Mumbai was given by Portuguese as dowry to Charles II of England when he married Catherine. The group of seven island was leased to the East India Company who offered freedom of business and religion to persons who came and settled here.
How to Reach Mumbai :
By Train - Mumbai is the head quarters of the railway system. Chhatrapati Shivaji Railway Station is the major one which connects all most parts of Indian cities to Mumbai. Some of the important connections by rail and there respective destinations are as follows.
By Air - Mumbai can be reached through numerous flights. Mumbai is well connected to all major cities in India and also connected to many cities abroad including Singapore, New York, Bangok, Hong Kong.. International fights are landed at Chhatrapati Shivaji International Airport (formerly known as Sahar Airport) while at Chhatrapati Shivaji Domestic Airport (formerly known as Santa Cruz Airport) for domestic fights. This two airport is about 4 km apart and are approximately 30 km and 26 km away from the heart of the city - Nariman Point - in south Mumbai
By Road - Mumbai is well connected by a network of roads to the rest of India by and state highways. State owned buses connect Mumbai to all neighboring points. However, this is not a good option if you do not speak Hindi or Marathi as no printed information is available in English.
Places to see in Mumbai -
Colaba Area - Situated in South-Bombay, this is a tourist preferred location. It has plenty of budget and mid-range hotels. The majestic Taj Mahal Hotel has great views of the Gateway of India from its top floor Apollo Bar. The streets behind the Taj Mahal Hotel are the travellers' centre of Mumbai. The main drag of Colaba is plenty of street vendors, shops, stalls and cafes.
Mumbai Fort - The extravagant blend of Victorian gothic buildings in the Fort district of Mumbai, supports the European roots of the city. This lively area occupies the site of the old British built fort and is the established commercial centre of Mumbai. It's jampacked with commuters, street stalls and the 19th century British institutions and trading houses. The Bombay Stock Exchange on the famous Dalal Street is one of the many establishments.
Marine Drive - Built in 1920, Marine Drive runs along the shoreline of the Arabian Sea from Nariman Point to the foot of Malabar Hill. It passes Chowpatty Beach along the way. It's one of Mumbai's most popular romantic spot and sunset view is amazing. Tourist brochures are fond of stating it as the Queen's Necklace, because of the dramatic curve of its streetlights at night.
Chaupati Beach - Chowpatty is a major tourist attraction in Mumbai. Chowpatty Beach is a place that requires no introduction. No tour to Mumbai is complete without visiting this lively beach, A visit to this beach provides an interesting outing with many permanent little kiosks. Marine Drive is the centre of attraction for its stunning walkway, Versova Beach is known for its community of fisher folks.Eating at the long line of stalls at the edge of the beach is an interesting experience for the public.
Malabar Hills - The colonial bungalows that peppered the hillside in the 18th century have now been replaced by the apartment blocks of Mumbai. The formal Hanging Gardens (or Pherozeshah Mehta Gardens) on top of the hill, offer the visitor a panoramic view of Bombay - the bay, the colorful Chowpatty Beach immediately below,and the imposing buildings of Nariman Point (Manhattan of India) reaching for the sky. And at night, "the Queen's Necklace" is something to watch from the height. Beside the Hanging Gardens, are the Parsi Towers of Silence. Parsis hold fire, earth and water as sacred so do not cremate or bury their dead. At the Parsi Towers of Silence, (not open to visitors) the dead are exposed to elements.
Hanging Garden - Perched at the top of Malabar Hill, on its western side, just opposite the Kamala Nehru Park, these terraced gardens, also known as Ferozeshah Mehta Gardens, provide lovely sunset views over the Arabian Sea. The park was laid out in the early 1880s over Bombay's main reservoir, some say to cover the water from the potentially contaminating activity of the nearby Towers of Silence.
Crawford Market - The colourful indoor Crawford Market, north of CST (previously VT), is the last outpost of British Bombay before the fever of the central bazaars begins. It's a blend of Flemish and Norman architecture with a bas relief depicting Indian peasants in wheat fields just above the main entrance. The freize, incidentally, was designed by Lockyard Kipling, father of the famous Rudyard Kipling, and the Kiplings' cottage still stands next to the JJ School of Art across the road. Now named after a local patriot called Jyotiba Phule, Crawford Market looks like something out of Victorian London, with its sweet smell of hay and 50 ft high skylit awning that bathes the entire place in natural sunlight. It used to be the city's wholesale produce market before this was strategically moved to New Bombay. Today it's where central Mumbai goes shopping for its fruit, vegetables and meat.
Calbadevi - No visit to Mumbai is complete without a round into the bazaars of Kalbadevi, north of Crawford Market. The narrow lanes of this area are flooded in by laundry-draped chawls, and a huge mass of people bring Mumbai's traffic to a standstill. It's in complete contrast to the relative space, orderliness and modernity of South Mumbai. The main areas are Zaveri Bazaar (jewellery), Mangaldas Market (cloth), Dhabu St (leather goods) Mumbai's.
Nariman Point - it is the cities nearest and most important business center with its imposing sky-scrappers. Nariman Point has been named after the Khursheed Framji Nariman who was a Parsi visionary. The area is situated on the extreme southern tip of Marine Drive. It houses some of the premier business establishments such as Air India, Central Bank of India, Indian Express, Mittal Towers, State Bank of India, The Oberoi Hotel and so on. The political headquarters of the state of Maharashtra, Vidhya Bhavan is also located in here, Nariman point is the 4th most expensive office market in the world.
The Gateway of India - Bult between 1913-1924 : In the days when most visitors come to india by sea and when mumbai was indias principal port this was indeed the gate way of India. It is a great historical monument built during the British rule in the country. Located on the waterfront in South Mumbai.The Gateway is a basalt arch 26 metres (85 ft) high. As you pass through the gate from the city side, the first scene that we see is the waterfront of South Mumbai.close to the gate way are the stetues of the maratha leader shivaji astride his horse and of swami Vivekananda.
Prince Charle's Muesum - Built in the Indo-Saracenic style of architecture to honour king George V's visit to India. It has 3 main sections: Art , Archealogy , & Natural History. It has a fine collection of Chinese Jade pieces, oil paintings & miniature paintings.
Film City - Mockingly called Bollywood by locals, Film City clings to the outskirts of the National Park, and is practically overrun by assorted stars and starlets - the demi gods and goddesses of modern India. Bollywood churns out over 900 films every year, all packed with those mandatory elements of song, dance, melodrama, violence and erotica that audiences love. Which is probably why Film City sets are heavily booked around the year. They are closed to visitors, but special permissions can always be obtained to check out the action.
St John`s Church - The afgan church was built in 1847 ain is dedicated to the soldiers who fell in the sind campaign of 1838 and the first afgan war of 1843. Records also mention that only one person, one Surgeon Bryden – a medical officer, out of 16,000 men returned safely to Jalalabad to tell the tale, a war in which the British suffered a complete rout
Haji Ali Tomb - Haji ali`s tomb, right into the sea, can be reached by a long causeway during low tides.the tomb and mosque were build by his devoties. It is said that saint haji went on a pilgrimage to mecca and died on the way. As he has desired, his dead body was placed in a casket which came floating to the place where his memorial is now built. Near here at worli, is the Nehru pplanetarium and beyond this is the Nehru science center.
Jehangir Art Gallery - The Jehangir Art Gallery is most famous art gallery and a tourist attraction in Mumbai ,built in 1952 by Sir Cowasji Jehnagir, this art gallery is the most prestigious and modern venue for Indian artistes in the cityThis gallery is managed by Bombay Art Society and is situated at Kala Ghoda. It is behind the Prince of Wales Museum and has four exhibition halls. Many of the artistes have to wait a couple of years to exhibit their works in this gallery. The Gallery is open for five days: Monday to Friday from 10 am to 5 pm.