Despite the city being India's most important transport hub, the competition has so far been concentrated on flights from London. flights from Manchester
and Birmingham to Bombay remain eagerly anticipated.
Nicknamed the "City of Dreams", Bombay is one of the busiest locations in India - and anyone who's made their way through the bustling streets of any other major Indian city will have some idea of just how busy that is. Not just the country's financial and business capital, Bombay is also a thriving port, a centre for haute couture
and architectural development, and the Bollywood film industry's equivalent of Los Angeles
. The city's thoroughfares throng with star-struck wannabes looking for their big break, or evidence of their favourite actors and actresses. ; If the cinema can be considered another of India's many and diverse religions, then Bombay represents its Mecca. In fact, there's a real mix (a Bombay mix?) of influences at work here. Evidence of the city's colonial past comes in the form of the Gateway to India, a vast construction in yellow basalt erected to mark the visit of King George V and Queen Mary in 1911. Inaugurated that same year, but only completed in 1923, was the Prince of Wales Museum, which remains to this day one of the city's most fascinating attractions: a comprehensive collection of documents and artefacts from all over the Indian subcontinent. Yet there's plenty of Hindi tradition here, too, from the Tomb of Haji Ali to the Mahalaxmi Temple, dedicated to the goddess of wealth. Festivals dot the calendar, particularly towards the end of the year. Ganesh Chaturthi in October/November, marked with lavish street processions, is swiftly followed by the festival of light, Diwali, when flares and firecrackers light up the night sky. More modern attractions include the Nehru Planetarium and Science Center. But Bombay also knows how to preserve a much-needed sense of calm, small oases in the middle of a sprawling metropolis: revel in the greenery and serenity of a Kamala Nehru Park, Hanging Gardens, or Marine Drive.