West India stretches from the great port city of Mumbai to a number of spectacular destinations, including Goa in the south. Modern Mumbai is India’s commercial and banking capital, as well as the country’s largest port. More than 350 years ago, the city was presented to the Portuguese as dowry when Catherine of Braganza married King Charles II in 1661. The city boomed during the Victorian era and continues to grow at an exponential rate 200 years later.
The introduction of trains and the expansion of the port connected large areas of western India to Mumbai and, today, it continues to be the gateway to areas such as the state of Gujarat and its great cities of Ahmedabad, Bhuj, Bhavnagar, Junagadh and Baroda. Towns such as Aurangabad and Pune, which can be accessed from Mumbai, are in turn gateways to World Heritage Sites like Ajanta and Ellora or to the seasonal Hill Stations at Mahabelsehwar and Matheran.