Set within the compound of the old Monte Fort, the Macau Museum was opened in 1998 as a means of educating visitors on the fascinating history of the Special Administrative Region of Macau. As Macau is one of the first areas in the Far East to experience a blend of European and Asian rule, the museum chronicles the curiosities and struggles of this tiny peninsula attempting to live under two distinct governments and cultures.
The first two floors of the museum are located in the subterranean tunnels of the old Monte Fort and primarily highlight Macau’s cultural and political past. First floor exhibits known as the “Genesis of Macau” provide visitors with an understanding of the history of the peninsula and focus on the fusion and friction of the Portuguese and Chinese cultures. The museum’s second floor shifts more towards the everyday lives of the people of Macau with exhibits covering daily customs, artwork, and traditional Macanese festivals. There is even a fully reconstructed Macanese street which depicts daily life in old Macau, replete with Chinese storefronts and colonial European architecture. Finally, on the third floor, with a view stretching out towards Macau’s modern skyline, visitors can peruse the exhibits which point towards Macau’s contemporary present and the prospects for a prosperous future.
The largest museum in Macau and undoubtedly the most popular, the Macau Museum is an easy place for history buffs and inquisitive visitors to lose themselves in the storied history of one of colonialism’s longest lasting endeavors.