Basilica of Our Lady of the Mount, Bandra

Mumbai. It’s a city of glittering gold, it’s a city of dust and coal. It’s a city of soaring hearts, it’s a city of broken hearts. It’s a city giving wings to the future, it’s a city rooted in the past.

It’s the city of dreams.

The city of Mumbai is almost a second home for me. I live in its sister city of Pune and my dad has lived there for so many years, which has led me to visit the city countless times. Yet, no matter how much I’ve travelled in Mumbai, there is always a part of the city that is waiting to be explored.

On my recent trip to the city, I explored an area of Mumbai called Bandra. It is known for its glam, vintage vibe and it’s also the area where many Bollywood celebrities have their residences.

In this blog, I’m going to talk about my favourite place in Bandra, the Basilica of Our Lady of the Mount. The church, colloquially known as Mount Mary, is nestled among trees, atop a small hillock and there is a lot of reverence for this church because it is said that the deity makes wishes come true.

The church was built sometime in the 16th century, by Portuguese Jesuit priests. It has stood the test of time, seeing two raids, reconstruction, and the changing eras. When I see a structure that has remained standing for so long, I feel it radiates that aura of resilience and it brings home the fact that change is inevitable but one must keep living through it all.

The architecture is so beautiful, even though it is simple. I love how the blue grilles contrast with the dark grey and white stone, and the spires reaching into the overcast skies adds in a gothic tone to the structure. I was very lucky to get a view without any cars photobombing the scene, which let me capture a glimpse of the candle stalls and the cobblestones.

There’s something about cobblestones that really makes my heart go ‘ooh-la-la’.


Here is a glimpse of the interiors of the church and the moment I walked in, I was literally stunned by the beauty of it all. There are so many sculptures and paintings, depicting different scenes from the Bible and the mood is one of pure faith and reverence.

Now, I live in a country where many religions co-exist and carry out all their cultural and customary practices and I’ve observed that each time there’s a religious festival going on, the whole place is engulfed in a very pure and peaceful aura. There’s so much power in the beliefs and the faith of people and no matter what religion they choose to follow, there’s always a sense of healing and peace, whenever there’s a festival or a custom being celebrated. In India, we are fortunate to have a huge participation in all religious festivals, simply because we do co-exist, and this goes a long way in showing that faith is perhaps one of the most powerful things and it is what we need for peace and harmony.

Back to the church, I love the golden aura of the altar, contrasting with the white and blue of the walls. The sculpture of the Mother is simply radiant and beautiful and this is really enhanced by the flower arrangements which are done every day by the locals. Here’s a close up for ya.

The Mother of Mount Mary is said to grant three wishes to each of her worshippers. People from all over the city visit the chapel and ask for wishes, right from the wish to heal their loved ones or themselves from sickness or injury to wishes pertaining to financial stability, having a family, ambitions, love and even success.

There is a beautiful custom here, where the stalls outside the church sell candles shaped like body parts, cash, passports, homes, families and basically all the common things that one could wish for. If one has made a certain wish and they see that the wish has been granted, they must come back and light a shaped candle(according to whatever they wished for), in gratitude to the Mother.

There were so many people who lit candles shaped like various body parts because they claim that their wish for being healed was granted, and it was quite a miraculous and wholesome sight to behold. The church is commonly visited by people who are ill or have disabilities, which again, brings one back to the power of faith.

I made three wishes too. Being an ardent fan of Aladdin, this whole custom really fascinated me and I’m not one to miss out on a chance to get three wishes granted.

Did I wish for a 100 wishes?


This is a small chapel opposite the basilica, where one can light candles for the well-being of their loved ones. I like how the custom of lighting candles brings in a sense of protection and a small act such as this goes a long way in being a kind well wisher.

I love the flames still burning, against the backdrop of the chapel, on a rainy day. Gives me a very “eternal flame” vibe.

Finally, here’s the stalls outside the church, selling candles, small statues, trinkets, junk jewellery and small novelty gift items and souvenirs. I bought a bracelet and a sculpture, along with a few candles to light. They are good keepsakes of the place, even though I will be coming back.

The Mount Mary Church radiates a sense of peace and harmony amidst the glam of the bustling city of Mumbai. It did wonders in bringing a sense of goodwill into my mind and it brought home the fact, that at the end of the day, it’s all down to a good heart and a feeling of kindness.

And that is a wrap.

Until Next Time.

Peace out:)


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