Macau in three days, October 1-3 2010

(Note, the pictures are in random order, and do not follow the text.)
Technically it is only 2.5 days we spend in this tiny place, which is about 29 square kilometers in area and has a population of about half a million. The main reason for our visit is The House of Dancing Water in City of Dreams. We are also looking forward to enjoying some Portuguese food and wine. It does not quite go as planned, as Tei falls sick when we reach Budget Terminal at Changi airport.
We spend the first day strolling the streets in the downtown and the old town. We have lunch at E.S.Kimo, a Macau-based western food restaurant. However, we skip the spaghetti bolognese and french fries, and order a few Chinese dishes, and sugar-bomb ice coffee. Before returning to the hotel ( Hotel Guia on Guia Hill) for a two-hour nap, we do something we've never done before anywhere: we hire a rickshaw to the A-Ma temple. The guy has two speeds in his bicycle and is not even sweating in the 30-something degree weather.
After the nap we head out for dinner at Restaurante Litoral. We had checked the place earlier today: it looks cosy and is relatively busy. We start with green salad and caldo verde. For the entrees we have grilled cod w/ potato and garlic, and charcoal sole with Casal Garcia, our favorite vinho verde branco. The cod dish is super oily, which does not improve Tei's condition.
After the dinner we hurry to see the last two contestants of Macau International Fireworks Display Contest. We see the last few minutes of Italy's show and then wait for another 30 minutes to enjoy China's display in full, meanwhile enjoying a glass of wine in the nearby tennis club's restaurant.
We start the second morning with tea and dim sum in hotel's Brilliant Lake restaurant. The place is noisy --- the hotel is full of Chinese or Honkonger tourists --- and the concept of having dumplings for breakfast strikes odd to us, especially when having some gastrointestinal problems. Then we head up the hill to Guia Lighthouse.
After the lighthouse we visit Grand Prix Museum and Wine Museum (both museums are free: wine tasting costs 10MOPs per wine). Then we find ourselves at Fisherman's Wharf --- an entertainment, retail, hotel, casino, and restaurant complex that mixes different cultural styles from Ancient Rome to Tang Dynasty. The place is almost comfortable, since it is not crowded and noisy at all. We have lunch at Darling on the Wharf Bistro, self-claimed Mediterranean restaurant/cafe.

In one of the narrow alleys of the old town we find a small gelato place that can't be proud of its agile and friendly service but sells tens of different flavors of gelato of which kiwi is just ok, but pink grapefruit is awesome. Highly recommended!

Then it is about time to get ready for the evening's show; flash photography is not allowed and the quality of our cell phone cameras are no match to the challenges of photo opportunities: high flying stunts in flashing lights. Thus, no pictures. Before the show we have drinks and munchies in Hard Rock Hotel's bar. Afterwards, we take a walk in Taipa Village, and find a number of Portuguese restaurants. However, this time we opt for an Irish pub and cottage pie, true comfy food for an upset stomach.
On our last morning we go to Starbucks for breakfast: coffee, juice (watermelon and pink grapefruit; in Singapore they only have orange, cloudy apple and carrot) and bagels with cream cheese. We check some more attractions in the old town and beyond: Luis de Camoes Garden and Grotto, Ruins of St Paul's, a facade of old church built in 1602-1640 and destroyed in fire 200 years later, and Lou Lim Ieoc Garden, and finally take the cable car up to the Guia Hill.