Unexplored Underrated Places of Mumbai
June 26, 2019
Mumbai, the city that never sleeps, has a variety of popular tourist attractions such as Juhu Beach, Marine Drives, Sanjay Gandhi National Park, Hanging Garden, and so on. However, one can never really have explored this city of Dreams without excavating deep into these underrated, unpopular places that truly brings out the gaudiness and exclusivity of the city from its core.
Here are a few places that one must visit in Mumbai to feel the ethnic, societal, altered and genuine vibes of the beautiful city:
Sewri Jetty – Flamingos in Mumbai
Yes, to all of our jolt, contrary to its well-known image, Mumbai has this unpopular, isolated place called Sewri Jetty where you can actually, ACTUALLY see thousands of “Pink Flamingos”. In the months of November to March, these birds migrate from distant places of Siberia through Ran of Kutch in Gujarat to the mud flats of Sewri. It is a must-visit place for all bird lovers as they can also have a glimpse of so many other migratory birds such as Black-Headed Ibis and Black-Tailed Godwit, Western Reef-egret, River Tern, Egrets, Cranes, Wagtails, Swallows and so on.
- Carry your Binoculars
- Avoid High Tide Times
- 6 am – 1oam (Best time)
Hasnabad Dargah – Taj Mahal of Mumbai
A rare glimpse in Mumbai is this Mughal Style of architecture which is majorly made of Rajasthani marbles. The top of the Dargah and its interior is made of real gold. It is a real spectacle for those who are fond of architecture and structures. This Dargah was built by Aga Khan for his family after coming to Mumbai from Iran. Also known as Shah Hasan Ali’s Maqbara, this mosque is currently open from inside to only the members of Shia Community (Muslims from Iran).
The Taj Mahal vibes in Mumbai? – This is the place!
Gilbert Hill – Devil’s Tower in Mumbai
This 200 ft tall gigantic pillar of black basalt rock was formed when molten lava was clasped out of the Earth’s gaps during the Mesozoic Era about 66 million years ago. Over the structure are two Hindu temples devoted to Gaodevi and Durgamata; these are temples which are set up in a small garden. These temples can be accessed through small trekking via steep steps carved in the structure. Early morning (within the cold breeze) or after sunset (when the city lights are lit) are the two best times to visit when one can sense the enormity of the city.
Worli Koliwada – Mumbai’s Unexplored Neighborhood
This 800 years old village of Worli Koliwada is made up of a sequence of Settlement Clusters. Koliwada literally means the Habitat of Kolis. The Kolis are the community of fishermen who stayed on one of the seven islands that primarily made Mumbai. One unique thing to see here is the Golfadevi Temple – the temple of Yes & No Goddess. Every day, fishermen visit the temple to seek permission to enter the sea and go fishing. The priest places two silver balls on either ear of the goddess and if the left one falls – it is a ‘No’ while if the right one falls, it is a ‘Yes’. It has been believed firmly that the goddess is never wrong on any question and one can actually find the faith working in mysterious ways here!
Banganga Tank – Mini-Banaras of Mumbai
Along-side the neighboring Walkeshwar temple, this freshwater tank was built by Lakshman Prabhu in AD 1127. This tank is often called the Mini-Banaras of Mumbai and has a mythological Hindu belief that Lord Rama asked his brother Lakshmana to bring him some water. Laxman instantly shot an arrow into the ground, and water gushed forth from the ground, creating a tributary of the Ganges, hence its name, Banganga, the Ganga created by a baan (arrow). This tank is considered sacred and is believed to have healing powers. The place, being unpopular amongst tourists, is an inspiration to many artists and writers.
Heritage Museum – A Secret Hidden in the CST Building
YES! You heard it right. There is a railway Heritage museum in the Chatrapatti Shivaji Terminus Building which is also a Worlds’s Heritage site. It gives a wonderful inside view to the pillar carvings, miniatures of railways and engines depicting the evolution of railways in India from Steam to Electric. There is a library-kind arena which also has a restricted library accessible only to the railway employees. The winding staircase along with the gigantic impressive Dome takes you back to the vibes of Hogwarts. It is a must-visit site, especially for all the MUMBAIKARS!
Dharavi – World’s Largest Slum
It should be shocking if you have been to Mumbai but not to Dharavi. Dharavi, a locality in Mumbai with just over 2.1 square km, is one of the highest densely populated areas in the world. Though being one of the world’s largest slums, it is not a place where poor people are depressed. There are no beggars on the street. One has to visit this place and see how it runs an informal economy bearing an annual turnover of around US$1 billion. It has less than 10% unemployment rate which is enough to break the stereotype about Dharavi as showcased in movies and alike.
Gopal Vipassana Pagoda – World’s Largest Stone Dome
Designed based on the world famous “Shwedagon Pagoda” in Myanmar, the Pagoda Complex was built fully out of donations to express gratitude to Lord Gautama Buddha for his teachings and to practice meditation. Painted fully in Gold, the center of the Pagoda contains the world’s largest stone dome built without any supporting pillars. It is said to have the original relics of Gautum Buddha at the Global Pagoda.
Mumbai is the city that has a story concealed in every nook and corner and to truly discover this city, glancing these beautiful but unpopular places is vastly endorsed. While there are many such remarkable and splendid places veiled within the city, one cannot travel everywhere but must endeavor to travel at least a few of the places on their voyage to Mumbai Darshan.
And once you visit the city, you are bound to return here whereby you can endure exploring further…