Set on the banks of the Yamuna River, the Taj Mahal in Agra is an enormous symbol of eternal love. This is the 17th-century mausoleum that was built for Mumtaz Mahal by Mughal Emperor Shah Jahan. Reputed as one of the most flaunting buildings in the world, the Taj brilliantly represents the fine architectural design of the Mughal era. Its breathtaking beauty has been recognized as one of the Seven Wonders of the Modern World. Do you need to know more about this historical jewel? Then, here we have got you covered.
This article contains in-depth information on this architectural jewel. The information includes its history, architecture, lesser-known facts, entry fee, timings, and nearby attractions.
History: Takes you back to the past
The Taj Mahal serves as the grandest mausoleum in the world that boasts Agra Tourism. It was commissioned by Shah Jahan, the Mughal Emperor for his beloved wife Mumtaz Mahal. Its construction was commenced in 1632 and around a year after Mumtaz died on the banks of the Yamuna river. Although the main mausoleum was constructed by 1643 that got completed until 1653. The Mughal emperor was overthrown from his power and imprisoned by his son Aurangzeb in 1658. There he spend his last days in the nearby Agra Fort from where he looked at his creation and remember his wife.
Shah Jahan died in 1666 and he was buried inside the Taj Mahal besides his loving wife. It was the time when the Jat rulers of Bharatpur raided Agra in the 18th century invaded the Taj and plundered it. During the Revolution of 1857, this memorial site suffered many damages at the hands of the British soldiers who removed the precious stones from its walls. The Taj Mahal underwent massive restoration work in the early 20th century under the command of Lord Curzon, the then Viceroy of India. After independence, the monument came under the aegis of the Government of India.
Architecture: Admire the majestic art of the Mughal Era
A universally admired masterpiece of art, the Taj Mahal combines the elements of Islamic, Persian, and Indian architectural styles. The monument covers 42 acres of land bounded by crenelated walls on three sides and the Yamuna on the fourth side. It was constructed using pure white Makrana marble sourced from Rajasthan. Many precious and semi-precious gemstones were also used to enhance the beauty of the memorial in the Agra tour package.
The Taj Mahal stands on an elevated square plinth that has four minarets standing at the four corners. The symmetrical building houses the crypts having an arch-shaped entryway that sits below a colossal dome and finial. The main hall of the mausoleum can be seen as the false sarcophagi of Emperor Shah Jahan and Mumtaz Mahal. The tombs are located inside a locked chamber at a lower level.
The external decorations of the monument testify to the Mughal craftsmanship, the interiors are also equally dazzling. The inner chambers are having an octagon shape featuring jali bordering and quotations from the Quran on the cenotaphs and intricate decorative detailings. The base and casket are delicately adorned where the main bodies are kept plain with the Islamic tradition.
The construction of this monument took more than 22000 artisans, laborers, painters, stonecutters, and a huge amount of investment. Besides the mausoleum, the Taj complex houses a mosque, a museum, a great house, and ornamental gardens to see in Delhi Agra Jaipur Tour.
Gardens & Museum: Take a tour around the mausoleum
The Taj Mahal is surrounded by a sprawling 980 sq. ft. Mughal garden or Charbagh. Raised pathways divide the garden into 16 sunken flowerbeds. An elevated marble water tank is placed between the main gate and the tomb adding to the beauty of the entire place to visit in Agra Same Day Tour. The gardens were originally modeled on the famous Persian garden when the colonial rulers took possession of the Taj.
Within the Taj Mahal complex stands the small but significant Taj Museum housing several original miniature paintings from the Mughal era. One of the main highlights of this museum is the pair of 17th-century ivory portraits of Shah Jahan and his wife. The museum also houses several Caledon plates that are also known to change color or break into pieces.
- Museum Timings: 10:00 am to 5:00 pm
- Museum Entry Fee: Free
Interesting Facts about Taj Mahal, Agra
- In Persian, The Taj Mahal means the Crown of Palaces
- The impressive interiors of the Taj Mahal have a reverberation time of 28 seconds. This means, if you say anything inside the place, it will echo for 28 seconds.
- The Taj Mahal was disguised under scaffolding to minimize the threat of air attacks by the Japanese during World War II. The same tactic was followed during the Indo-Pak war of 1965 and 1971.
- The monument is taller than the Qutub Minar by about five feet
- The minarets of the Taj was built to tilt outwards to prevent the Tomb from suffering any damage in case of calamities like earthquake.
- The Taj appears pinkish at sunrise, milky white in the evening, and the golden glow under the moonlight.
- There are around 99 names of Allah inscribed in calligraphy style on the tombs.
- For Indians 50/- Rs
- For Foreigners 1100/- Rs
- For citizens of SAARC and BIMSTEC 540/- Rs
- Main Mausoleum entry 200/- Rs per head
- 30 minutes before sunrise
- 30 minutes after sunset
Night Entry Fee:
- For Indians 510/- Rs
- For Foreigners 750/- Rs
- For Children Between 3 to 15 age 500/- Rs
Night Entry Timing:
- 8:30 Pm to 12:30 am
Important Note: Closed on Friday and during the month of Ramzan
Tourist Places near Taj Mahal –
- Agra Fort
- Jahangir’s Palace
- Jama Masjid
- Mankameshwar Temple
- Tomb of Itimad-ud-Daulah
- Chini ka Rauza
- Mehtab Bagh
The iconic jewel of the Taj Mahal is a timeless love story celebrated in a marble edifice. If you are planning a tour of the Taj, then why not take up a Golden Triangle Tour and explore the other jewels of Delhi, Agra, and Jaipur.