Ganesh Chaturthi: Let the celebrations begin

Almost every Indian is familiar with the line, Ganapati bappa mouriya! Pudcha varshi, laukar ya! Even if not seen, heard or experienced in real life, the sound would resonate in the ears the moment it’s read — thanks to Bollywood movies. Ganesh Chaturthi in all its grandeur is celebrated all over the country and is considered really important in the states of Maharashtra, Karnataka, Tamil Nadu and Andhra Pradesh.

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The festival, also known as Ganeshotsav, is celebrated on the occasion of Lord Ganesh’s birthday. It is believed that Lord Ganesh comes to earth on this day and stays with his devotees for a period of 10 days, in which he ensures the removal of all the obstacles faced by them. Devotees leave no stone unturned in welcoming and looking after their holy guest.

But there is simply no way you can miss a Ganesh Chaturthi celebration in Mumbai. Every street and locality will have its own private celebration. However, these are the best and the most famous pandal in Mumbai.

Lalbaugcha Raja

Founded in 1934, this is the most visited pandal and is definitely one of the places to visit in Mumbai during the festival. It draws 1.5 million people each day, so be prepared to stand in long queues that can snake as far as 5 km! The legendary design of the Ganapati idol is now patented.

Location: Lalbaug market, GD Ambedkar Road, Lalbaug (Central Mumbai)
How to reach: It is walking distance from Curry Road, Lower Parel and Chinchpokli stations.5011159150_7487a7a44c_z

Ganesh Galli Mumbaicha Raja

Just a couple of lanes away from Lalbaugcha Raja, this pandal is famous for its lavish themes each year. This is a slightly better option if you want to avoid the long queues.

Location: Ganesh Galli Lane, Lalbaug (Central Mumbai)
How to reach: It is walking distance from Curry Road, Lower Parel and Chinchpokli stations.

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Andhericha Raja

Though not as imposing and spectacular as the other idols, Andhericha Raja is known for granting wishes. The pandal also boasts of a novel theme each year. It is the most famous Ganapati in the Mumbai suburbs.

Location: Veera Desai Road, Azad Nagar, Andheri
How to reach: Nearest Railway station is at Andheri

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Khetwadi Ganraj

This is one of the most spectacular Ganapati, decked in real gold and diamond ornaments. This particular pandal holds the record for building the highest Ganapati idol that was more than 12 m high. Moreover, there is a Ganesh idol in almost every lane of this area, so there’s plenty to see here.

Location:12th Lane Kehetwadi, Girgaum
How to reach: Charni Road and Sandhurst Road are the nearest stations.

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Goud Saraswat Brahmin (GSB) Seva Ganesh

Affectionately known as the Gold Ganesh, this is the richest pandal in Mumbai. The idol is adorned with more than 60 kg of gold! Also, made entirely of clay, it is eco-friendly as well. Inside the pandal, instead of the usual recorded songs, you’d hear traditional instrumental music often heard in south Indian temples.

Location: G.S.B. Sports Club Ground, Near S.N.D.T. Women’s College, R.A. Kidwai Road, King’s Circle, Matunga
How to reach: Get down at Kings Circle if coming from the Harbour Line. For those taking the Central line, get down at Matunga.

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Ganapati Visarjan

This grand culmination of the festival of Ganesh Chaturthi should be experienced to be believed. Majority of the grand idols are immersed on the Anant Chaturdashi, i.e, the 11th day after Ganesh Chaturthi. However, the idols kept in homes can be immersed on the 2nd, 5th, 7th day as well.

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Ganesh Chaturthi in Mumbai is synonymous with huge decked-up idols, loud community celebrations with lots of music and dancing. We hope this travel guide proves to be useful for all of you who plan to visit Mumbai this September for Ganeshotsav.

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