Mumbai Historical Places
Mumbai's most famous monument, this is the starting point for most tourists who want to explore the city. It was built as a triumphal arch to commemorate the visit of King George V and Queen Mary, complete with four turrets and intricate latticework carved into the yellow basalt stone. Ironically, when the Raj ended in 1947, this colonial symbol also became a sort of epitaph: the last of the British ships that set sail for England left from the Gateway. Today this symbol of colonialism has got Indianised, drawing droves of local tourists and citizens. Behind the arch, there are steps leading down to the water. Here, you can get onto one of the bobbing little motor launches, for a short cruise through Mumbai's splendid natural harbour.
Next to the High Court on Bhaurao Patil Road, the Venetian Gothic Bombay University has a Gothic clock tower 260 feet high, that is curiously adorned with oriental figures. In the old days it used to play Rule Britannia, God Save the king, Auld Lang Syne and a Handel symphony among 16 tunes that changed four times a day; now the repertoire is restricted to wafting chimes of the big Ben on the quarter hour.
Next to the High Court, the Venetian -Gothic University has a Gothic clock tower 260 feet high that is curiously adorned with oriental figures. In the old days it used to play Rule Britannia, God Save the King and a Handel Symphony among sixteen tunes that changed four times a day; now the repertoire is limited to the wafting chimes of the Big Ben on the quarter hour.
The Rajabai Clock Tower is named after the mother of a 19th century stockbroker, who contributed towards its construction; it has a spiral staircase , which is unfortunately closed to the visitors after several unhappy citizens hurled themselves from the top.
With its old parquet floors, spiral staircases, wrought iron loggias, and exquisite marble statues of forgotten city fathers, the colonnaded Town Hall is perhaps the most regal and elegant of Mumbai's heritage buildings. It houses the Asiatic Society, a library with a collection of 800,000 antique volumes. One of them is a priceless first edition copy of Dante's "Inferno." There is also an impressive numismatic collection of over 1,000 ancient coins and a rare gold mohur belonging to the Mughal Emperor Akbar. You need permission to look at these treasures, but the public library is open to all and usually draws a large number of senior citizens who pore over the local newspapers in the fading grandeur of its reading room.