Agra and Taj Mahal

Agra is the city where the Taj Mahal is located. Here live over 1.5 million inhabitants. The town is known for marble and marquetry work.

The way to the Taj Mahal is complicated. You can only take camara, money and identification (if you have eTickets – on which is a QR code) with you, nothing else. First you have to go to a tourist center, where you get a bottle of water as well as shoe coverers. This circumstance is documented by recording the eTicket number on a piece of paper – a bureaucracy must finally be. The QR code is simply ignored.

Then you get driven with an electric car (small buses or golf cart with 4 seats) to the entrance area. There the ticket is scanned and – if one has an eTicket – the check with an identication document (eg: passport). The QR codes are scanned using handies. After trying the 4 or 5 mobile phone, the finaly find a working one.

Then you go through a metal detector, which naturally peeps every time, because you carry mobile phone, clock, camera and money with you. After that, the where checking everyone manually.

When you have overcome these hurdles, you enter the entrance area, which was built of red sandstone. Through the heaven gate you finally arrive at the square in front of the Taj Mahal. The sight is really breathtaking. After a short walk through the park you have to wear the shoes cover and go up to the plato, where the Taj Mahal is build. The four minarets at the corners are tilted 5 degrees outwards. Should they collapse during an earthquake, they would fall from the Mousoleum and not to the grave site.

Then go inside – in the center you can see two coffins. But the funeral is 30 meters lower.

Both on the way to the tourist center and back, you get “attacked” by traders who what to sell you a lot of stuff.

We were lucky that we where there on a day where not so many people was visiting, so we had not to wait to long on the different locations.