The Taj Mahal and Red Fort

Trip Start Aug 15, 2003
Trip End Nov 14, 2003

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Wednesday, August 20, 2003

Made the journey with my two German friends from Delhi to Agra on Monday morning. A 3 hour train journey cost something silly like 3 quid.

I drove the tuktuk part of the way from the station to the guest house after the driver said he'd let me. Scarey as hell - don't think I'll be doing any more driving during my time in India.

Checked in and headed pretty much straight to the Taj Mahal. Fantastic place, although the entry fee for non-Indians is extortionate. Indians pay 20 rupees, westerners pay 750 rupees. An English lad worked out that's the equivalent of charging an Indian something like 600 pound to get into Alton Towers!

Well worth the money twice over though. From a distance it's fantastic, and then close up you can appreciate the symettry of the place and attention to detail. Check out the pictures, though I'm not sure any picture can do it justice. And yes I did attempt the reflection in the water picture, and no it didn't quite come out like on the postcards, but hey!

Next day checked out the Agra Red Fort. Massively more impressive than the Delhi Red Fort. Chock full inside of palaces, and sadly also ruins of buildings destroyed by the British to make room for their Arsenals.

Headed back to Delhi on Tuesday evening on a chair-class train fare, which included food that puts anything I've ever had on any plane to shame. I'm now back in Delhi checking out the sights of the New Delhi area, before heading off to Jaipur very early in the morning to begin my little tour of Rajasthan. I think that month in India is only really going to be enough to scratch the surface. After Rajasthan I plan to head down to Mumbai and hopefully spend a week or so chilling out in Goa before heading to Nepal.
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