Mumbai is the curate's egg of Indian sightseeing. Some critics deplore the city's monolithic architecture while others delight in Mumbai's eccentric gigantism that climaxes with impossibly excessive Gothic spreads such as Victoria Terminus.
Gritty and glamorous, Mumbai personifies today's India. A megalopolis of 14 million people, Mumbai is India's commercial and business hub. Contributing to Mumbai’s tourism industry is the city being host to the world's largest film industry (Bollywood, of course). Mumbai is also home to the region of Dharavi, one of the world's largest and most idiosyncratic slums.
Though Mumbai thrives during the daytime, evenings take a much more sedate turn and the most popular evening activity in Mumbaiby faris strolling on the beachfront promenades and taking in the markets and outdoor activities there. Families enjoy an occasional night at a local restaurant or an evening cricket match.
A international city with a classically Asian street-food core and incessant buzz, restaurants in Mumbai offer cuisines from all over the world, but visitors would be missing out if they didn't have at least several Indian meals prepared in the various styles of different regions of the country.
Mumbai is a progressive and modern city that isn't easily offended and draconian laws related to dress, alcohol, and homosexuality that apply to other Asian cities are far more lax in Mumbai. On the other hand, there's no pumping club scene here and raucous night-owl behavior will only really interest the local police.
Mumbai isn't a shopping paradise along the lines of Singapore or Bangkok. Even though this is a great city of commerce, mass retail has yet to really catch on and department stores or shopping malls are very thin on the ground. Instead, visitors should aim for eclectic market purchases or excellent second-hand buys.
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