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Taj Mahal - Symbol of Love
We booked a bus for Fixed Departure Tour (Delhi-Taj Mahal-Agra-Mathura-Delhi) operated by Southern Travels (P) Ltd., New Delhi. Our bus left Delhi at 6:00 a.m. and returned back at 10:20 p.m. Our trip to Taj Mahal was memorable. I share my experience here
Travelling some 200 kms from Delhi, we reached Agra, the city of the Taj Mahal, in Uttar Pradesh state of North India. An old city it appeared with dust and noisy. Our bus stopped in front of the Agra Fort, one of the UNESO World Heritage Sites in Agra. Agra Fort is also known as Lal Haveli. The fort is very stately, and features the classic red. Agra was the capital of the Mughal empire from 1526 to 1658.
Khass Mahal, Agra Fort
Diwan-i-Am (Hall of Public Audience), Agra Fort
Two of the fort's gates are called as Delhi Gate and Lahore Gate. We entered via Lahore Gate, also known as Amar Singh Gate. Jahangiri Mahal is the most noteworthy building inside the Agra Fort. The Mahal was the principal palace for women belonging to the royal family and used mainly by the Rajput wives of Akbar. The Hall of Public Audience, Diwan-i-Am, was used to speak to the people and listen to petitioners. The Hall of Private Audience, Diwan-i-Khaas, was used to receive kings and dignitary.This Fort is close to Taj Mahal. We can watch Taj Mahal from Agra Fort in good climate condition.
Viewing the Taj Mahal from Agra Fort
Taj Mahal from Agra Fort
A battery-operated car brought us to the check point, and there was a brief security check before you entered the area. Shoes were not allowed. Arms, ammunition, fire, smoking items, tobacco products, liquor, food, chewing gum, head phones, knives, wire, mobile charger, electric goods, iPods and MP3 music players are prohibited inside the Taj Mahal complex. Video cameras are permitted after the security check. Water in transparent bottles, small video cameras, still cameras, mobile phones and small ladies' purses are allowed inside the Taj Mahal. Lockers are available at the gates to keep your belongings. Avoid touching and scratching the walls and surfaces of the monument. When we entered the Taj Mahal, we were blessed with the shower of rain.
Main entrance gate, Taj Mahal
The main gateway (darwaza) is a monumental structure built primarily of red marbles. The Mughal garden uses raised pathways that divide each of the four quarters of the garden into 16 sunken flower beds. A raised marble water tank at the center of the garden reflects the image of the mausoleum. The Taj Mahal garden is unusual since the main element, the tomb, is located at the end of the garden.
Taj Mahal from the main entrance gate
Main entrance gate from South, Taj Mahal
Taj Mahal is a majestic and awesome monument. At the first sight, Taj Mahal is absolutley stunning. To me it looks like a beautiful cut out, a well-drawn white painting, a symbol of love, a picture of a marvellous building projected on the cloudy sky. Taj Mahal is the best example of Mughal architecture which is the combination of Turkish, Persian and Indian architectural styles. It was constructed by the Mughal Emperor Shah Jahan in memory of his better half Mumtaz Mahal in twenty years. UNESCO declared the Taj Mahal a World Heritage Site in 1983. Babur’s grandson Akbar made Agra his capital and reconstructed the Agra Fort and Akbar’s grandson Shah Jehan constructed the most famous monument Taj Mahal. Shah Jehan was also buried in the white Taj, next to his beloved wife Mumtaj Begum. The Taj is one of the most well preserved and architecturally beautiful tombs in the world. Taj Mahal is a religious site and a mausoleum. So visitors are requested not to make noise.
Friends in Taj Mahal
Taj Mahal at photo finish
At the far end of the complex, there are two grand red sandstone buildings that are open to the sides of the tomb. The western building is a mosque and the other is the jawab (answer) that may have been used as a guesthouse.The Taj Mahal attracts a large number of tourists. The grounds are open from 6 a.m. to 7 p.m. weekdays, except for Friday.
Minars and Mosque
I read somewhere that after visiting Taj Mahal, the wife of Captain Sleeman remarked that “I cannot tell you what I think, for I know not how to criticise such a building, but I can tell you what I feel. I would die tomorrow to have such another over me”.
Moving towards The Taj Mahal
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