After spending two-third of the day at the area around Ruins of St. Paul’s, we venture to other parts of Macau Peninsula and chanced upon St. Anthony’s Church and Camoes Garden.
St. Anthony’s Church
As we walked along, we reached the St. Anthony’s Church, a church that was first built of bamboo and wood from 1558 to 1560. St. Anthony’s Church is one of the oldest church in Macau. The church was burnt by fire for several times and was also reconstructed of stone several times. The St. Anthony’s Church that we see today dates back to 1930. In the past, the members of Portuguese community would hold wedding ceremonies here which gave the Church the Chinese name of Fa Vong Tong (Church of Flowers).
After visiting St. Anthony’s Church, we continued exploring the area and we chanced upon Camoes Garden. At the front of the Garden was a small park with seats and there were a number of elderly men sitting around chatting.
The Camoes Garden is situated on a forested hillside in the old part of the town. The Camoes Garden is part of the asset of the Oriental Foundation, which was originally the house of Manuel Pereira, a Portuguese merchant. After the death of the merchant, his residence was donated to the government and the garden is commemorated and named after the great Portuguese poet Luis Vaz de Camoes (1524-1580).
Luis Vaz de Camoes is the author of “Os Lusiadas”, an epic poem that tells the History of Portugal and the great discovery journey of the Portuguese people, which made of him a poet of the world. He lived many years in Asia and told among the first settlers in Macau, with an important place in the Administration, and wrote part of his work “Os Lusiadas” in the Caves that were named after him. Camoes died on 10 July 1580, the Portuguese people National Day.
Camoes Garden is one of Macau’s oldest parks and Macau’s largest, covering an area of nearly 20,000 square meters (about 24,000 square yards).
Camoes Garden is a popular spot for locals to do their morning exercises and evening walks, play a chess game, walk their caged birds (a Chinese custom) or to meet with friends. The Camoes Garden is an oasis in the busy city and a contrast to the Sin City that Macau is known to many visitors.
After exploring the Camoes Garden, we walked back to the Ruins of St. Paul’s area. Along the way, we captured photos of the streets and old residential buildings that have their own unique architectures and nostalgic feel.
We took the taxi back to Cotai after buying some snacks and souvenirs at the Ruins of St. Paul’s area.
For more information on St. Anthony’s Church and Camoes Garden, go to www.macaumuseum.gov.mo.
This trip was made in Spring 2017.
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