Weddings in India are a grand affair, perhaps grander than anywhere else in the world. Ostentatious decorations, lots of food, free-flowing booze (sometimes) and a long guest list are all characteristic of a typical Indian wedding. While weddings have always been a big-deal, a recent trend that has caught up in India is that of pre-wedding photo shoots. Every couple that’s on the verge of tying the knot indulges in a pre-wedding shoot at beautiful locations. These photographs serve as a final ode to the courtship of the couple who will soon be brought together in holy matrimony. India is blessed with beautiful locales in and around all the major cities which can provide romantic backdrops for a memorable photo shoot. Take Mumbai for instance. It is renowned as one of the busiest cities in the world and often mistaken to be just a concrete jungle with hardly any scenic beauty. However, once you get out of your home or hotel room and start exploring, you realize that Mumbai is full of wonderful places that are ideal for clicks. So, if you are a resident of Mumbai and wish to capture some romantic moments with your partner before the big day, here are some places you could consider for the perfect pre-wedding photo shoot:
Mumbai’s most popular tourist spot and one of the most scenic places of the city is Marine Drive. Overlooking the massive Arabian Sea, Marine Drive provides a wonderful backdrop of the city skyline on one side and the beautiful setting sun on the other. It is thronged by people all day long starting with fitness enthusiasts early in the morning to love birds later in the evening. The entire 3.5 km stretch springs to life in the evening when the street lights turn on making it look like a pearl necklace and therefore giving it the sobriquet Queen’s necklace. You can pick any spot along the stretch for that perfect shot.
One of the most visited spots in the western suburbs of Mumbai, Band stand in Bandra has a beautiful setting with the lovely Portuguese Bandra fort as the backdrop. Add to that the magnificent structure of the Bandra-Worli Sea Link and what you have is an unmatched location for a stunning photo shoot. It is surrounded by other beautiful stretches like Carter road too so you can make a day out of it by shooting at various beautiful locations in Bandra. From hep restaurants to trendy markets, Bandra has it all!
If you are looking for something rustic, the Elephanta caves are your best bet. A UNESCO World Heritage site, the Elephanta caves are a popular tourist attraction for history buffs. Here, you will find cave temples with ancient sculptures of Hindu Gods. The rock-cut architecture provides a beautiful backdrop for a unique photo shoot. With the right colors, mood and a good photographer, you can do wonders here.
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Captured in numerous Bollywood movies due to its beautiful structure and fame as one of Mumbai’s renowned buildings, the Asiatic society also called as Asiatic library is one of Mumbai’s most prominent landmarks. It holds historic significance as it used to be the place where intellectuals would meet back in the 19th and 20th century. Today, it is one of the most photographed places of Mumbai and one of the oldest literary societies of India. The steps leading up to the main door with the building as the backdrop makes for an ideal spot to click some fine photos.
Sanjay Gandhi National Park
And then there is the raw, natural beauty of Sanjay Gandhi National park in Borivili. If you are looking for a place with green backdrops, wilderness and a natural setting right in the middle of a metropolitan city, then Sanjay Gandhi National Park is your answer. In fact, it is the only such park anywhere in the world. You can hike up the View Point trail which will take you to the highest point of the park with a lovely panoramic view of the city which you can use as the perfect backdrop for your pre-wedding shoot. If you are lucky, you can also get some beautiful birds or wild beasts in the background.
Similar to the Elephanta caves, the Kanheri caves provide a rustic setting for your photo shoot. They are located within the Sanjay Gandhi National Park premises and are known to be among the earliest cave temples in India. As you can see from the rock-cut temples, Kanheri caves were a major Buddhist settlement between the first and tenth century and the monks built several monasteries here. The beautiful inscriptions that you find here will take you back in time. While the Elephanta caves are a huge tourist spot, you will find Kanheri caves to be unadorned and therefore, ideal for a romantic photo shoot without many people to disturb you.
Gateway of India
Perhaps the most popular landmark in the city of Mumbai, the Gateway of India is a beautiful structure with the massive Arabian Sea behind it and the magnificent Taj Mahal Palace hotel right next to it. Built to commemorate the first visit of King George V and Queen Mary in 1911, the Gateway of India’s construction was completed in 1924 and it has remained one of India’s most iconic monuments since then. While it is usually full of tourists and locals making it difficult for a romantic shoot, if you try to get there early in the morning and pick the right spot, you can get some amazing clicks.
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A lesser-known church located in Navy Nagar which is the far end of south Mumbai, the Afghan church is a magnificent structure that can actually prove to be a perfect place for a pre-wedding photo shoot. Built in the 19th century to honour the lives that were lost in the first Afghan war, the church is a gorgeous building with marvellous gothic architecture. It can provide a lovely setting for a romantic shoot and the fact that its premises are hardly ever crowded makes it convenient and ideal for that romantic pre-wedding click.
Karnala Bird sanctuary
Once you move a few kilometres out of Mumbai, you enter the wonderful green world of the Western Ghats which can prove to be the most beautiful locales in the country for photo shoots. One such beautiful place full of greenery is the Karnala bird sanctuary located just 60 km from Mumbai. With moist deciduous forests and several species of migratory birds, the Karnala bird sanctuary makes for a wonderful destination amidst natural beauty. It provides the perfect backdrop for a romantic pre-wedding photo shoot.
And how can we miss Mumbai’s most popular getaway, the lovely hill station of Lonavala. No matter how popular and touristy Lonavala gets, its charm continues to allure people all year round. Be it the wonderful drive from Mumbai to Lonavala or the beautiful views like the one from Tiger point, Lonavala is full of amazing spots for photography. It is abundant in backdrops of stunning greenery, beautiful valleys, and cloud-laden hills. There are several places in and around Lonavala where romance is just in the air. Places like the Pawna lake also make for extremely picturesque spots for a breathtaking photo shoot. Not only will these places provide the right landscapes, they will also put you in the best romantic mood possible for that perfect click with your loved one.
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