Many of us spend thousands, even lakhs of rupees traveling the globe in search of new and exciting destinations to discover, but how many of us make the effort to discover our hometown?
A surprising number of people have never made the effort to visit the numerous tourist destinations in our hometown. Thousands of people living years in Delhi have never made a trip to the Quatab Minar, millions living in Mumbai have never been to the Elephanta caves.
Why don't we make as much as an effort to discover the places we live in, as we do to discover a place we visit?
Naturally when you live in a certain place you don't have to go to the tourist destinations to get a feel of the culture, traditions and history of that place. But taking your children to visit monuments of historical and geographical importance will help them put a face to the matter in their text books.
So this summer take your children on a tour to discover your hometown. If you live in Mumbai, here are some of the places worth a visit.
Gateway of India
You may have passed by the Gateway of India thousands of times, but how many times have you actually gotten off the car and walked around the gateway? Not many of us know why the Gateway was built. Spend an afternoon or an evening at the Gateway and discover its significance with your children. Read the plaques put on display. Appreciate the magnificence of the colonial style architecture and intricate latticework. Follow up your visit by taking a short cruise on the yachts docked by the gateway. Wouldn't this be a far better option than visiting the cinema?
Prince of Wales Museum
Close to the Gateway of India stands the Prince of Wales Museum. If your child is more of a nature fan than a history buff, you could take a quick round of this museum, and then go next door to the Bombay Natural History Society which has a huge collection of flora and fauna.
Jehangir Art Gallery
Introduce your children to the world of art by taking them to visit the Jehangir Art Gallery. The art gallery has exhibitions all year round and usually display paintings by prominent Indian artists. Some artists offer moderately priced paintings which just might be within your budget, and who knows, if your luck, and the artists' luck, holds out the painting may just triple in value in a couple of years! You could also take a stroll outside the gallery where student and young upcoming artists showcase their work. Finish off the evening by having a snack at the art gallery's famous cafe.
The only time many people have ever visited the Nehru planetarium was during a day-trip organized by school, and few remember little if anything of their visit. Plan to make a trip to the Nehru planetarium with your children, and take them for the Sky Theater Show. Call the planetarium at 24920510 in advance for show timings and pricing information. Whether or not your child is scientifically inclined, a visit to the planetarium is something he is sure to enjoy. Close to the planetarium is the Nehru Art Gallery, which is also worth a visit.