As part of my quest to complete the unfinished drafts, I chose, for the first one, the most wanted of the drafts I have wanted to finish – The draft on Mumbai! I would like to keep the setting original. At the time of writing this draft, I had, for 7 weeks, kept my promise of blogging daily. Then, in the 8th week, because of being in Mumbai for the first time, I missed out on it and ever since I have missed countless weekends. Without further ado, though, I would like to pen down my feelings…
The city has had me infatuated from the moment I started going around it for the first time in January! The absolute chaos which is there for all to witness somehow made life come alive. Growing up in North India, you always had friends who would tell you stories about Mumbai, about the magic of marine drive, of the songs of the night! Mumbai, in its first experience, didn’t disappoint me, neither did it in its second or third experience.
I have a small list of things which I experienced while at Mumbai, and will like anyone reading these to give a shot at. So here it goes:
- Marine drive – No questions asked, no answers given. If I had half a day to spend in Mumbai, I’d spend that at Marine drive, any day, any time
. Be there and you will know it.
- Health juice center, Matunga – I am aghast at so many of Mumbai friends having not ever had a glass of juice at this place! I have been there twice and ‘Boom’ is an experience of heaven! Hands down, one of the best drinks I have ever had. Coordinates to place are: Health juice center
- Lassi te parrontthe– It is places like these which may Bombay so much special. (Notice the change!) A totally off-beat kind of a place to have a delicious Parantha and a mind blowing lassi! If you are ever near carter road, never miss this place! Has a momo corner beside it where you can satisfy the Chinese food lover in you. Also, as a surprise, you can go through the Worli-Bandra sea link to this place if you are near Bandra. That is a treat indeed. Coordinates to the place are: Lassi te parrontthe
- Hotel Ram Ashraya – I, a North Indian, brought up on Paranthas boy, rarely fall in love with South Indian food. On a rainy, Mumbai afternoon, during my second visit to Mumbai, this place had me. Amazing idli, yummy vadhas, and splendid filter coffee. Coordinates to the place are: Hotel Ram Ashraya
- Sharma Ji’s at Girgaon Chopati – “Sharma Ji, Sharma Ji, aaiye, aaiye” – The familiar chants have greeted me every time I have gone there to eat. The same menu, the same sitting place and the same me. Everything feels perfect around here. The food has my favorites listed down, one after another. There are so many chat options that you will be spoiled for choice – I am, every single time. Coordinates are as follows: Sharma Ji’s at Girgaon Chowpatty
- Golla at Chopati – Girgaon & Juhu – Needs no mention. If you have grown in India, a golla (ice candy) is just the thing that takes you down the memory lane. And it feels so good to be acting like a kid, all over again. Juhu Chowpatty for your reference.
- K. Rustom’s Ice cream – Marine drive and the area around it is beautiful. And then there are heritage shops which have made it more beautiful. K. Rustom’s ice cream parlor is one such place. They serve you natural ice cream sandwiched between wafers. Every single bite is so worth it. Go in the season and you may get Custard apple. Best flavor, as per many. Coordinates as follows: K. Rustom’s Ice cream
- Linking road Bandra – Shopping with a female friend, or if you are lucky, your girlfriend is sometimes a daunting task. And when you have to walk for long, look at 100 items before deciding, hunger pangs become a big issue – Relation piercers they are! Linking road remains a joyful memory for exactly these reasons. So many street side food vendors, so many unique items to consume. And for women, so many shopping avenues. Full value for money. Map it here: Linking road Bandra
- Priyadarshani Park (PDP) – I, for all practical purposes, have not really visited all the places all places in Bombay. But then, amongst the ones I have visited, PDP will always remain a beautiful memory. And irrespective of the emotions attached, it is a place I will visit whenever I next visit Mumbai. A perfect place for Joggers and lovers alike. Lovely views, amazing sea side sitting avenue and lovely location. Map your coordinates here: Priyadarshani Park
- Sardar Pav Bhaji – Hands down, the most buttery, tasty pav bhaji ever. The funny thing is, twice that I have been there, I have waited around 70 minutes and 45 minutes, standing in line to get a seat at the centre. And remarkably, these are less waiting times. Such is fame of the centre. If you are a cynic who cannot value the taste, or are too much health conscious, then maybe this not a place for you. But for everyone else – It is a heaven! Don’t forget to try the Mango shake and the Jeeru. Coordinates are here: Sardar Pav Bhaji
I no longer state, or claim that these are the 10 best places in Mumbai. But I can certify that these are some places which you can try and you won’t be disappointed. Mumbai, and its spots – The 10 mentioned above and the ones I didn’t or couldn’t mention is and shall always remain a happy memory for me. There are some things which just set Mumbai apart, so much so that you can be in cursing your luck at one moment and feel totally in love the other. And if you ask me, very few cities in India can charm you with its magic, in the same way.
PS: I would like to thank my friend Pooja for her hospitality and for all the time she has given me in helping me see Mumbai like a local and not as a tourist. Without her, not even one of the top 10 would have been possible.