Mumbai is the capital city of Maharashtra, a western state in India. It holds the population that is second-highest in India and seventh-highest in the world. Apart from being the financial capital of India, Mumbai is also a prime tourist destination. It houses three UNESCO World Heritage Sites; namely Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj Terminus, Elephanta Caves, and the Victorian Gothic and Art Deco Ensembles of Bombay. Tourists also love to stroll on the sandy beaches in Mumbai, as it is a coastal city.
How to reach Mumbai
Tourists from different foreign countries can reach Chhatrapati Shivaji International Airport by flights, operated by several reputed airlines. Air India, GoAir, IndiGo, SpiceJet, and Vistara are the airlines that run daily flights to this airport which is 30 Km to the north of the city centre. People from other Indian cities can reach Santa Cruz Domestic Airport that is 26 Km away from the city. People can also reach Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus or Mumbai Central Station in Mumbai by trains from different parts of the country. Some express trains also arrive at Bandra Terminus, Kalyan Junction, and Lokmanya Tilak Terminus of Mumbai. Inter-state buses are also available that run between Mumbai Central Bus Station and nearby cities of neighboring states.
Geography of Mumbai
Originally, Mumbai was formed of seven islands, which later merged to form a single island in the 18th century. This city is located on Salsette or Sashti Island offshore the Konkan coast in Maharashtra. It has the Arabian Sea to its western side while Thane Creek is to the east and Vasai Creek borders its northern side. There were 22 hills in the seven islands, most of which were demolished to connect these islands. Now, Malabar Hills is the highest point in this city. There are four peninsulas in this region, namely Worli, Bandra, Colaba, and Malabar Hills. Sanjay Gandhi National Park is a reserved forest area in Powai Hills and it occupies a large part of Borivali in the Mumbai suburbs. Vihar Lake and Tulsi Lake are situated in this park while Powai Lake is in the southern region of the forest.
Where to stay in Mumbai
South Mumbai is considered as the best area where tourists prefer to stay in hotels or resorts as per their budgets. The presence of most of the tourist attractions, restaurants, marketplaces here, as well as the proximity of Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus, are the reasons for choosing hotels in this area. Churchgate is another popular area for tourists, as they can easily travel via train or boat for sightseeing, as well as enjoy delicious street foods from numerous roadside stalls. Marine Drive and Colaba are other places where tourists can stay in affordable hotels and enjoy a lot in these lively areas.
Beaches to visit in Mumbai and near Mumbai
Being an island city, Mumbai has several beaches along the Konkan coastline where tourists can enjoy quality time with their families. Some of these beaches are very popular and always found crowded while some are almost untouched and quiet.
Juhu Beach – This beach in the west suburb of Mumbai is very popular for family gatherings. It is close to Vile Parle Station and lined with several roadside eateries selling all types of North Indian and South Indian delicacies.
Chowpatty – This beach is a favorite place to hang out among local people who come here for a morning or evening walk, relaxing with loved ones, or watching the sunset. It is located in Dadar suburb, near Churchgate Station and Charni Station.
Madh Island – It is less crowded than Juhu or Chowpatty even though it offers beautiful scenery of seashore surrounded by mangrove forests. This place comprises some small villages and farmlands on the Northwestern coast, with Portuguese-made Madh Fort overlooking the beach.
Versova Beach – It is a popular family beach in the Andheri suburb, close to Siddhivinayak Temple and Mount Mary Church. It is named after Versova village that is known for holding the largest fish market. This beach is the ideal place for enjoying various types of water sports.
Manori Beach – Many people like to spend weekend getaways with their families on this beach. It is situated in a fishing village that takes only 2 hours to drive here, surrounded by cashew nut groves and some mansions made by the Portuguese. They stay in adjoining resorts, enjoying swimming and delicious seafood items.
Tourists also like to visit Aksa Beach and Marve Beach in Mumbai, as well as Uttan Beach, Vasai Beach, Mandwa Beach, Alibaug Beach, Kelwa Beach, Kashid Beach, and many other beaches near this city.
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