Best Places for Pre Wedding Photography Shoot in Mumbai
I have lived in Mumbai for two years, I instantly fell in love with the city and its cutting chai, Bhajji pav, Marine drive, the local train rides, conversations with taxi wala bhaiya, and the list goes on. The city has been aptly named or called as Maximum City. I have roamed the entire city for various professional and personal assignments.
Today I will share with you my experience as a photographer and traveller about places that are great for a pre-wedding shoot in Mumbai. Some places are already well known, while chances are you might find many places which you do not know about. Mumbai city has hell lot of hidden beautiful places that are really great for a pre-wedding shoot. So let’s start the list. I am listing places without any priority or particular ranking.
Worli Village or Worli Koliwada(as it is called locally) is a tiny fishing village in the heart of the city. It is hardly 2 km away from Elphinstone Road(now Prabhadevi) railway station. Dadar Station is also very much reachable and is almost at the same distance as Prabhadevi Station.
You may be wondering what’s so special about a fishing village that I am recommending this place for your Pre Wedding shoot? Wait until you go there. Koli people love bright colours as much as we love them(I am from Rajasthan). The village is filled with bright colourful homes of locals, for a moment it is visual sensory overdose since coming from the city you aren’t accustomed to seeing these many colours. These also make for the perfect background for getting a variety of photos.
Oh! Did I forget to mention that Worli Village also gives one of the best views of Bandra-Worli Sealink. Since one of the ends of sealink is at the Worli you can see entire start point to end point of sea link.
During late evening, Sunset happens behind the sea link giving a great opportunity for some good pre wedding shot. The place is abuzz with activity always with kids playing cricket and Koli women doing household chores. You will never feel this place is inside one of the top metropolis city in the world.
Wait! There is more
There is an old fort in the Worli Village which will give the panoramic top view of the Worli village and the sealink. You can see the coast of Dadar, Mahim, and Bandra as well at a distance. For taking photos within the fort premise you will have to take permission. There is a small gym inside the fort and the You can request Gym Owner for taking some images at the fort. You have to be careful while taking photos at the fort. Plan your shots beforehand and don’t spend too much time taking photos at the fort as your cameras may be spotted by Military Guards as officially photo shoot is not allowed there. But if you take one or photos there without making yourself too visible it is fine.
All in all Worli Village is a wonderful place not only for Pre Wedding shoot but also other conceptual shoots, That is the reason why always there is film shooting ongoing there(By the way Hymn for the Weekend by Coldplay was partially shot here). If you love colours this is not a place to miss.
Every year the fishermen celebrate the fish festival at Worli Village in November so that is something that you can incorporate into your Pre Wedding Shoot in Mumbai.
Nearest Station: Dadar and Prabhadevi(Elphinstone Road)
Any Precautions: Avoid your Pre-wedding shoot on Sundays, as on Sunday locals gather near shore to unwind, play cards and have drinks. If you plan to shoot on Sundays be sure to not to disturb locals enjoying their Sunday time. Locals as such are really friendly.
I think all of you must already know about Marine Drive either directly or indirectly through Bollywood. Marine Drive is evergreen and one of the most popular locations in Mumbai for Pre Wedding shoot. Marine Drive is famously called as Queen’s Necklace as the illuminated road at night along the coastline of marine drive resembles like a string of pearls in a necklace.
Best time for Pre Wedding Photography in Marine Drive is early morning as there is very less crowd during that time. Also, in the early morning, you can capture the blue hour along with the famous Queens necklace. There are endless possibilities for a different kind of Pre Wedding shot at the Marine Drive.
The place is always lively as there is always some crowd at the marine drive at any given point of time. You will see people from all age group but mostly young couples and college students. There are also very famous landmarks and restaurants at Marine Drive which provides really good background for your Pre Wedding Images. Examples are The Pizza by the Bay restaurant, Air India building, Oberoi Trident Hotel. I am not kidding I have some images to prove the same.
One of the benefits of planning your Pre Wedding Photoshoot at Marine Drive is that it is very near to other pre-wedding shoot locations like Gateway of India, Asiatic Library and South Mumbai. This, in turn, gives you an opportunity to plan your Pre Wedding Shoot with the variety of locations in the same vicinity.
Nearest station: Churchgate Station(walking distance from here)
Any Precaution: Plan your shoot at early morning (5 am to 6 am) to avoid crowds
If you want classy and heritage look for your pre wedding shoot in Mumbai than Asiatic Library is one of the best places. The Asiatic Library building is more than century old and its famous steps along with the white walls of the library provide for an amazing Pre Wedding shoot images. Both early morning and late evenings are a good time for the shoot here. The Asiatic Society of Bombay as it is originally called is also home to thousands of books a godly place for anyone who is a bookworm.
South Mumbai is a wonderful place. In fact, the two places mentioned above are also in south Mumbai but I feel South Mumbai deserves a separate mention in the list of places for pre wedding shoot in Mumbai. So Why? Beautiful and Nostalgic – These are the words which come to my mind when I think about South Mumbai. The old beautifully maintained building with British architecture will instantly take you back to the time and memory of “Bombay”. You will come across many places while exploring this part of town which is quite worthy of making it to your Pre Wedding Photo portfolio.
Nearest Station: CST or Churchgate
Any Precaution: Avoid navy area in South Mumbai near Gateway, Navy personnel will most probably confiscate the camera as it is illegal to take photos in that area.
Gateway of India:
One of the most picturesque areas with the magnificent backdrop of Gateway of India and iconic Taj Hotel. This combination makes it one of the most sought-after places for pre-wedding photography in the city. Gateway is one of the compulsory locations for Pre Wedding shoot, this place was once the gateway for Britishers to India. On one side of the gateway is Arabian sea decked with numerous fishing boats that add to the beauty and is complemented by many flying seagulls and pigeons.
There is a corner at Gateway where people feed pigeons. Sometimes if you are lucky enough you might get the perfect shot with the sunrise behind the gateway and a lot of flying pigeons.
The best time to shoot at Gateway of India is early morning when you get some really good images with the sun rising by the behind(not exactly behind) of Gateway. Also, there is less crowd during morning time, by evening the place gets fully crowded especially if it’s a weekend. You can always find many couples having their pre wedding shoots here.
The evening is also a good time for the shoot but the place is overly crowded mostly during the evening so it won’t help as such. The lanes surrounding Taj hotel also provide some good random place for pre wedding shoot. It’s always good to explore, who knows what you might find.
The best part is both Asiatic Library and Marine Drive are nearby Gateway and are easily accessible via public transport or yellow taxi(yes the famous Kali Peeli).
Nearest Station: CST or Churchgate.
Precaution: Avoid disturbing birds at Gateway to get your perfect shot, The security personnel doesn’t like that 🙂
Vasai Fort & Vasai Suruchi Beach:
Vasai fort is located on the outskirts of Mumbai in Vasai village. It is accessible by both rail and road and takes nearly an hour of commute depending on from where you are travelling in the city. Vasai fort resides overlooking the Vasai/Bhayandar creek. Vasai fort is one of my personal favourite location for pre wedding shoot. This fort was once used for the protective watch by Maratha kings later on it was captured by Portuguese. This fort carries a lot of history with it. This fort is very big and you can complete an entire pre-wedding shoot here without going at any other location. The fort is old and ruined giving a very vintage and heritage type of look for your pre wedding shoot. Overall there is a distinct mood to the place and same also provides an opportunity for a thematic shoot here.
Vasai Suruchi beach is not very far from Vasai Fort. It takes around 15 to 20 mins by road to reach Vasai Suruchi Beach from Vasai Fort. Vasai Suruchi beach is one of the cleanest and sparsely crowded beach in the outskirts of the city making it very ideal for some very beautiful beach shots. Suruchi beach is also home to stretch of tall and long trees which give photographers more opportunities for creative pre-wedding shot images.
All in all Vasai fort and Suruchi beach provides an entirely different and much more relaxed experience. The good idea will be to plan an entire day for Vasai fort and Suruchi beach for your Pre Wedding Shoot. You can take a break/rest at the hotel which will also give you refreshing time in between the shoot. Hotel rates are quite reasonable there. Alternatively, you can just relax at the beach for an hour or two before resuming your shoot.
Nearest Station: Vasai road railway station. Bus service is available from outside the station. You can ask anyone about the bus to Vasai fort anyone can guide you.
Any precaution: Since it’s a long day shoot be sure to take some refreshment like fruit juice, biscuits etc with you. Vasai beach is in the outskirt of the city and closes at 7 pm so you will have to plan accordingly.
Bandra & Bandra Fort & Chapel Road & Bandra Reclamation :
Bandra is the Bollywood hub of Mumbai with many Bollywood celebrities. Apart from that Bandra has several locations for getting great pre-wedding pictures. The Chapel Road has some amazing graffiti that definitely make for awesome pre wedding images. The chapel streets consist of street artwork from multiple artists. This is also one way to forever remember their work in your memories.
Also, there is carter road which gives you a scenic view of Bandra Worli Sealink. The view it offers is exactly opposite to that of view from Worli Village.
If you plan a shoot in Bandra than this three trio will make an ideal choice for the entire day. You can start the day with chapel road and roam around beautiful churches taking lovely pre-wedding photos along or You can visit Bandra Reclamation. The newly installed Love Mumbai artwork attracts a lot of visitors and is totally worth to be part of your pre wedding album, especially if you really are in love with the Maximum City.
In the evening you can plan for Bandra Fort and carter road as the sun set to give those poetic pre-wedding images out of the movie.
Bandra fort provides you a panoramic view of Bandra Worli Sealink. It is exactly opposite on the city from the Worli. It provides a different point of view of Bandra Worli Sealink from that of provided by Worli Village. On Sundays, it is mostly crowded so it is better that you plan your pre wedding shoot here on weekdays when there is relatively less rush. The place is generally visited by love birds but you get to see the crowd of all age group. Originally Bandra Fort was built by Portuguese to be used as a watch tower. Whatever remains now are in ruins giving it a heritage like look. But what makes Bandra fort stand out from Vasai fort is the Arabian sea and Bandra Worli sea link in the background which gives the “Mumbai” feel to the image. It is not fair to compare Bandra fort with Vasai fort as they are both unique and also Vasai fort is a lot bigger than Bandra fort. Bandra Fort and Worli fort both provide the view of sea link but from the opposite side. At the end of the day its your personal choice.
Bandra(Chapel road, Carter Road, Reclamation and Fort) provides more of a modern Mumbai feel to the photos and is one of the excellent choices for your Pre Wedding shoot.
Nearest Station: Bandra Station
Any Precaution: Plan your Pre Wedding shoot at Bandra before hand and avoid weekends as Bandra is generally more crowded on weekends.
Sanjay Gandhi National Park(SGNP) and Kanheri Caves:
Ever wondered that there could be a full-fledged forest approximately 30 times the size of central park in Newyork. Welcome to SGNP located in the suburbs of Mumbai. This park makes Mumbai a really unique city for a number of reasons(like Leopards living along with the locals)
Sanjay Gandhi National Park is really beautiful and natural location for your pre-wedding shoot. You can get some great shot in the canopy of forest and mother nature. The lush greenery of the forest proves to give you some great images. Here you can get some great images in the forest without going out of Mumbai. It’s a fun place to go to but at times become bit tiring physically as you have to walk a lot. You can hire bicycle for rent or else you can also take your vehicle inside by paying the required fee.
Kanheri caves :
Kanheri caves is a more than thousand year old Buddhist caves deep inside the Sanjay Gandhi National Park. The place is still revered among Buddhist monk and you can easily find few Buddhist monks and nuns among the tourist. The caves provide a very serene and calm atmosphere giving a spiritual touch to your pre-wedding photos. On a slightly different note There are nearly 90 different caves. There are ample opportunity to get variety of Pre Wedding Shot with ancient background and the top view of Sanjay Gandhi National Park. The prayer hall or Great Chaitya hall is a structural marvel and provides a really magnificent view for your pre-wedding images. Don’t miss this place if you plan to visit kanheri caves for your pre wedding shoot. There are so many caves that it will take your full day if you were to visit all the 90 caves at Kanheri Caves. There are numerous Buddhist inscription in many caves and also a large Buddha statue in one of the cave.
Both SGNP and Kanheri Caves are great place for pre wedding shoot and in a way provides you a great opportunity to forget the hustle and bustle of busy city that Mumbai is.
Nearest Station: Borivali station, Walking distance from Borivali Station(hardly takes 10 mins to reach there)
Precautions: Take something sufficient enough to eat for you in case you get hungry there is not much option to eat apart from street vendors selling fruits and some other items. There is a very high fee (about some thousand rupees) but normally it’s fine if you are not shooting anything related commercial (movie, short film, documentary). Better is to avoid shooting near the entrance, once you get a bit inside the park you can see many people shooting with their cameras without any problem.
If you plan to shoot any commercial short film, documentary film or movie than you will have to pay the required fee for the same.
Avoid roaming inside the national park in places which are very sparsely populated or are empty just to be safe from a wild animal.
These are some of the places which provide a lot of opportunities for your complete Pre Wedding Photography shoot. Any one or two combination provides for the really comprehensive pre-wedding shoot.
However, there are many other places which you can consider for your pre-wedding photography shoot in Mumbai if you prefer something apart from the above-mentioned places.
A popular local tourist spot located near to the very busy Dadar station. Dadar Chowpatty provides side angle view of Bandra Worli Sealink, especially during evening hours. You can get some very good images here. You can include Dadar Chowpatty in your pre wedding shoot location if you have planned a shoot in Worli or Worli village.
Juhu beach is another popular tourist spot. Juhu beach is recommended for low tide beach Pre Wedding images. During low tides, there is a wide channel of shallow water that allows for a very creative photo shoot. Although during weekends the place is very crowded and at times dirty, so much better to plan a shoot here during weekdays.
Well, all of you must have heard about Aksa Beach thanks to the popular “Tujhe Aksa beach ghuma du kya” song. Aksa beach is located in Malad. It is accessible from either Malad or Borivali railway stations. Aksa beach is much cleaner than many other beaches in the city, thanks to its location it is located a bit interior compared to other popular beaches. Aksa beach is thus very ideal for Pre Wedding Photo shoot, It is also less crowded compared to other beaches. Evening time is the best time for the shoot as you can get some good silhouette shots as the sun sets in the Arabian sea.
Hanging garden is located in Malabar Hills. It provides a nice and top view of the Girgaun Chowpatty and Marine Lines. You can consider to stop by Hanging Garden and get some good images if you have planned for your shoot in South Mumbai. Alternatively, for some reason you are skipping Sanjay Gandhi National park then you can get some good nature pre-wedding shoot images at the hanging garden. The place is very well maintained.
Banganga Tank/ Walkeshwar:
Banganga is an ancient water tank located in Walkeswhar area of Malabar hills. There is an ancient story which tells that After Lord Rama shot his ban(arrow) here the Ganges river started flowing here. Hence this place is considered sacred and is visited daily many many Hindu devotees. Banganga tank is a small rectangular tank surrounded on all sides by building and this gives a unique look and feel to the place. Banganga tank is ideal for some very exquisite Pre Wedding images. Also You can roam around in Walkeswar. I love the charm of old lanes of Walkeswar and Malabar hills, There are so many places that can provide the spectacular background for your pre-wedding images. I do suggest you visit Banganga and Walkeswar or decide beforehand with your photographer for the shoot there.
Elephanta Caves is a UNESCO world heritage site. The caves are dedicated to Lord Shiva and have rock-cut structures of Hindu and Buddhist Deities. Elephanta Caves are located on Elephanta islands and it takes around an hour to reach there by ferry. You get the ferry for Elephanta Caves from Gateway of India. I personally feel it is better to avoid Elephanta Caves for your pre wedding shoot but at the end of the day it’s a very personal choice and a lot of people have shot their pre-wedding images there.