One of the top spots to watch the sunset in Mumbai, Chowpatty Beach is a busy expanse of sand and sea that's fun to visit, day or night. People watching is one of the main draws here, because this beach attracts Mumbai residents from all walks of life, from multigenerational families to canoodling couples.
Though Chowpatty Beach is more about strolling than sunbathing, it's a fun spot to walk around, especially at dusk when the beach fills up with locals taking evening strolls and vendors selling everything from food to LED toys. It’s a popular spot on night tours of the city, and with its numerous food stalls and wandering snack merchants, the beach makes for a great place to try out street food.
Things to Know Before You Go
- Don’t forget sunscreen and a parasol or a hat if you’re visiting during the day.
- Wear comfortable shoes or beach-friendly flip-flops, and be prepared for plenty of walking.
- The beach isn’t very clean, so it’s less than ideal for swimming and sunbathing.
- Modest clothes are the norm in India, and women should stick to 1-piece swimsuits or put T-shirts over bikinis out of respect for local culture.
How to Get There
Chowpatty Beach is located on Marine Drive. It’s just north of South Mumbai's Colaba neighborhood, about 15 minutes’ drive from the Gateway of India and less than 10 minutes from Fashion Street. It’s a 15-minute walk south of the Hanging Gardens. The nearest municipal railway station is on Charni Road, a 5-minute walk from the sand.
When to Get There
Chowpatty Beach is fun to explore anytime, but it’s at its most animated around sunset, when people of all ages crowd onto the beach to watch the sunset. If you are in Mumbai for the annual Ganesh Chaturthi celebrations (September or October) and don't mind crowds, it can be worth coming to the beach to watch tens of thousands of pilgrims parade idols of the elephant-headed god Ganesh down to the sea.
Bhelpuri: The Quintessential Chowpatty snack
Chowpatty beach is famous for its bhelpuri, a popular Indian street-food snack made of puffed rice mixed with chopped onions and tomatoes, spices, and chutney, and usually topped with fresh coriander and sev (tiny crisp noodles made from chickpea flour) along with chaat masala spice mix and a squeeze of lemon. Hawkers sell this popular treat all over the beach, often in cones made from recycled newsprint.