Bombay’s culture and history


Koli fisherfolk are the original inhabitance of the seven islands that form Mumbai as far back as the 2nd century BC . Once can still see a large number of remnants along the shorelines of Bombay. A succession of dynasties held sway over the islands until the 14th century, in 1534 Portugal was in power of bombay . The most recognisable contribution of the Portuguese made to the area was christening it Bom Bahai, before throwing the islands in with the dowry of Catherine of Braganza in 1661. The British government took possession of the islands in 1665, but leased to the East India Company.

A major player in the independence movement, Bombay hosted the first Indian National Congress in 1885, and the Quit India campaign . The city became capital of the Bombay presidency after Independence, but in 1960 Maharashtra and Gujarat both were divided on the basis of language and Bombay became the capital of Maharashtra.

In 1996 the city’s name was officially changed to Mumbai, the original Marathi name derived from the goddess Mumba who was worshipped by the early Koli residents. The airports, Victoria Terminus and Prince of Wales Museum have all been renamed after Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj, the great Maratha leader, although the British names of these and many major streets are still used.


The official language of this beautiful city is Marathi, which is the mother-tongue of local Maharashtrians. Other languages spoken popularly spoken in Mumbai are Hindi, English,and  Urdu.Mumbai is a city of many faiths and is secular and culturally diverse .

The dwellers of this city are very passionate about music, dance as well as theater. Traditionally, Marathi ‘Koli’ songs that originated from the Koli tribes are a part of the musical heritage of this city. However, since Mumbai is home to the famous Bollywood industry  Bollywood music is a popular type of music. Apart from Bollywood music, traditional Marathi Classical, Hindustani Classical, Indi-pop, Western Classical and English music have grown considerably as popular genres of music in their own respective spheres.Mumbai is imcomplete without cinema and is also called the city of dreams. Apart from being labeled a city with an undying spirit, Mumbai is almost always associated with Hindi cinema owing to the fact that Mumbai is the nurturer of Indian cinema. 

Overall,Mumbai is a fast paced city that never sleeps. Apart from being the commercial capital it is also home to the bollywood industry and has many job opportunities. Its is the city of dreams.

“As you move through this life and this world you change things slightly, you leave marks behind, however small.” is a famous quote by Anthony Bourdain and this is how our traveller , Yashodhara leaves her mark on the world. Her instagram handle is daydreamsandtravel, sharing all of her travel diaries and balancing between her job in the process.

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