Southern Mumbai provides grand display of India's vibrancy, dynamism and huge variety. South Mumbai has two tips forming a hand ready to clamp onto the beautiful Arabian Sea. Not sure though why it’s called Arabian instead of some local name. Was it due to influence of Middle Eastern countries!
South Mumbai and Malabir Hill on Google Maps
Between two tips of South Mumbai is world famous coastline – Mumbai’s Queens Necklace. Post dusk when street lamps lit the road; the glittering necklace is displayed audaciously.
India Travel Channel
Skyline from Malabar Hill
Overlooking Malabar Hill
Marine drive, road along the Arabian Sea coast line, is the neck of the Mumbai’s Queens Necklace. If starts from Nariman Point – southernmost tip of that route and takes you all the way to Charni Road chowpatty(beach) or Girgaum beach - famous for send-off of Lord Ganesha at the end of Ganesh festival and also featured in many Bollywood movies.
While walking on Marine drive you will pass Oberoi hotel, circular Ambassador hotel, Flyover at Marines Lines station, Aquarium, Charni Road beach. All these are non-erasable landmarks which have featured in umpteen Bollywood and other Indian movies across different ages of India.
Spend few minutes on flyover of Marine lines station. Its good place to see the sea, Marine drive and skyline of South Mumbai.
If you really enjoy the walk it can talk up to 2-3 hours to walk on Marine drive pavement.
Close to Charni Road train station is Aquarium, Beach etc. At the beach one can enjoy parasailing, jet skiing, boating, massage etc. This small beach is in the heart of the city hence you will always find lot many people.
For Hanging Garden & Kamala Nehru park, take a cab/bus from the beach. The route is very scenic and takes you to Malabar hill – posh area located on a hill and home to affluent citizens of the country. This premium real estate site of Mumbai has two well known parks for family – Kamala Nehru Park & Hanging Garden
Hanging garden provides a great view of the Arabian Sea. But sadly most of it is obstructed by the tall trees and building. But the glimpse of the Sea from the hill is indeed calming. Mumbai’s Hanging garden has good variety plants, flowers, huge banyan trees. But it’s the plants pruned in animal shape which catches attention immediately.
Lord Hanuman (monkey form), peacock, giraffe, elephant and deer are the shapes pruned by gardeners. I liked giraffe more than others as it stands tall and competes with Mumbai’s sky scrapers.
Kamala Nehru children’s park is right opposite and is famous for its shoe shaped slider. It also provides a breathtaking view of Mumbai’s Queen’s necklace and the skyline.
Other Places to visit:
Babulnath temple, Priyadarshini park, Prince of Wales museum, Jehangir art gallery, Gateway of India, CST Train station, Central Library, whole sale markets in Kalbadevi, Zaveri bazaar, Cutlery market, Crawford market area, Colaba.
Famous Babul Nath temple of God Shiva. Its located on small hill and there are elevators charging INR 2.00 for the needy.
Places to Eat:
While Girgaon chowpatty offers plenty of junk food to eat, but Nariman Point - southern tip and Sukh Sagar area close to Girgaon chowpatty offers plenty of decent and good restaruants to have sumptious Indian food. There are pizza places as well. Make sure to have Kesar Pista kulfi next to Sukh Sagar restaurant.
Like New York, trains are best way to commute in Mumbai. You can get down at Churchgate station and take a train from Charni Road station, regardless of whether you return from beach or come down from Malabar hill.