The city of Mumbai (formerly known as Bombay) is on the west coast of India. It is the most populated city in the country, it is home to over 12 million people. According to the density of residence, Mumbai is the second largest in the world, the local metropolitan area is one of the largest in the world. It has more than 21 million people. People settled here for a long time, but in modern form the city was founded by the Portuguese in 1672.

The British did not see any special way of developing Bombay by renting it to the East India Company. Development impetus the city received during the Civil War in the United States, becoming an important trading center. And with the opening of the Suez Canal in 1869, Bombay became the main port on the coast of the Arabian Sea. At first the city was located on seven islands, but soon this territory became a single whole, merging with the continent.

In the 19th century, Mumbai was considered a classic example of the Victorian era, demonstrating the wealth of the colonial authorities. Today the city is striking in its contrasts. Next to modern skyscrapers are ancient palaces, luxury is replaced by poverty. Here, at the same time, there are the biggest slums, and the most expensive real estate in Asia.

Unfortunately, few of our compatriots can visit this city. It is necessary to form an opinion on Mumbai based on films and books. So there are many myths about this city.


A solitary trip to Mumbai is unsafe.

This myth is especially often used against girls. In fact, traveling alone is not safe anywhere if you carelessly treat your own safety. And it does not matter what sex a person is. Such developing countries as India are considered the most interesting for research and safe. It is guaranteed to be able to come in contact with the great heritage, interesting food, the cultural world. However, all the same travelers should not build illusions and remain realistic. India – the country of the second, and even the third world. There is a high level of poverty, poor education, which generates high crime. In Mumbai, it is not as safe as in the Scandinavian countries of Europe. Tourists are amazed at the fact that they suddenly find themselves rich with low prices. But the higher the state, the higher the risk of losing it. Girls should also be careful when choosing a dress code. Do not focus on transparent shirts and short skirts. In any case, the media exaggerate the danger of a megacity. Poverty and overpopulation are present, but rapists and thieves do not wait for tourists at every corner, pickpockets do not operate in every bus and in any market.

Mumbai is a city of slums.

In Mumbai, there is a district of Dharavi, it is one of the biggest slums in the world. Here, on an area of ​​215 hectares, there are about a million people. It was here that the film “Slumdog Millionaire” was filmed. In fact, Mumbai is not only a dilapidated primitive housing. About 54% of the population lives in the slums. Dirty streets, poverty and disease are a common rule for most megacities in India. However, there is also a modern business center in Mumbai, where financial institutions and offices of international organizations are located. There are rich quarters here, they are located along the western coast. In 2016, the second tallest building in the world should appear in Mumbai. Truly – a city of contrasts. Mumbai is considered to be the financial center of the country, which also affects architecture. In general, it was strongly influenced by British rule. It is a city that has managed to preserve traditions and create its modern look. The architecture of Mumbai combines Gothic, Victorian, Art Deco and Indo-Saracenic styles. Here, many historical monuments and monumental buildings have survived from the colonial era. The international airport also strikes, forming the first impression of the city, and the landscape of skyscrapers debunks the myth of the city of slums.

In the city it is impossible to survive without knowing Hindi.

This myth is analogous to the fact that without knowledge of Chinese in Singapore there is nothing to do.In fact, Mumbai is a melting pot, in which cultures are mixed. As a rule, every resident in the city at least a little, but speaks English. More and more Indians know this international language more than any other (with the exception of Hindi). Especially tourists should not worry if they stick to traditional routes, then there are no difficulties with communication. And learn a few simple words in Hindi will not be particularly difficult.

There is nothing interesting in Mumbai.

It turns out that there are many people who consider Mumbai a gateway to Goa or a boring financial center. In fact, the city has everything that is needed and interesting for tourists. Mumbai ideally combines ancient traditions and modernity. It is easy to go into the slums, and around the corner will be an elite residential area. Of course, it is not as clean and safe here as in most of the world’s megacities, but the presence of interesting and unique sights compensates for these troubles. Mumbai is a living pulsating organism, it’s hard not to find something that satisfies the guest’s tastes. One like the beaches or bazaars, the other – the elite shopping centers and Bollywood, to inspect the buildings of colonial architecture will not have enough time to leave. The most famous monument is the Gate of India, where the acquaintance with Mumbai is started by tourists. Unusually looks Chattrapati Shivaji station, which became a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The Haji Al Mosque has almost a six-century history. It is connected to the mainland by a narrow dam, along which numerous pilgrims go at low tide. To get acquainted with the ancient history of the country you can visit the Chhathrapati Shivaji Museum. This building joined the Indo-Saracenic style with elements of the architecture of the Great Moguls and Marathas. And in 10 kilometers to the east of the city artificial caves of Elephanta, also a UNESCO heritage site, were created.


In Mumbai, you can not eat street food.

It all depends on the human digestive system. In fact, food quality issues arise immediately after security issues. Everybody likes to eat, many travel only for the sake of familiarizing with new kitchens. There are relevant tours in and Mumbai. Indian cuisine is famous for its sharpness and aromas. Comes here for the first time hear contradictory advice. Some recommend to touch authentic street food, while others, on the contrary, do not advise it. Those who have a bad reaction to new or spicy foods should stay away from such food. Street catering – a unique culinary experience, but someone more like restaurants. And not always dishes will always be spicy, so do not be afraid of it. But almost guaranteed the street kitchen guarantees extreme tastes.

Mumbai has the largest number of migrants in India.

According to this indicator, Delhi overtakes Mumbai. In the former capital of India, 4 out of 10 residents are visitors. And the myth appeared, thanks to Bollywood.

In Mumbai, migrants are hated.

If the city really had such a negative attitude towards migrants, how to explain the fact of the daily arrival of the new 200 families in Mumbai for settlement? Just do not stand in the way of visitors at the station at rush hour.

Most of the migrants in Mumbai come from North India.

Most new residents come to the city from the state of Maharashtra. It supplies 37.5% of migrants, while the northern state of Uttar Pradesh – only 24.3%.

Thain, Kalyan and Wearar are not part of Mumbai.

Purely administratively, these settlements do not fall within the jurisdiction of Mumbai, but this does not mean that they are separated from the city. People work in Mumbai and come here every day. Thain, Vierar and Kalyan are part of a single agglomeration.

Schools and colleges in Mumbai are as Bollywood shows them.

Not all young people have their own luxury car, most use public transportation. Girls do not wear such short skirts, and boys – shorts and T-shirts, as actors.Most classes are not conditioned, so people have to intensively use deodorants. It is necessary to distinguish a beautiful picture in a movie from reality.

In Mumbai it’s easy to meet a celebrity from Bollywood.

Yes, from time to time people come across celebrities. But mostly they are busy shooting, ordinary townspeople are busy with their own affairs. It even happens that the meeting remains completely unnoticed. And there are areas where the fact of meeting with a movie star brings fame to the local community.

Most favorite dishes in Mumbai are wada pav and pav bhaji.

The first dish is vegetarian. It’s a sandwich with potato cutlets inside. Pav bhaji – puree from vegetables. However, in the city there are many other types of food, beloved by residents. This and McVada pav (from McDonald’s), and the bhaji of dosa, kebabs, pani puri, chicken rolls.

Mumbai built the Marathas.

In fact, the city was a metropolis created by Portuguese and English. Once upon a time there was a village of fishermen, not far from the temple of Mumbai. That settlement was called Mumbai.

The original name of the city is Mumbai, not Bombay.

As we know, with the Portuguese, the settlement was called Mumbai, and already under the British name was Bombay. Initially, the Portuguese called the city in the XVI century in general Bombain, which meant “good bay”, and the British eventually modified this word to their pronunciation.

Marathi played a key role in the development of the city.

Bombay’s economic growth and development are mainly connected with the Parsis and Gujarati.

Mumbai has always been part of the state of Maharashtra.

Until 1960, Bombay was part of the province of the same name. And there was no such state formation as Maharashtra at all. The province together with the city was the western part of Gujarat. The very state of Maharashtra appeared in 1960. The leading industrialists of Gujarati advocated the independent status of Bombay. The movement for a separate state of Marathi even led to armed clashes – on May 1, 1960, 105 people died. As a result, the growing state of Bombay was divided along the language border into the states of Gujarat and Maharashtra.

Mumbai is the name of Maharatthas, therefore it is true.

The city of Bombay was part of the same-named former province, which included the western Gujarat. This people also used to call the city of Mumbai, not Bombay.

Most of the city’s residents are Marathas.

This statement is near the truth. About half of the residents of Mumbai are Marathas, but this is not the majority. About a quarter of the population is Gujarati.

Marathi are the indigenous inhabitants of Mumbai.

Primary inhabitants of these lands were fishermen coli. Then the Portuguese and the English settled here, then the Parsis, the Gujarati, and only then the Marathas.


In the slums of Mumbai is very dangerous.

In fact, it is believed that the slums of Mumbai are the safest place not only in the city, but throughout the country. These settlements are completely controlled by the local community, strangers here just do not get caught. The stranger risks not to get out of here if he violates the laws of the slums. Tourists are allowed to go there freely, but ask not to take pictures. Muslims and women are especially protesting against cameras.

Only beggars live in slums.

Men living in slums can earn up to $ 500 per month. Housing here can cost tens of thousands of dollars because of its proximity to the center and being in a fairly safe and in its own comfortable area.

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