Well, the name says it all. And believe me, the ride is just as exciting as the name suggests. Yeah, I know you’re already cringing at the fact that you have to wake up at 6:00 am on a Sunday, but we are here to tell you why it’s going to be worth taking all that effort. How do we know? Well, experience. Yup, we were there to check out this awesome event.
Carvan Trips (known for curating personalized trips and tours) organizes this cycle ride through the historical streets of South Mumbai (better known as “town” to Mumbaikars). When I heard of this fun ride, I jumped on the chance to burn a few calories early in the morning, and well, gaining a few while sipping on my soothing, cold pint of beer. Having lived in Mumbai all my life, I was a little apprehensive about the guided tour, assuming I knew everything about “my city”. But I was in for a pleasant surprise. So here’s my experience of #HeritageOnWheels.
A day prior to the ride, the organizers gave us all the deets about what to carry, what to wear and what to expect. This was a great way of showing some care and making us feel comfy. We were asked to gather at 6:30 am and the early birds were promised to be given the better cycles. The group consisted of about 20 enthusiasts, who were all excited to hit the road. Before we started the ride, Sharad Shah (our guide as well as the founder of Carvan Trips), introduced himself and also, got us to introduce ourselves. After the introductions, we were all set to begin the ride. A note to all those who suffer from unpunctuality, make sure you reach ON TIME; these guys are pretty punctual.
The idea behind this ride is to learn about the history and heritage of monumental structures of this fab city. The places covered were the Gateway of India, the Taj Hotel, Asiatic Library, Horniman Circle, CST, BMC building, Ballard Estate, Kala Ghoda, Rajabai Towers and the High Court. The organizers were generous enough to stop at an Irani café on the way and treat us all with some authentic bun maska and cutting chai.
Each stop was for about five minutes where Sharad would share some insights about the architecture and the history. Surprisingly, even if you are Mumbaikar, we are sure you haven’t heard of these facts before. Moreover, living in this fast-paced city isn’t easy, we are so busy running around and getting frustrated about the traffic in the city that we often forget to actually look at and explore the beautiful Victorian buildings.
If you are still wondering why this can’t be done later in the day and why only at 6 in the morning, think about it. Cycling through the quaint streets of the city with NO TRAFFIC and of course, without the scorching sun. It is an amazing experience, to say the least.
As promised, the ride came to an end with the folks at Carvan Trips treating us all to a pint of beer. After all that cycling around on a Sunday morning, it is only unfair to not do something out of the routine. So drinking a beer or a mocktail (for non-alcoholics) at 9 am was the best way to rejuvenate. Moreover, it is also a great way of socialising with the others in your group and getting to know them better.
Our suggestion? Whether a Mumbaikar or not, go for this ride to know more about the financial hub of India and fall in love with this city all over again.
Check the events page for updates about the next Heritage Cycle Ride.