Macau is the gambling capital of the world, the casinos are bigger than vegas and there is more money gambled here each year than Vegas but despite that Macau is not even close to being Vegas.
If you’re staying in Macau chances are you will be staying with a hotel attached to casino or at least it’s own gambling area. The vibe of the casinos is not like Vegas, it’s not a party town, wealthy people from China and Hong Kong come here to gamble lots of money very quickly.
I was disappointed and surprisingly impressed at the same time, I was expecting to go and party and gamble at nightclubs and casinos in Macau but this is not the scene in Macau. I gambled a bit at the lower money tables for the sake of it but it was not a lot of fun and there were no obvious nightclub districts, only a few bars within casinos.
What I was impressed at however was the history of Macau, how beautiful the city is to walk around. Macau was previously a Portuguese colony and the oldest European colony in Asia and going to Macau is like going to a European city, the old churches, ruins, streets are amazing.
There are two main islands of Macau, Macau City which is the old center of Macau and the newer Taipa/Cotai island, I originally booked to stay on Taipa/Cotai island in a place recommended by a friend but found accommodation for less than half the price in Macau City and was glad I changed my booking.
Macau City has so much more to see and do during the day and is enjoyable just to spend a day walking around. The Taipa/Cotai island side of Macau is full of the biggest and newest hotels & casinos however it is more expensive to stay on and harder to walk around as everything is so far apart. There are free shuttles all day until very late at night between both sides of Macau and the casinos so you can easily get to either side regardless of where you stay.
A lot of people travel to Hong Kong and China but don’t think about including Macau as part of their trip, I highly recommend including Macau for a couple of days at least if you are going to Hong Kong or China as I believe you will be pleasantly surprised by what you find.