Mumbai- the city of dreams. The financial capital of the country is not only famous for a thing or two. It preserves a whole different world in itself. To name a few, the Bombay film city, Taj Mahal hotel Mumbai, the Gateway of India, Elephanta Caves, Marine Drive and many more. Each of these has a separate feel and each of these has its own story to tell.
From food to entertainment, the city has everything to offer that you can ever ask for.
However, here’s a list of top 9 things to do in Mumbai:
#1 Elephanta Caves
The local Marathas popularised this island by the name of Gharapuri. However, The Elephanta name was given after the Portuguese took over the island from the Gujarat Sultanate and named it ‘Elephanta Caves’. These caves were named so after a massive rock-cut statue of an elephant that stood over the sea. The Portuguese used the structure as a landmark so that they could dock their boats and also tell the island apart from the other smaller islands of the sea. Unfortunately, the monolithic elephant statue can be no longer found here. It was damaged in an attempt to move it to England. Later, Cadell and Hewett reassembled the statue and placed it in the Jijamata Udyaan.
#2 The Gateway of India
The Gateway of India is an arch-monument, 26m in height. It was built in the early twentieth century. The motive of the building was to commemorate the landing of King-Emperor George V and Queen-Empress Mary, in December 1911 at Apollo Bunder, Mumbai. They were the first British monarch who visited India. Anyhow, at the time of the royal visit, a cardboard structure greeted the monarch since the gateway was yet to be built. The foundation stone of the Indo-Saracenic style monument was laid in March 1913, it had also incorporated elements of 16th-century Marathi architecture. Even after that, the final design of the monument was sanctioned by architect George Wittet only in 1914, and ultimately construction was completed in 1924.
#3 Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus
Now, what’s in a Railway Station? you may ask. But Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus is nothing like any other terminus. It is a historic terminal train station. It’s also a UNESCO World Heritage Site of Mumbai. The railway station was basically built to replace the Bori Bunder railway station, of the Bori Bunder area of Bombay. However, a bigger station was built in order to meet the demands of a big city. It was named Victoria Terminus, after Queen Victoria. The station was designed in a Gothic Style by, a British born engineer Frederick William Stevens.
#4 Marine Drive
Marine Drive is an Esplanade along the Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose Road. Its stretch is 3.9 km and is located in South Mumbai. The names of Marine Drive and Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose Road are usually interchangeably used, so as to refer to this 3.9km stretch. The road and esplanade were constructed by Bhagojisheth Keer and Pallonji Mistry. The road is a ‘C’-shaped six-lane concrete road and runs along the coast of a natural bay. Girgaon Chowpatty is at the northern end of Marine Drive. The adjacent road links Babulnath and Malabar Hill at the northern tip to Nariman Point at the southern tip.
#5 Kanheri Caves
Kanheri Caves are located near the tranquil surroundings of the Sanjay Gandhi National Park. Inside, are more than 100 Buddhist caves. These caves are popularly known as the Kanheri Caves. Kanheri comes from Krishnagiri or Kanhagiri an ancient inscription. It literally means black mountain. It is named after its black basaltic stone. It saw the rise and decline of Buddhism. These caves have the distinction of having the largest number of the cave from a single hill.
#6 Taj Mahal Palace Hotel
The Taj Mahal Hotel, Mumbai, is a heritage, five-star, luxury hotel. It is built in the Saracenic Revival style and is located in the Colaba region of Mumbai. It is also known as the “Taj Mahal Hotel” or simply “the Taj”. The Taj has a number of points which makes it different from any other hotel. It was also one of the main targeted sites in the 2008 Mumbai terror attacks. It is said that Jamsetji Tata decided to build Taj after being denied entry in a luxury hotel. Taj also accommodated Mohammad Ali Jinnah’s wife during her last days. Rumours even claim Taj to have its top floor haunted. There is just too much to this place.
#7 Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj Vastu Sangrahalay
One of the main museums of Mumbai is the Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj Vastu Sangrahalaya (CSMVS). It was formerly named the Prince of Wales Museum of Western India. It was founded by the citizens of Mumbai, with the aid of the government, in the early years of the 20th century to commemorate the visit of George V. George V was Prince of Wales at that time. It is located in South Mumbai near the Gateway of India. The museum got its current name in 1998 after Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj, who was the founder of the Maratha Empire.
#8 Bombay vada pav
If you are by now tired of roaming in the city, take some rest and treat your tummy with the popular ‘Vada pav’ of Mumbai. It is one of the most loved dishes of the Mumbaitians. And if you are being to Mumbai and are not having a bite of Vada Pav, trust me, you are missing a lot.
#9 Haji Ali Dargah
The Haji Ali Dargah is the monument of Pir Haji Ali Shah Bukhari. It is a mosque and dargah located off the coast of Worli on an islet in the southern part of Mumbai. Pir Haji Ali Shah Bukhari was not only a Sufi saint but also a wealthy merchant from Uzbekistan. The dargah is one of those few most recognisable landmarks of Mumbai.
This may mark the end of my list but is nowhere close to the endpoint of what Mumbai has to offer. Each place has a story to tell, this city has many.