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Where to stay in India, Kolcutta or Mumbai?

Travel Forums Asia Where to stay in India, Kolcutta or Mumbai?

1. Posted by thejenster (Budding Member 3 posts) 10y

thejenster has indicated that this thread is about India

Hey everyone. i am a student from england and am going with a friend to India in July to do a bit of volunteering plus general travelling stuff! Just wondering if anyone could tell me what is Mumbai like. does it have nice beaches?! alsois kolcutta very clostrophobic. Also looking for somewhere to stay thats simple but clean and central in either city thats very cheap(under £10 a night per person). is it best to book a hotel for a couple of nights then go seacrchinmg for a good value one? or will everything be fully booked by the time we get there? love you forever if anyone has any info!!!
Happy travels everyone
Jenny x

2. Posted by gurdeep101 (Budding Member 46 posts) 10y

the salvation army has dormitory acco in mumbai. htey charge Rs. 100 per night.

thats roughly 2.5$. Dunno abt the pound exchange rate.

They have a cap on the number of nights one can stay there though.

Google "Salvation army+mumbai" for the exact address.

also, you may want to look at Youth hostels association of India.

Google for the exact link.

Regards

Gurdeep

3. Posted by ronrc3 (Budding Member 9 posts) 10y

Jenny,

I have a mixed Manchester/Calcutta background having lived in Cal for nearly 9 years from my early teens (in London now).

The thing with Calcutta and indeed any Indian city is that they are a lot to take on initially. The claustrophobic feeling comes from the fact that there are a lot of people (and pollution) as well as the fact that the Western concept of 'space' does not exist in India (quite similar to some Mediterranean countries) really. The latter is one of the things that makes that culture so welcoming to foreigners - BUT you have to get acclimatised to the above things first, to be able to unearth the gems. It doesn't help if you are visiting in summer since Calcutta/Bombay summers are hot and humid - a pretty bad combination (which accentuates the effects of pollution and population).

I do not know much about B&Bs in Cal (never had to use one), but generally the Sudder Street area is where most backpackers hang out. But to be honest, although the area is really central, I would suggest you look at some 'guest houses' in South Calcutta - near Rabindra Sarobar (the lake). It's a lot cleaner, greener and only 6-7 stops away on the tube (which is really cheap in £s).

Anyway, drop me a line if you need any further info.
Cheers,
Ron

4. Posted by traveler1 (Full Member 190 posts) 10y

hey jen . . mumbai is the place to be . . its a more fast paced action oriented city which is buzzing 24 hrs . . unlike calcutta.. with all due respect to that city . . of course it comes with its baggage of being populated ...like calcutta . . but i guess that what makes it buzz..its probably the most cosmopolitan of all indian cities...an there are beaches...but sorry not clean enough .. but goa a couple of hrs flight does have some amazing beaches...if you intend to stay in mumbai for a bit..i would suggest you try the YWCA or girls hostels in case you have a girl companion . . else some budget hotels would be defy avail for 10 pounds a night...live here...so could find out if would want to know

5. Posted by traveler1 (Full Member 190 posts) 10y

hey jen . . mumbai is the place to be . . its a more fast paced action oriented city which is buzzing 24 hrs . . unlike calcutta.. with all due respect to that city . . of course it comes with its baggage of being populated ...like calcutta . . but i guess that what makes it buzz..its probably the most cosmopolitan of all indian cities...an there are beaches...but sorry not clean enough .. but goa a couple of hrs flight does have some amazing beaches...if you intend to stay in mumbai for a bit..i would suggest you try the YWCA or girls hostels in case you have a girl companion . . else some budget hotels would be defy avail for 10 pounds a night...live here...so could find out if would want to know

6. Posted by minime (Budding Member 3 posts) 10y

Haven't been to Mumbai myself but I never found Kolkata to be crowded or a problem. Plenty of cheap accom around Suddher street where the salvation army is however I would advise just booking a few nights at a time until you explore better valur options. You might also want to look in to paying guest accommodation in private houses etc.

Minime

[ Edit: Sorry, no promos please... ]

7. Posted by penna (Full Member 110 posts) 10y

i would NOT reccommend anyone stay anywhere on suder street cal. there is not such thing as clean or quiet. sudder street is many people`s idea of hell. if u have the money avoid chowrindgee all together. i wish i had.

8. Posted by c_dog03 (Budding Member 13 posts) 10y

Mumbai is a great place to stay with lots to see, even though the beaches are too dirty to swim in. The city has a lot of good restaurants, shopping, clubs, sights, etc. Probably quite a bit more than Kolcutta. For beaches, Goa is just a quick flight or a cheap 12 hour overnight train ride away. The best place to stay in Mumbai is probably in the Colaba area in downtown. You can easily find a good place for two or three pounds a night. And you won't need to call ahead due to the huge number of guesthouses and the fact that there won't be too many tourists there in the monsoon season.

9. Posted by aharrold45 (Travel Guru 1281 posts) 10y

Depending on what sort of luxuries you want, in Mumbai I stayed at a place called Asha Hotel which is located down this narrow alleyway in Grant Street almost opposite the entrance to Anakool Hotel. It was a bit more pricey when compared to the Salvation Army place, but is quiet which is something that is almost non existant 24/7 in Mumbai. The rooms had TV's with cable TV, and also have a fan but no A/C, but for an extra fee you can get A/C. It cost me 450R a night which was haggled down from 550R so they'll probably tell you 550R a night, but if you tell them you can get it for 400R or 450R up the road well they should come down somewhat.

Beaches in Mumbai, well they sure are no clean enough to be swimming, and they are in an area with more beggers than is believable at first sight. They have thousands of homeless people living in the area where Chowpatty beach is and itr seemed a pretty dodgy area. People there were so desperate, that I had a bottle of cordial in this pouch on the side of my daypack, and they saw it so ran up to me grabbed it and ran off. I was holding a banana and the same thing happened. It sure is an eye opening experience in Mumbai and one you are sure to never forget especially if you see a few of the same beggers I did with severe disabilities. One even had his fet facing outways at 90 degrees and his right foot was on his left leg and left foot on his right leg. It looked so terrible, and their were more almost as bad as that dreadfully unlucky person. If you have never been to other places in Asia like Cambodia, well this will be one hell of a culture shock I reckon. A guy in Mumbai said that they have 10,000,000 people living on the streets. That is just so sad to think that almost the equivalent of half the population of Australia lives on the streets in one city in India, and it sure seemed likie an acurate thing. Just look at the streets gutters that are lined with homeless people sleeping, with cars not far from them nearly all the way from the airport to Grant street which is quite a distance.