Mumbai Attractions

Mumbai, the business and entertainment capital of India and the richest city in India, amazes travelers all over the world with its colorful nightlife, beautiful beachside scenery, dynamic Bollywood films, solemn religious sites, colonial architecture, large areas of green space and garden and so on. In addition, Mumbai also boasts some famous historical attractions that have been declared in the UNESCO’s World Heritage Site List, such as the Elephanta Caves and the Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus. In general, most of the popular attractions in Mumbai can be covered within 2-3 days.

Top Attractions

1. Gateway of India

Situated on the Apollo Bunder opposite the Mumbai Bay, Gateway of India is a landmark building with a similar architectural design of Arc de Triomphe in France. The memorial monument was built in the year of 1911 in memory of the visit of King George V and Queen Mary to Mumbai. Made of basalt, the pillars of the gate are inspired by Hindu temples, while the windows are designed in Islamic feature, which symbolizes the diversity and integration of Indian religions. At present, the Gateway has become the symbol of Mumbai, and also works as an important venue for the municipal government to welcome guests from all over the world.

2. Elephanta Caves

Located at a distance of 11 km (6.8 mi) from the city of Mumbai, Elephanta Caves, aka Gharapuri Island is a spectacular ancient architectural complex, as well as an outstanding representative of Indian grottoes. Listed as a world cultural heritage by UNESCO in 1987, Elephanta Caves collects numerous reliefs and sculptures of worshiping god Shiva - one of three great Hindu gods. They are mainly related to Hinduism, including legendary stories of god Shiva, and also scenes of life of ancient Indians. Nowadays, five grottoes are open to the public, among which the Shiva Temple is the best preserved and the most popular.

3. Marine Drive

Mumbai is known as the “Queen of Indian Cities,” while the Marine Drive is the “Queen’s Necklace”. It is a 3.5-kilometer-long (2.2 mi) boulevard with a crescent moon shape along the South Mumbai coast, running from Chowpatty Beach in the north to Nariman Point in the south. One side of the avenue is scattered with shops, restaurants and vendors; on the other side lies the sparkling Arabian Sea. When the sun goes down and the heat fades away, Marine Drive begins to bustle with people for dating, strolling, photographing… At night, dotted with lights, the thoroughfare turns to be “The Necklace of the Queen” if looking down from higher position.

4. Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus

Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus was established in 1887, which witnessed Indian’s long history of being colonized by British. Formerly it is named as Victoria Terminus to mark the 50th anniversary of Queen Victoria’s accession to the throne. Later, after India’s independence, it was renamed Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus in 1996 to commemorate the national hero - Chhatrapati Shivaji. It is the largest and the busiest railway station in India and still serves passengers traveling by train now. With the perfect combination of Victorian features, Hindu and Islamic architectural styles, Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus was recognized by UNESO as a world heritage site in 2004.

5. Dhobi Ghat

Constructed more than 130 years ago, Dhobi Ghat near Mahalakshmi Railway Station is the largest open laundry in the world, which provides tourists with an amazing glimpse into the inside of the city. This is a working area for the poor in Mumbai, where clothes are handed in by citizens of all walks of life for manual cleaning. Dhobi Ghat can hold thousands of people washing clothes at the same time, so it is also called “Laundry Factory of Thousand People” by generations. The overbridge from the train station is the best spot to see the unique scene of colorful clothes and bed sheets hanging everywhere.

Read more about Top 10 Things to Do in Mumbai


More Sightseeing Attractions in Mumbai

1. Aksa Beach is one of the cleanest beaches in Mumbai. It has become the main choice for tourists who seek for peace and tranquility from the busy city life.

2. Bandra Worli Sea Link is a cable-stayed bridge over the Arabian Sea, connecting Bandra and Worli. It has 8 lanes to serve traffic flows and caters to around 37,500 vehicles per day.

3. Bollywood is the largest film production base in India, which has produced many world-famous films.

4. Chor Bazaar or “Thieves Market” is the biggest flea market in the country. Here tourists can find all kinds of second-hand goods from antiques and electronics to vintage furniture.

5. Chowpatty Beach at the northern end of Marine Drive is the most accessible beach in Mumbai, where visitors can have a relaxing stroll, appreciate sunset, buy kinds of souvenirs, and taste Indian snacks.

6. Crawford Market is the biggest shopping paradise for Indian residents. Some most popular things to buy in this place are soft leather bags with embroidery, woodcarvings, Indian spices, jewelry and Darjeeling black tea.

7. Dharavi Slum, located in the heart of Mumbai, is the largest slum in Asia accommodating more than 1 million people in an area of less than two square kilometers.

8. Essel World, the largest and best amusement park in India, boasts lots of exciting rides for all age groups, including Shot-N-Drop, Top Spin for the adults; Kangaroo Hop, Boat Ride for the children; and Tunnel Twister, Copper Chopper for parents and kids.

9. Flora Fountain, built in 1869, is a wonderful monument with a coat of white paint. It is famous for its integration of waterscape, building, music and sculpture.

10. Gandhi Museum formerly named as Mani Bhavan Gandhi Sangrahalaya, was the chief working center of Gandhi from 1917 to 1934. This two-storey ancient building has been converted into a museum housing some relics depicting his contributions towards the country.

11. Haji Ali Dargah comprises of a tomb and a mosque located on a small islet off the coast of Worli, south of Mumbai. Followers from all religions arrive here for blessings.

12. Hanging Gardens is located at the top of Malabar Hill and is usually surrounded by clouds. From here, one can take everything of Marine Drive in a glance, and also appreciate various animal-shaped bushes.

13. Jogeshwari Caves are the largest cave temples in India that have been in existence for 1,500 years. These caves are claimed to be the precursor of the famous Elephanta Caves.

14. Kamala Nehru Park, a part of the Hanging Gardens complex, was first built in the year of 1952 in memory of Jawaharlal Nehru, the former prime minister of India. The park is famous for a building in the shape of woman’s boot, which is always climbed up and down by children.

15. Kanheri Caves are dedicated to Lord Buddha. Here visitors can take photos of scenic sunset view on the hillside, have a safari in Sanjay Gandhi National Park, visit Tulsi Lake and so on.

16. Mahalaxmi Racecourse was built in 1883 in the heart of Mumbai city. The racing track is oval-shaped with a length of 2,400 meters where tourists can watch racing games, run on the track, witness a wedding and so on.

17. Mumba Devi Mandir, aka Mumbadevi Temple, built in the 16th century, is a renowned sacred pilgrimage spot for local people.

18. Nehru Science Centre has about 500 interactive exhibits based on different elements of science, including energy, sound, mechanics, and light.

19. Powai Lake, located in Powai Valley, is an artificial lake with surprising landscapes and various flora and fauna.

20. Prince of Wales Museum, aka Chhatrapati Shivaji Museum, was designed by George Wittet who was the designer of the Gateway of India. There are three main exhibition areas in this museum including Natural Area, Art Area and Archaeological Area.

21. Siddhivinayak Temple is a Hindu Temple dedicated to Lord Shiva’s son, Lord Ganesha. It is one of the richest temples in India.

22. Taraporewala Aquarium is India’s oldest aquarium, where one can see around 2,000 fish of over 400 species, such as sharks, turtles, and rays