October 1, 2023

A morning at Dhobi Ghat

“Dhobi Ghat is one of the most popular tourist attractions in Mumbai,” say several websites I look into. Really? Ok, so I did land up there one morning, camera in hand, so I realize I have no right to be snarky but “tourist attraction?” There was even this major makeover proposed a couple of years ago but when I went last April, I saw no signs of anything having been made over, or even made cleaner. The dhobis are clearly tired of having camera thrust on their faces but a crisp 100 rupee note into the hands of the man who calls himself the supervisor gets me a hasty guided tour.

Anyway. Here are a few images from my morning at Dhobi Ghat.

Greens and whites

Morning sunlight

Rin ki safedi?

No doubt who this belongs to

You're taking my photo?

Press on

Don't argue with me

Clothes and chaos

More photographs from Dhobi Ghat on my flickr set here

Here is a short documentary on BBC – more than a 100,000 items of clothing are washed here every single day. And here is an interesting blog post by Meena Kadri on the almost error-free marking system used by the dhobis and the dabbawalas of Mumbai.

Also read: my story in the Singapore Airlines’ inflight magazine on Mumbai’s dabbawalas – I had great fun following them around South Mumbai for two days – Clockwork Couriers.

5 thoughts on “A morning at Dhobi Ghat

    1. I lived in Bombay for years and never went there – though I’d cross it ever so often. So when I went back on work for a few days last year, I made it a point to visit and see for myself what the fuss is all about!

  1. I went to Dhobi Ghat 3 months ago when I first arrived in India and being from America I could not understand why it’s a “tourist attraction”. I didn’t get it at all. I love your photos though. Especially the second one with then light streaming in.

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