Discover Bandra’s Hidden Portuguese Heritage by walk
Join us on a Bandra Walking Tour and step back in time to the days of yore when Mumbai was just a set of seven islands, each with its unique tales. Discover the hidden heritage treasures left behind by the Western and native forefathers in the suburb that continues to intrigue both natives and non-natives alike.
Bandra, also known as the “Queen of the Suburbs” in Mumbai, is a melting pot of cultures with a rich Portuguese heritage. In 1534, Salsette Island, of which Bandra was a part, came under Portuguese rule, and Brother Manual Gomes, a Portuguese missionary, arrived soon after. He managed to convert several locals and laid the foundation for eight churches in the area.
Bandra Walk is an ideal walking tour for those who want to explore the neighborhood’s Portuguese past, including forts, churches, and Indo-Portuguese Catholic villages. The lure of international influences and liberal attitudes has drawn droves of celebrities, models, musicians, hipsters, and ex-pats to this multi-faceted neighborhood, leading to a steady stream of stylish new restaurants, bars, and boutiques that cater to their cosmopolitan lifestyle.
So come along and explore the rich history and current trends of Bandra West with us, and experience the perfect blend of old-world charm and modern-day sophistication on this guided walking tour.
Highlights of the Bandra walking Tour:
- St.Andrews Church – St. Andrew’s Church is one of the oldest churches in Mumbai. It was originally built by Portuguese Jesuits in 1575. It stands on the seashore of the Bandra suburb of Mumbai and was the only church there till the first quarter of the 17th century.
- The Historic Villages – The Bandra of Yesteryear was a tiny fishing village inhabited by Kolis (fishermen) and farmers. It was acquired by the British East India Company while the rest of Bombay belonged to the Portuguese.
- Ranwar Village – Ranwar is the original of the 24 pakhadis, or villages, that made up Bandra. When the Britishers took Bombay away from the Portuguese in 1661, they did not obtain control immediately.
- Chimbai – Unlike its fortunate brother Ranwar, this village is a far cry from the development or the artsy scene Bandra is famous for. Although it is in the vicinity of Bandstand with its posh bungalows and high-rise buildings, this village is unkempt and uncared for. The few original inhabitants of Bandra or Mumbai in general, the Koli community (Chimbaikars) can be still found here.
- Trace Bandra’s Heritage – One of the defining characteristics of Bandra West is its pervasive Portuguese heritage. Bandra was settled by the Portuguese in 1534 when it was a simple fishing village, and it remained part of their territory even after the Bombay Islands were transferred to the British in 1661. During their occupation of the area, the Portuguese built many churches and converted thousands of locals to Catholicism.
- Basilica of Our Lady of the Mount – The Basilica of Our Lady of the Mount, more commonly known as Mount Mary Church, is a Roman Catholic Basilica located in Bandra, Mumbai The feast of the Blessed Virgin Mary is celebrated here on the first Sunday after 8 September, the birthday of the Virgin Mary
- Visit Bandra Fort and Bandstand – Tucked away on the tip of Bandra West are the remains of a 17th-century fort that was built by the Portuguese as a watchtower. It was strategically located to look out over Mahim Bay but now provides an excellent vantage point for viewing the landmark Bandra-Worli Sea Link bridge.
- Tour Cost for INR 1000/- Per Person Group Tour
- Private Cost for INR 2000/- Per Person
- Meeting point: We will meet at St.Andrews Church and end the tour at Land’s End.
- Batches: Evening 4:00 pm
- Duration: 2.5 Hours Walking
- Cultured, professional, highly qualified, and knowledgeable Female Guide
- Water Bottel
What’s Not Included:
- Hotel pickup and drop-off
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Some Pictures of Bandra walk
Here are some frequently asked questions about the Bandra Walking Tour:
The walking tour can take anywhere from 2-4 hours depending on how long you spend at each location and how fast you walk.
it can be helpful to have someone who is familiar with the area and can provide you with more information and context about the locations you visit. There are also guided walking tours available in Bandra if you prefer to have a guide.
Yes, you are welcome to take photos during the walking tour, but be mindful of any rules or regulations at specific locations.
Yes, the walking tour is suitable for children, but it may be challenging for very young children as some parts of the tour involve walking up and down hills.