“I can show you the world..shining, shimering, and splendid” – this song plays non stop in my head when Taj Mahal cross in my mind. I would say the trip to Taj Mahal was something that i have in mind since long time ago. I didn’t get my VISA couple of years back ( not sure what is the reason ) it’s just stay there as in progress. So, when i have my e-Visa on hand there is no way i skip Taj Mahal.
It was pretty packed after our trip in Amritsar to see Golden Temple & Wagah Border but we continued on. We packed our bag to go to the next City – New Delhi. It was so early in the morning half awake, we dragged our body back to the airport. Amritsar and New Delhi are quite far from each other. We decided to take airplane for the trip as it will take just about an hour.
You know, Amritsar airport has its own uniqueness. It’s an international airport that is not to small but not to big either. It’s in a size that is just enough. The check-in process was easy but when we got into the boarding room and saw our boarding passes.. “hang on, where is Gate 5?” haha.. Ground floor only have 4 gates yet we are in Gate5. Nonetheless, we just carred on since it wasn’t boarding time yet grabbing some breakfast and drinks. but wait.. what is that? Did i hear bird chirping? OH YES INDEED! not only chirping from afar but inside the lounge just on top of the restaurant. LOL. India you really have my heart. 🙂
Once, it’s already nearing our boarding time, there is no announcement or anything until one officer comes around announcing our flight. Oh dear you really have to be alert all the time. It turned out that our gate is upstairs. A bit of a confusion due to all the development i would say. Anyway, New Delhi here we come.
The flight was short and when we landed we already have a our driver from the hotel waiting. You know what i would share with you that our accommodation this time was so awesome. We stayed at New Delhi Holiday Inn International Airport. The services was good especially for the staff that welcome us. One of my friend fell sick and they really assisted us nicely. We are a happy guest!
Continue on about the trip. I excuse myself from the group for a while to get a local simcard. LOL the problem with an internet addict. I actually felt very uneasy when i am not connected to the internet. Amritsar doesn’t really have the local simcard for tourist so yes, i had a bit of detox over there. Once i get into the stall, in the midst of setting up and only by then the seller told me.. okay this will be online after 8 PM and i was like?? what?? it’s not directly on line?? it was another awed for me. Long story short i returned the sim card and had to go through a tough discussion to get my money back. Dude! i will only stay for a day in Delhi so that is definitely not a kind of solution that i would like to have. so caution for you who have such itinerary like mine.I left off and there we are dropping our baggage at the hotel.
Our hotel is in New Delhi while Taj Mahal is in another city – Agra. We have looked out for travel options mainly car and train. We were helpless with the train information and in the end decided to rent a car + driver. The trip was long it took around 3 – 4 hours drive one way. So you could imagine going back and fort already took much time…however, let’s just enjoy the ride, shall we? as usual, what is a road trip without rest area stop? we made a stop and i could finally get a taste of India Starbucks. before continuing the journey. :9 and btw, you could still see cow crossing the toll road and i even saw a car drive through another side of the lane. India you really have my heart.
When we reached Agra, it has passed lunch time and really all the snacking along the way didn’t really cope with the appetite. Hence, our local guide suggested us to eat first. It was raining anyway and we just about so lucky that Taj Mahal was closed for official visit from other country. There we are eating some local delicacies. I had to say i love it. I am not a fan of Indian food since i can’t really take some spices but by far staying in India for couple of days, i didn’t have problem eating at all. Now, it left a question : “then what was all those Indian food that i can’t eat before this?”
With a full tummy, Finally our friend and i continue our journey to see Taj Mahal. The weather outside was still cloudy after big rain. It was still drizzling but we can’t delay our journey any further.
Reaching Taj Mahal Area, our driver dropped us off at the gate. It was by local regulation that there shouldn’t be personal vehicle within certain perimeter from Taj Mahal. So we got off walk a bit and took a the provided vehicle. It feels a bit like an open safari. 😉 everything was good until we reached the entrance. OH MY GOD. It was very packed. I think thanks to the temporary closure and the huge rain. You could take a glimpse of it over here.
It was chaotic, the queue was crazy. A separate lane for foreigner wasn’t a big help i would say. We were quite lucky since we had a local guide with us so we have things provided though we still need to wait under the rain. Once we got our ticket ( it is in a token form btw ) off we go passing through the entrance. Once we get in, we though that it wasn’t that bad, it wasn’t that pack. Little that we know that we haven’t really enter the place. LOL.
When we finally get in.. oh waw.. all the trip all the effort to get there was worth it! the scenery was so beautiful. No wonder it’s very famous. Oh my, i can’t really contain my happiness seeing that place. Finally, i could see it with my own eyes after hearing about this place uncountable times.
I will tell you about it more detail later on.. as for now.. here is the picture of majestic Taj Mahal for our eyes to see. Wish you were there with us having our eyes wide opened.
Triana Mustika Rukmi