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What to Expect When Visiting the Taj Mahal for the First Time

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  • Explore the beauty of the Taj Mahal
  • The impressive architecture of India 
  • Visit one of the Seven Wonders of the World

by The Passionate Traveller

I’ll never forget my first visit to the Taj Mahal.  It started by leaving our hotel in Agra, an oasis of calm, and heading through the town with my eyes wide, looking out of the window.  There was so much to take in – busy market places, a hundred tuk-tuks, and various sacred cows going about their business.  We arrived at the drop-off area just a short walk from the Taj Mahal, with the glorious morning sunshine beating down, as we strolled through the gardens, past small stalls and ornate walls.

Then it was time, a view I had seen a thousand times in print and on screen suddenly – the timeless Taj Mahal, framed by a beautiful archway, was right there in front of me.  It was impossible not to stop still to take it in; others around me did the same, whether they were of Indian heritage or from further afield.

As I passed through the arch, more of the surrounding area came into view so it became even more mesmerising.  The symmetry was almost poetic and the long, slim ponds that lead the way shimmered.  One thing that really stuck out was just how bright the scene was – the white marble reflecting the sun’s rays made me glad to be wearing sunglasses.  My camera was working overtime as I captured the wonderful scenes of local women in strikingly coloured sarees drifting into shot.

Taj Mahal reflecting in a river on sunset, Agra, India

A stunning view of the Taj Mahal, Agra

Another thing that really stuck in my memory was how the Taj looked from different angles – seeing it close-up or from a secluded bench to the side somehow made the memories all the more personal.  Finally, as I walked into the Taj itself, it blew my mind that I was stood inside one of the Seven Wonders of the World – I couldn’t help but stroke the intricately detailed walls to make sure it wasn’t a dream.

Some memories will last a lifetime, and for me, I know that this is one of them.


If you are inspired to see the Taj Mahal for yourself, we would recommend our escorted tour to India, and with an extended stay in Shimla for an extra four days in India. We also offer the chance to see the Taj Mahal on our India & Nepal tour, and our Rajasthan, the Taj Mahal & Amritsar’s Golden Temple tour. Travelling solo? Why not look at our tour of India & Shima Extension for Solo Travellers?


The Passionate Traveller

I live to travel and have visited over 50 countries.  I love to see the world’s most iconic sights in person, as well as seeking out some quirky finds.  I love to share my tips, whether it be about packing, airports or sightseeing!

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