Category Archives: Travel

A Five Star Experience At Taj Hotel Mumbai: Dream Stay At Dream Destination!

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Hey readers, Savar Pandey is here again to share with you one of my electrifying experience in the city of dreams, Mumbai! I finally got a weekend off from my boss, and I didn’t want myself to get shut in my room in front of the boring television screen. I decided for a luxurious trip, and why not the city that doesn’t sleep- Mumbai. There are many exciting places to check out in the city like Gateway of India, Chowpatty, Kanheri Caves, Siddhivinayak Temple, Haji Ali Dargah and many more.

tourist attractions in mumbai

Tourist attractions in Mumbai | Image Resource : wikimedia.org

We have always heard about the Taj Hotel Mumbai, but neither our pockets nor the circumstances allowed me to spend a night there. But this time, my heart said no for compromising and I decided to book two days stay at the grand and most luxurious hotel of the country. The Taj group of hotels have many hotels in India and abroad. Taj Lands End and Vivanta by Taj were the two options in front of me.

My heart started drumming and there was a luminous sparkle in my eyes, and I finally chose Vivanta by Taj for the Taj experience in my life! As I landed in Mumbai, I received a call from the driver who was waiting for me at the arrivals. After a smooth drive in a luxurious car, I reached the hotel and was welcomed with pomp. The hotel is colossal, and my eyes were wide open and I was literally awestruck!

The check- in procedure winded up quickly and in the next 5 minutes I was in my room. “Gosh!” was what I exclaimed.  Actually I was dumbstruck and no words were enough to even partially describe the luxury or the palatial ambience. It was lavishness beyond what I ever dreamt of, and I realized no matter what I spend, it was worth every penny and I will cherish this memory for my lifetime. I was given a complimentary breakfast, beautifully presented and in style. It showed the experience and passion of the master chef.

After some deep sleep, I strolled in the entire hotel. “Oh my my!” was my heart saying every time I came across something lavish and stunning. As I am a hard core foodie, I sneaked into Trattoria as soon as the lunch time started. The menu offered to me stunned as the catalogue had hi fi names of food from various countries of the world. I tried international cuisine and my heart as well as tummy was fully satiated and satisfied to say the least!

Vivanta - Trottoria, Cuffe ParadeVivanta by Taj President Mumbai – Trattoria | Image Resource : vivantabytaj.com

I thoroughly enjoyed my two day stay at Taj Hotel Mumbai and was treated as a prince in a palace. Unforgettable indeed! While I was leaving the hotel, I made a promise to that I was surely going to give myself this treat whenever my purse strings allowed me to!

Elephanta Caves – A Visit to Ancient Wonders of Architecture

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My trip to Mumbai had been spectacular so far. I had been to many good places and after the last trip to Gateway of India, the next place which I decided to visit was one of the heritage sites located near Mumbai known as the Elephanta Caves. The caves are near to the city and are quite similar to the Ajanta and Ellora caves. They give an idea about the past artistic culture and comprises of Hindu and Buddhist rock arts.

Ferry to Elephanta Island from Gateway of India

Ferry to Elephanta Island from Gateway of India | Image Resource : photonicyatra.com

The caves are dedicated to lord Shiva. It is still debated as to who built these caves. The locales still revere these caves and it has become a huge tourist spot. Some of the historian and academics believe that it was built by Pulekesin II of the Chalukya dynasty as only a mighty kingdom like his could have built a structural marvel like this.

elephanta caves mumbai

Elephanta Caves | Image Resource : edge.ixigo.com

The caves are spread across an area of 60000 square feet and and are seven in number. They date back as old as 600 AD. The first cave is one of the most impressive which is known for its exquisite and popular sculptures. The caves are dedicated to both Hindu Gods and Buddhist religion. The main cave inside has a famous Lord Shiva shrine with an idol of Shiva full 0f splendour and magnificence.

Popular sculpture at Elephanta Caves

Popular sculpture at Elephanta Caves | Image Resource : bhavyaholidays.com

The Elephanta caves are a UNESCO heritage site and surely one of the gems of Mumbai. There are a large number of tourists everyday who comes to witness these ancient architectural wonders. In a city like Mumbai, a place like Elephanta which is away from the loud noises and chaos of the city is very important. The various sculptures of Hindu deities in intricate art mesmerises every visitor of Elephanta caves.

Shiva Linga shrine and Dvarapalas at door entry

Shiva Linga shrine and Dvarapalas at door entry | Image Resource : wikimedia.org

The place provides many good locations for doing photography. a place like this is a must visit for everyone who visits Mumbai. Once I was done with the visit to Elephanta Caves, I headed back for my hotel for having dinner and spend the night. The hotel which I had booked for my stay was Hotel Golden Toff Resort Mumbai.

Bandraworli Sea Link – A Wonder of Modern Day Infrastructure

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After another comfortable and luxurious night spent at the Golden Toff resort in Mumbai, I was ready for another day’s adventure in the city of Dreams, Mumbai. The first place which I decided to visit the following day was one of the modern infrastructure wonder of Mumbai known as the Bandra Worli Sea Link. The Sea link as the name suggests connects the western suburb of Bandra with Worli in South Mumbai. The link not only shortens the travel of the commuters between these two regions but also gives a stunning view of the sea.

Toll_gates-_Bandra_Worli_sea_link

Toll Gates Bandra Worli Sea Link | Image Resource : wikimedia.org

This sea link gives an idea of the genius of modern day infrastructure projects. I was simply awe struck by this amazing sea link created over the mighty and vast expanse of sea water. It was stunning to look around while at the middle of the BandraWorli Sea link. While walking around, I could see many people who have come to take a stroll at the sea link with their families and some alone.

The place is not an important road for the Mumbai people but it has also become a famous tourist spot now. If you want to capture the stunning views of Arabian Sea then a visit to BandraWorli Sea link is must. I think this place should be in the itinerary of everyone who comes to visit Mumbai.

Night view of Bandraworli Sea Link

Night view of Bandraworli Sea Link Mumbai | Image Resource : wikimedia.org

I enjoyed every moment which I had spent at the BandraWorli Sea Link. There were selfies and photography going all around. The place it is said looks even more stunning at the sunset. One can experience the might and vastness of sea with a visit to BandraWorli Sea Link. Infrastructure projects like this should be there for all the seaside cities of the country.

Once I was done with the visit to the Bandra Worli Sea link, I headed for my next place of visit which was the Mount Mary Church at Bandra. The church is one of the oldest and most renowned places of worship in the city. It is also one of those places of worship which is visited by people of all religions.

Destination of the Week : Rajabai Clock Tower Mumbai

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Rajabai Clock Tower Mumbai

Rajabai Clock Tower Mumbai | Image Resource : wikipedia.org

Rajabai Clock Tower Mumbai : I got to visit the Rajabai Clock Tower as a part of my Mumbai tour. It stands even today as one of the iconic locations in the city of dreams. The clock tower was elegantly designed in the British architectural style and was beautiful and majestic to look at.

Destination of the Week : Kamla Nehru Park Mumbai

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Kamla Nehru Park Mumbai

Kamla Nehru Park Mumbai | Image Resource : homegrown.co.in

Kamla Nehru Park Mumbai : My visit to Bombay was not complete without heading to the Kamla Nehru Park. The guide here explained to me that the park was built in honor of the wife of India’s first prime minister Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru. The park itself was very relaxing and comforting given to the Mumbai heat.

Gateway of India – The Iconic Monument and the Crown of Mumbai

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The trip to Mumbai went very good. I was very amazed to see the rich social and cultural fabric of the city through my visits to Ganpati temple, Haji Ali and the Dr DadjiBhau Museum. Once I was done with these visits I headed to the most attractive tourist location of Mumbai known as the Gateway of India. The Gateway of India is a crown on the head of the city. It has a very rich cultural and political significance.

The pillars, architecture and the designs of the monument are reminiscent of the British rule and the sacrifices laid by the various freedom fighters of the country. It was built in the year 1924 to welcome the arrival of King George V and Queen Mary to India. It took some 11 years for the construction of the gateway to complete. The political significance of this monument is that the last British regiment left India from here back in 1948.

Gateway of India

Gateway of India | Image Resource : wikimedia.org

The monument is made in the red yellow basalt and is a pure example of the Indo Sarcenic architecture which makes it an architectural marvel of the nation. There are many other leisure activities which can be found around the Gateway of India like boating, water sports and one can also enjoy the spicy street food of Mumbai.

Many international and local tourist visits Gate Way of India

Many international and local tourist visits Gate Way of India | Image Resource : wikimedia.org

The monument is one of the first places any new visitor to Mumbai visits. One can see a large number of tourists from different parts of the world. Most of the tourists deeply engrossed in taking selfies and doing photography. The iconic Hotel Taj of Mumbai lies opposite to the monument which makes the visit here a bonus. The place also reminds of the cowardly terrorists attacks of 26/11 when this place was under siege of the terrorist as they created havoc on the streets of Mumbai.

Taj Hotel Mumbai

You can reach the Taj Hotel mumbai, opposite to the Gate Way of India | Image Resource : the-south-asian.com

Once I was done with the visit to the historic Gateway of India, I headed for my next place of visit which were the historic Elephanta caves. These caves are one of the sites of heritage declared by UNESCO with beautiful carvings and sculptures.

Haji Ali Dargah – The Spiritual Custodian and Guardian of Mumbai

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After visiting the oldest museum of Mumbai, I tried some of the best Mumbai street food. The next place which I visited was the spiritual site of the city known as the Haji Ali Dargah. The dargah or tomb is of famous sufi saint Haji Ali and is located 500 yards into the Arabian sea which can be reached only when there is a low tide.

view of Haji Ali Dargah in Arabian sea

view of Haji Ali Dargah in Arabian sea | Image Resource : blissfulgeeta.weebly.com

There are many myths and legends which are associated with the belief of Haji Ali. One of the famous legends is that Haji Ali was a famous businessman whose life was changed after his visit to Mecca while performing Haj. After returning, Haji Ali renowned all his worldly pleasures and began a life of renunciation. There is also an offshore location of praying at the dargah which is located near the race course.

The entrance to the Haji Ali Dargah

The entrance to the Haji Ali Dargah | Image Resource : mountainsoftravelphotos.com

One has to enter the carved entrance of the Dargah through which one reaches the marble courtyard that housethe main shrine. One can see a number of devotees which come to pray and take blessings of the holy saint. It is believed that all the hardships of the person are gone once they express them to Haji Ali. Inside the silver frame draped in green and red chaddaris the tomb of the saint.

The tomb of the saint is beautifully decorated with ornaments and mirror work

The tomb of the saint is beautifully decorated with ornaments and mirror work | Image Resource : mountainsoftravelphotos.com

The tomb of the saint is beautifully decorated with ornaments and mirror work of highest quality and artistry. The various 99 names of God as per Islam are written on the tomb. While at the tomb one can enjoy the sufi singers singing praise for the saint as people pray nearby. It’s a wonderful scene and an experience. I just closed my eyes and was lost in the lyrics of those singers. There are numerous refreshment stalls nearby too selling local delicacies.

I felt quite blessed and relaxed after the visit to haji Ali Dargah. After this visit I retired for my hotel. The following day I decided to begin my trip with a visit to the historic icon of Mumbai and a crown on its head known as the Gateway of India situated at Colaba.

Destination of the Week – Bombay High Court Mumbai

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Bombay High Court Mumbai

Bombay High Court Mumbai | Image Resource : wikimedia.org

Bombay High Court Mumbai : I did not get a chance to witness a live session in the famous Bombay High court but I could imagine how cases must be going on inside the shut halls. I was thrilled to visit this iconic building in Bombay and hope to bring my niece here too as she aspires to become a lawyer and it would be a treat to her.

Dr Bhau daji Lad Museum of Mumbai – A Centre Preserving the Culture and History of Mumbai

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It was an amazing visit to the Lalbaugcha raja Ganpati mandal. I was thrilled to take blessings from the lord. Once done with it, I continued my journey and headed for the next location on my itinerary which was the famous and the oldest museum of Mumbai known by the name of Dr BhauDaji Lad Museum. It is located in the Byculla East area of the city and was established in the year 1855 as a treasure house for keeping arts.

The museum when established by lord Elphinstone in the year 1855 was known as Central museum of Natural History and Arts. Dr Bhau Daji Lad was made a member of the museum committee. He was a renowned Sanskrit scholar, antiquary who raised money for the construction of a new building for the museum. With the patronage of many Indian industrialists the new museum was formed and started in Byculla in 1872.

Dr Bhau Daji Lad Museum of Mumbai

Dr Bhau Daji Lad Museum of Mumbai | Image Resource : wikimedia.org

The museum is a fine example and one of the first cultural institutions which is taken care of through a public private partnership model. The infrastructure of the museum is reminiscent of the colonial architecture. I was quite scintillated when I entered the hall. There are many great things which are preserved inside the museum and will interest one and all.

Interiors of the Museum

Interiors of the Museum | Image Resource : wikimedia.org

There are a large number of finds by the archaeology survey of India in the form of maps, many amazing historical photographs of Mumbai, never ever seen be me before. There is also a section which houses the clay models, costumes made from finest artistry and some of the rare silver and copper wares too.

The best part for me inside the museum was the manuscript of the famous Hatim Tai story which is as old as 17th century. For the lovers of history and art this museum is a must visit place if you happen to be in Mumbai.

The visit to this famous museum was worth every penny. After this visit I took a break to try some local street food after which I headed towards my next location which was the Haji Ali Dargah, a famous spiritual Sufi shrine located in Mumbai.

Destination of the Week – Prince of Wales Museum Mumbai

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Prince of Wales Museum Mumbai

Prince of Wales Museum Mumbai | Image Resource : ikingindia.com

The prince of Wales Museum was opened to the public in the year 1922 and it has been in my bucket list of places to visit in Mumbai. I learnt when I visited there that the museum has over fifty thousand unique artifacts and I was astounded by the priceless collections.