Water transport in Mumbai consists of ferries, hovercraft and catamarans.
Proposals to start more water services were initially mooted in the 1990s but were held up due to legal issues. Services are provided by both government agencies as well as private partners.
The Maharashtra Maritime Board granted permission to a private operator to begin regular ferry services from Mora jetty in Uran to Elephanta (Gharapuri) from 15 April 2017.
The Brihanmumbai Electricity Supply and Transport Undertaking (BEST), started a ferry operations between Manori and Marve Beach in 1981, but they were soon taken over by private operators.
Subsequently, the Maharashtra State Road Development Corporation (MSRDC) was selected to undertake the work of setting up terminals at Nariman Point, Bandra, Juhu, Versova, and Marve Beach.
Hovercraft used to ply between the Gateway of India in Mumbai and CBD Belapur and Vashi in Navi Mumbai between 1994 and 1999 but the services were subsequently stopped due to lack of sufficient water transport infrastructure. The services used British made hovercraft and were operated by as a joint venture between the government and Mahindra and Mahindra, an Indian conglomerate. The City and Industrial Development Corporation (CIDCO) and Maharashtra Maritime Board (MMB) floated proposals to restart hovercraft services from CBD Belapur to reduce travel time from an hour and more to less than half an hour. The CIDCO developed hoverport in CBD Belapur was taken over by the Indian Coast Guard as an ad hoc base for providing security to water transport services till its permanent base at Nerul adjacent to Training Ship Chanakya was set up.
Catamarans and ferries are operated by private operators from the Gateway of India to Mandwa from where the operators run connecting buses to Alibaug. In 2009, following the 2008 Mumbai attacks, the Government of Maharashtra decided to shut down the jetties at the Gateway of India and instead open up newer ones near the Radio Club for boats bound for Rewas and Mandwa.
In 2011, the Mumbai Metropolitan Region Development Authority (MMRDA), proposed to run roll on roll off (RORO) services from Ferry Wharf to Mandwa.