Mumbai, formerly Bombay, is a must-visit. It’s full of dreamers and hard-laborers, travelers, starlets and gangsters, stray dogs and exotic birds, artists and servants, fisherfolk and crorepatis (millionaires), and lots and lots of people. It has India’s most prolific film industry- Bollywood.
Mumbai is India’s financial powerhouse, fashion epicenter, and a pulse point of religious tension. The heart of the city contains some of the grandest colonial-era architecture on the planet, but explore a little more and you’ll uncover unique bazaars, hidden temples, hipster enclaves, and India’s premier restaurants and nightlife.
Check out these 7 must visit places in Mumbai.
GATEWAY OF INDIA
Mumbai’s most recognized monument, the Gateway of India, was constructed in 1924 to commemorate the visit of King George V and Queen Mary to the city. It’s also where the last of the British troops departed, marking the end of British rule when India gained Independence in 1947.
The looming Gateway is designed to be the first thing that visitors see when approaching Mumbai by boat. It’s a popular place to start exploring Mumbai. These days the atmosphere around the monument resembles a circus at times, with numerous vendors peddling everything from balloons to Indian tea.
Located on the waterfront in Colaba, south Mumbai. Opposite the Taj Palace and Tower Hotel.
At the end of a tiring day of sightseeing, relax with the locals on the beaches of Juhu and Marine Drive, and watch the sunset. If you’re feeling adventurous, you’ll also be able to feast on tasty snacks offered by the multitude of food stalls and mobile food vendors.
Large crowds of people come to this place to stride along the beautiful walkway and to view the stunning sight of the setting sun at dusk. The scenic beauty of the perfectly lined palm trees offers its visitors an enthralling experience.
Marine Drive is also referred to as ‘Queen’s necklace’ because the street lights make the road look like a string of pearls and create an illusion of a necklace when viewed at night from any elevated point along the pathway of the drive.
GLOBAL VIPASSANA PAGODA
Global Vipassana Pagoda, a huge and grand golden-colored conical structure along the Gorai creek, could be seen miles away from the fringes of Western Mumbai.
The grand golden-colored pagoda and the huge statue of Lord Gautam Buddha leave visitors mesmerized. “The aim of the Pagoda complex is to express gratitude to Gautam Buddha for dispensing universal teaching for the eradication of suffering, to reveal the truth about the life of Buddha and his teaching, and to provide a place for the practice of Vipassana meditation,” said Goenka Jr.
Pagoda is a must visit peaceful yet glorifying place in Mumbai.
SANJAY GANDHI NATIONAL PARK
Sprawling over an area of 104 sq. km. of land, this is one of the most-visited national parks in Asia and because of this widespread natural beauty, it is a must-visit.
With all sorts of fun activities, this park can surely be a family entertainer. You can watch the big cats of the park close enough in a safari cage and have a fun day boating in the artificial lake in the park. Take the forest road or stairs and hike towards the Gandhi Tekdi, a memorial built in the memory of Mahatma Gandhi. The toy train, Van Rani, is another popular attraction here, especially among kids.
You can also visit the 2000-years-old Kanheri Caves to capture the Buddha relics. The undisturbed natural trails and the Jain Temple in the forest are also sure to make your visit a memorable one.
A collection of Shiva and Buddhist rock-cut temples located near Mumbai, Elephanta Caves is a fascinating blend of art and heritage. No one knows for sure who built these caves or when, but it remains beyond doubt that these centuries-old caves are among the finest rock-cut architecture existing in India.
Take a look at this UNESCO World Heritage Site in Mumbai. To reach this place, you need to take a one-hour ferry ride from the Gateway of India, during which you can also enjoy the scenic beauty of Mumbai. Those who lack the spirit of a trekker can hop on the toy train that will take you on a tour of the caves right from the entry point.
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