Top 17 Things Mumbai Is Famous For - Updated 2024

| 7 min read
Nishi Jain
Endorsed by a Mumbai Local Expert
Nishi Jain

Maximum City, City of Dreams - just some of the names given to Mumbai, a bewildering and overwhelming city for most first-time visitors. This largest metropolitan city in India is crowded, buzzing, and vibrant. Cosmopolitan in nature, the city is an exciting mix of local culture, history, and Western lifestyle. A melting pot thanks to having been the mecca for migrants across the country, the city reflects this in its heritage and food. To experience the true essence of the city, take the time to explore its varied attractions which include ancient forts, religious monuments, historical buildings, and swanky bars/restaurants. These are simply unmissable, along with the list of the top Airbnb vacation rentals and heritage hotels in the city. If you are keen to get started in exploring this fascinating city, read on for a list of the top things Mumbai is famous for.

1. Witness the bustling energy of Dhobi Ghat

Dhobi Ghat in Mumbai
Source: Photo by Wikimedia Commons user M M used under CC BY-SA 2.0

Dhobi Ghat, a unique and historic open-air laundry facility, holds a significant place in Mumbai’s cultural fabric. Dating back to the British colonial era, Dhobi Ghat has been a bustling hub where “dhobis” or washermen traditionally wash, dry, and press laundry from across the city. The site’s history is a testament to Mumbai’s enduring spirit and diverse communities, as generations of dhobis have diligently worked together to maintain this essential service.

The intricately choreographed process involves rows of concrete wash pens, each designated for different clients, creating a mesmerizing visual spectacle. Mumbai is famous for Dhobi Ghat not only for its functional importance but also for the mesmerizing sight it presents—a symphony of colors and movement that encapsulates the city’s vibrant rhythm.

As a living cultural artifact, Dhobi Ghat captures the essence of Mumbai’s identity and the unique coexistence of tradition and modernity within the city’s dynamic landscape.

Tip from Trip101 local expert



Dhobi Ghat Dhobi Ghat

Visiting Dhobi Ghat has been one of the fondest memory of my childhood in Mumbai. You can spend hours watching the several laundrymen washing and drying hoards of clothes in perfect symphony. It's just a stone's throw away from Mahalaxmi station on the Western railway line. So, if you're coming from Borivali, the train ticket will cost 10 INR (0.12 USD), and from Churchgate, it will cost you 5 INR (0.06 USD) to reach here. There is no entry fee to visit this place. Plus, recently, a viewing gallery was built here from where you can watch the working of this world's largest outdoor laundry under a cool shade. It's a fun place where you can take your kids before heading to Nehru Planetarium or Worli Sea Face, both within 5 km from here. Also, if you love photography, you'll surely have a lot to capture here! 

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2. Pay a visit to Rajabai Clock Tower

Rajabai tower
Source: Photo by Flickr user Ninad Chaudhari used under CC BY 2.0

The Rajabai Clock Tower, an iconic landmark in Mumbai, stands as a symbol of the city’s architectural and educational legacy. Built in the late 19th century, it was designed by Sir George Gilbert Scott in a blend of Venetian and Gothic styles. The tower is named after Rajabai, the mother of a prominent stockbroker who funded its construction.

Its location adjacent to the University of Mumbai underscores its historical association with education. It is a special thing in Mumbai as it houses the University Library and was initially meant to sound the chimes to guide students to their lectures. Its intricate carvings, its towering spire, and the melodies that echo from its bells continue to captivate both locals and visitors.

Rajabai Clock Tower

Address: WRHJ+W24, Karmaveer Bhaurao Patil Marg, Mantralaya, Fort, Mumbai, Maharashtra 400032, India

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3. Admire the beauty of the Taj Mahal Palace Hotel

Mumbai Aug 2018
Source: Photo by Flickr user ASaber91 used under CC BY 2.0

One of the architectural triumphs that Mumbai has to offer is the Taj Mahal Palace Hotel. This heritage and luxury hotel is named after the iconic Taj Mahal in faraway Agra. The building opened to the public in December 1903 and was built following the Saracenic Revival style. The structure has had its fair share of colorful history. It was used as a military hospital during World War I, and in 2008, it was a target of the Mumbai attacks. The Taj Mahal Palace Hotel is India’s first building to have intellectual property rights for its architectural design.

Taj Mahal Palace Hotel

Address: Apollo Bandar, Colaba, Mumbai, Maharashtra 400001, India

Website: Taj Mahal Palace Hotel

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4. Visit the quaint shops of Hill Road

Hill Road,Bandra (w)
Source: Photo by Flickr user I for Detail. used under CC BY 2.0

If shopping is one of your favorite activities on vacation, you must not miss the affordable and stylish shops offered on Hill Road in Bandra West. This shopper’s haven has it all, from clothing to homewares to seasonal delicacies. Locals say the best time to visit the market is at the end of the year when there are countless offers and deals during the holiday season. Going on a food tour here will not disappoint, too, as there are plenty of food kiosks and roving stalls that serve some of the best and budget-friendly Indian food.

Hill Road

Address: Bandra West, Mumbai, Maharashtra 400050, India

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Mumbai Tour Guide

Sukanya Roy Choudhury

Sukanya Roy Choudhury

I am a licensed guide but Maharashtra Tourism Development Corporation. I am also a visiting faculty teaching travel and tourism in the University of Mumbai and Patkar Varde College. Have alot of fun facts and stories about the city which I would be happy to share.

Tours by Sukanya

5. Walk along the beautiful promenades

Mumbai, India, Back Bay Promenade
Source: Photo by Wikimedia Commons user Vyacheslav Argenberg used under CC BY 4.0

Mumbai being a city along the beautiful Konkan coast of the Indian subcontinent has plenty of natural harbors that have been lined with promenades. These walkways with spectacular views of the water have been popular among tourists. Bandstand Promenade in the neighborhood of Bandra serves as a park and a jogging path for visitors. There is an amphitheater on-site that hosts Mumbai Festival and Celebrate Bandra. The Artist’s Court on this promenade is another performance venue for local jam sessions and sing-alongs.

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6. Get to know the Economic Hub of India

BSE building at Dalal Street
Source: Photo by Wikimedia Commons user BSEINDIA used under CC BY-SA 3.0

If there’s one moniker Mumbai is already known for, it has got to be the “Economic Hub of India.” The city serves as India’s center for the fashion, commercial, and entertainment industries and is the wealthiest in the country. Mumbai is home to various significant financial institutions like the National Stock Exchange, Bombay Stock Exchange, and Reserve Bank of India. This spirited city is responsible for approximately 6.16% of India’s economy with contributions of 30% income tax collections, 40% of foreign trade, and 60% of customs duty collections of the country.

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7. Join the Ganesh Chaturthi festivities

Source: Photo by Flickr user Thejas Panarkandy used under CC BY 2.0

One of the highly celebrated festivals in Mumbai (and all of India!) is Ganesh Chaturthi. This Hindu festivity celebrates the famous elephant-headed deity Ganesh’s arrival on earth. Ganesh is considered the god of wisdom and prosperity. The festival lasts for about 10 days during the months of Bhadrapada. It may be celebrated in public or at various temples by local communities or simply at home, where families will display small statues of Ganesh for worship. The statues are also carried in a procession and later immersed in a river or the ocean. Approximately 150,000 statues of Lord Ganesh are immersed in Mumbai every year.

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8. Go trinket shopping in Colaba Causeway market (from USD 96.0)

Spend some time exploring the incredible street markets to uncover some of the sought-after specialities of Mumbai. This guided tour will help you get a taste of shopping like a local in some of the unique markets. You will visit a market dedicated to flowers, the aromatic Phool Gully, then a well-known flea market, followed by the mammoth Crawford Market, and finally, the famed Colaba Causeway where you can buy cool souvenirs, trinkets, jewellery, and handicrafts.

Lasting for around six hours, the tour offers a break from the regular sightseeing to explore a different side of Mumbai.

Traveler's tips

The market has a huge variety of offerings, however, do be prepared to haggle. In my case, I went with a local to help me negotiate and bring prices down considerably!

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Shopping and Bazaar trail in Mumbai

Duration: 6 hours

3 reviews

9. Marvel at the massive Gateway of India (from USD 36.0)

One of India’s iconic monuments and a worthwhile place to visit in Mumbai, Gateway of India is on the southern part of the city’s waterfront, overlooking the Arabian Sea. Built in 1911 to commemorate the landing of King-Emperor George V and Queen-Empress Mary, it is today a popular gathering spot for locals.

Walk around marveling at the structure and enjoy sea views from the parapets around. You can go out to the sea on a ferry here, or even visit the famed Elephanta Caves that are a short ferry ride away.

Tip from tour guide



Gateway of India

Witness a part of the British heritage in Mumbai at the Gateway of India. It is an amalgamation of architecture, culture, and the hustle and bustle of people that Mumbai is famous for. In and around the area would be the Taj Mahal Hotel, the famous Leopold Café, the Kala Ghoda area, the beautiful premises of the University of Mumbai, and the Bombay High Court.

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Private Mumbai Sightseeing Tour

Duration: 4 to 6 hours

821 reviews

10. Get an inside look into Bollywood (from USD 125.0)

‘Bollywood’ is the term given to India’s thriving Hindi movie industry that is centred in Mumbai. Bollywood movies have long-held fascination not only for Indians but also others who are taken in by its vibrant and energetic style. Get a close look at this famous thing in Mumbai with a tour that will take you behind the scenes. While some tours focus on live shooting, others take you around key facilities. Consider taking the Viator guided tour of one of the major studios.

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Mumbai Bollywood Private Half-Day Tour Including Lunch

Duration: 3 to 5 hours

390 reviews

11. Admire the views at Marine Drive

Good Morning Marine Drive!
Source: Photo by Flickr user hasib used under CC BY-ND 2.0

This 3km (1.8 mi) concrete road/pathway along the Arabian Sea links Nariman Point to Malabar Hill. Curved in a C-shape along a natural bay, the promenade is among the famous places in Mumbai where one can enjoy the sea breeze and witness spectacular sunsets. Spend an evening walking here taking in the sights of the locals chilling, the street food vendors, and sparkling views of the sea.

A great way to enjoy the spectacle is to have dinner at one of the many sea-facing restaurants that line the road, giving you an opportunity to see why Marine Drive is also called the Queen’s Necklace (street lights along the drive look like pearls on a necklace!).

Marine Drive

Address: Mumbai

Website: Marine Drive

Opening hours: 24/7

Traveler's tips

Gazing at the setting sun Sunset at Marine Drive The Queen's Necklace

One of the best experiences in Mumbai for me was watching the sunset at Marine Drive. Simply find yourself a spot on the promenade, buy some 'cutting chai' from a local vendor, and gaze at the sun slowly melting into the sea while the cool breeze plays with your hair. The area is also excelling for walking hand in hand with your partner. When hungry, stop by Pizza By The Bay to relish some gourmet pizzas while admiring sea views.

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12. Explore the rocking nightlife of Mumbai (from USD 226.0)

In India, it is Mumbai that’s known as the city that never sleeps. Rightly famous for its nightlife, Mumbai has an incredible range of fun things to do. There are buzzing dance bars and live music bars, karaoke bars, lounges with magnificent views of the city or the city, cool beaches with street food, just take your pick. If you are looking for something offbeat to do, then consider midnight cycling tours and even sailing trips that are on offer.

Traveler's tips

Doolally Taproom - Andheri

If you like a laid-back atmosphere, visit the pet-friendly Doolally Taproom - Andheri. This brewpub is an excellent spot to have a carefree time with friends and fur babies (who need not be on a leash). While here, make sure to try the Alphonso Mead to enjoy a fresh and fruity flavor, and pair it with the crispy house fries that come with four different dips!

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Mumbai by Night Private Tour

Duration: 6 hours

13. Taste lip-smacking street food on Mohammed Ali Road (from USD 44.0)

There are several must-visit ‘khau gallis’ or 'food streets’ in Mumbai, and among the most well-known ones is Mohammed Ali Road, which is an essential stop for meat-lovers. Particularly during the month of Ramadan, this street offers a mindboggling range of Mughlai/Tandoori and North Indian food, plus of course scrumptious desserts. Beware, the area can get crowded and don’t expect posh facilities.

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Mumbai Street Food-Tasting Evening Tour

Duration: 3 hours 30 minutes

209 reviews

14. Spend a fun evening at the Juhu Beach

Juhu, bombay!
Source: Photo by Flickr user lensnmatter used under CC BY 2.0

One of the most famous beaches of India, this 6-km(3.8 mi) long beach is a tourist hotspot in Mumbai with its lively vibe. Juhu not only gives you scenic views and beautiful sunsets, but you also get to enjoy a whole plethora of local street delicacies. Additionally, you’ll find numerous fun (and cheesy) activities you can try out including horse carriage rides! Expect substantial crowds during weekends and public holidays at this famous Mumbai attraction.

Juhu Chowpatty Beach

Address: Juhu Tara Rd, JVPD Scheme, Juhu, Mumbai

Website: Juhu Chowpatty Beach

Opening hours: 24/7

Traveler's tips

Juhu Beach Vada Pav Pav Bhaji

While Juhu Beach is popular for its bustling evening scene, it's also an excellent place to have a morning jog with your four-legged friend, followed by a street-food breakfast. Me and my partner visited the beach early morning to take advantage of the tranquil atmosphere. We sipped on some milk tea, had a beach photoshoot, and enjoyed lip-smacking 'vada pav' and 'pav bhaji' from the local vendors. The filter coffee at one of the shops run by a Tamil vendor was also delicious!

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15. Enjoy a quiet walk down Worli Sea Face

Worli Sea Face
Source: Photo by Flickr user Simon Alexander J... used under CC BY-ND 2.0

This 2-km (1.2 mi) long promenade in South Mumbai along the Arabian Sea is yet another popular spot to enjoy sea views. Quieter than other sea-facing promenades in Mumbai, this is a must-visit place for a relaxing evening. Most of it adjoins one of poshest residential areas of Mumbai, nonetheless, you’ll find several restaurants/cafes facing the sea if you want to have a meal with a view. Must-visit attractions easily accessible from here include the Bandra-Worli Sea Link and the unique mosque out at sea, Haji Ali Dargah.

Worli Sea Face

Address: Khan Abdul Gaffar Khan Road, Worli Sea Face, Worli, Mumbai

Website: Worli Sea Face

Opening hours: 24/7

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16. Understand life inside the amazing Dharavi slum (from USD 23.0)

Asia’s largest slum, Dharavi made popular by the movie Slumdog Millionaire is a teeming settlement that is not just about poverty, but also about optimism and human ingenuity. Cramming nearly 700,000 people into just 520 acres (210 hectares), within the slum, you’ll find medical facilities, educational institutions, small-scale business enterprises, and of course homes. Walking through it gives a new perspective of the human spirit! Several companies offer tours of Dharavi, with many having Dharavi residents as guides so you get insider insights into living there.

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Dharavi Slum Small-Group Walking Tour in Mumbai

Duration: 2 hours 30 minutes

586 reviews

17. Admire the sunset at Bandra Fort (from USD 117.0)

Entrance to Bandra Fort
Source: Photo by Wikimedia Commons user AlishaAWM used under CC BY-SA 4.0

Built by the Portuguese in 1640, Bandra Fort, a.k.a Castella de Aguada is located at Land’s End in tony Bandra overlooking Mahim Bay. The fort is popular for its fabulous views of the beautiful Bandra-Worli Sea Link and of the unending sea stretching on three sides. Given its elevation (24m/ 79ft), sunsets here are particularly spectacular. If you are so inclined you can check out several celebrity houses’ that are located in the near vicinity, as well as the popular church Mount Mary Church.

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Mumbai Private City Day Tour with Dhobi Ghat, Gateway of India

Duration: 8 hours

2 reviews

Savour the city's rich culture

One of the most exciting experiences of Mumbai is exploring the different food experiences offered by the city, including non-vegetarian restaurants and best spots for biryani. Step outside your comfort zone and try out the local delicacies you find in street food stalls and restaurants, you won’t regret it. Ask advice from someone local to find out which ones are safest and will appeal most to you.

Frequently asked questions about things Mumbai is famous for

Any must-sees we missed? Tell us about them in the comments section or write a post here to help out fellow travelers!
Disclosure: Trip101 selects the listings in our articles independently. Some of the listings in this article contain affiliate links.


This article has been endorsed by Mumbai local expert Nishi Jain

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Writing and travelling both bring joy to Sowmya's life. Her favourite destination so far is Bhutan - a land of incredible beauty! And her favourite style of travelling is solo backpacking!...Read more

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