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Thursday, June 23, 2011

Top Mumbai Religious Places A must go

Mumbai, the lively city of Maharashtra, is most contemporary in its approach towards life, yet its roots are deeply grounded in traditions and ethnicity. Highlighting the spiritual facet, the city has many religious places to brag of. Seeing that it has a repository of many religions and sects, there are many places of worship, counting temples, churches and mosques. These holy places represent the religious sentiments of the people residing in Bombay

Moreover, the city-dwellers are living happily under the kind shelter of the divine places. Mumbai owes its name to Mumba Devi, who is the patron deity of the Koli fisher folks. While Mahalakshmi Temple presents a panoramic view of the Arabian Sea, congregation at Siddhivinayak Temple depicts the unshakeable faith of people. You look at the Haji Ali Mosque and it appears, as if the God himself is guarding the city from the violent waters of the sea. Scroll down to know more about the major religious places of Mumbai.

Mumba Devi TempleMumba Devi Temple is the most talked of shrine of Mumbai. It is sited at Bhuleshwar, in the southern part of the Commercial Capital of India. It is dedicated to Goddess Mumba, who is considered as the patron deity of Koli fishermen - the first inhabitants of Bombay.

Mahalaxmi TempleA long flight of steps on the rim of the Arabian Sea takes one to the revered shrine of Mahalakshmi. Sited on the northern side of Malabar hills, at B. Desai Road in Breach Candy, Mahalaxmi is one of the most-visited shrines in Bombay. The temple is dedicated to Goddess Lakshmi, the divine consort of Lord Vishnu.

Siddhivinayak TempleSiddhivinayak Temple is a highly revered shrine of Lord Ganesha in India. Dating back to the early nineteenth century, the temple was built by Mr. Laxman Vithu and Mrs. Deubai Patil in 1801. Sited at Prabhadevi, Siddhi Vinayak Temple is definitely one of the most visited temples of Mumbai.

Mount Mary ChurchMount Mary Church is considered to be the oldest in Mumbai city of India. It is situated in the West Bandra, past Hill Road, and was built initially around 1640. There are many beliefs connected with the destruction of the church, which was finally rebuilt in 1761.

ISKCON TempleISKCON Temple of Mumbai, dedicated to Lord Krishna, is one of the forty ISKCON temples across India. Built by the ISKCON Foundation, the elevated spire of this temple dominates the skyline of Juhu in Mumbai (erstwhile Bombay).

St. Thomas CathedralSt. Thomas' Cathedral is a beautiful structure that boasts of being the first Anglican Church in Mumbai. Indeed, the church affirms the moral roots of the budding British settlement in the Financial Hub of India. Built in 1718, St Thomas Cathedral is to be found near Flora Fountain at D.N. Road.

Haji AliHaji Ali is a venerated tomb (dargah) of the Muslims. Not only from Mumbai, people from all parts of India come to pay homage to this mosque. Located on an island off the shoreline of Worli, Haji Ali Mosque looks stunning amidst the blue waters of the sea.

St. Michael's ChurchSt. Michael's Church is amongst the oldest Catholic Churches in Mumbai. Seeing the sway of two major colonial powers - the British and the Portuguese, churches were constructed throughout the country. Sited in the Upper Mahim area of Mumbai, Saint Michael Church heralds the foundation of Christianity in India.

Afghan Church (4.5 km) In Colaba Island situated at the southern end of the city, church of St. John the Evangelist is located. Work on this church began in 1847. At the entrance, there is a big black board, revealing that it is an Anglican church dedicated to St. John the Evangelist. It is impressive with the wide Gothic Arches and beautiful stained-glass windows.

Hazi Ali Mosque (7.3 km) The mosque and tomb is situated in central Mumbai and were built by devotees in the early 19th century. It is set 500 yards into the sea and can be reached only in low tide. The structure is a slim solitary minaret. It is linked to the mainland by a tenuous causeway, which is practically nonnegotiable during rough monsoon, tides. Behind the sculpted entrance, a marble courtyard contains the central shrine. Hundreds of worshippers stoop to press their forehead against the richly brocaded red and green chaddar covering the tomb, lying in an exquisite silver frame supported by marble pillars and is decorated with artful mirror work: blue, green, yellow chips of glass arranged in kaleidoscopic patterns interspersed with Arabic patterns which spell the ninety-nine names of Allah. The whitewashed mosque also has a cool courtyard generally full of people and refreshment stalls. The rocks exposed during low tide at the rare end of the mosque are a favourable spot to catch some cool sea breeze. There's nothing somber about the building's cool courtyard, which is generally full of chattering families and refreshment stalls.

Jain Temple Built with marble in 1904, located on the Malabar Hill, the temple is dedicated to Adinath(the first Tirthankara). The walls of the temple are adorned with colourful paintings depicting various incidents in the lives of the 24 Tirthankaras of the Jain religion. On the first floor is a special shrine dedicated to Parsvanath carved out of black marble and the ceiling shows the different planets as personified in Hindu mythology.

Mahalaxmi Temple(7.2 km) The Mahalaxmi Temple located at the northern foot of the Malabar Hill, a part of it is now called Breach Candy in Mumbai. This is one of Mumbai's oldest temples dedicated to Mahakali, Mahalaxmi, and Maha Saraswathi. Large number of devotees come to this temple daily.Kailash TempleThe

Kailasha Temple situated near the village of Ellora, 30-km from Aurangabad . It is considered as one of the most astonishing 'buildings' in the history of architecture. This is the largest of 34 excavations at Ellora, which took almost a century. This temple is the world's largest monolithic structure carved from one piece of rock and the most extensive rock-cut projects ever undertaken.

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