The Gateway structure stands in the edge of a pier called Wellington Pier also popularly known as Apollo Bunder.
The Gateway overlooks the Arabian Sea.
The Gateway of India memorial at the pier was envisaged to receive King George V and Queen Mary of Britain during the colonial era.
Their visit en route to Delhi Durbar, the power center of the Raj era happened in 1911, however the this memorial arch could be completed only in 1924, over a decade after this visit! Even then the rest of the civil works had to be abandoned due to shortage of funds.
What actually stood in its place in 1911 to welcome the royal couple was a cardboard replica of this structure!
The Gateway of India design is in the so called Indo-Saracenic style, a hybrid architectural style combining many schools of architectures. The design was done by the Scottish architect George Wittet, known for designing a large number of Mumbai's colonial structures .
Apart from the Gateway of India, some of his works works in Mumbai's heritage include the Prince of Wales Museum, Institute of Science, the Small Causes Court at Dhobi Talao, Wadia Maternity Hospital at Parel, Bombay House located near Flora Fountain, King Edward Memorial Hospital, The Grand Hotel and many other buildings at the Ballard Estate, a European style business district in Mumbai.
Ironically the last British troops to leave India too passed through this gateway in 1948!
The Gateway of India environs is the epicenter of Mumbai's tourist district. Towards its left is the ferry point for Elephanta Island. On its right is Apollo Bunder, an erstwhile fishing dockyard, now a popular weekend hangout. The Taj Mahal Hotel located right next to the Gateway of India is another majestic piece of the heritage architecture.
Gateway of India and its surrounding locale is an ideal spot for a Heritage Walk in Mumbai.
Take a taxi or bus to Gateway of India from CST Train station or Churchgate Station.
If you are a fitness freak, just walk, and call it a heritage walk! It's about 2km from either stations to the Gateway of India. The trail is right though some of the legendary heritage landmarks of Mumbai.