Mumbai — Nigeria is not short of charming and memorable locations for tourist to visit, but India boasts of much more because there is probably a story or history behind every bus stop in Mumbai.
The tourist attractions in Mumbai, a city of some 20 million inhabitants, are such that one could get confused because of the duplication or replication of names, structures and locations in India or of somewhere else in the modern or ancient world. The replication is such that an excited researcher could run the risk of mistaking one for another. Here are some of those enticing places in Mumbai.
THE HANGING GARDENS OF MUMBAI
Mumbai, being a tourist town, is not short of these attractions as there is the Hanging Garden, also known as Pherozeshah Mehta Gardens.
The garden, located at the top of Malabar Hill, is terraced and features numerous hedges carved into the shapes of animals. The garden gives an elevated view of the marine drive beach that has the man-made sea wall. It is said that if viewed from the sky, the walkways spell PMG for 'Pherozeshah Mehta Gardens' in cursive.
Another prominent feature of the garden is the 'Mhataricha boot in marathi', which literally means 'grandma's boot'. It is a boot house with stairs that allow children climb and play. The park was laid out in 1881 by Ulhas Ghapokar over Bombay's main reservoir.
Similarly, there is the Hanging Gardens of Babylon, which was said to be one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World, and the only one whose location has not been definitely established.
The Hanging Gardens, which was supposedly built by King Nebuchadnezzar II in 600 BC for his Median wife, Queen Amytis, were a distinctive feature of ancient Babylon. The gardens were said to have looked like a large green mountain constructed of mud bricks
In addition there is the Hanging Garden at Nineveh, which had more documentations to prove its existence than the hanging garden of Babylon. It was supposed to have been built by King Sennacerib's.
GANDHI MEMORIAL MUSEUM 'MANI BHAVAN'
Located on leafy quiet Laburnum Road in Mumbai, 'Mani Bhavan Gandhi Sangrahalaya,' simplified as Mani Bhavan, is the old Mumbai residence of Gandhi. The two storey building, where the revered leader lived from 1917 to 1934, is touted to be one of the most important locations in the city.
The museum, which is recognized as a research institute for Gandhian thoughts and rural development, has a library on the ground floor that consists of over 50,000 books on Gandhiji, Gandhian thoughts and allied subjects. On the first floor of the building is an auditorium where films on Gandhiji are shown. On the second floor is Gandhi's austere room. Adjoining his room is an exhibition in miniature doll-like figures depicting his life contained in 28 tableaux. There are two more rooms that have been converted to a photo gallery.
Similarly, in South Africa there is a house where Mahatma lived and is also now a memorial for him, called Satyagraha House. It is located in Johannesburg and now doubles as a museum and a guest house.
Crowd at The Gateway of India, which includes international and local tourists, local photographers who make brisk business using monument as background.Photo: Bamas Victoria
THE GATEWAY OF INDIA
The Gateway of India in Mumbai is a monument built during the British Rule, which overlooks the Arabian Sea. The structure is a basalt arch, 85 feet high.
It was erected to commemorate the landing of King George V and Queen Mary at Apollo Bunder, when they visited India in 1911.
During the day there is a crowd, which includes international and local tourists, with photographers making brisk business, using the monument as background.
Similarly, there is The India Gate in New Delhi built as a memorial for 82,000 Bristish-Indian soldiers who died in the First World War. It was initially referred to as All India War Memorial.
The India Gate of New Delhi and the Gateway of India in Mumbai has a lot of resemblance in their architectural designs, photographs from certain angles can be easily mistaken for the other by a casual observer.
Boats leave daily from the Gateway of India to the Elephanta Island, a popular tourist destination taking about an hour each way. Photo: Bamas Victoria
Elephanta Island is a popular tourist destination because of the island's cave temples. The Elephanta Caves were carved out of rock. Boats leave daily from the Gateway of India to the Elephant Island, taking about an hour each way. The island is also called Gharapuri Island.
There is the Elephant Island in Marinduque, Philippines which consists of resorts, spas and hotels. Aside from the name and the fact that they are both islands they are different in the sense that the Elephanta Island of Mumbai has some religious significance. There are caves and statues for gods, which is not the same with that found in the Philippines.
UFO REVOLVING RESTAURANT
UFO Revolving Restaurant in Kandivali East, Mumbai, moves like a clock and it is said to take 24 hours to go round it axis.
According to a Wikipedia article, a revolving restaurant is usually a tower restaurant eating space designed to rest atop a broad circular revolving platform that operates as a large turntable. The building remains stationary and the diners are carried on the revolving floor.
There are over a hundred of similar restaurants in the world spreading across all continents.
Mumbai is situated on the western coast of India and is surrounded by the Arabian Sea. This makes it the choice for the location of a number of beaches, like the Marine Drive. "Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose Road" is a three kilometre-long, six lane concrete road in southern Mumbai. It stretches north along the coastline, forming a natural bay. This C-shaped road links Nariman Point to Babulnath, and is situated at the foot of Malabar Hill. Marine Drive is also known as the Queen's Necklace because, if viewed at night from an elevated point anywhere along the drive, the street lights resemble a string of pearls in a necklace.
There is the Chowpatty Beach located in the city popular for its delicacies. The Juhu Beach is situated in 'Ville Parle' bordered by a posh locality. The Madh Island Beach made of a cluster of little villages and farmlands situated on the North-Western coast of Mumbai and the Versova Beach which is a continuation of the Juhu Beach and separated by a creek, situated in the suburbs of Andheri.
The Taj Mahal Palace and the Taj Mahal Tower in Mumbai even though they are one hotel they are two distinct buildings and it is still different from The Taj Mahal crown of palaces a white marble mausoleum located Agra.Photo Bamas Victoria
TAJ MAHAL PALACE
The Taj Mahal Palace Hotel is a five-star hotel made up of two buildings located in Mumbai, India, next to the Gateway of India. The Taj Mahal Palace and the Taj Mahal Tower even though they are one hotel are two distinct buildings, built at different times and in different architectural designs.
The hotel which allows for a tourist tour is different from The Taj Mahal "crown of palaces," a white marble mausoleum located on the southern bank of the Yamuna River in the Indian city of Agra. It was commissioned in 1632 by the Mughal Emperor Shah Jahan to house the tomb of his favourite wife, Mumtaz Mahal.
The New Delhi's Taj Mahal is also a very popular tourist destination and one of Indian known icons.
A view of Dhobi Ghat the open air Laundromat that employs about 5000 people as seen from flyover bridge of Mahalaxmi station Mumbai. Photo: Bamas Victoria
DHOBI GHAT: MUMBAI'S OPEN LAUNDRY
Mahalaxmi Dhobi Ghat is said to be the largest outdoor clothes washing Laundromat in the world. It is located in Mumbai.
The washers, locally known as Dhobis, working with concrete wash pens, each fitted with its own flogging stone, washes the clothes from Mumbai's hotels and hospitals. There are an estimated five thousand people working at the Dhobi Ghat.
A quick internet search on google for Dhobi Ghat will present you different results, and the first result for Dhobi Ghat is actually is a movie with similar name titled Dhobi Ghat.
The movie 'Dhobi Ghat' is centers around the lives of an artist and a Dhobi washerman who dreams of becoming a film star.
MOUNT MARY CHURCH
The Basilica of Our Lady of the Mount, more commonly known as Mount Mary Church, is a Roman Catholic Basilica located in Bandra, Mumbai, where tourists and locals stop to say a prayer and light a candle.
The feast of the Blessed Virgin Mary is celebrated here, so also is the birthday of the Virgin Mary.
There is another, the Basilica of Our Lady of Mount Carmel in the Island of Malta. This is also a Roman Catholic church in the Maltese capital Valletta on the island of Malta and it reported to be one of the most famous churches and main tourist attractions of Valletta.
NARIMAN POINT 'MANHATTAN OF MUMBAI'
Located at the end of the Mumbai's Marine Drive, Nariman Point is named after Khursheed Framji Nariman, a municipal corporator who had initiated the area's development as an extension of the Back Bay reclamation.
Nariman Point houses some of India's prestigious business headquarters. Despite its decline that is yielding the status of the preeminent business district to Bandra-Kurla complex in recent times, it remains one of the most expensive business districts in India.
Nariman Point boasts of a spectacular skyline and pricey residential condos hence it is widely regarded as the 'Manhattan' of Mumbai. It is also the main financial district of Mumbai and houses most of the financial services and brokerage companies. It is also the location for the Vidhan Bhavan, the political headquarters of the state of Maharashtra.
Just like Nariman Point the Manhattan of Mumbai, the New York's Manhattan is often reported to be the economic and cultural center of the United States as it has the Wall Street in the Financial District of Lower Manhattan. The economically powerful Manhattan has been called the leading financial center of the world, and it is also the home to the world's two largest stock exchanges by total market capitalization, the New York Stock Exchange and NASDAQ.
In addition New York's Manhattan do boast of a spectacular skyline and expensive residential condos.
Despite having some of its tourist attractions replicated in one way or the other, Mumbai is filled with tourist attractions that will give a tourist something to marvel - and to take lots of pictures.