Mumbai Travel Guide
Located in Western India in the state of Maharashtra and the commercial capital of India, Mumbai (formerly known as Bombay but had its name changed by Parliament in 1997) is home to Juhu Beach, Pav Bhaji, Bollywood and Marine Drive. In 1932, JRD Tata made aviation history when he flew a light aircraft from Karachi to Juhu Aerodrome. This later became known as India's national carrier, Air India.
What to See / Do
Chowpatty & Juhu beaches top the list of must see sights in Mumbai. Tourists and locals alike gather en-masse at sunset to get some respite from the heat, enjoy the view and sample the refreshingly sweet & sour kalakhatta (a black drink), share a plate of paanipuri (hollow, fried, crispy golden shells filled with diced potatoes, chickpeas, onions and chillis and topped with tamarind chutney) or the malaikulfi on a stick.
Nearby is the ISKON temple and the morning aarti (prayers) resounds blissfully over Juhu beach with the melodious music making it more a spiritually enhancing experience rather than religious. The same can be said for the 15th century Haji Ali which is a famous dargah (mosque) housing the tomb of Sayed Peer Haji Ali Shah Bukhari. This white structure sits on a floating island off the coast of Worli (South Mumbai) which is connected to land by a narrow, stone path and one which regularly gets completely submerged during the monsoon season.
A ferry ride on the Arabian Sea departing from the Gateway of India to the Elephanta Caves, on Elephanta Island is a really fun way to spend the day. A world heritage site, it will only cost you around £1.50 to visit! Following your day trip, why not pop into the nearby Leopolds Cafe for a pitcher of beer which is one of Mumbai's most iconic institutions and one which was under fire during the 26/11 terrorist attack on the city. If you fancy something a bit less raucous, the nearby Starbucks cafe, built over two floors, is probably one of the largest and finest coffee houses you've ever seen!
The $270 million Bandra-Worli Sea Link (officially known as the Rajiv Gandhi Sea Link) is another new city attraction connecting the suburbs to South Mumbai in less than 20 minutes thereby saving commuters at least an hour on their journey time. The bridge features eight lanes with smooth, tarmac roads akin to those of a major freeway in the western world. If you're not cruising along it, then just observe it from a vantage point at Land's End, Bandra.
Tropical with a warm sea breeze if you happen to be in the coastal areas such as Versova, Juhu & Worli but otherwise pretty humid year round, Mumbai's temperatures generally soar to around 40C at peak and 27C at the lowest. A few chilled ones by the pool at the Sun n' Sand Hotels are always welcome when visiting Mumbai! The monsoon hits Mumbai from June to September each year which cools the city down somewhat.
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Where to Stay
Mumbai hosts some great accommodation providers from the 50 year old Sun n' Sand Hotel still standing tall in a leafy corner of Juhu to just a few steps away, the grandeur of the JW Marriott, which rises majestically into Juhu's skyline and overlooks Juhu Beach. These are the traditional five-star properties but there's also the more affordable Ramada on Juhu Beach itself and the Sea Princess as well as many guest houses along the way.
Go further into Bandra and you'll come to the Taj Lands End where you'll always find some Bollywood celebrity or cricketer, serious faced, clinching a business deal, in the lobby bar.
If you're looking for a deluxe standard of living during your stay in Mumbai, away from the hub-bub, then South Mumbai is your port of call. From the stunningly appointed suites at the Intercontinental with rose-filled baths to the Hilton Trident with its equally fabulous Frangipani (Italian) and India Jones (Thai) restaurants to the iconic majesty that is the original Taj Hotel, famous for its quintessentially British standards of service, high teas and, regrettably, the tragic incidents of 26/11 when Mumbai was under terrorist attack.
How to Get Here
Direct flights from the UK – take your pick from Jet Airways, Virgin Atlantic, British Airways and, of course, India's own darling, Air India.Or opt for indirect flights with Emirates (free stopovers in Dubai!), Etihad, Qatar, Lufthansaand more.
Book your flight to Mumbaiwith Tickets to India and ask about our generous luggage allowances in all classes. Ask our reservations staff for further details now.
Book your hotel in Mumbai at the same time as your flights and take advantage of our fantastic flight+hotel deals. We can also arrange your airport transfers and excursions.