Agra & the Taj Mahal

So, the Taj Mahal – is pretty.damn.beautiful. There’s no denying it, it’s a fact. We decided to see the sunrise of the Taj, which meant dragging ourselves out of bed at 5:15am – no easy task.

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The walk from our hotel to the Taj was only about 20 mins, but in the pitch black darkness of night. It turns out we needed to walk through a non-lit, very dark park – we stumbled across a few locals playing football, sitting around small fires, generally looking at us like we were crazy people. To be honest, we must have looked pretty odd, with scared expressions on our faces. I can tell you now, had I been on my own – there’s no way I’d have walked down there.

But luckily enough we ended up at the front of the queue, we paid our entrance fee – which as usual is more than the fee for the locals, which is something as a Brit you just have to get used to and make your peace with. However, the guards at the Taj Mahal made us wait for ages, so we did only just make the end of the sunrise. As the gates opened, people began running to see the beautiful building and get that perfect shot. I managed to get a photo with no one in it, but you have to be quick, the place starts filling up pretty quickly and soon the place was full.

There’s not really any words I can use to describe the Taj Mahal, so I’ll let the photos do the talking…

2014-09-07_0042 2014-09-07_0043 2014-09-07_0044 2014-09-07_0045 2014-09-07_0046 2014-09-07_0047 2014-09-07_0041 Working in the fields, Taj Mahal

I didn’t see much of the city of Agra, but what I saw, I didn’t love – there was the lack of character we’d found in Delhi and Mumbai, the people didn’t seem as warm and it just didn’t give us a good vibe. That said, had we explored more – maybe I would have changed my mind.

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Agra Round Up:
- Don’t walk to the Taj alone in the pitch black
- Don’t order pasta – it’s likely to be noodles with tomato ketchup thrown on for good luck.
- Try and see the Taj Mahal from the back too, worth the visit but not worth paying for. Act nonchalant and you make get away with not paying like we did by walking by the pay booth accidently. (honestly!)
- The Taj Mahal does get pretty busy, it’s worth making the effort to see it at sun rise, if not for the beautiful colours and light for the peace

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