India

Things to do in Mumbai

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The world’s third largest city, with a population of over 17 million, Mumbai is also home to the Bollywood film industry. Capital of the state of Maharashtra and the financial powerhouse of India’s economy, Mumbai is a trilingual city with Marathi, Hindi and English as official languages. Mumbai is a peninsula city that has expanded […]

India

Seven Islands of Bombay

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Bombay was originally a cluster of islands.  The seven major ones are shown on the first map below, and consisted of Mahim, Worli, Parel, Bombay, Colaba and Little Colaba.  Additional islands of Mumbai included Elephanta (Gharapuri) Island, and the Middle Ground Coastal Battery, which now belongs to the Indian Navy, and is a fortified defensive […]

India

Bandra Fort

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Bandra Fort lies at the extreme end of Band Stand promenade in Bandra West.  You walk all the way along the promenade and past the Taj Land’s End hotel, and there, on the last tip of land before it drops into the sea, is the fort. From Bandra Fort there is a very good view […]

India

Homesickness

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I have been in Mumbai for more than three months now, and when I left my brother at the international airport I started feeling homesick.  His presence here had thrown me back into a world where it is normal to have all my family and friends around me, and deeper than that – the comforting […]

India

Haji Ali Dargah

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A photo tour of Haji Ali island tomb and causeway. On the approach to the Dargah. Inside the Haji Ali complex. This is the view upon leaving the tomb.  Note the stacks of sandals all around! An empty fountain beside the tomb chamber

India

Mahalakshmi

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Just beyond Mahalakshmi station and over the rail bridge lie the dhobi ghats.  These are concrete vats where dhobiwalas wash laundry every day; loads of washing are brought here from all over the city to be soaked and beaten at the dhobi ghats.  Mumbai’s dhobi ghat is said to be the largest outdoor laundry in […]

India

Holi – the festival of colours

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Holi, 27th March 2013 Today is Holi, the Hindu festival of colours. There is a drum and brass band playing outside my building, and the pigeons are busy dropping nesting material in through my window.  I clear the twigs, bits of plastic and twizzled curls of paper off the inner windowsill and out of my […]

India

Elephanta Island, and the spirit of E. M. Forster

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I visited Elephanta, an island that lies in Mumbai’s harbour, about seven miles north-east of the jetty in front of the Gateway of India.  I went down to the Gateway and bought a ticket for the ferry to the island (Rs 150 at time of writing), and then queued up on the jetty with groups […]

India

Bombay by Night

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I went to an InterNations event, taking a taxi from Bandra over the Sea Link suspension bridge to Worli village. I met Hitesh, we got along well and at around 1am when the event was finishing, he took me on a drive through the city.  Surrounded by dark water and lights, Mumbai is incredibly beautiful […]

India

Bandra West and Suburban Trains

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I’ve been quite busy in the past week or so acquiring a flat, and moving in.  I live in a suburb called Bandra West now, which lies north of Mahim Creek and west of the railway line, beside the sea.  I’ve been riding on the suburban trains, and doing a bit more wandering around and […]