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Home > Discover Mumbai > Sight Seeing > Mumbai > Historic Interest

..................................................................................Historic Interest

 Crawford Market 

Crawford MarketThis is probably the last bastion of British Bombay, poised between two

Worlds-The Fort, and the bylanes of the old town. Designed by Lockwood Kipling, father of British novelist Rudyard Kipling, the market is now called the Mahatma Jyotiba Phule Market, after a famous social reformer.

It was the largest market until recently and handled nearly 3000 tonnes of fresh produce everyday. During summer season the place is filled with mountains of mangoes. The market complex also sells pet animals, poultry, fish and meat, imported chocolates, Kraft cheese and smoked ham.

Getting there

Nearest station: Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus (Central Railway).

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 Gateway of India

Gateway of IndiaOne of the most famous monuments in the city, the Gateway of India was built as a triumphal arch to mark the visit of King George V and Queen Mary in 1911. It was after Independence in 1947, that the last British battalions marched through this Gateway to the waiting ships that took them home to England.
A grand structure, resembling an unlikely fusion of the Arc De Triumph of Paris and a Moorish Palace, it lies complete with four turrets and an intricate lattice work carved into yellow basalt stone. A few yards away from the Gateway, are statues of Swami Vivekananda, an Indian spiritual reformer of the last century and Chhatrapati Shivaji, a seventeenth century Maratha leader. Both are recent additions in the garden nearby, a part of the tourist attraction.

Getting there

Nearest station: Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus (Central Railway).

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 The Taj Mahal Hotel 

The Taj Mahal HotelRarely does a hotel become part of the city’s legend. The Taj Mahal Hotel in Mumbai is a landmark. Located opposite the Gateway of India, this magnificent old building with its pretty domes and oriental décor once welcomed viceroys and emissaries from England. Today, it entertains a different kind of royalty - business travellers. It is said that Jamshedji Tata a leading industrialist, built this hotel to snub the British. Chamber, a British architect designed this grand structure and sailed away for a year, only to come back and discover that his magnum opus had been built with its back facing the seafront. The hotel still stands with its grand reception lobby facing the rear entrance. Phone: 202 3366

Getting there

Nearest Station: Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus (Central Railway)

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 Town Hall & Asiatic Society

Town Hall & Asiatic SocietyThe Town Hall is a colonnaded structure set atop a flight of stone steps. Now known as the Central Library, it is slightly worse for wear, but still the most regal of Mumbai’s public buildings with its parquet floors, spiral staircases and old marble statues of forgotten city founders. It also houses the Asiatic Society, a rather scholastic foundation that observes an old practice of extending membership only to worthy citizens.

The library is filled with 8,00,000 antique volumes including a priceless first edition copy of Dante’s Divine Comedy; an impressive numismatic collection of 10,000 antique coins including a rare gold coin belonging to the Mughal Emperor Akbar. The library contains around 2,50,000 volumes dedicated to humanities alone.

Timings: 10 a.m. - 5 p.m.
Phone: 266 5139/ 5560

Getting there

Nearest Station: Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus (Central Railway)

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 St Thomas Cathedral 

St Thomas CathedralThe St Thomas Cathedral lies in the vicinity of Horniman Circle and is said to be the city’s premier Anglican Church. It was built in the year 1718, to improve the moral standards of the growing British settlement. The high box pews of the church, replaced now by more ordinary ones, were allotted to the people in order of social rank with the front row reserved for the Governor and the rear ones for ‘strangers’ and ‘inferior women’. Here, many Britishers were laid to rest under marbled tablets engraved with touching rhymes.

Getting there

Nearest station: Churchgate (Western Railway)

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 The Victoria Terminus Station 

Victoria TerminusThe Victoria Terminus (VT) recently renamed Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus (CST), after the Maratha patriot is modelled on the lines of St Pancras Station in London. Designed by F.W.Stevens for the Great Indian Peninsular Railway, it is undoubtedly an Italian Gothic style masterpiece. The headquarters of the Central Railway System, it has 14 platforms with passenger amenities from which local as well as trains to different cities and towns all over the country depart. Around half a million commuters pass through this station twice a day. 

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 Flora Fountain 

Also known as Hutatma Chowk to commemorate the martyrs who laid down their life in the freedom struggle, the Flora Fountain was built in the year 1869 and is today one of the busiest places in Mumbai. British Governor, Sir Bartle Frere erected a statue of the Roman Goddess of Spring here, which till today remains as the main downtown landmark. This can be easily called the heart of Mumbai’s business district as most of the leading banks, offices and shops are situated across this notable relic.

Getting there

Nearest Station: Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus (Central Railway) and Churchgate (Western Railway).

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 High Court 

High CourtThe High Court is a proud and haunting Gothic structure in black stone. Here, the Esplanade, a bowling green lawn was located, which was later struck down in the 1860s to make way for a row of public buildings.

Getting there

Nearest station: Churchgate (Western Railway)

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 Bombay University 

Bombay UniversityNeighbour to the High Court this Venetian Gothic University, the Bombay University has a Gothic clock tower, which is 260 feet high and decorated with oriental figures. The Rajabhai Tower, situated within the vicinity of the University, is named after the mother of a 19th century stockbroker who contributed to its construction. The tower includes a spiral staircase that was closed to visitors after several unhappy citizens hurled themselves from the top.
The University library is open to all and is worth a visit to admire the stained glass windows or spend a few minutes behind the polished teak tables that are illuminated by antique brass lamps.

Timings: 10.30 a.m. – 5.00 p.m., except on Sundays.
Phone: 267 6272

Getting there

Nearest station: Churchgate (Western Railway)



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µ Crawford Market
µ The Gateway of India
µ The Taj Mahal Hotel
µ Town Hall & Asiatic Society
µ St Thomas Cathedral
µ The Victoria Terminus Station
µ Flora Fountain
µ High Court
µ Bombay University
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The Jannat, deep in the heart of mumbai
Mumbai's dirt gets cleaned at Dhobi Ghat
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Mumbai welcomes Kenyan ships
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