Taj Mahal – Man Made Wonder


This article has the reasons why and how one should visit Taj Mahal…what one should see minutely to enjoy the visit more… reach Agra easily…this article also has information regarding the ornamentation of the building…most important is to be aware of the thugs…

Taj Mahal is one of the Seven Wonders of the World. This magnificent monument was constructed by Moghul emperor Shah Jahan in the loving memory of his beloved wife Mumtaz Mahal.

The Location


Taj Mahal is located on the banks of sacred river Yamuna in Agra. While traveling towards Taj Mahal through the city of Agra one may see the building and imagine of a white huge pearl resting somewhere. The curved huge dome and the minaret of Taj keep the people guiding the people silently towards it. The finial of the dome proves to a pin of beauty in congested city of Agra.

The building


It is a magnificent building which was constructed in the span of 20 years out of the marble stone. Not only the structure of this building is spellbounding but the minute carving on the walls is also a piece of magical craftsmanship which is attracting the millions from all across the globe. It is not the enormous structure of the Taj, mainly the red stone gate or the two side gardens along the pathway towards the main building of Taj neither the huge dome of the main building, it is everything which castes a spell on the visitor.
The main building has the tomb of Mumtaz Mahal and Shah Jahan in a basement. Right above the original tombs in the basement sarcophagi of the two are placed in the main chamber. The original tomb of Mumtaz Mahal has the calligraphic inscriptions of Ninety Nine names of Allah.
The dimensions of the main dome are 35 metres (115 ft) in circumference and the height is about 7 metres (23 ft). This dome addressed as to have a shape of onion or pupolarly called to be an amrood (guava).
The whole building is decorated with decorative spires which are from the base to the ceiling. The flowers are made from the precious stones which are fixed in the engraved section of the wall. All around the building verses of the Holy Quran are also engrave on the entrance and the main building. On the main entrance it is a verse of Quran which means, 'O soul, thou art at rest. Return to the Lord at peace with Him, and He at peace with thee'.
The minarets of the building have a very distinctive feature. The four minarets on the corner of the main structures of Taj are tilted outside from the building. The reason for such a design was only with the thought that if the minarets fall they should not damage the main structure.
On the right side is a mosque which can accommodate 590 people at time. A replica of the mosques on the right is constructed to the left of the main building. These two structures are made of red stone.

Quranic verses


The decorative elements which beautify the building by Arabic calligraphic inscriptions are the verses of the Holy Quran which were chosen by Abdul Haq. He complied and collected the themes of judgment which includes:
Surah 36 – Ya Seen
Surah 39 – Az Zumar (The Companies)
Surah 48 – Al Fath (The Victory)
Surah 67 – Al Mulk (The Kingdom)
Surah 77 – Al Mursalat (Those Sent Forth)
Surah 81 – At Takwir (The Folding Up)
Surah 82 – Al Infitar (The Cleaving)
Surah 84 – Al Inshiqaq (The Bursting Asunder)
Surah 89 – Al Fijar (The Daybreak)
Surah 91 – Ash Shams (The Sun)
Surah 93 – Ad duha (The Brightness of the Day)
Surah 94 – Al Inshirah (The Expansion)
Surah 95 – At tin (The Fig)
Surah 98 – Al Bayyinah (The Clear Evidence)
Surah 112 – Al Ikhlas (The Unity)
On the completion of the work Abdul Haq was honoured by the title of "Amanat Khah" by the pleased Shah Jahan.

Visiting times


The maintenance of Taj Mahal is done by the Archeological Survey of India, which requires a huge amount in maintaining the whole glamour of it. There are about 4 to 5 million people visiting Taj Mahal annually and about more than a quarter million are from overseas. The revenue is generated through the entry ticket into the building which is Rs. 20 for Indian adult and Rs. 975 for a foreigner during the day time. During Sunrise and Sunset the Indian have to pay Rs. 110 per adult. The timing to visit the building is 6:00 am to 7:30 pm. Taj is closed on Friday.

Be aware


Once you have purchase the ticket you are free to move inside the building till the time it is being closed. You are not supposed to pay any money to the people inside the building for any services like shoe keep; all services are inclusive in the ticket cost.
Now day some people have started to ask to offering at the tomb of Mumtaz Mahal and Shah Jahan which should not be paid in any circumstances. These are the thugs who will misuse your kind nature.

Caution


Please don't carry mobiles, cigarette, bidi, pan, and other eatables inside the building. If one is carrying then all have to surrender at the gate where security is screening the visitors.

How to reach


Agra is 205 Km from the capital of India, Delhi. One may travel by road or through number of trains which are an easy connectivity for Agra. There are about 99 trains running between Delhi and Agra but the best are:
Bhopal Shatabdi Express (12002) Departure from Delhi 6:15 am and Arrival at Agra 8:12 am.
Taj Express (12280) Departure from Nizamuddin Station, Delhi 7:10 am and Arrival at Agra 10:07 am.
Swarna Jayanti Express (12644) Departure from Nizamuddin Station, Delhi 6:010 am and Arrival at Agra 9:10 am.
Punjab Mail (12138) Departure from New Delhi 5:25 am and Arrival at Agra 8:50 am.


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