Pagoda at Gorai

Getty Images/Flickr RM

Global Vipassana Pagoda

Mumbai (Bombay)

Rising up like a mirage from polluted Gorai Creek is this breathtaking, golden 96m-high stupa modelled on Myanmar’s Shwedagon Pagoda. Its dome, which houses relics of Buddha, was built entirely without supports using an ancient technique of interlocking stones, and the meditation hall beneath it seats 8000.

There’s an art gallery dedicated to the life of the Buddha and his teaching. Twenty-minute meditation classes are held daily; an on-site meditation centre also offers 10-day courses.

To get here, take a train from Churchgate to Borivali (exit the station at the ‘West’ side), then take bus 294 (₹10), an autorickshaw (₹60 to ₹65) or an Uber (₹420 or so) to the ferry landing, where Esselworld ferries (return ₹50) depart every 30 minutes. The last ferry to the pagoda is at 5.30pm.

Lonely Planet's must-see attractions

Nearby Mumbai (Bombay) attractions

1. Esselworld


This Gorai Island amusement park is well maintained and has lots of rides, slides and shade. Ferries leave every 15 minutes (₹50) from Borivali jetty at…

2. Water Kingdom

0.25 MILES

Little tykes with energy to burn will love this Gorai Island amusement park and its rides and slides – Asia's largest theme water park. It’s a ₹50 ferry…

3. Sanjay Gandhi National Park

6.22 MILES

It’s hard to believe that within 1½ hours of the teeming metropolis you can be surrounded by this 104-sq-km protected tropical forest. Here, bright flora,…

4. Kanheri Caves


The 109 Kanheri Caves lining the side of a rocky ravine 6km from the northern entrance of Sanjay Gandhi National Park are a big draw. The caves comprise…

5. Gilbert Hill

7.72 MILES

Smack dab among the residential apartment blocks of Andheri (W) sits this 61m-tall black basalt mountain that resembles a chocolate molten cake …

6. Iskcon Temple

8.04 MILES

Iskcon Juhu plays a key part in the Hare Krishna story, as founder AC Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada spent extended periods here (you can visit his modest…

7. Juhu Beach

9.27 MILES

This sprawling suburban beach draws legions of Indian families and courting couples frolicking in the Arabian Sea for 6km all the way to Versova. As far…

8. Kidzania

11.42 MILES

Kidzania is predictably one of Mumbai's kid-tastic attractions, an educational activity centre where kids can learn all about piloting a plane, fighting…