You could be applying for a visa either in your own country, or in a third country. If you have any doubts about your situation you should enquire at a Chinese Consulate or at a Public Security Bureau Entry and Exit Administration office in China.
Application in a Third Country & Regions
Travelers often need to obtain visas while en route, in another country, for example, you are Austrians, you can also apply at Chinese Embassy in Berlin, Germany. While it is possible to obtain one in this situation it has become more difficult recently. Some offices do not accept appliations from persons who are not resident in the country concerned. In some cases having a visa for that country is considered OK, but this might be of no help if you are in a country where you do not require one.
There is no simple answer to this issue, nor is it clear exactly why this rule exists. The first option is to try at every Chinese Consulate that you pass in the hope that one will grant one. Another possibility is that if you can manage without your passport for a couple of weeks, you express mail or courier your passport and application to a friend or agent in your own country and have it sent back to you after it has been issued.
Hong Kong and Macau are considered as foreign territory on this regard so they are 'third regions' in this context. Hong Kong has traditionally been liberal in its application of visa regulations but this has changed since the Olympics. Now nationals of many countries are banned from applying for a Chinese visa in Hong Kong or Macau unless they are working or living in Hong Kong or Macau permanently: including Afghanistan, Algeria, Bangladesh, Congo, Egypt, Gambia, Ghana, Guinea, India, Indonesia, Iran, Iraq, Kazakhstan, Kirgizstan, Libya, Mali, Mauritania, Morocco, Malaysia, Nepal, Nigeria, Pakistan, Philippines, South Africa, Sri Lanka, Sudan, Saudi Arab, Sierra Leone, Syria, Tajikistan, Tunisia, Turkey and Uzbekistan. However, this policy is subject to change at any time in the actual operation of visa office. Other nationals who can most easily apply in their home country should still be able to obtain them in Hong Kong, but maybe for lesser durations than was the case in the past. Here TravelChinaGuide advises that you should better arrange Chinese visa in advance in your resident country in order to avoid any hassle.
Now it is not worth applying a Chinese tourist L in Hong Kong because it takes 3 – 4 days and costs HK$ 200 – 2,000 or more that differs from countries. If you want to get it within 2-3 days, you have to apply for rush service or express service by paying extra HK$ 300 or HK$ 200 besides the regular fee. The previous method of reaching to Hong Kong and immediately getting one no longer exist. You have to burden the expense hotel bills in Hong Kong till your application is approved. The office in Macau is less crowded and the hotel is cheaper, but it also takes a long time. Generally speaking, you can only get single or double entry one if you are visitors in Hong Kong without HK ID Card; if you have previous entries into Mainland or you are Hong Kong student/work visa holders, you possibly get a multiple-entry one to Mainland.
Hereunder is the contact information of Commissioner's Officer of Foreign Affairs Ministry of PRC in Hong Kong and Macau:
Office of the Commissioner of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the PRC in Hong Kong SAR,
Address: 3rd Floor, China Resources Building, 26 Harbour Road, Wanchai.
Open 09:00 - 12:00, and 14:00 - 17:00, Monday - Friday (except Hong Kong public holidays)
Do not take large baggage as you are not allowed to take it inside.
24 hour Automatic Answering Telephone: 852-34132300
Live Answering Telephone: 852-34132424 (available at 10:00-11:00, 15:00-16:00 on workdays)
The office in Macao is quite small and some travelers suggest is less generous than the Hong Kong office.
Address: No.992 Luo Li Ji Bo Shi Da Ma Lu (In Portuguese, the address is No. 992, Avenida do Dr. Rodrigo Rodrigues, Macao SAR, PRC)
1. Monday - Friday, 09:00-12:00, 14:30-16:30
2. 14:30-16:30, FRIDAY is open only for Pick-up.
3. Office is closed on Saturday, Sunday & Macau Public Holidays.
Maybe you are also interested in Application in Your Own Country and Application in China (renewal and extension).