Chinese rule coupled with the Portuguese colonization made Macau’s culture a diverse one.
Macau and Portugal
When the Portuguese have settled, Macau then became a quintessential trading post for both the Europeans and the Chinese. The region then played an integral role in the Portuguese trade routes. This brought along exports of silk, spices, tea, precious metals and a whole lot more. Macau as a trading post was further strengthened by a Monopoly on Chinese trade as well as with the Union of the Portuguese and Spanish Crowns.
The colonizers brought with them more than just their wares; they also brought their religion to the region. It became the gateway by which religious missionaries gained access to Japan, China and other surrounding countries.
The Effect of Hong Kong on Macau
Macau was greatly affected by regions that were in such close proximity and one of them is Hong Kong. When the China surrendered Hong Kong to the British in during the 19th century, Macau waned in popularity compared to the growing fame and wealth of Hong Kong. In an attempt to reverse the effect of Hong Kong, Macau was declared as a “Free Port” and was declared a Portuguese colony totally independent of China.
Macau Under Modern Day China
As China grew she struck a diplomatic deal with Portugal and Macau was recognized as a territory of China. Despite its status and an SAR of China, Macau still continues to enjoy a high status of autonomy apart from the Asian giant.
Today Macau’s economy is booming. Its’ association with China has given the region an economic boost and the region will undoubtedly continue to prosper. Tourists from all over the world flock to Macau in order to get a taste of its culture as well as to wallow in the many scenic spots in the region as well as to lie on the beaches along the peninsula’s shoreline.
Hong Kong one of the most beautiful places in all of Asia. And it is no wonder that Hongkong attracts millions of tourists each year. People from all over the world as well as Hong Kong locals themselves (often called “Hongkies”) are attracted by the impressive structures, the peaceful and meditative destinations all around the region, great shopping opportunities as well as loads of fun to be had in various theme parks.
The Po Lin Monastery
The Po Lin Monastery, otherwise known as the Precious Lotus Monastery is perhaps the most popular Buddhist monastery in the world. People come to Po Lin to look at the beautiful and serene gardens as well as to send their prayers up to the heavens.
It is a great place to relax in and it offers its visitors a chance to meditate and take some quiet time alone away from the hustle and bustle of the modern world. The Monastery is also home to one of Hong Kong’s most popular sculptures and that is the copper statue of the Big Buddha. The statue stands at a staggering 34 meters.
The Hopewell center is an impressive architectural creation. It is one of the most recognizable landmarks in Hong Kong and is the very first ‘circular skyscraper’ in the locale. This 214 meter tall building is made up of 64 floors. The structure stands on a slopping hill and is the reason why its rear entrance is accessible only from the 17th floor; a fact that makes it even more popular to Hong Kong’s crop of tourists.
It has always been said that no visit to Hong Kong is complete without a trip to Victoria Peak. Tourists come during the day in order to see to the Hong Kong harbor glimmer under the sunlight. They then continue to remain until the sun has set so that they can witness one of the most famous cities in the world come to life after dark. Victoria Peak is home to tourist attractions such as the old summer residence of Governor MacDowell, Peak Sky Terrace, Bubba Gump restaurant, EA Electronics and the world-famous Madame Tussaud’s Wax Museum-Hongkong. Shopaholics can while away their time in the Peak Tower or in the Peak Galleria. It is accessible via the Peak Tram or by the bus services that go to and from the locale.
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