Tuesday, January 3, 2017

Three interesting bicycle trails offer an unique glimpse of Mumbai

Go island-hopping
Feel the wind rush past you as you cycle through the winding, mangrove-lined lanes, beaches and unexplored trails in Manori, Gorai and Uttan. The weekend bicycle ride is organised by Jack and Hill Adventures, an adventure company based in the city.

Johann Daniels, who founded the venture nearly two years ago, says, "Although we organise a lot of adventure activities, cycling is our primary focus." The route the group will be following, he adds, includes a bit of tarmac cycling as well as off-roading.

"We will meet at Gorai Jetty at 6.30 am, where participants will be briefed on how to use and control the mountain bicycles that we will provide them with. From here, we take the ferry across. Our first stop will be the beautiful Global Vipassana Pagoda," he says.

Next, the group will cycle on to Uttan, further up north. Here, you will go up to the red-and-white striped Uttan Point Lighthouse, which provides a panoramic view of the sea as well as Gorai.

"From the lighthouse, we will head back to Gorai, this time to the beach. We will have breakfast by the sea, and, if we have time, we can also fly kites here. Then, we head on to Manori for some off-road cycling," says Daniels.

In Manori, you will be taken to a "secret" spot, situated on a cliff, from where you will be treated to a stunning view.

"I came across this place while exploring the area a few years ago. It's completely off the grid — you won't find it on Google Maps as it has no name. We want it to remain known to as few people as possible," he adds.

The entire ride will cover a distance of around 25km, and will end at Marve after stopping at Manori beach.

ON: January 8, 6.30 am onwards
LOG ON TO: Jack & Hill Adventures on Facebook
CALL: 9833376765
COST: Rs 1,500

Cycle under the stars
The city takes on a different life after nightfall. Gone is all the chaos, to be replaced by a quiet yet buzzing energy.

To see this magic for yourself, sign up for a midnight bicycle ride organised by Reality Tours and Travel.

The ride begins in Colaba, taking you through Marine Drive, Girgaum Chowpatty, and Banganga Tank in Walkeshwar, which is a picture of tranquility when bathed in moonlight. Cycle past Haji Ali, which looks spectacular when it is lit up. You will arrive in Worli in time to witness the sunrise from the fort, and will also have a chance to explore Worli Koliwada.

At each stop, the accompanying guides will provide you with fascinating tidbits about the site before continuing on. To fuel the journey, you will stop for snacks along the way, and at the end the ride, you will be treated to a welcoming cup of tea and breakfast.
Eighty per cent of the profits from this ride will go to an NGO that offers educational programmes to the local community.

ON: January 7, 11.55 pm onwards
MEETING POINT Kailash Parbat, Colaba.
LOG ON TO: goo.gl/Ynm2Xy
CALL: 9820822253
COST: Rs 1,500

Cut through a carpet of green
Aarey Milk Colony in Goregaon (E) is an almost- untouched part of Mumbai. Although surrounded by bustling areas, this part of the city is always cloaked in green and wears a quiet look. Spend the weekend exploring this slice of serenity with a bicycle ride organised by Hikeden, a two-year-old city-based adventure outfit.

"The Aarey Milk Colony route is beautiful, and is commonly used by cyclists because it is so empty and calm," says Anik Gadia, co-founder of Hikeden. The colony, which was established in 1949 and spans 16 sq km, is home to gardens, lakes, as well as elevated viewpoints. The ride is an easy one, and will cover key points in the area.

"If you don't own a bicycle, we can arrange one for you," assures Gadia.

ON: January 8, 6.30 am onwards
AT: Aarey Milk Colony, Goregaon (E).
CALL 9892171211

LOG ON TO: hikeden.com
COST: Rs 899

from travel http://www.mid-day.com/articles/bicycle-trails-mumbai-guide-midnight-bicycle-ride-aarey-milk-colony-manori-gorai-uttan/17883189

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