Girgaum Chowpatty- Chaupati beach in Mumbai
Among the sea beaches, the Girgaum Chowpatty is one such place which is known for idol immersing, especially Ganesha idols. Mumbai is a place where lord Ganesha is admired all over the city and worshipped by almost all the people. The Hindu deity, Ganesha son of Shiv Parbati is all time favorite of the Marathi. Hence, a large number of people are gathered along the beach after worshipping, to immerse Ganesh idols of various sizes. The beach adjoins the well kncolown Marine drive and is located in the area of Girgaon. The beach runs along Arabian Sea and is noted for celebrating Ganesh Visarjan.
Every year ‘Ramlila’ is performed on the stage in Chaupati and the effigy of Ravana (regarded as the deity of negative energies) is burnt on the day of Dushhera. The beach hosts many vendors selling mouth watering fast food like pav bhaji, panipuri, bhelpuri and patties etc.
The nearest railway station is definitely Churchgate station. Once you get down at the Churchgate you need to catch a local train that goes to Charni Road. The beach is located at a walking distance from Charni road. Taxis, cabs, autos as well as buses are available to take to the beach from anywhere in the city.
When to visit Girgaum Chowpatty
October to march is the best time to visit the beach due to its favorable weather. At this time you can visit the beach at any time of the day which you cannot do in summer season because heat raises high in summer months. At the time of ganesh chaturthi celebrations the beach displays totally a different view. Crowds and possessions engage the shore which might be a presenting sight for your idle eyes. The festival is celebrated in the month of September every year. If you want to have a sight of this celebrations then arrive there at this time.
Activities and sightings
- During the terror attacks of 26/11 there were ten terrorists, nine were killed in near Colaba and the Fort region. The one left was caught alive by Tukaram Omble, the statue of whom was installed near the beach
- The oldest institute of Mumbai known as Wilson College is situated at the opposite side of the beach. Mani Bhawan, a nearby museum which is dedicated to Gandhi ji is located at a distance of 1 km from the spot. Other nearby places is Taraporewala Aquarium which is 2 km away and Banganga (3km) from the beach.
- In the morning the beach remains calm. At that time people are found jogging and walking around. Sunrise watching is not possible as it is on the west. Because of this evening remains more corwded that the morning. Activities like dancing monkey, snake charmers, vendors, fotune tellers start their business among the crowd.
- The word Chowpatti includes ‘chau’ which means four and ‘patti’ means water channels. Four channels of water were found escaping into the sea, now locals call t5he place by this name.
- The building of Chowpatty area (from Chowpatti to marine drive) is said as Art Deco region due to the curves design in balconies (twirl and wave like structure). After Miami, it is the second biggest district where Art Deco has been used.
- An Indian scholar, Shivkar Bapuji Talpade is believed to fly on an unmanned plane in the year 1895. It was rumored that he flown from this Chowpatti Beach on which film Hawaizaada (2015) was released.
Apart from all this beautiful things there is one thing that we must be aware of. Do not stay inside the water of Girgaum Chowpatty for a long time or swim in the sea. The water is polluted at a high level due to disposal of raw sewage, open defecation and storm drains. Moreover due to some oil slick, the beach sand has started turning black since 2016. Other than these polluting agents, the place would have been a heaven. However, the beach is greatly enjoyed by local people and tourists, who love to watch the mesmerizing sunset, watch the children playing with the sand, eating street side delicacies and watch the waves playing with the shore.