An almost 400-year-old, 100-by-100-meter stone fort, with superb sunset and casino views from the top.
Together with Macau Museum inside, Monte Fort, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, is generally considered the premier historical attraction for tourists in Macau.
The top battlements on the 9-meter-high walls are a great place to see the shimmering casino lights of mainland Macau and the colors of sunset. If the weather is right, the scenery is quite beautiful at dusk.
Monte Fort was built by the Jesuits between 1617 and 1626. Walls enclosed quarters for soldiers and storehouses. Large cannons were set along the top battlements.
The fort was designed to survive a two-year siege, but the cannons were used in battle only twice. It is said that a miraculous shot fired accidentally by a monk hit a Dutch ammunition ship. The resulting explosions damaged the nearly victorious Dutch fleet so badly that they retreated.
It remained a military base until 1965 when a weather station was built there. The weather station building was removed by the then Macau Government between 1996 and 1998 and replaced with today's Macau Museum. Macau Museum is the place to learn about this once important Portuguese colony.
Suggested Routes to the Fort
The fort, the remains of St. Paul's, and the Senado Square are part of the Historic Center of Macau UNESCO World Heritage site.
You could take a half-kilometer walk from Largo do Senado Square on San Ma Lo Street and see the main attractions of the World Heritage sites during your walk, as well as local scenery, and visit the tourist shops along the way.
Walk east 50 meters from the front of Saint Dominic's Church, and turn left at the first corner. Walk north 100 meters, and you'll reach a narrower road called the Rua de San Paulo. Follow that northwards about 250 meters, and you’ll reach the Commercial and Tourist Center building. St. Paul's is behind it.
See the remains of St. Paul's Cathedral (1627), and then take the nearby escalators to the fort.
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I updated this article on May 28, 2013
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