If you’re in India for vacation, there are several things to see and do. And although you can enjoy the scenery and look at the several ancient monuments, your tour is incomplete unless you go on the Bollywood tour.
If you are in the land of Bollywood, you should definitely try to participate in the tour of Bollywood.
There are several tour operators who organize a Bollywood tour that includes a visit to the movie studios (located in film-city), multiple locations where Bollywood movies are filmed, and you also get to see some celebrities (as well as their homes where they live).
As part of the Bollywood Tour, you get to see the Taj and Gateway of India, followed by “star homes” (houses of superstars – Shahrukh and Salman Khan) in Bandra. Bollywood Tours take you to film sets and recording studios. You get to see behind-the-scenes action. The tour ends with series of dances.
For a foreigner in India (who’s not a die-hard Bollywood fan), its definitely interesting and a learning experience to see the industry that churns out thousands of movies every year. You never know, you could even be asked to do a small role as there’s always a demand for foreign faces in Bollywood movies.
One more thing to remember. When in India, do try to learn more about its culture; it will only make your experience more pleasant during the trip.
So the next time, you’re in Mumbai during the monsoon months, make sure you checkout the Dahi Handi celebrations, and the Ganesh Chaturthi festival in Mumbai. These are celebrated on a grand scale in Mumbai, and you could even get to see few Bollywood celebrities at one of the events.
Read: More about the film city tour.
Overview of Bollywood Tour
The Half day tour of Bollywood includes the following:
- You can take the half day Bollywood tour either at at 10:00AM in the morning, or at 02:00PM in the afternoon.
- You will be picked-up from the hotel, and driven to one of the nearby shooting locations, where you can see live shooting of Bollywood movie – stars practicing their dialogues, director discussing scenes with actors, crew members preparing for a shot, technicians preparing the sets.
- Post the shooting, you will be taken to the dance hall, where you can enjoy live dance performances of professional Bollywood dancers. On the way towards the hall, you can see posters of legends of the Hindi Film Industry.
- Next, you will visit the abodes of your favourite Bollywood stars
- You will also visit animation, VFX and music recording studios. You will also see choreographers making the actors learn their dance steps, stunt actors practicing their stunts, and more.
- At the end of the tour, you will be driven back to your hotel or the pick-up destination.
- All Entrance Fees included
- Hotel pickup and drop-off
- Transport by private, air-conditioned vehicle
- Informative, English-speaking guide
- Professional driver
- Dinner (full-day tour only)
- Movie ticket (full-day tour only)
One of the best tours during our two week vacation in India. Just cant rate it highly enough. To have a first class tour, your need a excellent guide, and our guide for the day ‘Imran excelled in every department! Not only was he very knowledgeable on the whole history of Bollywood and who the main players were he was also well versed on the history of Mumbai and India. Imran took us a drive-by tour of the stars houses were we managed to catch a glimpse of one walking along the street. Then it was off to the studios where were taken behind the scenes of live shoots on both TV shows and Bollywood films. He even managed to get us pictures with the stars. We were also taken to a 1st class Indian restaurant for lunch. As said just cant rate this tour or our guide highly enough so go on live a little and book it!!
The visit to SJI studio was good…but the dance performance was done with only one set of dancers in a small room…..The second visit was planned for another studio but we were taken to an outdoor location with some not so interesting shooting so please first confirm with your guide for visits
Akash Kapoor says
Just wanted to pass along our thoughts on the Bollywood tour as we felt our experience was a little disappointing to say the least for the City + Bollywood Tour.
Starting with the very beginning, the guide was late in the morning. We planned for 9-930 the night before, but he didn’t arrive until 10:30am citing traffic as the reason. But as Indians we are all well aware that traffic is the norm in Mumbai and should be planned for accordingly.
A late start means everything was either delayed or rushed as a result. We proceeded with the tour and had to mention each of the viewpoints serving as a reminder whereas I would think it’s an expectation that the guide would show us everything without mention. At Taj and Gateway of India we made a short stopover but were wondering that for us it turned out that we had already seen it before but for other tourists how would you expect them to see and enjoy the place in a short rushed time? We then reminded him of Mani Bhawan and other viewpoints, before making our way towards “star homes”.
This was definitely the most oversold part of the tour as we saw Shahrukh Khan and Salman’s house and Farhan Akhtar. In fact there were other houses on the way that we enquired about to which the guide informed us that it belonged to this celebrity etc, but again I would think this is an expectation, especially when your travellers are Indian. (no kidding, I was able to provide more celebrity addresses on an Ola cab ride) we asked of other houses in Pali Hill and Amitabh’s house but it was “out of the way” and also apparently the houses you show depends on where the tour begins which is quite disappointing, a tour should have a proper itinerary.
After the fact, I also reconciled with the word doc and noticed the restaurant we were taken to was Shalimar and not Copperchimney – we were not given an option and once again, this speaks to my point that as the guest I felt like I should have policed the entire route and every fine detail (maybe I should have gotten paid to be the co-pilot). The restaurant was definitely not hygienic as there were fruit flies on pickles and even our drinks but since we were already “late” for the dance we made our way out to SJ. The studio itself is pretty substandard and for serials, yet the guide did a good job to show us around because he was kind enough to arrange us another viewing of another shoot at Filmistaan. At the same time, he emphasized that it was a personal favor though he mentioned the company has relations with studios so they are aware of shoots so not sure if the facts reconciled there and if it really was an additional favor. Such additional favors feel quite burdening so would try and watch the language for guests.
The highlights were the singing studio though again the experience should not feel rushed and feel as if it is not included in the tour but done as a favor. (The guide was kind to ask if any of us sings, but if we said no it would not be a part of the tour… I would expect the tour to be complete as per the itinerary because a traveller would not know what a recording studio experience is like regardless of whether or not they sing).It should be a more organized natural part of the tour as it changes the way one perceives the tour and enjoys it.
All in all, at over $200 per person the tour was not worth the price whatsoever. The car itself was substandard, I’m sure at that cost a newer fresher car can be arranged as it smelled of smoke (cigarette smokes) which is quite disgusting.
Rudra Tandon says
I am a total Bollywood freak and this was the kind of trip I wanted to go on. Not excited about Mumbai sight-seeing, I was only interested in the Bollywood part. You might think shooting is a normal process but its tricky. Got a chance to visit live shooting, various studios…Loved it.