101 things to see and do in mumbai bombay

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1 Ride the Gateway ferry

The water’s brackish and there’s roughly one life-belt for every 20 passengers. But don’t let that stop you from taking a joyride on one of the ferries at Apollo Bunder. The 20-minute ride around the harbour is perfectly safe, so long as you don’t lean too far out of the boat.

Gateway of India, Apollo Bunder. Ferries leave roughly every 15 minutes. Rs 50.

Gateway of India Counter Tel.No.2284 1877.


The gateway to India;: The story of Methwold and Bombay,

Bombay: Gateway of India

2 Gape outside Mannat and Jalsa and Galaxy

After a stroll along Bandstand’s promenade, take a long pit stop outside Shah Rukh Khan’s mansion Mannat, where, if you’re lucky, King Khan may emerge from the gate as he’s driven to his next shoot. Meanwhile, Amitabh Bachchan has shifted from his old bungalow Pratiksha to the brand new Jalsa.

Address: Shah Rukh Khan’s Mannat, Band Stand, Bandra (West), Mumbai 400050, India.

Address: Salman Khan 3 Galaxy Apartments BJ Road, Bandra Mumbai 400 050

Address:Amitabh Bachchan Pratiksha, 10th Rd,J.V.P.D. Scheme,Bombay 400049

Jalsa , near St Joseph’s High School, Juhu, Vile Parle (W).wikimapiaIt is said his bungalows, Pratiksha and Jalsa, in Juhu, are together worth a whopping Rs 1,60 crore. Interestingly, Jalsa, his second home, was gifted to him.

3 Bet on the horses

The Derby is strictly for wannabes. For the real deal, visit the Mahalaxmi Racecourse on a normal raceday – twice to four times a week, depending on the time of year – and put your lot in with the punters of every description who mill about the bookies. It doesn’t matter if you don’t know your Flying Ranee from your Flying Toofan, just go with the favourites.

Royal Western India Turf Club, Mahalaxmi. Check www.rwitc.com for race dates.

4 Fish at Powai Lake

There almost seems to be more crocodiles in the Powai Lake than rohu but don’t let that stop you from throwing out a line. The Maharashtra State Angling Association assures us it’s safe to scope the waters for fish.


Maharashtra State Angling Association

Club House, Powai Lake, Powai, Mumbai – 400076

Phone:636 4270 (updated jan 2010)

E-Mail: powailake@hotmail.com

5 Jetski at Chowpatty

The H2O water sports centre offers scuba diving, snorkelling, water and jetskiing, among other facilities. If you are above 18, you can charter a jet ski after attending a familiarisation programme, which is offered free to all participants. Once you’re used to the mean machines, you may be able to ride them alone but a lifeguard is likely to hover close by.Salt water Grill

H2o Water Sports Complex


Girgaum Chowpatty, Grant Road, Mumbai – 400007

Rs 975 to charter a jet ski for 10-15 minutes; Rs 250 for a three-four minute ride.

6 Sip Irish coffee at Prithvi

Although the management denies that there’s any liquor in the Irish coffee, the drink is the most sought-after item on the menu of Prithvi Café, the suburban hangout of choice for theatrewallahs and television actors.

The Prithvi Café is an open air café hugged by gorgeous trees and bamboo. The Café has 22 tables, with an approximate seating capacity of 92.

Café hours are Mondays: 3 pm – 11:30 pmTue to Sun : 12:30 pm – 11:30 pm

Prithvi Theatre 20 Janki Kutir Juhu Church Road Mumbai 400 049

Box Office : +91 (22) 26149546 Fax : +91 (22) 26175775

Email: prithvitheatre@prithvitheatre.org

7 Go For a Heritage Walk around around town

Great for those staying at Budget hotels at colaba)

Scots Kirk
Elphinston College
Prince of Wales Museum of Western India
Clock Tower
Keneseth Eliyahoo Synagogue

recommended reading

The Heritage Buildings of Bombay

Bombay Art Deco Architecture: A Visual Journey: 1930-1953

Bombay: The Cities Within

City of Gold: The Biography of Bombay

Maharashtra Tourism Development Corporation has introduced of its own kind a tour by OPEN DECK BUS in the heart of City of Mumbai. The Guide of this tour is specially trained by M.T.D.C. to make your tour entertaining, informative and enjoyable. In your journey through the City’s past and present, look out for historical and archaeological buildings on the way. The details of the tour are as under:

Booking Contact Telephone Nos. 2284 5678 (5 Lines).

Gateway of India Counter Tel.No. 2284 1877.

Timing 7.00 p.m. to 8.00 p.m.

8.15 p.m. to 9.15 p.m.

( Every Saturday & Sunday )

Fare Upper Deck : Rs.120/- per head

Lower Deck : Rs.50/- per head

(Above 3 years full fare)

Tickets available at Reservation Division, MTDC, Mumbai-400 020 and Gateway of India Counter.

Route Gateway of India – Vidhan Bhavan – Oberoi Hotel – Marine Drive – Churchgate Railway Station -

Eros Theatre – Oval Maidan – Maharshi Karve Road – Rajabai Tower – CST Railway Station Building – D.N. Road – Hutatma Chowk -

Homi Modi Street – Horniman Circle -

Asiatic Library – Gateway of India.

Name of Heritage Buildings Churchgate Head Office, Old Secretariat,

Rajabai Tower, Convocation Hall, High Court,

CST Railway Station, Thomas Cook,

Asiatic Library – Gateway of India.

8 Build a model aeroplane

It takes more than a wing and a prayer to take flight. But at Virar’s Space Apple, it takes a three-day aeromodelling camp to help creative types find their inner aircraft engineer. Participants are introduced to the theory and principles of aviation and are taught how to make models of three planes using paper, foam and thermacole.

Ish Krupa, Agashi, Virar (W). Call on 95250-2586764. Rs 2,500 onwards.

9 Spend time at the coin gallery

Numismatists will go nuts in the Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj Vastu Sanghrahalaya’s House of Laxmi coin gallery. The gallery traces the development of money from the sixth century BC to the British era.

MG Road, Kala Ghoda (2284-4519). Tue-Sun 11am-5.30pm. Rs 15 for adults, Rs 300 for foreigners, Rs 5 for children 5-12 years.

10 Play cricket at Azad Maidan

If you can claim some part of the sprawling ground (which is often overrun by political meetings and protests), join enthusiasts of all ages and sizes for a session of impromptu cricket.

Azad Maidan, opposite CST station.

11 Eat biryani at Delhi Darbar

Jafferbhai’s Delhi Darbar, at the bottom of the city’s red light district, serves up some of the best biryani south of the NCR. Made from a recipe devised by proprietor Jafferbhai Mansuri’s grandfather back in 1900, the Delhi Darbar’s biryani maintains the same wonderful aroma and taste time after time.

Near Gulshan Cinema, Grant Road (2387-5656). Daily 11.30am-12.30am.

12 See the BNHS butterflies

The wooden cupboards around entomologist Naresh Chaturvedi’s desk at the Bombay Natural History Society contain slim drawers that hold roughly 20,000 moths, butterflies and winged insects labelled and mounted on support rods. The collection covers 650 species, including 11-inch atlas moths, translucent Kaiser-i-Hind butterflies and a fancy turquoise-tipped papillion from Paris.

Hornbill House, opposite Lion’s Gate, Colaba (2282-1811). Contact Naresh Chaturvedi for two-hour guided viewing sessions. School students Rs 30 (50 students minimum). Adults Rs 100 (20 people minimum).

13 Watch films at Awishkar

For the past few years, some of the classrooms of the New Mahim Municipal School have been used as a performance space by the theatre group Awishkar. Apart from staging plays, Awishkar has joined forces with film groups Vikalp and The Short Circuit to screen short films and documentaries. Cinemascoop, as the event is called, celebrated its first anniversary in September, and it continues to draw small but committed crowds, despite making them squat on the floor.

New Mahim Municipal School, Mohammed Chhotani Marg, Mahim (W) (2444-5871).

What Short films with SHAMIANA update Jan 2010

14 Take a bit of Mumbai with you

The next time you’re feeling Mumbai-sick, hug a pillow with a photograph of the Rajabai Tower. Buy trays with water colours of old Mumbai from Contemporary Arts and Crafts, Krsna Mehta’s quirky kites from Good Earth, and reproductions of old city maps and photographs from Phillips Images.

BOMBAY by Krsna Mehta and Sangita Jindal, Good Earth, Raghuvanshi Mills, Lower Parel (2495-1954). Rs 800 for cushion covers and watches, Rs 40,000 for canvasses. Daily 11am-8pm. Contemporary Arts & Crafts 19 Nepean Sea Road (2363-1979). Mon-Sat 11am-8pm, Sun 11am-7pm. Rs 2,000-Rs 5,000. Phillips Images, Colaba (2202-0564). Mon-Sat 10am-7-pm.

15 Take a leak in the heritage toilet

We’re not suggesting that you deface public property. Bombay Dockyard, which allows visitors in on a tour on the first Sunday of every month, has the country’s only heritage toilet. Located just inside the Bombay Castle, between the historic Bombay and Duncan docks, the fully operational lavatory has been in use since 1750, mostly by sailors who aren’t allowed to use their ship’s toilets when the vessels are in the harbour.

Lion’s Gate, Shahid Bhagat Singh Road.

Call 2265-5750 for details. Only for Indians.

16 Cheer at the Cooperage

The Cooperage ground may be better known as a venue for high-profile weddings than for serious sports. But that shouldn’t stop you from cheering for Mahindra Uniteds-in-the-making that battle on this ground for a place in the Mumbai League.

Maharshi Karve Road, Colaba.

17 Hang out at Hanging Garden

Until ten years ago, standing at the highest point of Pherozeshah Mehta Garden opposite Kamala Nehru Park meant you could see all the way to the refineries at Wadala and count each jewel on the Queen’s Necklace on Marine Drive. While new high-rises have started to obscure two of those views, the garden is still the best seat in the house for panoramic views of the city.

Opposite Kamala Nehru Park, Malabar Hill. Daily 10.30am-6.30pm.

18 Explore the National Park

The Sanjay Gandhi National Park in Borivali has two lakes (Tulsi and Vihar) and a range of wildlife, including cobras, pythons and spotted porcupines, around 1,500 kinds of insects and over 150 species of butterfly. The park is also home to leopards, but you may not want to get in their way, considering that since 2004, they have killed over 60 people, mostly slum dwellers who live inside the park.

Sanjay Gandhi National Park, Borivali (E) (2886-0362). Tue-Sun, admission Rs 20; Tiger and Lion Safari Rs 30.

19 Walk through Vasai Fort

Vasai may now be just one more stop on the northern fringes of the suburban line of the Western Railway but back in the day, the 1600s to be precise, Vasai was where all the action was. The birthplace of the only Indian Catholic saint, Gonsalo Garcia, and a jewel in the Portuguese crown, Vasai fort, or Bassein as it was then known as, was filled with impressive public buildings, imposing private mansions and soaring churches. Today, none of the buildings are intact but the walls of the fort still stand and it’s a calm spot of collapsing arches and decrepit belfries.

Take a train to Vasai on the Western Railway and a rickshaw from the station.

20 Eat a thali in Kalbadevi

One of the best thalis you’ll ever eat in Mumbai is to be found on the first floor of an ancient building in Kalbadevi. Set up in the early 1940s, the Friends Union Joshi Club serves up a delicious Gujarat-Marwari thali that combines a salad, four vegetables and rotis, dal, chaas and a dessert.

Friends Union Joshi Club, Kalbadevi (2205-8089). Mon-Sat 11am-3pm & 7-10pm; Sun 11am-3pm. Rs 70.

Eating out with buzybee The father of all foodies
Heritage Walk Britannia & Co restaurant
How to Stop Worrying and Learn to Love Bombay
Team Bhp Reload this Page A Guide: Eating out in Mumbai

21 Browse at the Asiatic Library

If you’ve grown up on a diet of Bollywood movies, you might confuse the Asiatic Library for the Bombay High Court or an assortment of city colleges but the steps of this whitewashed building at Horniman Circle actually lead up to the city’s largest public library. Browse and read for free (or take a snooze in its peaceful corridors).

Central Library, opposite Horniman Circle, Fort (2266-0956). Mon-Sat 9.30am-6.45pm.

22 Buy Musibat Mein Mumbai

The Bhojpuri folk music form of birha has been keeping residents of eastern Uttar Pradesh and Bihar up-to-date about current events for centuries now. Recent bestsellers in the genre include two video-CDs entitled Musibat Mein Mumbai. Part one, released in 2005, recounts the deluge that struck the city on July 26, 2005, while part two released earlier this year centres on the bomb blasts that took place on Mumbai’s suburban trains on July 11, 2006. The quality of the music is debatable but the VCDs are heart-felt chronicles of two of the city’s greatest tragedies.

Available at Anand Sadan, Yusuf Meher Ali Road, opposite Luv Kush Hotel, near JB Shah Market, Masjid Bunder (2347-9149).

23 Find Elephanta pachyderm

Trust the Brits to complicate our lives. Not happy to just leave Elephanta island alone, they had to go meddling, with the result that lakhs of confounded tourists every year ask their long-suffering guides, “But where’s the elephant?” It’s at Byculla Zoo.

Jijamata Udyan, Byculla (2374-2162). Thur-Tue 10am-6pm. Rs 5 adults, Rs 2 children.

24 Take a heritage cruise

Take in Fort’s neo-gothic architecture while cruising around in the open-topped double-decker bus Neelambari. The bus operates on weekends and begins its tour at 7pm from the Gateway of India. For an hour, you can lose yourself in the graceful sweep of Horniman Circle and the imposing columns of the Asiatic Library.

Bombay Safari, Gateway of India, near Taj Mahal Hotel, Colaba (2281-0139). Rs 40-90.

25 Drink beer at Janata

Janata is a regular working-class bar, like the hundreds of such boozers that dot Mumbai. It has the same Formica benches and tables, the menu offers similar Mangalorean and Indian-Chinese pub grub and the alcohol too is identical. Yet, Janata has acquired a certain cache, primarily because it’s the quintessential Mumbai dive – even if it is now the spot for the more high-brow to slum it out.

Janata, Pali Naka, Bandra (W) (2600-4049). Daily 10.30am-1.30am.

26 Offer Mother Mary a wax kidney

The waxworks on offer at Bandra’s Mount Mary Church grant prayerful wishes. Wax limbs, breasts, eyes, stomachs, spinal cords, brains and kidneys are on sale for devotees who offer up relevant parts when they pray for ailing relatives. A parafin computer could lamd you a call-centre job.

Mount Mary’s Road, Bandra (W).

27 Chew on wada pao

Indulge in Mumbai’s iconic snack at Mama Kane’s Swatchha Upahar Griha, the establishment that claims to have invented India’s potato-filled answer to the hot dog.

222, Smruti-Kunj, near Dadar station, Dadar (W) (2422-1161). Daily 10am-9pm. Wada Rs 7, wada pao Rs 8.

28 Guzzle cheap wine at Ivy

Ivy has none of that old-world hokum of zero-watt lighting, wood panelling and leather sofas. Instead, this little bar in Worli has brightly coloured walls, genial waiters and pretty much all types of fermented grape found in the Narayangaon area. Bacchus would be pleased.

Indage House, Annie Besant Road, Worli (6610-0910). Daily 11am-11pm.

29 Walk along Marine Drive

It’s Mumbai’s answer to Havana’s Malécon. Even after its freshly installed parapets, redesigned jaywalk-deterrent road divider and missing bhuttewalas, the walk still has goose bump-inducing views of the Mumbai skyline and the Arabian Sea.

30 Learn horse riding

Instead of walking in the same place on the treadmill, try horse riding at The Amateur Riders’ Club. The Club conducts a ten-day course in horse riding through the year. The course runs from Tue-Fri for two-and-a-half weeks. The course costs Rs 2,806 (payments only in cash).

Amateur Riders’ Club, Gate No 8, Mahalaxmi Racecourse, Mahalaxmi (6500-5204/ office@arcmumbai.com).

31 Throw party atop a bus

The Brihanmumbai Electrical Supply and Transport Undertaking allows you to hire a bus by the kilometre, which you can take as far and fast as BEST buses go. You could take the MTDC’s tourism bus Neelambari (see entry number 23), a red open-top double-decker, a double-decker or a single-deck bus. Even though eating, drinking or playing music on the bus is frowned upon, the scheme is popular for birthday parties.

Call 2418-6346. Rs 60 per kilometre, with a minimum charge of Rs 2,400. Waiting charges Rs 175 per hour. Open-deck and double-decker seat 79 people, single-decker seats 50. No guide provided.

32 Eat ayurvedic food

Swadshakti is probably Mumbai’s only ayurvedic restaurant, where a chunk of the menu is dedicated to detoxifying “panchakarma” dishes. The lack of spice in the dishes may take some getting used to, but the palate is disciplined, the flavours of the healing herbs that the restaurant uses liberally – ginger, garlic and fenugreek, among others – will emerge more strongly.

Swadshakti, Bhadran Nagar Cross Road 2, opposite Milap theatre, Malad (W) (2806-5757). Daily 10am-10pm.

33 Go flamingo spotting

Mumbai’s mudflats at Sewri Bay have been hosting over 20,000 live flamingos between November and May every year since 1994. Early mornings, between high and low tides, are good times to spot the birds. Birdwatchers will also be able to spot gulls, terns and waders among the pink-feathered flamingos.

Near Colgate factory and Sewri Jetty, Sewri.

34 Gorge on Sarvi’s kebabs

Sarvi in Nagpada has been serving up the most tender seekhs since the 1930s, when it was frequented by Urdu writers and poets.

Zuber Sofia Road, opposite Nagpada Police Station, Nagpada Junction (98335-33305). Daily 5am-12.30am. Seekh kebabs Rs 24.

35 Dance with Ganpati

Among the hundreds of processions that throng the Haji Ali waterfront, the Dance with Ganesh truck is one of the biggest. It’s a trippy laser show, 20,000 watts of pure sound and gallons of bhang all rolled into one. On Sept 25 this year, the final day of the Ganesh festival, organisers DJs Asad and Hussain will play house, trance and assorted electronic sounds 2pm onwards from Mahalaxmi temple to the Worli immersion site.

36 Participate in the bird race

The Mumbai Bird Race involves spotting and recording as many birds as possible on a single day. Initiated in 2005 by naturalist Sunjoy Monga, the race takes groups of amateur and veteran enthusiasts into Sanjay Gandhi National Park, the Tulsi and Vihar lake areas and Karnala bird sanctuary. Bird sightings are recorded over a 12-hour period using binoculars, avian catalogues, hawkeyed team members and sheer luck.

See www.indiabirdraces.com.

37 Listen to music at Banganga

The Banganga tank in Walkeshwar is surrounded by Hindu temples on all sides. It’s worth a visit any time of year but in January or February the area boasts an added attraction: the Hindustani classical music festival organised by the Maharashtra Tourism Development Corporation to raise funds for the preservation of the ancient site.

Banganga Tank, Walkeshwar (2202-1843).

38 Shop to make a difference

Give something back to Mumbai before you leave by shopping for souvenirs that will help local charities. At the Women’s India Trust, the ethnic-print bed sheets, quilts and curtains, table ware, soft toys, jams, chutneys, letter writing sets and paper bags help unskilled and disadvantaged women. At the Life Trust, proceeds from coasters, table mats, framed artworks, greeting cards, bags and mouse pads go towards the support of physically and mentally challenged patients. At the Yusuf Meherally Centre, Warli-themed hand-painted T shirts, purses and bags help Adivasi women and children from Thane villages.

Welfare of Stray Dogs sells T-shirts, bags, mugs, caps, trays, notebooks, photo albums and photo frames along with canine products like towels and collars, pillows and bedding to fund sterilisation drives, rabies immunisation projects and healthcare and adoption of street dogs. At Akanksha, revenue from paper gift bags, craft and hobby kits, folders, wrapping paper and jigsaw puzzles help educate underprivileged children.

Akanksha, Chinchpokli (2370-0253).

Life Trust, Worli (2491-0287, 2491-0288).

Welfare of Stray Dogs, Mahalaxmi (2373- 3433).

Women’s India Trust, Mahim (2446-2506). Yusuf Meherally Centre, Gamdevi (2380-5059).

39 Feed the cows at Panjrapole

Bhuleshwar Road is exotic India at its finest – temples, eager-eyed shop owners, the thick smell of incense, flowers, puffed rice and cows. At the end of this road, however, is a pukka Mumbai experience that you’re unlikely to find in other cities. If you make your way past the stalls selling temple bric-a-brac, you’ll find yourself facing a massive, light-green arched doorway. This leads you to the Bombay Panjrapole trust, started by the philanthropist Sir Jamshetjee Jeejeebhoy for the welfare of cows. Inside the Panjrapole stand bevies of bovine beauties who munch the grass you offer them as though they’re doing you a favour. This is the oldest of five cowsheds run by the 170-year-old trust.

Madhavwadi, CP Tank.

40 Listen to qawwalis at Haji Ali

Sikandar Shad sits serenely four times a week at the Haji Ali shrine. One of the most well-known qawwals of Mumbai, Shaad performs at the dargah and has been associated with the enigmatic world of the qawwali for the past 50 years.

Four evenings a week, Sikandar Shad and his group of musicians ensure that visitors praying at the Haji Ali get a good dose of qawwal as they watch the sun set.

Haji Ali, Lala Lajpat Rai Road. Sun, Mon, Thur, Fri, 4-8.30pm.

More Details



41 Climb Mazagaon Hill

Joseph Baptista Gardens is one of the few parks in the city perched atop a hill. The 126-year-old park, known locally as Mazagaon Hill, includes a jogging track, a children’s area, a senior citizens’ corner, a study centre, fountains, a temple cut out of the rocks and a fabulous view of the harbour.

Joseph Baptista Gardens, Mazagaon. Daily 7am-9pm.

42 Catch a music gig

Not Just Jazz by the Bay is the sole survivor on a street once lined with restaurants that in the 1960s each hosted their own jazz band. It features live acts from Wednesday through Saturday. The performers include college bands and a few originals, stalwarts from the city’s ’60s and ’70s pop-rock scene such as the Elvis-channelling Gary Lawyer and sari-clad diva Usha Uthup, in addition to local jazz legends such as Jazzy “Joe” Pereira.

Soona Mahal, opposite The Ambassador Hotel, 143 Marine Drive (2285-1876).

43 Have pao bhaji at Sardar

Expect up to 50gm of Amul butter in your plate of pao bhaji. But don’t let the butter scare you away. The signature dish at Sardar in Tardeo may be all wrong for dieters, but clearly does a lot right for the palate.

Tardeo Road Junction, Tardeo (2353-0208). Daily 11am-2am. Rs 47.

44 Ride the longest bus route

Rs 22 buys you a ride on bus route 524 Ltd – the longest route on the BEST network – from beginning to end. Plying between Borivali Station (E) and Vashi, the bus covers 44 km over roughly an hour and 45 minutes.

Buses leave every 17 minutes from Borivali Station (E) and Sector 26 in Vashi. See www.bestundertaking.com.

45 Chill out at the amphitheatre

Below the ramparts of the Bandra fort is one of the most under-used performance spaces in Mumbai. The amphitheatre comes to life only a few times a year, mainly during the Prithvi Theatre Festival in November and the Jazz Utsav a few weeks later.

Bandra Fort, Bandra (W). Call Prithvi Theatre on 2614-9546.

46 Get a role as a movie extra

If you’re American, Australian or European and want a bit role in a Hindi film before flying out, head to Leopold’s Café in Colaba. This watering hole for tourists is the biggest talent pool for agents looking for candidates to play decadent Westerners in the movies.

Leopold’s Café, Colaba (2202-0131). Daily 7.30am-midnight.

47 Eat at Anant Ashram

The East Indian neighbourhood of Khotachiwadi is famous for its charming homes and Anant Ashram – a seafood lover’s idea of heaven. Try the surmai fry, teesrya (mussels) and prawn curry.

Gaiwadi, Girgaum. Mon-Sat noon-2pm & 7-9pm.

48 Get a picture with a film star

A few minutes away from Alfred Cinema in Grant Road are three photo studios that can give you your moment of glory with the likes of Rani Mukherji, Salman Khan and the eternal favourite Shah Rukh Khan, albeit in their plywood cutout avatars. Which cutout is in greatest demand depends on which star has a hit film at the moment.

Tamanna Studio, opposite Nishat Cinema, 296, Maulana Shaukat Ali Road, Grant Road. Bombay Photo Centre, 227 Maulana Shaukat Ali Road, Grant Road.

49 See snakes being squeezed

Watch the snakes having the venom wrung out of them at Parel’s Haffkine Institute, which has a farm that houses the most common species of Indian poisonous snakes.

Haffkine Institute for Training Research and Testing, Parel (2416-0947).

50 Join a music circle

Mumbai may be known to many as Bollywood but it’s also the country’s Hindustani classical music capital. From Kishori Amonkar to Zakir Hussain, almost every major classical maestro has a Mumbai connection. Joining a music circle that organises concerts every fortnight is a great way to get familiar with present and future stars.

Bhavan’s Cultural Centre, Andheri (W) (3293-8017) and Karnataka Sangha, Matunga (W) (2437-7022).www.bcca.in

51 Marvel at miniatures

Browse through the Chhatrapati Shivaji Vastu Sangrahalaya’s miniatures of Mughal kings luxuriating in palaces and Krishna swanning around gardens with his gopis.

Chhatrapati Shivaji Vastu Sangrahalaya, Kala Ghoda (2284-4519). Tue-Sun 11am-5.30pm. Rs 15 for adults, Rs 300 for foreigners, Rs 5 for children below 12 years.

52 Bargain for bras

The lingerie stores at Crawford Market are packed with randy twentysomethings who guess your size – correctly – before you can. There are bargains to be had if you don’t mind the stares.

Crawford Market. Mon-Sat.

53 Buy a sola topi

Once upon a time, stiff upper-lipped Raj officials braved the summer in stiff sola topis, or pith helmets. These lightweight hats made of cork or pith (a plant known in the subcontinent as shola), were covered with cloth to shade the wearer’s head from the sun. They also had small holes for ventilation. Today, a sola topi is not just an ingenious way to beat the heat but also a Mumbai souvenir. A trail would lead you to Jabbar’s, a hat shop in Mangaldas Lane near Crawford Market. Although the store still supplies sola topis on demand, production has dwindled. “We still make them, but there are hardly any craftsmen left who make these caps as it requires a special process,” said Arshad Jabbar, who has run the store since 1927.

Jabbar’s, Dwarkadas Building No 2, Mangaldas Road, Crawford Market (6631-7021/6636-4611). Rs 550.

54 Snooze at the Sassoon Library

If you happen to be in Kala Ghoda and in need of a post-lunch nap, head to the row of planter’s chairs that lines the first floor deck of the David Sassoon Library. They’re more comfortable than first-class airline seats.

Mahatma Gandhi Road, Kala Ghoda, Colaba (2284-3703). Daily 8am-9pm.

55 Visit the Chinese Temple

General Kwan Tai Kon cuts an imposing figure on the gilt altar in Mumbai’s only Chinese temple. Worshippers usually come during Chinese New Year.

Nawab Tank Road, Mazagaon.

56 Cheer at a kushti match

Watch wrestlers clad in loincloths grapple on red mud at one of the last surviving akhadas or wrestling centres. Young punters are put through a punishing schedule of push-ups, running and mallakhamb to prepare them for the rigours of wrestling.

Shree Samartha Vyayam Mandir, PL Kale Guruji Marg, off Gokhale Road, Dadar (W) (2430-6258).

57 Eat street food at a khau galli

Pick from batatawadas, pudlas and other innovations that you get only on Mumbai’s streets, such as the Schezwan dosa. Wash these down with the medley of fruit and ice-cream called “fruit slad”.

Third Agiary Lane, Zaveri Bazaar. Also at New Marine Lines.

58 Buy fish at Ferry Wharf

Early each morning, vast quantities of fish are sold to retailers and hoteliers at the market at Ferry Wharf in Dockyard Road. Work starts at around 5.30am and is at its peak by 7am. Surmai, rawas, small sharks, waam, phalai, popat, rani and singhada (catfish) are among the varieties sold here. By around 9am, it’s all over except for the shouting.

Ferry Wharf, Dockyard Road, Mazgaon.

59 Munch idlis at Café Madras

The idlis at Café Madras are probably the best you’ll ever get outside of a south Indian home in Mumbai. The restaurant’s recipe shuns the Shetty-style rice grits in favour of the pricier but more flavourful urad dal, uses old-school slow steamers to retain moisture and texture and serves up its idlis with sambar, home-made butter and mulagapudi.

King’s Circle, Matunga (2401-4419). Tue-Sun 7am-2.30pm, 4pm-11pm. Rs 13.

60 Catch the Prithvi Festival

In November, Juhu’s Prithvi Theatre turns into a venue for one of the most anticipated events on the city’s cultural calendar. Prithvi’s annual drama festival usually hinges on a theme: this year, it’s musicals.

Prithvi Theatre 20 Janki Kutir Juhu Church Road Mumbai 400 049

Box Office : +91 (22) 26149546 Fax : +91 (22) 26175775

Email: prithvitheatre@prithvitheatre.org

61 Belt out karaoke at Soul Fry

Unleash your inner Sinatra at Monday night karaoke at the Bandra branch of the Goan restaurant Soul Fry. The evening sees locals attempt to outcroon each other with their church choir-honed vocal chops.

Pali Market, Bandra (W) (2604-6892). Mon 9.30pm onwards.

62 Sip beer at Sea View

From the outside, Sea View barely shows any signs of life. But hidden within is a gem of a restaurant. Pork chilly fry, potato chips (not French fries) and onion bhajia go beautifully with beer, which is the only alcohol available.

Hotel Sea View, Juhu Tara Road, Juhu Beach, (2660-5942). Daily 9am-11.30pm.

63 Host an ITDC guest

“Atithi devo bhavah” (guests are godlike), says a some dusty Sanskrit text and the Indian Tourism Development Corporation. The ITDC has compiled a list of people who have offered a room in their house as paid accommodation for tourists. Whether you’re looking for a place to stay or feeling like spreading the love in accordance to our ancient traditions, get with the programme.

Contact ITDC on 2203-3144 to join the list of hosts or email indiatourism@vsnl.com for the list of paying guest accommodations.

64 Gatecrash an art opening

If it’s the end of the week, approximately seven o’clock and you notice some loiterers around Kala Ghoda, then you could be on your way to a free drink. Most previews are held on Thursdays and Fridays. While the wine may not be fine, it won’t be undrinkable either. No one checks invitations.

65 Listen to Hindi film songs

Sargam, an informal association of music lovers, takes Hindi film music lovers on a Bollywood flashback every month at its listening sessions. They’re free and open to all.

Call on 2446-5983.

66 Star-gaze at the planetarium

It’s still not too late to revisit the planetarium and refresh your scientific knowledge through such enthralling shows as Wonders of the Universe, Hide & Seek in the Sky and Awesome Universe.

Nehru Planetarium, Worli (2492-0510). Rs 35 per adult, Rs 20 per child (age 4-12). . Booking 11am-1.45pm & 2.30-5pm.

67 Buy an Indian rock album

Check out the latest in the local rock and metal scene at music instrument shop Furtado’s in Dhobitalao. From the newest release by Indi-rock stalwarts Pentagram to upcoming death metal bands, it’s the best way to sample what campuses are headbanging to.

BX Furtado & Sons, Jer Mahal, Dhobi Talao (2201-3105). Mon-Sat 10am-7.30pm.

68 Watch a play in a garden

Watching the right play in the leafy environs of Horniman Circle Garden can be an enchanting experience. Take Manoj Shah’s musical Master Phoolmani, which had audiences screaming for encores at the end of three hours when it was staged a year ago.

Horniman Circle Garden, Fort. Call Prithvi Theatre on 2614-9546.

69 Revolve and eat

Here’s a new spin on dinner. In 90 minutes, while you work on your crispy crab rolls and tofu with bak choy at Pearl of the Orient,

the city whirls under your feet. Don’t blame your stiff drink. Mumbai’s only revolving restaurant spins under the gentle power of a two HP engine, with views of the Queen’s Necklace, Brabourne and Wankhede stadia and the stock exchange.

Ambassador Hotel, Churchgate (2204-1131). Daily 12.30-2.45pm & 7.30-11.30pm.

70 Pray at the actors’ temple

Situated diagonally across from the ISKCON temple, the Mukteshwara temple is regarded as the shrine where all Bollywood aspirations come true. The seven-storeyed temple houses over 130 deities, from Vishnu with ten faces to Buddha.

Mukteshwara temple, Juhu. Mon-Sat 7am-midnight. Sun 7am-1pm, 4pm-midnight.

71 Be the hero in a movie poster

Always pictured yourself in a great Bollywood romance? Arm yourself with your photograph and call one of the artists below. They will source the poster of any movie you wish to star in and paint you into your own tragic saga in a couple of days.

Call Durgadutt Pandey on 98193-46775 or Arvind Chudasama on 98208-76707. Rs 8,000-Rs 12,000, depending on size.

72 Clink with models at Olive

It’s suburban Mumbai’s favourite bar, whether it’s the margaritas that tempt you or the lissom ladies nursing their margaritas. Thursday nights are as glitzy as it gets.

Olive, Khar (2605-8228). Mon-Sat (8.30pm-1.30am). Sun brunch service too.

73 Show up on Page 3

The simplest way to get onto the party pages is to make a quick payment to the friendly folk at Medianet, the public relations wing of the Times of India. An excel spreadsheet will tell you the exact price of appearing in their newspaper, depending upon how many times you want to show up and how many inches you want to take up.

Call Medianet Times Group on 2273-5483.

74 Stroll along Juhu beach

Now that bhelpuri stalls and horses are back where they belong, Juhu beach finally has a stretch that lets you enjoy a solitary walk. Now if only they’d clean up the water.

Juhu beach, Juhu.

75 Pole dance

Unleash the Pussycat Doll in you by enrolling in a Dare & Bare class at Gold’s Gym on Nepean Sea Road. Anchored by fitness instructor Shilpa Rane, the class teaches a variety of tricks from the sex trade – striptease, lap dancing and pole dancing – which will help you shed your inhibitions for good. Over a one-hour class, expect to go through basic butt moves, hip rolls, a slinky catwalk, deep dips and a squat that doesn’t quit. Perform all of those moves on stilettos and you are likely to have an intensive workout for your thigh and leg muscles as well.

Dare & Bare pole dancing classes, Gold’s Gym, near Chandralok, Nepean Sea Road, (98331-03710). Tue and Thur 7-8pm. Rs 2,400 plus taxes for eight sessions, plus Rs 500 for enrolment.

76 Feast on Trishna’s crabs

This world-famous butter pepper garlic crab has been featured in several international publications. The bib allows you to drool even if you aren’t quite kissable for a while.

Sai Baba Marg, Fountain (2270-3215). Price as per size, Rs 550 for medium to Rs 1,250 for jumbo. Mon-Sat noon-3.30pm, 6pm-midnight. Sun noon-3.30pm, 7pm-midnight.

77 Scribble on Ghetto’s walls

Get very drunk. Hug your friends. Get the permanent marker from Prakash at the cash counter. Look for an empty spot on the wall. Write how much you love Mumbai, your friends, Ghetto, beer, life and this song they’re playing. Add some abuse and beer-induced wisdom. Repeat.

Next to Mahalakshmi Temple, Bhulabhai Desai Road, Mahalakshmi (2351-5537).

78 Kiss under a giant heart

Don’t leave the city before showing your love inside a huge heart. There’s a giant one at the Nehru Science Centre, complete with aorta and pulmonary what-nots. Entry and exit is through a ventricle.

Dr E Moses Road, Worli (2493-4520). Daily 10.30am – 6.30pm. Rs 20.

79 Shop at the Strand Book Fair

If you’re in the city in January or September, make a pilgrimage to the Strand book fair, every Mumbaikar’s favourite hunting ground for bargains on books.

Call on 2208-6103 for dates and timings.

80 See art at the Grand Hyatt

Once you’re done with your lunch or dinner, stroll through the lobby of the Grand Hyatt. Curated by Rajeev Sethi and themed around the Shiva-Shakti mythology, the hotel has brought together artwork by prominent artists, including Atul Dodiya, Sudarshan Shetty and Riyas Komu.

Grand Hyatt, Off Western Express Highway, Santa Cruz (E) (6676-1234).

81 Go bug spotting

If you see beauty in cockroaches, then the Insect Lovers Group is right up your alley. But first, you have to join the entomological course conducted by the Bombay Natural History Society. Members trade information and periodically go on field trips.

Call V Shubhalaxmi on 2842-1174.

82 Ride a giant wheel

The ten-day long Mahim fair, held in honour of Muslim saint Maqdoom Mahimi in the tenth month of the Muslim calendar, has plenty to offer. Catch the magic show, the wheel of death and the woman with the magical feet. Plus, there are no less than eight giant wheels to choose from.

Opposite St Michael’s Church, Mahim (W).

83 Be gay at Voodoo

There’s not an ostrich feather or tiara in sight. Instead you find men in muscle T-shirts grinding to Bollywood hits. Given the

testosterone in the air, Voodoo is a slightly disconcerting experience at first. But novelty wears off after the first ten minutes and you even contemplate elbowing your way through heaving pecs to get on the dance floor.

Voodoo, 2/5 Kamal Mansion, Arthur Bunder Road, Colaba (2284-1959).

Gay Bombay: Globalization, Love and (Be)longing in Contemporary India

84 Rant at The Speaker’s Corner

Lash out at the government, campaign for the legalisation of marijuana, advocate animal rights, fight for public nudity or whatever it is that’s got your goat at Mumbai’s own version of Hyde Park’s Speaker’s Corner. A board in Vashi’s Sagar Vihar Park encourages people to speak on any subject of their choice between seven and eight in the morning and the evening. The only condition is that people can’t use loudspeakers or mikes. Built by the City and Industrial Development Corporation of Maharashtra, Sagar Vihar Park also allows musical performances between six and seven in the morning and the evening.

Sagar Vihar Park, Sector 7, Vashi.

85 Devour a divine brownie

If heaven were to take the form of a dessert, it would come in the shape of a Theobroma chocolate chip brownie. The brownie is rich yet light and each bite is packed with the dense cocoa niblets.

Cusrow Baug Shop No 24, Colaba Causeway (6529-2929). Daily 8.30am-12.30am. Rs 30.

86 Play beach football at Juhu

Feel free to showboat your scissor kick to the locals who gather early in the morning and before the sun goes down for a kick off.

Juhu beach, Vile Parle (W).

87 Find the Fort wall

For those who still don’t believe that the Fort area past CST gets its name from an actual citadel, the eastern boundary wall of St George’s Hospital should come as a surprise. The last stone fragments of the walled city that existed till 1864 stand as proof of the time Byculla, Malabar Hill, Mazagaon and Parel formed the suburbs and Bandra housed holiday homes for the wealthy.

St George’s Hospital, behind General Post Office, P D’Mello Road, Fort.

88 Visit the Mumbadevi temple

Pay your respects to the patron goddess of the Kolis, Mumbai’s first inhabitants. The temple doors are made of silver and its railings are filled with coins shoved in by worshippers who want their wishes fulfilled.

Mumbadevi Road, near Zaveri Bazaar. Daily 5am-noon, 4-8pm.

89 Stay at the Taj for a day

Residents of the Taj Mahal Hotel get to hang out and sip champagne by the swimming pool. If you’re feeling suitably bubbly, you could slip into the individual beach chair-shaped Jacuzzis in full-service spa.

Taj Mahal Hotel, Colaba (6665-0300).

Rs 23,500 for a single-occupancy luxury room and up to Rs 31,000 for a Taj Club category double occupancy room, plus 10 per cent tax.

90 Sway to music at a bandstand

Every Saturday and Sunday in the cool months, you can catch the Brihanmumbai Mahanagar Palika Suraksha Dal Band, also known as the BMC Band, performing in bandstands in public parks and gardens across the city. The set list is a mixed bag: Hindi film songs, koligeet, Scottish marches, patriotic tunes, and even a bit of Beethoven and Mozart. They also take requests.

Call SM Kamble on 2596-5257 for the schedule. Performances begin from October.

91 Hike up to the Kanheri caves

Borivali’s Sanjay Gandhi National Park houses the Kanheri caves. The 109 caves contain rock figures of Buddha and his Boddhisattvas sculpted during the Mauryan and Kushan empires of the first century BC.

See no 18 for address. Tue-Sun. Rs 20.

92 See Jehangir’s firman

One of the gems in the Alpaiwalla Museum in a firman, or letter of recognition, written by Mughal emperor Jehangir in 1 618. The firman was a reward for Chandji Kamdin and his nephew Hoshang Ranji for the hospitality they showed the monarch in Navsari. FD Alpaiwalla Museum, Khareghat Memorial Hall, Khareghat Colony, NS Patkar Marg, Hughes Road (2361-6586). Mon-Fri 10.30am-1.30pm, 2.30-5.30pm.

93 Get your portrait made

The students and other struggling artists that dot the Pavement Gallery outside Jehangir Art Gallery are ready, eager and willing to indulge your narcissism.

Pavement Gallery, Kala Ghoda.

94 Learn Bollywood dance

Shake it like Madhuri, move like Mithun. It’s only a few dance classes away.

Shiamak Davar’s Institute for Performing Arts (2353-7930), Arts in Motion Dance Studio (98201-83231), RG’S Company of Dance (93221-82023).


Shiamak Davar’s Institute for the Performing Arts

Circle of Light

Shiamak Davar’s Media & Entertainment (P) Ltd.

Head Office – Mumbai

C-19, Everest, J. Dadaji Road, Tardeo,

Mumbai 400 034.


Tel: + 91 22 23537930 /1 /2 /3 /4 /5 /6 /7

Fax: + 91 22 2352 0618

Email: info@shiamak.com

Arts In Motion Dance Studio

39, TV Chidambaran Marg,

Sion (E), Mumbai – 400 022.

Mobile: + 91-98201 83231

+ 91- 98203 80009

Email: artsinmotion@gmail.com


95 Attend a passion play

Holy Week, as Catholics know the seven days from Palm Sunday, sees the unfolding of a series of ancient pre-Easter tableaux in Bandra’s St Andrew’s Church that are known as Santos Passos, or Passion Plays.

St Andrew’s Church, Hill Road, Bandra (W).

96 Ride in the oldest elevator

One of the city’s few surviving hydraulic lifts can be found in Navsarri Building in Fort. Said to be the oldest elevator in Mumbai, the lift is wood-panelled and operated using a crankshaft.

Navsarri Building, DN Road, Fort.

Navsari Building, 240, Dr. D.N. Road, Fort, Mumbai-400 001

97 Read books on Mumbai

Care to read Sir Dinshaw Wacha’s thoughts on the city in the period between 1860 and 1875? Trying to locate back issues of Bombay magazine? Almost everything you want to know about Mumbai is in the Indian Merchants’ Chamber’s Bombay City Corner.

Bombay City Corner, Indian Merchants’ Chamber,

Location and Timings

The library is situated at:

Resham Bhavan,

3rd Floor,

78, Veer Nariman Road,

Behind Churchgate Station,

Mumbai-400 020. It is open to the public from 10.00 a.m. to 5.45 p.m.. Monday to Friday, and 10.00 a.m. To 1.45 p.m.. on Saturday (except on 2nd & 4th Saturdays).

98 Sing bhajans to motor beats

You don’t need to use your eyes to find Gujarati saint Jalaram Bappa’s tiny shrine on Bhuleshwar Road. Your ears will get you there. For its evening puja, Bappa’s temple plays the drums, cymbals, brass bells and ghungroos – all without a single musician. They have a nifty little contraption that hooks up the instruments to a motor and plays them simultaneously, keeping preset beats and rhythms. The machine was a gift from a devotee two years ago.

Jalaram Bappa Mandir, Bhuleshwar Road, off Kalbadevi Road. Daily 7pm.

99 Trail Ambedkar

The father of the Indian Constitution composed the document sitting at the café formerly known as The Wayside Inn in Kala Ghoda. But since that no longer exists, you can pay your respects at the Bombay Improvement Trust chawls, where Ambedkar lived as he went to school, started his practice and raised a family. Move on to his office at Damodar Hall in Parel, where he began his career by founding the Bahishkrit Kitkarni Sabha. Hang out at Rajgriha, the home he built for himself at Dadar Hindu Colony. Finally, visit Siddharth College in Fort, which he founded in 1946.

BIT Chawl, room 50-51, near Parel flyover, Parel (E). Damodar Hall Parel Naka, near Parel flyover, Parel (E). Rajagriha, Dadar Hindu Colony, opposite Raja Shivaji High School, Dadar (E). Siddharth College of Arts, Science and Commerce, PT Marg, Fort.

100 Eat offal dishes

Ling’s Pavilion does an excellent chilled pork aspic (pork fat with bits of pig ears), the stalls outside Minara Masjid serve heart masala and Noor Mohammadi at Bhendi Bazaar is famous for its nalli nihari or bone marrow.

Lings Pavilion, off Colaba Causeway, Colaba . Noor Mohamadi, 179 Wazir Building, Abdul Hakim Noor Mohammadi Chowk, Bhendi Bazaar

Landsdowne Rd Behind Regal Cinema Mumbai 400 001 Tel: +92 22 2282 4533/2285 0023

Tucked into a street off Colaba Causeway, this tastefully decorated restaurant with split-level seating has enough nooks and corners to make an excellent choice for a private business lunch or dinner. Lings sticks to a basic, but vastly effective formula, with fabulous, good-value food and pleasing service. Our beef in black bean pepper sauce was tender, the prawns fresh, and the stew in a pot was tangy and had plenty of crunchy vegetables.

101 Visit Japanese graves

Behind Worli’s Nipponzan Myohoji or Japanese temple is a little-known cemetery that houses the ashes of Japanese prostitutes and other Japanese immigrants. The cemetery has two stupas, a shrine and a house.

Hindu Shamshan Bhoomi, behind Japanese temple, E Moses Road, Worli

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