Mumbai City Travel Guide
Mumbai or Bombay, a cluster of seven islands, derives
its name from Mumbadevi, the patron goddess of the Koli fisher folk, its
Once a Portuguese princess' dowry and later an adornment of neo-gothic
British architecture, Mumbai today, is more than just a metropolis. It is
infact an enigma of mud huts & sky- scrapers, age old traditions &
high fashions, the industrialists' heaven & movie makers' hollywood.
A lovely natural harbour and winding creek set off the city of Mumbai from
the long, narrow coast of Western India.
Mumbai pulsates with activity. It is a city that is disciplined by no time
frame-neither by day nor night. Mumbai is also the country's financial
powerhouse, the nation's industrial heartland, and its economic nerve
centre. Dazzling shopping arcades, exciting sport activity, night clubs and
discotheques, theatre and music, gourmet restaurants and interesting
sightseeing - Mumbai offers the visitor a heady mix of all this and more.
City Travel Attractions
Afghan Church (4.5 km)
Dedicated to the British soldiers who fell in the Sindh and Afghan
campaigns of 1838 and 1843, this church also known as St. John's Church was
built in 1847.
Chowpatty Beach (4 km)
This is one of the most popular tourist attractions in Mumbai. This is a
popular beach where celebration of festivals such as Coconut Day and the
Ganesh Chaturthi immersions take place. Besides little kiosks selling
Mumbai's special snacks, Bhelpuri, A Kulfi (local ice cream), one can find
professional masseurs, pony-leaders, beebee-gun shooting galleries,
contortionists, snake charmers, monkey-trainers, balloon sellers,
flower-girls and lots more.
On the beach are statues of India's freedom fighters, Lokmanya Tilak and
Vallabh Bhai Patel who symbolise the freedom struggle. Chowpatty occupies a
special-place in the life of Mumbai, having been the venue of mass political
meetings in the pre-independence era.
Gateway of India
This 26 metres high stone archway is the first landmark of Mumbai a visitor
sees when arriving by ship. Designed by Wittet in the 16th century Gujarat
style, it was built to commemorate the visit of King George V and Queen Mary
to India in 1911. This crypto-Moresque archway welcomed numerous viceroys,
governors and top civil servants as they disembarked by launch from their P
& 0 steamers.
An equestrian statue of Chhatrapati Shivaji and statue of Swami Vivekananda
have been installed here.
Haji Ali Mosque
The tomb of a Muslim saint who died while on pilgrimage to Mecca. It is
believed that a casket containing his mortal remains floated and came to
rest on a rocky bed in the sea, where devotees constructed the tomb and
Can be visited only at low tide.
Headquarters Of Western Railway
Completed in 1897. It has, an ornamentation, a sculptured group
representing engineering, commerce and agriculture.
An attractive building built in 1878 in the early English Gothic style. The
central structure rises up to 54.2 metres and is surmounted by statues
representing Justice and Mercy.
Formerly known as Flora Fountain. This is the business centre of Mumbai,
surrounded by offices, banks, colleges and shops.
Built in marble in 1904, the shrine is dedicated to Adinath, the first
Tirthankara or apostle. The walls of the temple are adorned with colourful
paintings depicting various incidents in the lives of the 24 Tirthankaras of
the Jain religion. On the first floor is a special shrine dedicated to
Parsvanath carved out of black marble and the ceiling shows the different
planets as personified in Hindu mythology.
Kamla Nehru Park
Situated on the slopes of Malabar Hill, it is mainly a children's park
named after the wife of India's first Prime Minister. Laid in 1952, the
garden offers a panoramic view of Marine Drive and Chowpatty Beach.
An important Hindu temple dedicated to the goddess of wealth.
Mahatma Jyotiba Phule Market
Formerly known as Crawford Market it was constructed in 1867. This is
principally a fresh produce wholesale market with shops selling flowers,
fruits, vegetables, meat and fish all under one roof.
At the hub of the market is a fountain by Lockwood Kipling (father of
The poshest area of Mumbai, Malabar Hill has attractive residences,
including the Chief Minister's house and a palatial state guest house. Here
also, are the ruins of Walkeshwar temple built sometime between 810 and 1260
AD. It is believed that Lord Ram on his way to rescue his wife Sita, stopped
here and made a lingam (phallic totem) out of sand to worship Lord Shiv.
Mani Bhavan (Gandhi Memorial)
A memorial dedicated to the Father of the Nation, Mahatma Gandhi. He used
to stay at House No. 19, called Mani Bhavan, from time to time between 1917
and 1934. He was arrested here in 1932 and taken off for one of his many
prison terms. The building now contains a pictorial gallery, a 20,000-volume
research library, a film and recording archive and a set of diorama on the
The interested tourist can view this historical landmark dating back to
1829, with prior permission from the Mint Master.
Municipal Corporation Building
The V-shaped building, which stands opposite Victoria Terminus (Chhatrapati
Shivaji Terminus) is designed in early Gothic style blended with Indian
motifs. The dome, its chief architectural feature, is 71.5 metres from the
The high-rise corncob of the cylindrical Nehru Centre looms north of
Mahalaxmi. Here is a planetarium, convention centre, and concert cum- movie
auditorium. The planetarium recreates an image of the sky as seen from
anywhere on the earth, at any time - past, present or future.
Daily shows except Monday:- At 1500 hrs. and 1800 hrs. (English) 1630 hrs.
(Hindi) On Saturday and Sunday:- 1500 hrs. and 1800 hrs (English), 1630 hrs.
(Hindi) & 1300 hrs (Marathi) Entry fee: Rs. 10.00 (adult) Rs. 5.00
(child) Tel.: 4920510
Nehru Science Centre
The museum here, has a children's Science park and a permanent gallery,
which consists of exhibits relating to the properties of life. There are
also antique exhibits like a railway engine, tramcar, supersonic aeroplane
and steam lorry. Open daily except Mondays Entry fee: Rs. 5.00 Tel.: 4932667
Netaji Subhash Road
Known as the Queen's Necklace or Marine Drive this promenade is along the
Pherozshah Mehta Gardens
Popularly known as Hanging gardens they were renamed after the national
barrister Pherozshah Mehta. The gardens were laid out in 1881 on top of the
reservoir which supplies water to Mumbai. A special feature are the hedges
which are cut into animal shapes. In the early hours of the morning it is
inhabited with people doing yoga, calisthenics or just taking a walk, while
at sunset one can get a stunning view of the city the harbour and hills
beyond. There is also a flower clock here.
The Mahalaxmi race course is named after the Hindu goddess of wealth and is
one of the finest in the East. Racing season: November to April. Tel.:
Built in the 19th century Gothic style on the university campus, the 79
metres high clock tower commands a fine view of the city. The tower also
houses the university library.
The Dawoodi Bohra Muslims erected a marble mosque and mausoleum in honour
of their spiritual leader the late Dr. Syedna Taher Saifuddin. The lavishly
decorated mausoleum has four silver doors and the Koran is inscribed on the
inner walls in gold. The air-conditioned Fatemi mosque has 17 arches.
Opened in 1951 this aquarium has interesting specimens of marine and
freshwater fish. A pipeline brings water directly from the sea for the
marine fish. Constructed at a cost of Rs. 800,000, there are shell &
shell-craft art and fishery by-products on display.
Timings: Open daily except Mondays from 1000 to 1900 hrs.
Entry fee: Rs. 3.00 (adult) Rs. 1.50 (child) Tel.: 2012063/2082061/2
The pride of Mumbai along Shahid Bhagat Singh Road is the colonnaded Town
Hall which houses the Asiatic Society Library.
Veermata Jljabai Bhonsle Udyan
These beautifully laid gardens were formerly known as Victoria Gardens.
Open daily except Wednesday from 0800 to 1800 hrs. Entry fee: Rs. 4.00
(adult) Rs. 2.00 (child under 12 years). Elephant, camel, pony and boat
rides available daily from 1500 to 1700 hrs. Tel.: 3725799
On the northern end of Dr. D. N. Road looms the extravagant fantasy of
Victoria Terminus (recently renamed as Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus - Mumbai
CST), where the first train steamed out of Mumbai from here to Thane in
1853. One of the largest buildings designed by F.W. Stevens in the Gothic
style, it's imposing dome is surmounted by a figure symbolising Progress. A
life-size statue of Queen Victoria is placed in front of the the central
facade. The clock on top is 3.19 metres in diameter.
Weavers' Service Centre
The preparation of designs, weaving of samples and block printing by hand,
can be observed here after obtaining the permission of the Director of the
Timings: 1000 to 1700 hrs Tel.: 3610923
The pasteurising, bottling and distribution of milk can be seen here daily
from 0900 to 1300 hrs & 1400 to 1600 hrs.
Entry fee: Rs.2.00 (adult), Rs.1.00 (child) Tel.: 4931946
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