Old Streets I Have Walked
I took a quiz online “Which famous quote describes your life?” and got “Do not go where the path may lead, go instead where there is no path and leave a trail”. It elaborated further,
“You are a very adventurous person. You love to explore new possibilities, try out everything that has not been tried before, and lead others in new and exciting ways. You learned very early in your life that you don’t have to be like everybody else, and that there are great things in the world just waiting to get discovered by you. Now walk that unknown road, fear not, for only new paths can lead to new and exciting places.”
There were no new roads that day, so I took to the old streets. A path taken by so many since the 16th century…
“Rua de Sao Paulo” or St. Paul’s Road is the historic road that leads to the Ruins of St. Paul from Macau’s Old City centre.
Macau’s Old City centre.
Street vendor (along St. Paul’s Road) selling food items similar to our local Yong Tau Foo.
This is the second time I passed by this stall and it is usually busy.
I will try this on my next trip.
Almond biscuits like these are very popular food souvenirs.
Yuk Kon, or Bak Kwa as we called them, are “Dried Dragon’s Meat”, and taste like jerky but on the sweet side.
The ones sold in Macau are very much thicker and bigger in sizes compared to those sold in Singapore.
They may come in different flavours, like beef, chicken and pork.
Undeniably Macau’s most distinguished landmark, the Ruins of St. Paul’s was officially listed in 2005 as part of the Historic Centre of Macau, a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
“Do not go where the path may lead, go instead where there is no path and leave a trail”.
The Ruins of St. Paul’s (Ruínas de São Paulo) in Macau (大三巴牌坊):
Originally built in the 16th century, the complex of St. Paul’s College and the Cathedral of St. Paul burned down and was rebuilt multiple times before the third and final fire during a typhoon in 1835 left it beyond repair.
All that remains are the iconic stone facade and the grand staircase leading up to it.
Not years of age (although I felt like one after climbing) but the total number of steps.
The Museum of Sacred Art and Crypt was built at the bottom of the ruins and houses many religious artefacts including Sino-Portuguese crucifixes, as well as a 17th century painting of St. Michael Archangel – the only surviving work from the original college.
The carvings include Jesuit images with Oriental themes, such as a woman stepping on a seven-headed hydra, described in Chinese characters as ‘Holy Mother tramples the heads of the dragon’.
A few of the other carvings are of the founders of the Jesuit Order, the conquest of Death by Jesus, and at the very top, a dove with wings outstretched.
Looking down from the steps at Ruínas de São Paulo.
Matteo Ricci, S.J. was an Italian Jesuit priest, and one of the founding figures of the Jesuit China Mission, as it existed in the 17th–18th centuries.
“Matteo Ricci was born in 1552 in Macerata, part of the Papal States, and today a city in the Italian region of Marche. Ricci started learning theology and law in a Roman Jesuit school. He entered the order in 1571, and in 1577 he applied for a missionary expedition to India. His journey began in March 1578 in Lisbon, Portugal. He arrived in Goa, a Portuguese Colony, in September 1578. Four years later, he was dispatched to China. In August 1582, Ricci arrived at Macau, a Portuguese trading post on the South China Sea.” – Wikipedia
Matteo Ricci, S.J.
His current title is Servant of God.
The huge mustard coloured building on the right is Ponte 16 (十六浦).
“Ponte 16 was the first fisherman’s port, resplendent in the colonial architecture of the day, a hub of diverse cultural influences. In the mid 1900s, Chinese triads and gangs moved in and the area became known for gambling. The Inner Harbour reigned as the city’s economic centre up until the 1970s, when commercial activities began to decline with the relocation of the Hong Kong – Macau Ferry Terminal.” – Wikipedia
Photo taken when ascending towards Fortaleza do Monte.
Fortaleza Do Monte.
Built in 1617-1626, the fort was to protect the properties of the Jesuits in Macau.
Later it was seized by the Governor for the defense of Macau.
The Museum of Macau (on right) was built on the hill in the 1990s.
The tree covered park at the top of the fort has a panoramic view of the mainland area of Macau.
The fortress has served various functions:
*First residence of the Governors of Macau
In the 16th Century, China gave Portugal the right to settle in Macau in exchange for clearing the area of pirates under strict Chinese administration.
Macau was the first European settlement in the Far East.
It became Portuguese colony effectively after the treaty signed by the Qing and Portuguese Governments in 1887.
It was also the last when, pursuant to an agreement signed by China and Portugal in 1987, Macau became the Macau Special Administrative Region (SAR) of China on 20 December 1999, ending over 400 years of Portuguese administration.
Being the first and last European colony in Asia, Macau has more pronounced colonial history than any other in this region. It has been said that if the streets were bereft of people and signs in Chinese, you would be convinced you were in Europe.
Old streets I have walked…
Happy traveling and discovering 🙂
Date visited: July 2014.
All information (text) credit: Wikipedia and Wikitravel.