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A unique travel package: Tour Asia’s largest slum – Dharavi

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I do cover a lot of online travel agencies and destinations on this blog, but most of them cover elite and traditional travel destinations. But today’s post talks about a place that is known for poverty and notoriety.

I accidentally stumbled upon this site of a traditional travel agency that offers guided tours to Dharavi….yes, Dharavi – The largest slum in Asia.

I was amazed when I read that because Dharavi is not a place where you would ideally like to be in most circumstances (at least that’s what most of us think!).

But in reality, there are hundreds of people – most of the westerners – visit Dharavi every year and come out with a completely new image.

Reality Tours and Travels is a brainchild of two motivated people, Krishna Poojari and Chris Way. One of their main aims of arranging these kinds of tours is to break the negative image of Dharavi and of people living in slums. Along with it, they also give 80% of the profit generated from this venture to an NGO. Surely a noble cause, I must say.

Here are some of the tours that you could take:

guided Dharavi Tours

It was amazing to read the comments left by people who took this tour. All of them recommended it whole heartedly.

Here is what some of them had to say.

Tomi says:
My partner Marilyn and I had the amazing experience through Dharavi in May this year, and as a newcomer to India, it is an absolute must in my opinion! I could not think of a better introduction to this fantastic country. I’m not sure i’ll ever be able to explain the effect this tour had to me personally, but it certainly had a huge impact on my way of thinking, i’m forever grateful! Thanks for the experience!

Sandra Wolton says
It gave us a fascinating introduction to Dharavi focusing on the enterprise, activity and hard work of the various communities living there, a  positive and enlightening experience helping us understand something of the inhabitants and the problems they struggle with daily in pursuit of a better life.  My strongest memory of Dharavi is the warm welcome we received, the huge smiles -  we can all learn such a lot! 
A Reality tour is worth every rupee the company works with a network of local contacts which make the tour especially interesting.  Reality runs various local projects for the people in Dharavi which are really making a difference.  A must!

After reading these comments, my pre-concieved *negative* notion about Dharavi has already subsided. Now that I am moving to India, this will be an interesting tour to take.

if you live in Mumbai, I highly recommend you try out. It would also be interesting to know if any of the readers have actually taken this tour.

  1. poetryman69 says

    I prefer to eradicate problems rather than visiting them. If only W wasn’t wasting a trillion dollars killing people in Iraq.

  2. trakin says

    Hi Xavier,
    Thanks for your comment, unfortunately I do not understand German…
    here is you comment translation,

    Hi folks, and there’s really good to nem purpose. You can stay in slums and it was good to learn and it helps others even. Not bad.

    One question…Did you actually stay there or did you go for this tour?

  3. sidharth says

    This tour actually shot into the limelight, so to speak, post a documentary by Discover or Nat Geo. I dont remember which one exactly now, but i saw it about 7 months back and shared your feelings of disbelief as well but it was interesting. The anchor was an Indian ladt traveling with one of the guides.

    Whether i would plunge myself into this remains to be seen.. and whether its the “best introduction” to our country also i think is debatable.

    Very interesting blog incidentally, bookmarked.

    Cheers!

  4. trakin says

    Saptarshi,
    I would love to hear your experience…if you are planning to go in December sometime, drop me a line, we could plan on going together (I will be in Pune from December). It am looking forward for it…

  5. Saptarshi says

    This is indeed a very interesting find. I’m going to find some time soon to go to that tour… Although I’ve been through slums of Mumbai quite a few times, it’ll be interesting to see what the tour is all about!

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