Macau is teeming with great spots to eat at even in places that are popular with tourists. Whether you prefer something fancy, affordable or local, there’s something for every kind of foodie! We’re focusing on great restaurants for something tasty near Senado Square, part of the UNESCO Historic Centre of Macau World Heritage Site. Here’s our selection of the best restaurants to try out close to one of Macau’s most touristic spots.
(See featured image above: Portuguese style pork and clams dish. Credits: Mariazinha restaurant)
Mariazinha is a delightful restaurant located in Old Macau just before you head up to the famous St Paul’s Ruins. They serve some of the best Portuguese dishes in town. If you don’t believe us, believe the locals who regularly go there. They have great value weekday lunch sets, consistent and friendly service. Their hearty Portuguese cuisine, warm ambiance and delicious fare make it the perfect spot for a lovely meal.
Opening hours: Daily, 11:30am–2:45pm, 6:30pm–9:45pm
Boa Mesa Macau Restaurante
Make your way to Travessa de São Domingos, a little side street off of the square, and you’ll find Boa Mesa. Contrary to popular belief, it’s not just another restaurant serving Portuguese food. This family-friendly restaurant has fantastic fresh seafood offerings as well and has something for everyone. We love their classic Portuguese style steak–bitoque, an amazing array of starters, and their authentic duck rice is delicious. With a quaint and intimate vibe, try pairing your dishes with sangria for a refreshing twist!
Opening hours: Daily, 12:00pm–10:00pm
A specialty coffee house with a cool industrial design, Communal Table is located on Rua Formosa with a plain and practical yet cozy space. Their meals are usually light and converse to most Portuguese restaurants, portions are smaller, so one can either keep it simple or order several dishes to share. It’s the perfect spot to head to when looking for a quick and tasty meal. Also serving locally roasted specialty coffee, they offer everything from pour over coffee to espresso and from single origin to blended coffee. The concept behind Communal Table is simple–a table large enough to share your thoughts, ideas, happiness, coffee, and food with friends old and new.
Opening hours: Daily, 7:45am–6:00pm
Once you enter, you will immediately feel the laid-back vibe of Cathedral Cafe. While the weekday lunch sets are favored, there is a great selection of comfort food on the menu. Grab a beer or a glass of wine and affordable dishes such as salad, pasta, and sandwiches. The friendly staff are helpful with tourists and locals alike. It’s a great place to people watch as well and offers some outdoor seating which is rare in this area of town! From Macanese to Portuguese, Australian specialties and even traditional dishes, Cathedral has something for everyone!
Opening hours: Daily, 10:00am–2:00am
Arrived in Macau and still haven’t tried some of the amazing local cuisine? That’s a shame, but you still have time! Head to this little spot tucked away at a small patio in Rua das Mariazinhas (follow from Senado Square toward Rua do Campo). Filled with meat, seafood or veggies, these are some of the best dumplings in town. With a traditional wrapping, take them with hot tea and maybe a side of noodles. Although hard to find for first timers, it’s usually full of people queuing, so be sure to get there earlier to find a table. If you’re unable to do so, just ask for “tapau” (takeaway), and find a quiet spot to hang out and appreciate this delicacy.
Opening hours: Daily, 12:00pm–10:00pm
Dumpling Town 7A Beco da Arruda, Macau, +853 2835 6633
Serving some of the simplest dishes from Portugal, this is the to-go place not only for a quick meal, but also a tasty one. Tailored for meat lovers, they serve warm, fresh out-of-the-pan bifanas and pregos (pork meat and beef sandwiches) with cheese, parma ham or plain. Grab some mayo and mustard, have it with a Portuguese beer or even a glass of wine and complete your meal with a freshly made espresso. Have it the Portuguese way or any way at all. Set in a quieter area, it’s just a few minutes away from Senado Square and has lots of local designer and crafts shops where you can look for gifts to take home, to remind you of the great times you had while visiting Macau.
Opening hours: Tuesday–Thursday, 12:30pm–10:00pm, Friday–Sunday, 12:30pm–3:00am
With quite an innovative concept in Macau, Urban Tribe teaches us that you don’t need to eat fatty dishes to experience Portuguese cuisine. With a menu consisting of fresh salads with pasta, quinoa, couscous or lettuce, they invite customers to have it with all sorts of ingredients: from biological tomatoes to corn, tuna or chicken. Have a fresh and light meal with their original olives and olive oil sauce or combine it with their exquisite homemade soup of the day and a freshly made, no added sugar iced tea. Set right across Mariazinha, it’s a great place to go if meat is not your thing. They also sell organic Portuguese wine, coconut milk-based yogurts and many other delicacies for one to take home and enjoy a side of Portugal rarely seen in Macau.
Opening hours: Monday–Friday, 11:00pm–7:00pm
Urban Tribe 1 Calçada da Rocha, Macau, +853 6555 8067, www.facebook.com/urbantribemacau
Take a left after the zebra crossing leading to Leal Senado Building and you’ll see a patio on your right hand side, just when the steep road starts going up: you’ve reached Larry’s Place, one of Macau’s healthiest and most laid-back restaurants. Featuring just a few seats, it’s great for takeaway meals and one can even order online! From rice bowls to vegan and vegetarian salads, fresh fruit juices and other light dishes, Larry’s food is filling, healthy, colorful and wallet-friendly.
Opening hours: Monday–Saturday, 8:00am–8:00pm
Zhen Dim Sum
A new concept has arrived to town and it’s sure to amaze everyone who just can’t get to a traditional dim sum restaurant in time. This typical Cantonese cuisine is usually served between 11:30am and 2:00pm, with most dishes gone way before closing time. If you are one of those who love having late lunches or dim sum for dinner, head here to experience the traditional flavors of this part of China and have a blast, with all their beautifully designed dishes and plates. From char siu bao, to rice noodles with seafood, congee with chicken and century egg, these are some of their must-try dishes. Desserts are also great! Affordable with sharing and individual portions, Zhen Dim Sum is the place to go when looking for dim sum outside of its regular timing. Set in Praia Grande avenue, it’s close enough to Leal Senado and to other main attractions, such as Nam Van Lakes and Lisboa Casino.
Opening hours: Daily, 8:00am–9:30pm
Zhen Dim Sum 807 Avenida da Praia Grande, Macau, +853 2892 0299, www.facebook.com/zhendimsum