4.1 / 5

Haji Ali Dargah

📍 Dargah Rd, Breach Candy, Haji Ali, Mumbai, Maharashtra 400026, IndiaView map ›

🗓 Best Time To Visit:October to March

⏰ Open Hours:Open 24 hours

🧳 Things To Do:Pay respects at the Dargah, enjoy the view of the Arabian Sea, visit the nearby shopping area

💰 Budget:No entry fee, donations accepted

👥 Traveller Types:Pilgrims, Tourists, History enthusiasts

🔍 Known For:Islamic architecture, Tomb of Haji Ali, Stunning sea views, Prayer halls

🚉 Distances:6 km from Mumbai Central Railway Station, 15 km from Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj International Airport, 5 km from South Mumbai

🕌 Unique Aspects:The Dargah is located on an islet, connected to the city via a narrow causeway, which is accessible only during low tide

🚶 Accessibility:Accessible by foot during low tide, no vehicles allowed on the causeway

📸 Photography:Allowed, but respect the religious sentiments of the place

💡 Tips:Dress modestly, check the tide timings before visiting

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Haji Ali Dargah: A Majestic Shrine in the Heart of Mumbai

If you are looking for a place that combines spirituality, history, and culture in Mumbai, then you should not miss visiting the Haji Ali Dargah. This is one of the most iconic landmarks in the city, attracting millions of visitors every year. The dargah is a stunning example of Indo-Islamic architecture, built on a small islet in the Arabian Sea.

It is also the final resting place of Pir Haji Ali Shah Bukhari, a revered Sufi saint who performed many miracles and spread the message of peace and harmony. In this article, we will tell you everything you need to know about the Haji Ali Dargah, including its history, architecture, timings, entry fee, facts, and nearby attractions.

History of Haji Ali Dargah

The history of the Haji Ali Dargah dates back to the 15th century, when Pir Haji Ali Shah Bukhari, a wealthy merchant from Uzbekistan, came to India. He was a devout Muslim who renounced his worldly possessions and dedicated his life to serving God and humanity. He traveled across India and the Middle East, spreading the teachings of Islam and performing miracles. He settled in Mumbai and became a popular figure among people of different faiths and backgrounds.

According to legend, Pir Haji Ali Shah Bukhari once visited Yemen and met a poor woman who was crying because she had accidentally dropped her oil vessel in the sea. The saint felt sorry for her and threw his cloak into the water. To everyone’s astonishment, the cloak floated back to the shore with the oil vessel on it. The woman was overjoyed and thanked him profusely.

However, Pir Haji Ali Shah Bukhari realized that he had committed a sin by using his miraculous powers for a trivial matter. He felt guilty and decided to go on a pilgrimage to Mecca. On his way back, he fell ill and died. Before his death, he asked his followers to put his coffin on a boat and let it drift in the sea. He said that wherever the coffin would stop, that would be his final resting place.

The coffin miraculously reached the coast of Mumbai and stopped near a small islet in the Arabian Sea. His followers built a tomb on the islet and later constructed a dargah around it. The dargah became a sacred site for Muslims as well as people of other religions who came to pay their respects and seek blessings from the saint.

There are also some myths and legends associated with the dargah, such as the one about the sinking of the islet or the one about the appearance of a crocodile. Some people believe that the islet will sink into the sea one day as a sign of the end of times. Others believe that there is a crocodile that guards the tomb of Pir Haji Ali Shah Bukhari and only shows itself to his true devotees.

Architecture of Haji Ali Dargah

The architecture of the Haji Ali Dargah is a remarkable specimen of Indo-Islamic style, blending elements from different cultures and eras. The dargah consists of several structures, such as:

Photo of Haji Ali Dargah 1/8 by
(c) Daily Sabah

The dome: The dome is made of white marble and has intricate patterns and designs on it. It is supported by pillars and arches that have verses from the Quran inscribed on them. The dome covers the tomb chamber where Pir Haji Ali Shah Bukhari’s body lies.

The minarets: The minarets are tall towers that flank the dome on both sides. They have balconies and windows that offer a panoramic view of the sea and the city. They are also used for calling out prayers and announcements.

The courtyard: The courtyard is a spacious area that surrounds the dome and the minarets. It has fountains, lamps, flowers, and trees that create a serene and soothing ambiance. It also has benches and mats where visitors can sit and meditate.

The main hall: The main hall is where visitors enter the dargah after crossing a narrow walkway that connects the islet to the mainland. It has marble floors, walls, and ceilings that reflect light and create a luminous effect. It also has paintings and portraits of Pir Haji Ali Shah Bukhari and other Islamic saints.

The tomb chamber: The tomb chamber is where Pir Haji Ali Shah Bukhari’s tomb is located. It is covered with red and green cloth and decorated with flowers and candles. Visitors can touch or kiss the tomb as a mark of reverence and gratitude.

The sanatorium: The sanatorium is where sick or needy people can stay for free and receive food, medicine, and care from the dargah staff. It also has a library where visitors can read books on Islamic literature and history.

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The Qawwal Khana: The Qawwal Khana is where qawwali, a form of devotional music, is performed by singers and musicians. Qawwali is a way of expressing love and devotion to God and the saint. It is usually performed on Thursdays and Fridays, the holy days of the week.

The walkway: The walkway is a 500-meter long causeway that links the dargah to the mainland. It is submerged during high tide and emerges during low tide. Visitors have to walk on the walkway to reach the dargah, which adds to the charm and thrill of the visit.

The dargah has undergone several renovation and restoration work over time to maintain its original charm and beauty. The most recent one was in 2016, when the dome and the minarets were repaired and repainted. The dargah also has a solar power system that provides electricity and reduces carbon emissions.

Also check out: 8 Interesting Things You Didn’t Know About Haji Ali Dargah!

Timings and Entry Fee of Haji Ali Dargah

The timings of the Haji Ali Dargah depend on the tide levels, as the walkway is accessible only during low tide. The general timings are from 5:30 am to 10 pm, but they may vary depending on the season and the weather. It is advisable to check the tide timings before planning a visit.

There is no entry fee for visiting the dargah, but donations are welcome and used for charitable purposes. The dargah runs several social welfare programs, such as providing education, health care, food, and clothing to the poor and needy.

Some tips on what to wear and what to avoid while visiting the dargah are:

1. Wear modest and comfortable clothes that cover your head and shoulders. Avoid wearing shorts, skirts, or sleeveless tops.

2. Remove your shoes before entering the main hall and keep them in a locker or with a caretaker.

3. Respect the sanctity of the place and do not make noise or take photos inside the tomb chamber.

4. Do not carry any alcohol, tobacco, or drugs inside the dargah premises.

5. Do not litter or damage any property inside or outside the dargah.

Interesting Facts about Haji Ali Dargah

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The Haji Ali Dargah is not only a place of worship but also a place of wonder. Here are some interesting facts about the dargah that may surprise or intrigue you:

The dargah is popular among celebrities, both from India and abroad. Some of the famous personalities who have visited the dargah include Amitabh Bachchan, Shah Rukh Khan, Salman Khan, Aishwarya Rai, Brad Pitt, Angelina Jolie, Tom Cruise, Madonna, Michael Jackson, and Barack Obama.

The dargah is involved in various charitable activities, such as running schools, hospitals, orphanages, old age homes, and vocational training centers. It also distributes food, clothes, blankets, and medicines to thousands of people every day.

The dargah is committed to environmental protection and conservation. It has installed rainwater harvesting systems, biogas plants, waste management systems, and solar panels on its premises. It also organizes cleanliness drives and awareness campaigns on various environmental issues.

The dargah has faced several legal battles over its ownership and management. In 2012, a petition was filed in the Bombay High Court challenging the authority of the Haji Ali Dargah Trust, which runs the dargah. The petition claimed that the trust was misusing funds and violating norms. The case is still pending in court.

The dargah hosts various cultural events throughout the year, such as festivals, fairs, concerts, exhibitions, seminars, and workshops. Some of the notable events are Urs (the death anniversary of Pir Haji Ali Shah Bukhari), Eid-ul-Fitr (the festival that marks the end of Ramadan), Eid-ul-Adha (the festival that commemorates the sacrifice of Prophet Ibrahim), Milad-un-Nabi (the birthday of Prophet Muhammad), etc.

You may also like to read: The magical place in MUMBAI where Prayers are Answered!

Nearby Attractions near Haji Ali Dargah

If you are visiting the Haji Ali Dargah, you can also explore some of the nearby attractions that are worth seeing. Some of them are:

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Mahalaxmi Temple:

This is a Hindu temple dedicated to Goddess Lakshmi, the goddess of wealth and prosperity. It is located about 1 km from the dargah and is one of the oldest temples in Mumbai. It is famous for its exquisite architecture and its three idols of Goddess Lakshmi in gold, silver, and bronze.

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Nehru Planetarium:

This is a science museum that offers shows on astronomy and space exploration. It is located about 2 km from the dargah and is one of the best places to visit for kids and adults alike. It has a dome-shaped theater that displays images of stars, planets, galaxies, and other celestial objects. It also has a library, an art gallery, and a souvenir shop.

Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus:

This is a historic railway station that was formerly known as Victoria Terminus. It is located about 6 km from the dargah and is one of the finest examples of Gothic Revival architecture in India. It is also a UNESCO World Heritage Site and a functional railway station that serves millions of commuters every day. You can admire the intricate details and carvings on the exterior and interior of the station.

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Worli Sea Face:

This is a scenic promenade along the Arabian Sea that offers a breathtaking view of the skyline and the sunset. It is located about 3 km from the dargah and is a popular spot for jogging, cycling, or relaxing. It also has a park, a playground, and a food court.

Best Places To Stay Near Haji Ali Dargah

If you are planning to visit the Haji Ali Dargah, you might want to stay in one of the hotels near the shrine that offer comfort, convenience, and quality service. Here are five of the best places to stay near Haji Ali Dargah, based on their ratings, reviews, facilities, and location:

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(c) Four Seasons Hotel Mumbai

1. Four Seasons Hotel Mumbai:

This is a 5-star hotel that is located about 1.7 km from the dargah. It offers luxurious rooms and suites with modern amenities, such as air conditioning, flat-screen TV, minibar, and Wi-Fi. It also has a spa, a fitness center, an outdoor pool, a bar, and a restaurant that serves international cuisine. The hotel has a tranquil and chic atmosphere that creates a perfect haven for relaxation and rejuvenation.

To book a stay at this hotel click here.

2. The St. Regis Mumbai:

This is another 5-star hotel that is located about 1.3 km from the dargah. It boasts of exquisitely styled and lavishly appointed accommodations that feature marble bathrooms, walk-in closets, iPod docks, and Wi-Fi. It also has a spa, a fitness center, an outdoor pool, a lounge, and seven dining options that offer a variety of cuisines. The hotel provides a personalized service with its signature butler program that caters to every guest’s needs.

To book a stay at this hotel click here.

3. YMCA International House:

This is a budget-friendly hotel that is located about 1.2 km from the dargah. It features simple and cozy rooms with basic amenities, such as air conditioning, flat-screen TV, telephone, wardrobe, and digital safe. It also has a garden, a dining hall, and a 24-hour front desk. The hotel provides a clean and comfortable stay for travelers who are looking for an affordable option.

To book a stay at this hotel click here.

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4. The Ferreiras:

This is a homestay that is located about 2 km from the dargah. It offers spacious and elegant rooms with private bathrooms, balconies, and Wi-Fi. It also has a garden and a shared lounge where guests can relax and socialize. The host family is friendly and hospitable and provides a delicious breakfast every morning.

To book a stay at this hotel click here.

5. Empire Hotel - Grant Road:

This is a 3-star hotel that is located about 1.5 km from the dargah. It offers bright and airy rooms with air conditioning and seating areas. It also has a restaurant that serves Indian and Chinese dishes. The hotel provides free Wi-Fi access and a convenient location near the railway station.

To book a stay at this hotel click here.

The Haji Ali Dargah is a majestic shrine in the heart of Mumbai that will leave you spellbound by its beauty and grace. So, what are you waiting for? Plan your visit to the Haji Ali Dargah today and discover its magic and charm. You will not regret it.

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