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Dharavi Tour & Family Lunch


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Why Book With Us?

  • Trusted and experienced local guides
  • Hassle-free booking and attentive customer service
  • 80% profit goes back to our sister NGO Reality Gives

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3.5 Hours
Availability : All days
Min Age : 2+
Max People : 6
Tour Details


Daily, 3.5 hours including lunch

9:15am from Churchgate Station

10:00am from Mahim Station

Please Note: Available spots per day is limited so advanced booking is recommended.


Rs 1,500 per person (Mahim Station)

Rs 1,500 per person (Churchgate Station)

Rs 6,000 for private tour up to 4 people


Group Size

      Minimum: 2 people

      Maximum: 6 people

(For larger groups, please get in touch)

Known to many as ‘one of the largest slums in Asia’, we prefer to think of Dharavi as Mumbai’s beating heart. It houses about one million of Mumbai’s inhabitants and its industries have an annual turnover of approximately US$ 665 million. 

Through our educational walking tours, visitors experience a wide range of these business activities: recycling, pottery-making, embroidery, bakery, soap factory, leather tanning, poppadom-making and many more. 

We’ll also visit the residential areas of Dharavi. People from all over India have come to live in Dharavi, making it a microcosm of India. This diversity is apparent in the temples, mosques, churches and pagodas that stand side by side. 

Our three community centres that are funded through the profits from the tours are also located in the residential area. We will visit one of them and you will learn about the programs that our NGO, Reality Gives, offers the community. 

Our introduction to Dharavi aims to give visitors a much more nuanced understanding of life and work in Mumbai slums.

Family Lunch: Towards the end of the tour, we will walk to a nearby family home for a vegetarian meal. Not only will you get additional insight into Dharavi, but you’ll provide a local family with some extra income. Get comfortable and feast the local way, sitting on the floor and eating with your hands.

Up for more? Lunch will end with the perfect amount of time to make it to the start of our South Mumbai Market Tour.


Recycling Area

Metal and plastic comes from all over the world to Dharavi to be recycled. See the entire recycling process from sorting to the finished plastic pellets.

Rooftop Visit

The tin hutments that house so many human lives stretch on as far as you can see. You will never forget this view!

Community Centre

Our Community Centre, supported by funds from the tour, provides education in English, computers and life skills to the teenagers and young adults of Dharavi. Other activities such as sports, dancing, and yoga are also hosted at our community centres.

Kumbharwada Pottery Colony

The Kumbbharwada neighborhood is more than 150 years old and is the oldest part of Dharavi. Artisans create various types of earthen pots that are shipped all over India.

Family Lunch

After the tour, enjoy a vegetarian lunch in a local family’s home.

Meeting Point

Churchgate Station or Mahim Station

Churchgate Station:

There are four entrances to Churchgate Station, including two subways. The first photo shows the station as you approach from Colaba and where the entrance is. Once inside the station, go to the book stall about 30 metres before the platforms (as shown in the next two photos). Look for the sign saying “Wheeler.” (Photos: OneTwoThree)

Mahim Station:

We meet at the main entrance and ticket office on the West side of the station (photo 1). To check if you are in the right spot, verify that V-Jai Restaurant and Bakery is opposite and Cafe Coffee Day is diagonally opposite. (Photos: OneTwoThree)

End Point

Ends where we eat lunch near 90ft road. The nearest intersection is 60 feet and 90 feet road. Your guide will help you find the best way to get where you’re going next.


3.5 hour including lunch

9:15am from Churchgate Station

10:00am from Mahim Station


What will I see in Dharavi?

We focus on the small scale industries in Dharavi, such as recycling, the making of clay pots, embroidery, bakery, soap factory, leather tanning, papad (poppadom) making and many others, most of which take place in very small spaces.We also pass by the residential areas, where you really get a feel of how the people live and the sense of community that exists in the area.

People from all over India and from all religions live in Dharavi, and you will see this diversity. On the tour you will pass Hindu temples, mosques and churches in the area. When open, we visit the social projects run by our sister organisation and NGO Reality Gives, such as the community centre. It is quite an adventure to pass through the narrow alleys and you will almost certainly lose your sense of direction!.

Is Dharavi safe?

Although we cannot take responsibility should anything happen, we believe that the places that we visit are very safe. There are a lot of people in Dharavi (one million approximately in an area of 0.7 square miles) and there is a strong police presence in the area. Dharavi is generally full of hard-working, honest people, although for security purposes we ask you not to take valuables with you on the tour.

In the small alleys you have to be careful of low hanging roofs, open drains, and occasionally exposed electric wires. Also, in some of the factories that we visit there are fumes that can be hazardous. Since April 2014 we have been tracking whether our guests felt safe throughout the tour on our post-tour questionnaire; 99.7% of our guests felt completely safe throughout the tour.

Is Dharavi hygienic?

With the very high density of population and the limited infrastructure and sanitation facilities, there are areas which are quite dirty and smelly. We ask you to wear covered shoes.

What clothing should be worn on the tour?

We recommend that you wear covered shoes as some areas can be dirty, especially during the monsoon months from June to mid September. We ask ladies to dress modestly which means no sleeveless shirts, short shorts, or low tops.

Why can we not bring cameras on the slum tours?

We have a strict no camera policy in order to respect the privacy of the local residents. Dharavi has received a lot of attention from the media and the residents are very wary of being exploited. The policy may be considered strict but our relationship with the Dharavi community has been built over a number of years based on mutual respect. We do not wish for even the occasional photo as it could be incorrectly perceived as our starting to permit general photography on our tours. We can, however, send you a link to Dharavi photos which can be downloaded. There is also the opportunity to buy postcards and photos at the end of the tour, proceeds from which go to the community projects in the area.

Can I buy anything on the tour?

We don’t sell or ask you to buy any products made by the residents of Dharavi on the tour. We don’t want you to feel obliged to buy anything. If there is anything in particular that you find interesting on the tour, then by all means you can speak to the guide and he can help you buy it. There is also the opportunity to buy postcards and other merchandise at the end of the tour, proceeds from which go to community projects in the area.

Is it appropriate to bring small children on the tour?

There are health hazards highlighted above which children need to be very aware of. Otherwise we see no problem with bringing children of any age on the tour. Indians are very welcoming and receptive to young people.

I don't like going on organised tours. Is it possible to visit Dharavi on my own?

Yes it is possible to visit Dharavi on your own, and in our opinion it is safe to do so. However you will not know the best places to go, the area is like a maze and you will not gain the same insight as with one of our guides.

I want to do a Dharavi tour and another tour on the same day. Is this advisable?

Absolutely! Our tour timings were decided with this in mind. Have a look at the timings for the tours and let us know!

I hear that Dharavi is going to be redeveloped. Will I still be able to see the area?

The redevelopment plan has been stalled many times and now it looks like the original plan has been scrapped and a new one is being suggested. Due to the value of the land in Dharavi now, some say that redevelopment in some form is inevitable but there are still a lot of issues to be resolved and the developers have still not been announced. It should be possible to visit Dharavi even while the development (which would take several years) takes place.

The Dharavi Tour with Car Transport seems very long. Why is this?

For the “with car transport” option, the total time is approximately 4.5 hours. This includes transport to Dharavi and back from our office in Colaba, or to and from your hotel. For people staying in Colaba, if you were to catch the train/taxi to Dharavi from Colaba, the transport time would be approximately 50 mins to an hour each way, so the total time to do the Dharavi Tour and the Dharavi Tour with Car Transport is approximately the same.

How is the private tour with car transport different from the shared version?

On the shared version, you will need to meet outside our office in Colaba at the stipulated time. On the private tour with car transport, other visitors will not come on the tour with you and we will come to your hotel or residence to pick you up and drop you back. The tour is more flexible as well to what you want to see. Since we pass by areas of interest between Colaba and Dharavi, to get the most out of the private tour, it is best to start from Colaba, Fort or Marine Drive. For tourists staying in other parts of Mumbai who wish to do the private tour with transport (and hence be picked up from their hotel) we can advise on what will and will not be included in the tour depending on the location of your hotel.

I want to do a slum and sightseeing tour in a group with other people. Is this possible?

Unfortnately, the slum and sightseeing tour is a private tour only.

I want to do a sightseeing tour in a group with other people. Is this possible?

The sightseeing tour is a private tour. There isn’t the demand currently to do a shared tour.

I am staying in Colaba. Where should I meet for the short tour?

The easiest place to meet the guide is at Churchgate station- this is a 15-20 minute walk from Colaba.

I am staying near the airport/Juhu/Bandra. Should I do the Dharavi Tour with Car Transport?

As you are staying north of Dharavi, it would make the most sense to do the regular Dharavi Tour and meet us directly at Mahim Station.

If you would like car transport then a private tour with car transport would be a good option. This way we could pick you up directly at your hotel. But please note that only the Dharavi part of the trip would be covered (ie. you would not see the red-light area and open-air laundry). There would also be an additional charge to cover the extra distance that our car would have to come. If you wish to do a private tour with car transport and also see the other parts of the tour such as the red-light area and the open-air laundry, then contact us and we will try to arrange something.

If you would still like to do the shared Dharavi Tour with Car Transport, you will need to be at our office at 8.30am. It will take about 80 minutes/80 minutes/60 minutes to reach by taxi so it would be an early start! If you still wish to go, then you might consider making your own way back to your hotel/residence after the Dharavi part of the tour.

Where is Dharavi?

Dharavi is situated between Mahim and Sion – two areas at the northern tip of South Mumbai, just before the suburbs commence (Bandra and Kurla). It is sandwiched between the Western and Central Railway lines. It is about 10km south of the International Airport and 18km north of Colaba, the main tourist area.

I am meeting you at Dharavi. How long does it take to get there?


By train: it is a 15-20 minute walk to Churchgate station and then it takes approximately 45 minutes to buy the ticket and catch a “slow train” to Dharavi (Mahim Junction).
By taxi: By taxi it takes about 50 minutes to an hour (cost approximately Rs 300)

By train: it is a 15-20 minute walk to Churchgate station and then it takes approximately 45 minutes to buy the ticket and catch a “slow train” to Dharavi (Mahim Junction).
By taxi: it takes about 35 minutes in the afternoon, and 50 minutes in the morning. Cost: approximately Rs 500. (note: by auto-rickshaw not possible)

By train: you need to go to Vile Parle or Santa Cruz Station and catch a “slow train” to Mahim Junction. Total time approx 30 mins.
By taxi: it takes about 35 minutes in the afternoon, and 50 minutes in the morning. Cost: approximately Rs 200 (note: by auto-rickshaw not possible)

5 Reviews
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Solo Traveller

Our guide Chetan told us that he’d grown up in Dharavi (the main slum area in Mumbai) and we have to say his knowledge of the area, the history and possibly the future of it, the people and his expertise in navigating the alleyways made him a perfect guide.
Another point, the company are located in the slum itself and use 80% of the tour profits to help fund a education project in the slum so your booking helps residents directly.
We were booked in for the lunch as well and have to say it was truly delicious.
Truly an eye opening tour, tempered with some very interesting insights from a former resident who now works as a guide for the company.

September 28, 2019

Go Team Bee

Group Traveller

My goodness, what a fantastic experience. We had the humble pleasure of being shown round the unique community of Dharavi by the amazing Javed. Let me tell you if you want to book this tour, you want to ask for him! His local knowledge and love of Mumbai, and in particular the Dharavi slums just radiated throughout the tour.

The tour itself is incredibly respectful, and I feel honoured to have been allowed access to Dharavi and its wonderful people. Everyone was smiling, children stopped to say hello. The work they do within that community is incredible, from the plastic recycling (which I worry about their health doing!!!) to the leather making. This is a community of hard workers, and togetherness. It was interesting to hear that there is a low crime rate because people watch out for each other. The rest of the world could do with learning a thing or two from the Dharavi community!! I do not want to spoil it for you but the history behind this place is just eye-opening!

We had the pleasure of meeting the owner of the business too, what a lovely guy, all of them were full of smiles and the stories they can tell you about how they put 80% of their profits back into community causes such as education is just inspiring.

As if it wasn’t amazing enough navigating the small walkways filled with people and animals we then were hosted lunch by the most amazing woman, who we called mum. She made us three dishes, along with poppadoms and I tell you now I have never tasted such good food in all my life! Mum was a wonderful hostess despite not speaking any English, I wish we could have spent more time getting to know her.Please pass on our sincerest thanks, it was an honour to be her guests.

Thank you again for showing me and my mum Dharavi/Mumbai in its glory yesterday. I am hoping to book another tour with you this week.

August 21, 2019

Sarah P

Group Traveller

This was the best value tour we’ve done in the 4 weeks we’ve had in India. Excellent tour:informative, interesting, eye opening, fun and safe. Changed our understanding of slum life. Simran, our guide was friendly, helpful, open, a great communicator and a lovely. We were 59 and 61 yo and despite wonky knees we managed! We had a beautiful lunch with a local family. Take your children: it will help them to understand how privileged they are! Thoroughly recommend this tour.

June 18, 2019

linda m

Group Traveller

What a amazing tour , our guide Tabby was the best , He was attentive, knowledgeable and had a great sense of humour. There was absolutely no pressure to buy from the business. Lovely to see the real side of the lives of the Dharavi people so happy in there environment. Recommend the family lunch was beautiful food in very hygienic environment.

December 29, 2018


Group Traveller

We had Nilesh as our guide for a private tour of Dharavi and lunch with a local family. Nilesh was really informative, friendly and willing to answer any questions. Before we did the slum tour we where questioning whether it was morally right doing one. After a lot of research we choose to do the tour with reality tours based on how they give back to the Dharvai. We went expecting the slum to be full of thieves, people not wanting to work. But our perspective changed on how working class and self sufficient the people were and working towards a better future. It has given me a greater appreciation to how lucky we are here in Australia. We had the lunch with a local family and it was one of the best meals we had in India.

November 15, 2017