The Seven Islands of Mumbai - Guide To Travelling Across The 7 Islands That Formed The City

Little does one know that Mumbai was not an entirety, but several parts constituted and led to the formation of the commercial capital. Initially a set of 7 fragmented islands, Mumbai eventually came together after several reclamation projects. The Isle of Bombay, Colaba, Old Woman’s Island, Mahim, Mazagaon, Parel and Worli were joint by islands of Salsette and Trombay towards the north to unite them together into one major city. 
Mumbai 7 Islands Map (Source)

Journey through the Convergence of Mumbai's 7 Islands

Bird's eye view of Mumbai city (Source)

Isle of Bombay 

The stretch between Malabar Hills to Dongri was historically the Isle of Bombay. Previously a hub of the British harbour due to its strategic positioning near the coast, this isle was gradually jeopardized by the early British rulers and their empires. However, the Isle of Bombay currently houses many historic landmarks of the city such as the Banganga tank, Walakeshwar temple, the hanging garden, and other temples with intricate carvings. Head here to shop at the regale boutiques lined up for your shopping needs. 

Colaba and Old Woman's Island

Colaba (Source)
Heading down south from Malabar, you reach Colaba or the Old Woman's Island. Originally a 16-century home to the islands' fisherfolks- the island of Kolis (translation of Colaba). Colaba was then headed by the Portuguese. Eventually endorsed to the British in the 17th century, Colaba was initially known as Candil among the Portuguese. Hints of Portuguese architecture and culture can still be found in the nooks and crannies of Colaba, one of the most famous amongst the seven islands of Mumbai.

You can see a brilliant transformation of the ancient Colaba and Old Woman's Island to one of the city's most flanked areas. Holding great touristic importance as the city encloses some of the most reputed hotels like the Taj Mahal Palace Hotel. Parties, hipster dine outs, sea-facing tea lounges and age-old traditional eateries could easily be tagged as the fun part of the city.


View of Mazagaon (Source)
Mazagon derived from the name Matsya Gram or fishing village. It is located in the north to the eastern end of the isle of Bombay. Inhabited by the Portuguese fisherfolk before the 16th century, Mazagaon is one of the other harbour ports of the city. Mazagon still has traces of the initial Portuguese life here. It also houses certain hidden gems of the city such as the Chinese Temple, Our Lady of Rosery's Church and the Mausoleum of Mazagaon which has a striking resemblance to the Taj Mahal. 


View of Mumbai skyline (Mumbai)

Worli was an island that drew historic aficionados. The rich heritage fort was a highlight of this region. However, Worli is better known as the financial heart of the city today. The famous Worli-sea links and the skyline is the most scenic view of the city. People head to Worli just to witness the sea links and enjoy the sunsets at the Worli skyline. The view of the Arabian Sea from Worli is breathtaking.


Parel housed the earliest inhabitants of the island or city. A thriving residential and commercial hub today, Parel houses The Gateway of India nearby. With several historic textile mills, some shops, and the most iconic Ganpati temples- Lal Baug Cha Raja, Parel also has famous eateries and attractions of the city.


Mahim Sea Front (Source)
Located towards the North East of Worli, Mahim was under the rule of Raja Bhimdev in the 13th century, which then became the capital of the region. In the 14th century, Mahim was seized by the Sultanate of Gujarat. The Sultanate holds credit for the mosques and dargahs that are lined up in the region. In the 19th century, it was connected by the Island of Salsette and the famous Mahim Causeway was built. The green-and-white domed Makhdoom Ali Mahimi shrine is one of the most famous mosques today. St. Michael’s Church and the ruins of the 17th-century Mahim Fort are also notable attractions of the region today. 

So, now you know that Mumbai wasn't originally the same as you thought. The fragmented islands came together to form the city. These seven islands of Mumbai hold strategic importance and their connectors. If you head to Mumbai, don't miss out on any of the islands. 

When are you planning your next trip to Mumbai? Let us know in the comments below!

This post was published by Sony Punjabi

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