Commemorating the visit of King George V and Queen Mary in 1911, Colaba’s principal monument is the Gateway of India, India’s own honey-coloured Arc de Triomphe. Featured in countless Bollywood movies, it was built in 1924 by George Wittet, whose brief was to combine the grandeur of a Roman triumphal arch with decorative motifs from Hindu and Muslim architecture. The resulting structure, every bit a symbol of “power and majesty”, was originally intended to be a ceremonial disembarkation point for passengers alighting from the P&O steamers, but is, ironically, more closely associated with the moment in August 1947 when, amid much pomp and ceremony, the last remaining British soldiers on Indian soil slowly marched to their waiting troop ship as the Union Jack was lowered – to euphoric cheers from a vast crowd. The hour around sunset when thousands of visitors mill about the archway and plaza, munching bhel puri and having their photos taken, is the best time to visit.

Book through Rough Guides’ trusted travel partners

India features

The latest articles, galleries, quizzes and videos.

Living the past: the ancient professions of Old Delhi

Living the past: the ancient professions of Old Delhi

Modernity is seeping into Old Delhi, a walled district that has long harboured the Indian capital’s traditional ways of life. But what does this mean for long…

11 Dec 2017 • Jack Palfrey local_activity Special feature
Budget trips: 20 of the cheapest places to travel

Budget trips: 20 of the cheapest places to travel

That ever-growing travel wish list might be putting some pressure on your pocket – but there are plenty of destinations where you'll get more bang for your b…

11 Oct 2017 • Emma Gibbs camera_alt Gallery
19 places to get utterly lost

19 places to get utterly lost

One of the great joys of travelling is stumbling across unexpected places, wandering without a single destination in mind and embracing the journey. These place…

12 Sep 2017 • Keith Drew camera_alt Gallery
View more featureschevron_right