The Taj Mahal and the Very Impressive Agra Fort

Matt & Jill at the Taj Mahal

We sleepily get out of bed at 4.30am, get ready, go to the front door of our hotel and realise we’re locked in! There’s a kid asleep there so we try to wake him but he’s dead to the world and our train leaves in 20 minutes. We get him to sit up but he just flops back down. With no luck trying to find someone else in the hotel we finally get the kid up to unlock the door and leg it to the traino.

First sight of the Taj we both say ‘wow!’ It’s big and beautiful. But as you get closer you see how detailed every little bit of it is.

It looks pretty small here

And here

Inside looks like flowers and patterns have been painted everywhere. But as you look closer you see that every pattern is made from different coloured gems set into the marble. No wonder this place took 30 years to build. And for a structure almost 400 years old it’s in bloody good nic.

We sit in the shade on the cool marble as people scurry around taking photos. Some bloke sits next to us, says hi and we realise his wife is taking a photo of us. Maybe people thought we were famous or just really good looking cos people just keep sitting next to us getting photos with us. We should have charged 50 rupees a photo because we had about 15 shots before our cheeks were sore and we left.

Photo with a random Indian

Next we headed to Agra Fort which is a 500 year old massive complex containing palaces, mosques, parliament buildings, army barracks and plenty more.

Agra Fort

The whole thing is surround by a mote which was filled with crocodiles then a 40 foot wall behind which there were lions and leopards and then the buildings were 70 feet high.

Crocodile mote to the left and animal section on the right

The palaces where the royals slept had hollow walls which were filled with hot water in winter and cold in summer. Not bad for ancient a/c.

The Taj Mahal was built in memory of the fourth Mughal kings second wife who died during the birth of their 14th child. I’m not surprised there.

The fifth king took his spot on the throne by killing his 3 brothers and locking his father up.

He must have been a horny bugger as he had a Hindu wife a Muslim wife a Christian wife and a 300 strong harem.

The Harem quarters

As we didn’t have return train tickets all that was left was 2nd class. We waited in anxious anticipation as the train rolled up to the platform. Peering through the windows the seats are full and people are standing in the aisles. ‘Well this is going to be an interesting 3hr ride back to Delhi.’

We squeeze down the aisle, there’s 6 or 7 to a seat which normally seat 3 and people sitting in the luggage racks above their heads. ‘Hrrrm?’

Matt spots a rack with luggage in so after a bit of sign language we re-stack the luggage and jump up onto the steel racks for our interesting ride home for a very interesting day.

Matt in the luggage rack

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6 Responses to The Taj Mahal and the Very Impressive Agra Fort

  1. Caroline Mc Lean says:

    Sounds like ye are having a wonderful time. Your story telling is so detailed you shoud think about writing a book.

    • MattJill says:

      Hi Caroline
      Yes we are having a wonderful time. We have mentioned quite a few times about writing a book or where this blog writing could potentially take us. Love Jill

  2. Marita says:

    Bloody Wow!!! When you said you tried to wake the kid up in the room but he was “dead…….” I read the word “dead” and thought “Oh no, not another dead body” – was relieved to know he was “dead to the world”. Your pics, especially of the minature Taj Mahal are awesome – I’ve never seen that done before there. How the other half live eh?? Train ride sounds fascinating. I guess you’ll always laugh about it whenever you catch a civilised train (they’re sooooo boring). Yeah, you guys do look like movie stars – I was going to say enjoy it while it lasts, but thought better of that!! You’re having great history lessons – I found the moat info interesting, along with the lions and leopards. And how awesome with the hot and cold water. I think I’ll come back as royalty in a next life – no forget that one to!!
    As always great to hear from you guys. Love you heaps. My heart is soooo touched with these awesome blogs. Caroline was right – your trip will make an awesome book.

  3. Sara says:

    Hey guys am loving your blog and have to admit loads of jealousy but abolute happiness for you guys. I especially love you are taking both Nepal & India seriously with the runs!!!! Oooohhhhh how I remember the runs & the packed train rides. Photos are inspiring and makes me miss you so much. You have outdone everyone Mattie with that proposal, Don threw his hands in the air proclaiming that’s it he wins! Jilly now I can hassell you like a sis, can’t wait xx Keep em coming guys it’s awsome sharing your journey. Huge hugs from all of us and Eve called shots on being the flower girl xxxxxxxxxxxxxx

  4. Love the photos, especially the random guy, too funny. I see you are in shorts and t-shirt, when we were there (in January ’11) it was absolutely freezing in Agra, so I’m glad the sun is shining for you. Oh, saw the WC cap, awesome game against Hawthorn the other day, we scraped in by four points. Go Eagles!

    • MattJill says:

      Hey Sarah, we had so many photo’s with randoms, we had to take one of our own. We thought we should start charging 50 rupees per photo. Some days we wish we were back in Nepal where it’s perfect the temperature now, but India just wouldn’t seem right if it wasn’t stinking hot. Yes it was always going to be a tough game, I’m glad we got the points, just hoping we are somewhere that we can watch a game at some point. It’s funny, I thought nobody here would know of the Eagles, but I’ve had a Canadian recognize them and in Varanasi a bloke sitting at the next table to us lived in the same suburb as us back in Perth.
      We’re loving your blog, I just read about Chiang Mai. We loved it there, and that morning you wrote about really captures the essence of why we travel. Enjoy your travels. Matt

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