The Taj Mahal, an iconic symbol of love and one of the seven wonders of the world, is a must-visit destination for anyone traveling to India. Its majestic beauty, intricate carvings, and fascinating history make it a true wonder of the world. If you’re planning a taj mahal tour package, here’s everything you need to know to make your visit unforgettable.
History of the Taj Mahal
The Taj Mahal was established by Mughal emperor Shah Jahan in memory of his lovable wife, Mumtaz Mahal, who died during childbirth in 1631. Construction work initiated in 1632 and was completed in 1653.
What to See and Do?
The Taj Mahal is open from sunrise to sunset, and it’s best to visit early in the morning to avoid the crowds. Some of the must-see attractions include:
The Main Gateway: The main gateway is an impressive structure made of red sandstone and marble. It’s the entrance to the Taj Mahal and the perfect place to take pictures.
The Gardens: The Taj Mahal is surrounded by lush green gardens that are meticulously maintained. Take a stroll through the gardens and enjoy the stunning views of the monument.
The Mosque and the Jawab: On either side of the Taj Mahal, you’ll find a mosque and a jawab (answer). The mosque was built to face Mecca, while the jawab was built for symmetry.
The Taj Mahal: The main attraction, of course, is the Taj Mahal itself. Admire the stunning white marble facade and intricate carvings. Take a guided tour to learn more about the history and architecture of the monument.
Mehtab Bagh: Located across the Yamuna River, Mehtab Bagh is a garden complex that offers stunning views of the Taj Mahal from a distance. It’s a great spot to watch the sunset and take some memorable photographs.
Tips for Visitors
- Try to wear comfortable shoes and clothing, as you’ll be doing a lot of walking.
- Hire a licensed guide to learn more about the history and architecture of the Taj Mahal.
- Keep your belongings safe and secure, as pickpocketing is common in crowded areas.
- Avoid visiting during peak season (November to February) to avoid the crowds.
Exploring Beyond the Taj Mahal: Offbeat Experiences in Agra
Agra, the city of the Taj Mahal, is a treasure trove of cultural and historical landmarks that are often overshadowed by the iconic monument. Here are some offbeat experiences that you can explore while in Agra:
- Visit the Agra Fort: Agra Fort, also known as the Red Fort, is another UNESCO World Heritage Site in Agra. The fort is a massive structure built of red sandstone and marble and served as the residence of the Mughal emperors until the 17th century.
- Try the Local Cuisine: Agra is known for its delectable street food, including chaat, kachori, and petha. Head to the bustling Sadar Bazaar and indulge in the local delicacies.
- Take a Heritage Walk: Join a guided heritage walk through the old city of Agra and discover its rich history, culture, and architecture. The walk will take you through the narrow lanes and bylanes, bustling markets, and hidden treasures of the city.
- Visit the Tomb of Itimad-ud-Daulah: Often referred to as the “Baby Taj,” the tomb of Itimad-ud-Daulah is a stunning mausoleum built in the memory of Mirza Ghiyas Beg, the grandfather of Mumtaz Mahal.
- Explore the Mughal Bazaar: The Mughal Bazaar, located near the Taj Mahal, is a haven for shopaholics. The market is lined with shops selling handicrafts, leather goods, textiles, and jewelry, making it the perfect place to pick up souvenirs.
- Witness the Taj Mahotsav: The Taj Mahotsav is an annual cultural festival held in Agra that showcases the city’s rich cultural heritage. The festival features live performances, food stalls, and handicraft exhibitions and is a great way to experience the local culture.
A visit to the Taj Mahal is a journey through time, and one that will leave you with memories that last a lifetime. From the stunning architecture to the fascinating history, the Taj Mahal is a true wonder of the world. Plan your trip today and experience the ultimate Taj Mahal adventure.