If you didn’t see the Taj Mahal did you even go to India? One of the Seven Wonders of the World and rightly so! It’s a beautiful giant stealing the limelight from every direction. You cannot fully appreciate the beauty of this building until you have seen it up close, looked at the array of exquisite stone used to create the decoration and walked barefooted across the balcony, feeling the smooth marble below you feet. It is the product of a heartbreaking love story, the depths of grief and is an absolute must for your India bucket list.
Here’s how you get there and make the most of it!
We had heard that Agra, apart from the Taj Mahal and the Agra Fort was sub par so we decided to skip actually staying there and booked a day trip from Delhi. There are many stalls and travel agents scattered around Delhi who can arrange this for you, but pick wisely. We decided to book it through a travel agent connected to our hotel. The trip is quite a large expense, maybe the biggest expense you will have when your in India full stop, so we decided to spend a little more to make sure it was going to be top notch/someone actually turned up to take us! It was 50 Euros each which included a car for the day, picking you up at 3:00am and dropping you back around 17:00 and a guide for the Taj Mahal and Agra Fort.
We understand 3:00am is quite an early pick up, but my gosh is it worth it. You’ll miss the hordes of people turning up midday and it is beautiful in the early morning light. Anyhow, its a three hour drive, you can sleep in the car, maybe depending on your driver! It also means you can see the Taj Mahal and the Agra Fort AND get back to Delhi at a decent hour to cram some more of the dreamy food down your neck, if you still haven’t gotten used to curry for breakfast!
In terms of looking round the sights, our guide guided us all the way and then set us free to do some freestyle roaming after he had finished. Don’t miss the freestyle roaming this is when you fall in love with the building as well as the story.
DO NOT LEAVE AGRA without seeing Agra Fort. Yes, it is not going to beat the Taj Mahal, yes, you will see a lot of forts during your India experience and yes, you will be kinda sleepy from the early start… But it is a beautiful building and so entangled with the story of the Taj Mahal the experience wouldn’t be complete without seeing it.
Now food is never far from our minds, and in India at the forefront of it most of the time, but for this day trip, picnic all the way. It pains me to say it, but food is not the most important thing today. You can snack on you packed lunch throughout the day and not let it interrupt the experience. Also, its more often than not going to be pretty good!
It is an absolute gem and an experience you will never forget so go. However, more importantly, when you return home every single person you speak to about your trip will say, ‘Oh, so you were in India! Did you see the Taj Mahal?’.
Next stop, Rajasthan!