To know about Taj Mahal is to know about history and multitude of references to mysteries and ambiguity related to its existence.
What is inside the Taj Mahal? Is it built over a temple? Are there really tombs inside the monument? Is it really a mausoleum?
Why is Taj Mahal is enduringly adored the world over?
What is the appeal of the Taj Mahal? Why crowds throng for a glance at it? Why is this fascination with the Taj Mahal that refuses to fade away even after centuries. Perhaps no one knows. Or perhaps it is personal to all those who visit the monument built by Mughal Emperor Shah Jahan.
Taj Mahal’s Appeal
Was it built for love? Or perhaps just to fulfill a deathbed promise from a husband to a wife? Or perhaps a way to build something extraordinary in the guise of love or a promise or anything else. There is no way to tell. Perhaps this is the reason – the mystery behind its construction, which makes it fascinating. Or perhaps people simply want to see in person ‘what exactly is the big deal about Taj Mahal’.
The great Taj Mahal mystery or guesswork about its appeal apart; its popularity is undeniable. It brings in the big bucks from tourism in India. As per a recent news report; for the years 2019-2022, despite COVID restrictions, the revenue from Taj Mahal viewing’s ticket sales amounted to ₹ 132 crore.
The Taj Mahal is emblematic.
It captivates you. It beguiles you into gazing at it and wonder about it. It’s location by the Yamuna further adds to its magic and mystic – a monument of love standing lonesome by an ancient river – a river that herself is crying over the unfairness meted out to her being – and then there is the monument paling as the years go by – no longer white but yellowish and graying too – is it crying too? If yes then why? Is it because of the love that was cut short? Or perhaps because the homage to that ‘enduring love story’ is adored galore but yet neglected?
These Taj Mahal mysteries are no less significant than those about its structures and history. Perhaps therein lies its appeal. The unsolvable. The myth. Standing, working yet facing adversaries in the guise of doubts over its existence. Its present and available but impenetrable. That is the Taj Mahal. The sure yet enigmatical heritage defying ravages of time. It’s difficult to do so with all the noise and the dust and the ravages of sound. But it endures. Perhaps therein lies its appeal too.
Taj Mahal and the Town
Taj Mahal is in Agra, one of the most popular tourist attractions in India, for both international and domestic tourists. It is part of the Golden Triangle Tours in India (most notably for international visitors). A historical city in the state of Uttar Pradesh; Agra was also the capital of the Mughal Empire under many rulers.
Attractions in Agra include The Agra Fort (occupied by many rulers over the centuries), Ram Bagh (a fine specimen of Mughal Garden), Akbar’s Tomb, and Guru ka Taal (a historic gurudwara). Agra’s markets are also famous and offer a bustling view of the city and a distinct feel of India. There are places of interest near Agra too such as Fatehpur Sikri; a town showcasing many structures of the Mughal Era. Then there is Etawah, a nearby town with a wildlife century and scenic routes to enjoy bicycle tours.
If you are traveling to North India; you can visit Agra easily. You can take flights to India to any major city and reach Agra. Agra Airport has connectivity with major cities such as Delhi, Mumbai, Bangalore, Chennai, Hyderabad, and others.
If you are visiting Rajasthan or Delhi; Agra is easy to reach via trains or road. You can also plan your visit during the Taj Mahotsav; a 10-day cultural extravaganza in February every year. October to March is also the best time to visit Agra and rest of north India. You can reach Agra easily via road from Delhi, Jaipur, or any other nearby city.
A UNESCO World Heritage Site since 1983; Taj Mahal’s appeal will continue to endure. It is too important commercially, historically and culturally. If you are curious about Taj Mahal or wish to experience its enchantment up close then definitely plan a visit to Agra. Exploring a historical city and a world-famous monument housed here is definitely worth its while – controversies and mysteries notwithstanding.
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