#7 What It Feels Like To Be A Lighthouse Keeper, Pt. 3 – Macau, China

Even the chilly rain can’t dampen our spirits! — Amie and I at Guia Lighthouse

Before we know it, two days of fun in Macau have passed us quickly and it’s almost time to go home…but wait, before that we still have some places to visit, such as the Guia Lighthouse, taking the cable car from Guia Hill, and last but not least, making some wishes at the A-Ma Temple!

First stop: Ooh…it’s cold today at Guia Hill!

Guia Hill was only a 15-minute walk from our hotel… The little trek uphill might be a little strenuous but once we were up there, the fresh air invigorated us immediately. A light drizzle began to fall as we headed up to the Guia Lighthouse, located on the highest point of the Macau Peninsula at 94 metres. I could imagine it would be a fantastic vantage point for a lookout in the olden days.

Built in 1865, the stout structure with its curved sloping sides stood tall at 15 metres high and is the oldest lighthouse on the Chinese coast. With the gloomy dark clouds above us threatening to pour onto our heads, we felt like little lighthouse keepers trying to guide the ships to safety in the terrible weather.

As you can see from the electronic signboard, it’s only 14°C! But it didn’t feel so cold for us that day with all the excitement and adrenaline rushing through our veins…

Here we were, having purchased our bright green cable car tickets for only MOP 2 (one way) each!! So cheap! :D

The cable car ride from Guia Hill down to the street level lasted only less than ten minutes, but it was great fun. The cable ride was a mini one, all white in colour with the blue text “松山缆车” (Guia Hill Cable Car in Chinese) written on its sides.

Second stop: Making good wishes at A-ma Temple

The A-Ma Temple is more than just another temple built to commemorate the Goddess of seafarers, Ma-Tzu. Constructed in as far back as 1488 (!) and easily one of the oldest temples in Macau, the A-Ma temple is in fact the namesake of Macau Island… As the story goes, some Portuguese sailors arrived on the island a long time ago and asked for the name of the place, and the villagers replied “Ma -Gauk” (妈阁) thinking that the sailors wanted the name of the temple. Eventually, the Portuguese gave the island its name Macao, derived from the sound of what was told to them…

When Amie and I arrived at the temple, it was swarmed with locals and tourists, wanting to pray to the deities at the temple for some good luck for the upcoming year. We had to be careful as we moved through the crowd to explore the temple grounds, because the devotees were waving around their lighted incense sticks and their armloads of folded paper ingots, ready for burning as an offering to the gods.

There was a green bronze basin with some coins in front of one of the smaller pavilions, where people tried their hand at rubbing the handles. Apparently, doing so will bring them good fortune. Since we were already there, we also joined in the crowd and did the same. We didn’t feel any mystical or magical power surging through our bodies, but we were left with black marks on our hands from rubbing the bronze handles…

From the top of the small hill where the temple sits on, we could look over the narrow strip of ocean that separates Macau and mainland China.

Our Macau trip has come to an end after a quick trip over to grab some last-minute gifts and snacks near Ruins of St. Paul… We were a little sad to leave Macau, but also glad to be heading home.

Spying a beautiful sunset on our Jetstar flight home…


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