Food, Heritage Walks & Craft Stalls at Mumbai’s Kala Ghoda Arts Festival

The best part? It’s all free. | By NGT Staff

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For one week every year, Mumbai’s Kala Ghoda neighbourhood becomes a giant carnival for kids and adults, with zany art installations, quirky stores, and food stalls serving kebabs, gelato, and chaat. Photo: Ravi Shekhar/Dinodia Photo Library

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Every February, south Mumbai’s artsy neighbourhood of Kala Ghoda explodes with a riot of colour and sound, also known as the Kala Ghoda Arts Festival. From Sat February 4–Sun February 12, 2017, artists and performers from across the country descend on the city to showcase their work. Food stalls, music, dance, and theatre shows, heritage walks, workshops, and handicraft stalls all vie for attention. Best of all, entry is free.

Look out for street performers, like this gent, who turn any spot into a stage and are often more than happy to pose for a picture. Photo:

Look out for street performers, like this gent, who turn any spot into a stage and are often more than happy to pose for a picture. Photo: Shiresh Karrale Photography

Now in its 19th edition, the Kala Ghoda Arts Festival is one of the highlights of Mumbai’s cultural calendar and draws sizeable crowds, especially in the evenings. Traffic is cordoned off in the area, allowing visitors to browse through the stalls lining the sidewalks. Families feast on delicious aloo chat and hot-hot jalebi, ethnic shoppers buy funky kolhapuri chappals, and amateur photographers scout for odd angles. One of the biggest highlights is the art installations that pepper the area. Past editions have had Ferris wheels made out of bicycles, and Ambassador cars with funky paint jobs.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The bazaar is fun, but the best part of the festival is the workshops, which is spread over Kala Ghoda and nearby venues like the Azad Maidan and the Somaiya Centre for Lifelong Learning at Fort. Everything is within a 10-minute cab ride of Kala Ghoda, making it easy to spend the entire day at the festival. The schedule is still being finalised, but this year’s edition looks promising.

Take notes on the art of travel writing at a workshop conducted by our Editor-In-Chief Niloufer Venkatraman. Glimpse how spices have shaped history and tradition with food writer and APB Cook Studio owner Rushina Munshaw Ghildiyal. Take a class with chef and Le15 patisserie owner Pooja Dhingra.

For younger visitors, there’s a clay workshop with sculptors Arzan Khambatta and Sunil Padwal, and an interactive session on flamingoes and hornbills with naturalist Bittu Sahgal and author Deepal Dalal. Wind down with fabulous evening shows including classical dance by Mallika Sarabhai and her son Revanta Sarabhai, and a santoor performance by Rahul Sharma.

The Guide

Where Kala Ghoda, Mumbai

When Sat February 4–Sun February 12, 2017

Entry Free; some events require prior registration.

Details Visit www.facebook.com/kalaghodaartsfestival for updates and the schedule.

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