Hi again earthlings! This time I’m going to share with you a major throwback from my life, and actually, one of my dream that came true.
When I was still in college, my dad gave me a book about Nur Jahan, the daughter of Shah Jahan, the Mughal emperor who built Taj Mahal after the death of the love of his life, Mumtaz. I was so fascinated by the story behind the Taj Mahal. It really is a monument of love, because it was built as an expression of love from Shah Jahan to his late wife, and other than that his daughter found true love while working on the Taj Mahal project, she fell in love with the architect who constructed Taj Mahal. After I was done reading the book, I kept on dreaming about visitting this place that has a mind-blowing history behind it.
In 2013, I was already working, it was my first real job ever, when my dad called me and said he’s taking me and my brother to India for holiday. I was literally in shock. Everything happened really quick, all I can remember is that one day my dad called and then the next day I got my flight tickets. I will talk about the places that I went to in India on another ‘Throwback’, but today I will dedicate this blog for my Taj Mahal visit.
Long story short, after a few days in New Delhi, we made our way to Agra. It took about 4 hours drive from New Delhi, passing through the high way. I really enjoyed the sightseeing while going there, it was fascinating to see Indian ladies working on the field in their sari.
Because of the Taj Mahal and Red Fort, Agra became one of the most popular place to visit in India, or even in the world. So no need to worry about accommodation, there are some really great hotels in Agra, which you can choose according to your budget. My family and I stayed at the Trident while we were there. It’s my dad’s favorite place to stay whenever he visits Agra, he’s been there a few times for business and leisure purposes. I would totally recommend this hotel, great place and food.
Okay here goes the best part: I finally went to Taj Mahal. The viccinity is pollution free, hence why as I could recall but I can’t confirm, no motor vehicle is allowed in about 1 km towards the Taj. The security check point is also very strict, and there are several items that are not allowed inside, but I just can’t recall what are those things, my bad for being forgetful. But be rest assured that cameras are allowed, transparant water bottles and of course mobile phones. So no need to worry, you can still capture everything Instagram worthy while you’re in there.
As I entered the area, I didn’t get to see the Taj Mahal right away. First I saw a big garden, and as the tour guide explained, there are sort of like gates around the Taj, that really made it impossible to see the actual Taj Mahal Building unless you enter through the gate. And after I stepped into the gate, our tour guide whispered into my ear, “Welcome to one of the seven wonders of the world, this is Taj Mahal”. My jaw dropped while I watched it all unfold in front of my very eyes. White, gigantic and glorius building stood tall in front of me. I didn’t only get goosebumps, I had trouble breathing because I was in awe!
The first view after I stepped out of the main gate.
The construction of Taj Mahal began in 1632, and completely finished in 1643. It took another 5 years to complete the surrounding area and the garden. Thousands of people were laboured during the making of the Taj, and the materials came from all over Asia. My favorite part of the interior design would be the Jali, precious and semi precious gemstones that are carved into the walls. The unique thing is that these gemstones, in my own humble opinion, kind of absorb the light. So when the sun hits the jali, it makes the whole thing glow, so the Musoleum glows too. So beautiful, I was so speechless.
I am beyond thrilled that God gave me the opportunity to visit this place not only once, but twice. Thanks to my papa for taking me and all of my siblings there too, you are somehow the extension of God’s hands to make sure all your kids reach their dreams. I hope that this blog post somehow inspire you to go after your dream, because dreams do come true! I don’t have many photos from the trip, but I am happy to share some of the photos that I think worth sharing.
Don’t forget to keep on dreaming, but remember to wake up and make it happen!
X’s and O’s,
Behind the Taj there is Yamuna river. During the Mughal empire, this river is very important for both business and of course, water supply.
This is the photo spot where people queue the most.
Meet the locals who helped me put together my Sari