Amongst the city’s most popular residential and celebrity hubs, Bandra resonates with a lively vibe that’s hard to beat in the contemporary scene.
Starting out as Bandor, (so named by the Portuguese), a cluster of 24 villages inhabited by the Koli fisherfolk, was transformed in the 16th and 17th century with the community’s conversion to Catholicism. When the British replaced the Portuguese as rulers these converts were christened as East Indian and now form the backbone of Bandra’s cultural ethos. With Independence, the area became increasingly upwardly mobile, with the swathes of paddy fields being replaced by swanky bungalows and apartments to house the rich and famous. Bandra is Mumbai’s own answer to Beverly Hills with its great shopping, gastronomic restaurants and celebrity homes.
Why you will love itExploring one of the city’s most celebrity residential spacesEnjoying a slice of Mumbai’s spiritual and historic heritagePossibility of celebrity spotting
What you will experience
The Bandra tour begins at its popular Mount Mary Church which is venerated by people of all faiths and cultural backgrounds. The appeal of the church lies in the belief that wishes are granted and it’s no surprise that each day-long queues of devotees can be found at the church gate. Moving on one arrives at the Castelle de Aguada, an Old Portuguese fort, now in a state of ruins but still splendid in bearing and for its history of Maratha valour and the victory of the great Maratha Peshwas over the British and the Portuguese.
You can take time indulging in some photops of the stunning Bandra-Worli Sea link – a wonderful symbol of modern engineering. Driving past the oldest Jesuit church in the city – St. Andrews, you arrive at Waroda Road and Pali Village which is a visual treat with its old Portuguese- style homes. Spend some time enjoying those iconic features such as the big porches, wooden staircases and ornate grills.
The tour ends with a sampling drive past houses of famous Bollywood celebrities and the Bollywood Walk of Fame a section of Bandra’s sea-facing Bandstand Promenade.