The Taj Mahal -7th Wonder of the World

Molly Wallis

I had a great adventure in Northern India and a wonderful experience.. My visit to Agra to see the Taj Mahal completed my ambition of seeing all the seven wonders of the world in my lifetime. It is undoubtedly a symbol of love.  It radiates beauty and elegance.  You can’t help but gaze in admiration of its beauty, both from afar and close up. It is quite an imposing structure, and perfectly symmetrical. 

The Taj Mahal was commissioned in 1632 by the Mogul emperor Shah Jahan as a funerarary mausoleum for his late and favourite wife, Mumtaz Mahal, and completed in 1648.

It is built with white marble and so it can be seen in its natural glory in natural light. It is built on the banks of river Yamuna in Agra, about 3 hours drive from Delhi.

The Taj Mahal was voted the 7th wonder of the world in 2007 and attracts a huge number of domestic tourists, as well as international tourists,  every year. 

Visitors are allowed to go inside the building and you will be provided with a plastic blue covering for your feet as shoes are not allowed to be worn. 

There is nothing to see really inside except a “fake” tomb of the Mogul and his wife. The real tombs are located in the basement of the building which is not opened to the public. 

My favourite photo1 It seemed that I had the whole place to myself!

The photo opportunities were endless – talk about instagrammable  photos of every conceivable pose, some cringeworthy – sorry, I couldn’t avoid it.  Our Guide took the photos. He knew exactly where the best spot was and he made a beeline for it.  And of course, there was a specific seat, marked with a cross in front of the building that was rumoured to be “Princess Diana’s bench” , a perfect photo spot.  Here are a selection of my favourite photos.

A little cheesy, I know!
The Taj Mahal is set in a well planned, and beautiful landscaped garden with pools and fountains.
The attention to detail, the intricate carvings and designs as well as the arches and domes add to the beauty of this amazing building.
Walking around the building, I was convinced that the colour of the building changed. It was just a trick of the sun setting or shadow cast on the building!
The sun setting behind the building gives it a kind of glow that makes the white marble appeared yellow, depending on angle of your shot.
Replica of the tomb - real one is underground and not opened to the public.
Photographs are not allowed inside the Taj Mahal. Our guide talked to the guard who demonstrated the effect of shining a torch onto the marble - it showed its beauty well.
The workmanship and elaborate carvings on the walls are stunning.
My new friends - at the ready with a mobile phone - to take photos!

Is the Taj Mahal a wonder? You can be the judge of that. In my opinion, and having seen all the other 6  contenders, the Taj Mahal  is without a doubt, a very beautiful mausoleum. But it was not a wonder for me, simply because it did  not make me feel  “wow!  this is awesome”;   like I did when I first set my eyes on Petra in Jordan or Machu Picchu in Peru or the Great Wall of China. Or indeed the honorary 8th Wonder of the world, The Pyramid of Giza in Cairo, Egypt.  

Having said that, it is worth a visit, to admire the beauty of what is considered the greatest symbol of love.

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