From Juhu to Colaba
From Juhu to Colaba Mumbai Reviews
Surviving in the Midst of 14 Billions People and Dreadful Jam Aug 20, 2009
I arrived at Chhatrapati Shivaji airport at almost midnight, and surprisingly found the place crowded with people. I guess a lot of international flights reach Mumbai at night. The international airport in Mumbai is located at Sahar and has the exact same name like the train station. The name derived from Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj, one of the most significant leaders in India who laid the foundations of the Maratha Empire. Make sure do not make mistake in mentioning the location, or you will end up wasting time. I got the first impression of Mumbai street from the open-windowed cabs which being parked freely on the side of the road. Once I left the airport area, I saw the second public transportation; those black-yellow rickshaws (which is known as “bajaj” in Jakarta, due to the manufacturer). I found that the city was all quiet and asleep, even though it was Saturday night. It is not easy to find a place to eat (or even to get delivery service) after midnight.
Remembering one scene from “Slumdog Millionaire”, I went to Juhu area, where the legendary actor Amitabh Bachchan lives. Due to unavoidable needs of living space, many apartment buildings were transformed from big residential houses that used to belong to families. Nowadays, it is very common for middle class families to live in apartments, considering the value of land has become so unaffordable.
Driving from one point to another can be such a pain in Mumbai, because traffic congestion is almost unavoidable. The habit of speeding and honking seem to be the core of the traffic. If you want to save time, you might want to choose the rickshaw (which equipped with automatic cost-meter), but if you need comfort above all, you would rather rent a private air-con car with well-trained driver to take you to places.
Go south to find the more posh society in Mumbai. Once you are in the area, you would instantly feel the difference. The high-rise buildings, the modern decorations, the classic English heritage, are blending into one unique mixture. Walk your way to Gateway of India, in Colaba, where the Queen of England used to visit regularly. Look far ahead and you would find a mosque built in the middle of the Arabian sea. Haji Ali mosque was built by devotees in the early 19th century and still serves its functions up until today (except at high tide). The night life in South Mumbai is also promising more sparks and choices. One of the clubs that I went to is Polly Esther’s inside The Gordon House hotel at Apollo Bunder. One thing you should remember is that some clubs have couple policy. While you are in the neighborhood, grab dinner first at Café Mondegar, a.k.a Mondy’s, across the street, before you loosen up in the club. Café Mondegar serves variety of Continental and Chinese food, accompanied by an old juke box, good drinks, and cheerful surrounding (thanks to Mario Miranda’s mural cartoons). When you already decide what to eat, try the local boosts like Kingfisher beer as a companion.
In overall, the best time to visit Mumbai and Goa is during the winter. Winter means cool breeze and dry weather around the clock. Don't forget to bring a big tube of moisturizer at all times.
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