Mumbai, the Bollywood City or the land of Indian Movies, is a city of extremes: Glitzy yet modest, unthinkable wealth yet deplorable poverty. Yes, Mumbai is chaotic on the surface; however, take a deep breath (sigh…) and just hold on, as you will soon realize that there is a way to Mumbai’s madness. Mumbai is not only about the sights, it is about the madness, the great experience.
Chic yet conservative; rustic yet refined…that is Mumbai for the tourists. So pack up your bag and book flights to Mumbai from london gatwick, as this Indian metropolis will take you on a memorable journey that will inspire, excite and exhaust you all at once. Get a taste of this intoxicating city on holidays in Mumbai.
In Mumbai, you may have an arduous time locating the ‘Must-visit’ tourists’ spots, but the fact is that this metropolitan city has worked on a beat quite different from the rest of country, India.
10 Things to Do on Mumbai Holiday
Place of British Emperors Entry and Exit - Visit the Gateway of India
Only a few of landmarks represent the spirit of Mumbai more redolently than the Gateway of India. It will be the fittest of things if we list ‘Gateway of India’ (GOI) as our No1 attraction to visit when on a holiday to Mumbai.
GOI is a vantage point not because majority tourists began their Mumbai venture from this milepost, but because it was the port of ceremonial entry for the British Viceroys and Governors to India, once it was built. And when the British Generals left India, the troops made their exit via the GOI.
The monument is located in South India and was inaugurated in 1924. Kissing the Arabian Sea, GOI offers a splendid vista. The monument is built into the shape of arch that has a height of 26-meters. A brilliant architectural wonder, it is built of reinforced concrete and yellow Basalt.
The monument commemorates the visit of Queen Mary and King George V to India in 1911. The foundation stone was laid in that year itself. The monument is a key tourist attraction that even the locals throng.
Place of Britishers Entry and Exit - Visit the Gateway of India, Mumbai
Behind the Scenes Bollywood Tour - Visit Film City
The next on our list of Things to Do on Mumbai Holiday is exploring the Film city. When in the Bollywood city, visiting the Film city is a must. Film city is the film studio complex situated in Goregaon East in the vicinities of Sanjay Gandhi Park. It is the place where innumerable Bollywood movies are shot.
Mumbai is the film city of India (like Hollywood in USA), and has lured thousands of people wishing to try their luck in films. The Indian film industry is the largest in the world and in technical expertise, it stands at No#2 after Hollywood. There is a whole big dream world inside the film city, with advanced technology at its beck and indispensible creativity to produce movie masterpieces.
Inside the film city, one can find gardens, real like buildings, numerous editing and recording rooms, helipads, grounds and fountains etc. The place was built by the State government for the benefit of the movie industry.
To pay homage to Dadasaheb Phalke, the father of Indian cinema and an illustrious cine figure, the film city was renamed as Dada Saheb Phalke Nagar.
Welcome to Bollywood, Visit Film City in Mumbai
Tryst with Hindu Religion - Elephanta Caves
Elephanta Caves are UNESCO heritage site and are located around 10-killometers off the eastern coast of Mumbai. You can reach the caves by motor boats that rum from Apollo Bunder, near the Gateway of India.
The Elephanta Island comprises of 2 –groups of caves – having total 7-caves
·A small group of 2- Buddhist Temple
·A big group of 5-Hindu Caves
The caves were constructed sometime between the 5th and 8th centuries. They have been divided from solid basalt rock. The most significant cave out of the seven is the Mahesha Murti Cave, where giant stone figures of doorkeepers greet the visitors at the entrance.Inside the cave is a big hall that has huge stone pillars supporting the roof!
The Elephants caves are dedicated to the Great Lord SHIVA and one can see the Lord SHIVA in both his form – in the statue form and the SHIV-LING form. A mammoth 20-feet tall statue of Lord SHIVA can be seen standing high in the main chamber in the form of “Trimurthi SADASHIVA” (Three Headed Shiva) – The Creator, the Preserver and the Destroyer ( the three attributes of the Lord’s personality).
Creative and inimitable architectural designs can be seen the Elephanta caves. Every year, in the February month, the Elephanta Festival, primarily a musical festival is hosted. A visit to the caves renders tourists a clear insight into some of the cultural and religious facets of India. The caves showcase several acts and forms of Lord SHIVA.
Take a Stroll - Chowpatty Beach
The beach runs along the Marine drive, in the South Mumbai. Also known as the Girgaum Chowpatty or just Chowpatty by the locals, it is a place of GANPATI visarjan (immersion in the sea) during GANESH chaturti celebrations. Hordes to people flock to Chowpatty beach to do the GANPATI visarjan and many just to watch the spectacle.
It is one of the venues in Mumbai where stage performances of Ram Lila are held annually during Dussehra. Also, the ectype of Ravana is burnt here on the conclusion of the nine-day Navratri festival. You will see people of all ages and from all walks of life throng the beach not only to get fresh air, but to savor variety of popular street foods and enjoy various pony rides and ferry rides etc.
Take a Refreshing Stroll at Chowpatty Beach in Mumbai
Landmark of the City - Hutatma Chowk
The fountain is a landmark and one of the must-see tourist attractions on Mumbai Holiday.
The place was formerly called the Flora Fountain. The fountain is a beautifully carved stone fountain in South Mumbai built in 1864, and is built of imported Portland stone. The fountain has been named Flora, after the Roman Goddess of Flowers and is situated in the Fort area, which is a bustling and thriving business are in the heart of the city.
During the hot and sultry day, the soothing and cold spray of water from the fountain is much relished by those who happen to walk past it.
Hutatma Chowk, A Must-See Attraction in Mumbai Holiday
A Specimen of Victorian Style of Architecture - Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus
CST (Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus) is a historic railway station that was formerly called the VT (Victoria Terminus). It is a charming example of Victorian Gothic style of architecture and has been declared UNESCO world heritage site.
It is the last stop on the Central railway in South Mumbai. Additionally, Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus is the headquarters of the Central Railways of India. The place boasts of marvelous stone domes, inimitable ground plan and pointed arches. With interiors featuring wood carvings, ornamental iron and brass railings and tiles, the place is an excellent blend of two cultures.
It took around 10-years and 260,000 pounds to build, the costliest structure ever built in Mumbai till now.
Visit Historic Railway Station, Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus in Mumbai
The Queen Necklace- Marine Drive
The next on our list of Things to Do on Mumbai Holiday is a visit to Marine Drive. It is an amazingly laid out boulevard in South Mumbai linking Malabar hills to Nariman Point.Marine Drive (also known as Netaji Subhash Chandra Marg) is Mumbai’s sea prom and is an 8-lane, C-shaped and three-kilometer long concrete highway with a wide pavement that boasts of Chowpatty beach at one of its proximal end at the base of Malabar Hills.
The promenade is the most adored place to stroll, both for tourists and locals, with uninterrupted vista along the whole way. The apartments here are some of the most desirable and costly in the city.
The lights along the Marine Drive shine like a Queen’s necklace, hence the nickname. Take a stroll along the promenade and watch Sikhs in maharaja costumes pedaling rides on their ornamented carriages and see kids toss sticks of blazing incense over the shinning waters.
Marine Drive, the Queen Necklace of Mumbai
Holy Waters - Banganga Tank
While on the surface it may appear like water tank – an extremely old one, but in reality it is a pool of water considered scared and holy. Believed to spring up from the underground offshoot of the Ganges, the holy waters are studded with stone-turreted and crumbling shrines and temples presided over the emerging skyscrapers and assailing urbanization.
Listen to the mantra-chanting pujaris and toll of bells at the devotional hub. Also, visit the next door to check-out the spiritual impressiveness of Walkeshwar Temple, dedicated to the Hindu Lord SHIVA.
Not a Water Tank, It is a Pool of Holy Water in Mumbai
An Enchanting Shrine - Haji Ali
The next on our list of Things to Do on Mumbai Holiday is a visit to Haji Ali. Haji Ali is a tomb (or durgah) as well as an extremely famous mosque. It is a shrine gigantically venerated by Muslims and also people of other religions, and is situated on an island in the Worli region in Mumbai. The mosque was built in 1431.
People from all across India and world come to pay tribute to Haji Ali, a wealthy merchant-saint, who gave up all the worldly pleasure prior to moving to Haji in Mecca. It was built in the memory of Haji Ali.
Legend has it that he died while on this pilgrimage and the coffin carrying his body was cast in the sea waters as per his last wish; however, it floated back to this place. Other legends have that he drowned at this place.
Regardless of one’s faith, thousands of visitors come to Haji Ali durgah to receive blessings of the pure soul and it is estimated that around 40,000 visitors come to the shrine every Thursday and Friday. The highlight of the tomb is the 26-meter high tower inside the complex.
The Tomb is always covered with green and red sheet, which is supported on a silver frame by means of marble pillars. The pillars boast of myriad colored mirrors and have in Arabic the 99-names of Allah. Separate praying rooms for women and men are provided according to the Islamic traditions.
The shrine is around 500-meters from the shore and is aligned by a narrow walkway around 1-killometer long in the sea, astonishingly; it has no railings on the either side. It is indeed a lifetime experience to walk along this walkway with sea on both sides and cool wind blowing on one’s body.
A Beautiful Shrine, where All Wishes come True, Haji Ali, Mumbai
Try the Eclectic Fusion - Delicious Cuisine
Mumbai is an eclectic blend of Indian cuisines. While when outside of India, you may have only tasted the Indian Mughlai food (like thick kebabs, curries and naan), the food of Mumbai is influenced by Parsi, Muslim, Gujrati, Goan, South Indian and Costal cultures.
Sample delicious Parsi akuri cometh or overlook your diet completely and taste super-rich butter chicken, a yummy dish where chunks of chicken are marinated in spices and yoghurt, and then served with butter cream sauce.
Taste Eclectic Fusion of Cuisines in Mumbai Holiday
Mumbai is packed with glitz and glamour, and it is one of the most happening cities in India. It is a well-known fact that Mumbai never sleeps and those who visit this glamorous city will testify to this. The tourist attractions are not just exciting but also provide an insight into the legacy of the city.
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