So finally I planned to visit the seventh
wonder of the world “The Taj Mahal”. The total distance of Agra from my home in
Gurgaon is approx. 270 KM which included my travel to Noida and a stretch of
180 KM on Yamuna expressway.
We started early at 5:30 am. The drive was smooth and we made a small halt at a roadside restaurant. Few things what one needs to make sure while driving on the Yamuna expressway is to fill your vehicle tank and tyre pressure. Do check the backup tyre as well.
We reached Agra around 9:30 am and checked into a decent restaurant which had awesome reviews on tripadvisor.in However, what we got was much below our expectation as our experience was not that great. The AC in our room did not work
which we realized after we had
already unpacked our luggage. Ok they did change the room and transfer us to a
much better room but because of all this we lost more than an hour. Our plan
was to visit Fatehpur Sikri on the 1st day. Post relaxing for an
hour we started our journey to the historical place. The road was really bad. We were also stopped by the local police for a
routine check where the cop wanted us to drop his junior somewhere. Our privacy
mattered to us and hence we refused. The nightmare started as soon as we crossed
Agra. It seems UP government has no clue what is a road all about. We also got
stuck at a railway crossing for more than one hour!
At last we reached the historical building of Fatehpur Sikri. Well, mismanagement seemed so prevalent when some local goons tried to extract money in the name of MCD tax!!! Avoid them and confidently shoo them away. After paying a huge parking charge we somehow reached the bus stand from where we had to board a bus ferrying to the main historical site. Beware of the shopkeepers who can bug you to visit their shop and even thrust their visiting cards to you. Do not talk to them, lest they should make you buy from their shops, at any cost!I assumed it to be a free ride, but the Ministry of UP tourism charged us Rs.10 each. Seems a small amount but I think they shouldn’t charge. No wonders why people call it Ulta Pradesh.
As soon as we reached Fatehpur Sikri, we asked ourselves if it was worth going as it was the same Mughal architecture we had seen in Delhi and Jaipur. There was nothing new, yet we have to spend some time there to justify our efforts of reaching there. There was nothing special about that place. So we spent nearly an hour and returned to our hotel by evening.
The visit to the Mumtaz “Makbara” inside was like walking in hell. It’s not lit inside, and the place is overcrowded beyond capacity. To make things worse, a single point served as the entry and exit as well. We somehow managed to drag our way out. The TAJ is a must visit place to admire the beauty of LOVE but poor management, over crowded place, and eve teasing with foreigners make the experience bad.