Home > India > The Taj Mahal – it’s a gem

The Taj Mahal – it’s a gem

Queuing outside the massive walls waiting for dawn, we worried that the anticipation for Taj Mahal may spoil it – it may not live upto expectations – but we were not disappointed.

the first view as you come through the gate

Turning the corner and walking through the gate for the first glimpse is breathtaking, a surreal perfect gem sitting atop a plinth with the mist still hanging in the air and the sun slowly rising in the east. We were one of the first tourists to enter, and savoured the first few minutes we had in relative peace.


We tried to recreate the famous Diana picture, but by the time we got there, so were several hundred others, so we gave that up and enjoyed walking around and through the monument. On cue, Theo pipes up “I don’t like this white building”. There is no pleasing some. For the rest of us, the place definitely lives upto the hype and is one of those places that should make the list of things to do before you die. We were very glad we came and really enjoyed just wandering around and chilling out.

almost like Diana


Having our fill, we left Agra and the Taj behind, heading out on the road to Jaipur, and after an hour stopping at Fatepur Sicri – a place that would give Vietnamese hawkers a run for their money. We are reasonably well practiced at saying no, but even we succumbed to a miniature handmade chess set after bargaining the poor lad hard from 1500 rupees to 100 and then feeling guilty and giving him 200!
The place is another 16th century Red Fort on top of a hill, but this one feels slightly different, it is more of a series of enclosed cascading terraces with standalone pavilions. Still very pretty, but after a few hard days, we are flagging and looking forward to a few nights in Jaipur to recharge the batteries.

Theo the photographer - low level specialist

theo enjoying clambering in his own little world.

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