MACAU'S HERITAGE STATUS REACHES MILESTONE
Macau's status as a vital UNESCO World Heritage listed site will have 10 good reasons to be celebrated in 2015.
On July 15, the former Portuguese enclave will reach a new milestone – the 10th anniversary on receiving the international recognition.
"The historic centre of Macau was rewardingly inscribed on the World Heritage list on July 15, 2005, making it the 31st designated site in China," said Helen Wong, general manager of the Macau Government Tourist Office in Australia and New Zealand.
"It was a significant day for Macau and its people and showcased how important a gateway the centre was for the west to enter China over four centuries ago," she said.
"We are very proud of how the historic hub has been lovingly maintained in reaching this milestone, and we expect this important listing to continue for many generations to come."
The Historic Centre of Macau is said to be a "living representation" of the city's establishment, encompassing a series of architectural legacies with fascinating historic streetscapes and popular piazzas.
Among the squares and the 20 or more monuments are the much photographed Ruins of St Paul's, the symbolic A-Ma Temple, St Dominic's Church, the main Fortress, a section of the 16the Century city wall and, of course, Senado Square with its wave-patterned stone mosaic paving.
The tranquil green haven of Casa Garden, the 17th Century Guia Fortress and the Protestant Cemetery with its small 1821-built chapel and the graves of famous former British residents such as artist George Chinnery are also included.
All historic sites and squares can be viewed or visited on one of eight suggested self-guided walks from the Macau Government Tourist Office's "Step Out, Experience Macau's Communities" program available in free brochure form and online at the official MGTO website where an app can be downloaded to your Smartphone.
"Macau is living testimony of how western and eastern cultures came together," said Helen, "over a unique period of history."
Details: Macau Government Tourist Office (Australia and New Zealand), phone (02) 9264 1488 or check out www.macautourism.gov.mo