Taj-mahal, a fairytale, pure love story and not much of a happy ending..
After visiting Jaipur we were headed to the city Agra which has one of the seven wonders of the world: Taj-Mahal. It surely deserves to be in those seven! What an architecture! What a beauty..
The first day, we arrived to Agra early in the morning but since we were tired and whatnot, we postponed visiting the wonder for the next day. Well, I had already dressed-up and was ready to go.. But it was getting late and since this is almost the main reason for tourist to come to India, we should have gone there in the earliest time.
With the help of my Malaysian friends I was able to wear my “Saree”. It is not that easy to tie that 6 meter cloth around, but in the end you feel like Indian in it. With the touch of Bindi and a lovely braid or a bun. I don’t know how or why but even your attitude changes in this dress. I am happy that I bought one, though I might not be able to wear it again, soon..
So the first day, after we decided to visit the wonder the next day, I changed my clothes and removed my make-up and went back to my comfort zone. We chilled in the common area of the hostel whose atmosphere I liked the most comparing to others’. Even the name was pretty cool; Zostel. It was much of a relaxing day for us and we were looking forward the next day to come.
We put the alarm at 4:20 (latest) to get ready in half an hour (maximum) and challo! And like a Deja-vu, with the help of our friends we managed to tie the Saree around and headed to the beautiful place Taj-Mahal. The entry fee is 1000 INR (approximately 11 Euro). You get your ticket with one bottle of water and overshoe in the ticket window. The moment you step on its garden, you start feeling the excitement. The pure story behind it was already heartbreaking.. at least for me! The story of love, the story of lost and the story of a new beginning..
Mumtaz Mahal was one of the wives of Shah Jahan. But rumor has it, she was his favorite wife after all, whom he loves the most! It was time for her to give a birth of Jahan’s 14. children. While giving a birth, she had some complications and she died after their son was born. Then Shah Jahan promised her that “he would never remarry and will build the richest mausoleum over her grave.”
So this was the beginning of a newborn and the end of the love of his life. Of course he couldn’t recover easily. He wanted to build something as beautiful as his lovely wife. As a graveyard of her and a sample of heaven, he has thought before starting. It took 22 years and the labor of 22,000 workers to construct the monument. The mausoleum was inspired by Ottoman, Iranian, Arabic and Indian designs. If you look carefully you can see the touch of each and every single of them.
The place itself is mesmerizing. We went there many people but left behind only two of us (I was really glad to be honest hehe). We took many shots, well he wanted to use me as a model. We discovered the place together, trying to find the best spots to take pictures and videos. The garden was huge itself. Even at 5:30, there were many tourists, I swear. They did not even sleep last night I guess haha! We went early in the hope of catching the sunrise.. but there is no SUN in India during “Monsoon Season”, so be aware!
There are other rumors about the mausoleum that it changes colors during a day: in the early morning it looks golden, in the afternoon gray and in the evening, at the time of the sunset, pinkish. It was kind of true, I witnessed. And the construction was so well planned that from each angle of the building it is symmetrical. I was absolutely amazed in front of this huge beauty. I got pretty emotional, too. I felt like a Hindu woman, as though I changed the character by changing the clothes..
Inside of the monument it was forbidden to take any shots. Such a peaceful place that I hadn’t been to in my life.. The tombs of Mumtaz and Shah were next to each other. The tombs were surrounded by stones look exactly like a crown which was also part of the design. That’s how it was named after her; “The Crown Palace”. Being inside was quite different feeling for me. I felt as though they were guiding us and protecting their mausoleum.
After spending a lot of time there, we were ready to go back to hostel. On our way we bought some souvenirs and people kept asking if we are married. We just smiled at each other and didn’t say much thing to them. The day was well spent and it was more than worth 1000 INR for sure! If I go there again, I would visit the wonder from the start..
P.S. There are nice viewed cafes nearby where you can sip your beer or wine or coffee viewing the Taj-Mahal. I missed this great opportunity, but my friends went and the best time for it is absolutely the sunset! Don’t miss the opportunity of seeing this beauty in pink color as well!