Riddle me this: I am an island separated from the mainland by the Arabian Sea, a haven for food lovers and shoppers, and I never sleep. If you guessed Mumbai, then you are my “compatriot” and share my intense love for one of the most vibrant cities in the world! If you didn’t guess correctly, then you’re in for a fun visual journey of my most favorite city, period.
The magic of Mumbai, with its innumerable shops, restaurants, British-era architecture, and sky-dotting (almost) highrises is indescribable, but I’m going to try to give it a try, lol.
Whether you’re taking a stroll along scenic Marine Lines..
or shopping at one of its glitzy malls….which my son enjoys a lot.
or driving down the 5.6 km long cable-stayed bridge over the Arabian Sea, an architectural wonder that connects Mumbai to its suburbs
….you’ll rarely experience another city that’s as diverse a melting pot of cultures as Mumbai!
A stroll along the Gateway of India is our favorite nighttime ritual.
And seeing the splendor of the Taj Mahal hotel at Nariman Point / Gateway of India never gets old.
Dinner is always such a happy dilemma as there are so many restaurants to choose from – do we go traditional Gujarati thali or do we eat street food or do we go for one of the hip restaurants/bars in town? So every day is a culinary delight, and it’s not one meal a day when in India for me either, lol.
Cream Center’s chole-bhature (chickpeas w/fried Indian bread) are to die for and it’s the only place I could still find authentic cassata icecream.
And the most famous 100+ year kulfi (icecream) across the Chowpatty.
And the 100+ year old Jalebi (sweet fritters?) shop…
And more street food to entice all senses…
And some new favorite restaurants. This one “Friends” – with the word written in multiple languages at its entrance.
The Bar Stock Exchange with a stock ticker that determines the price you pay for a drink….
….the more popular a drink is, the more it costs.
The Farzi Cafe which serves recreated traditional favorites into unique fusion masterpieces.
Such as the Rasmalai tres leches you see below that we devoured.
And my most favorite new restaurant, Lord of the Drinks [said to have the longest bar in Asia.]
…where they serve artisanal cocktails & fusion/global cuisine like this grey goose watermelon basil drink I had.
And one more visual – my most favorite, and for that matter, the only beer I drink – Kingfisher….
At the Leopold Cafe [Back when we were college kids, we’d never have stepped into this restaurant, now it’s got stories to tell of bullet holes in its windows and the ghastly attacks one Thanksgiving weekend in India.
And the best selections of sarees and traditional Indian wear…..isn’t this one totally amazing?
And got this one too…cause how do you turn away from such beautiful colors?
And this one too, lol!
[Bought many more, but if I put all the photos, the blog will be several pages long & boring to the guys reading it, lolll]
and jewelry that is so unique and eye-catching that you want to buy it all.
But above all that glitter and jazz and shopping and eating and having fun, the one element of Mumbai that I miss the MOST is the camaraderie enjoyed with friends and family and neighbors and even the at-first-strangers-but-now-social-networking-friends I met at the bank, at the shops, and the restaurants I frequented.
If you’ve never been to Mumbai, I hope you enjoyed this very brief visual journey of this vibrant city on the shores of the Arabian Sea with a rich heritage, Victorian-era architecture, awe-inspiring sky-dotting buildings, quaint lanes, crowded streets, hole-in-the-wall restaurants, debonair lounges, elaborate buffet lunches, and in-vogue nightclubs. [Whew! But had to get all that in.]