Visit India- Taj Mahal
|This time during our visit to India,
we wanted to see the famous Taj Mahal. So we decided to go on a
week-long tour to see Delhi, Agra and Jaypur which is called the
Golden Triangle of India. Here are some highlights of these
towns thro my Nikon. (Click on any image to enlarge it!)
First, we started our tour to Golden Triangle of India with visit to
modern marvel, Askshardham.
Swaminarayan Akshardham in New Delhi epitomizes 10,000 years of Indian
culture in all its breathtaking grandeur, beauty, wisdom and bliss.
It brilliantly showcases the essence of India's ancient architecture,
traditions and timeless spiritual messages. The Akshardham experience
is an enlightening journey through India's glorious art, values and
contributions for the progress, happiness and harmony of mankind. The
grand, ancient-styled Swaminarayan Akshardham complex was built in only
five years through the blessings of HDH Pramukh Swami Maharaj of the
Bochasanwasi Shri Akshar Purushottam Swaminarayan Sanstha (BAPS) and
the colossal devotional efforts of 11,000 artisans and BAPS volunteers.
The complex was inaugurated on 6 November, 2005.
Here is one close-up. For more pictures, visit
the official website of Akshardham.
In this temple, I met my college friend who has in fact renounced this
wordly pleasures and become a saint. He was managing a team of 8000
plus artists (stone carvers) who worked on creating pieces of this amazing
monument. Miraj had wonderful time meeting him and other saints and
getting VIP treatment during his visit to this monument.
Now let us look at some historical monuments in this Golden Triangle
in red and buff sandstone is the highest tower in India. It has a diameter
of 14.32m at the base and about 2.75m on the top with a height of 72.5m
(Wow! Like a 20 plus storey building and that too built in 12th century!!!).
Qutb-u'd-Din Aibak laid the foundation of Qutab Minar in AD 1199.
was said to have been built to celebrate the victory of Mohammed Ghori,
the invader from Afghanistan, over the Rajputs in 1192. He raised the
first storey, to which were added three more storeys by his successor
and son-in-law, Shamsu'd-Din IItutmish (AD 1211-36). All the storeys
are surrounded by a projected balcony encircling the Minar and supported
by stone brackets, which are decorated with honeycomb design, more conspicuously
in the first storey.
India Gate, Delhi Built as a memorial to commemorate the 70,000
India soldiers killed in World War I, India Gate was designed by Sir
Edwin Lutyens and completed in 1931. Located on Rajpath, the road which
leads to the magnificent Rashtrapati Bhawan, the gate is 160 feet high
with an arch of 138 feet.
While most people visit Agra to see the Taj Mahal, Agra, once the capital
of all of India, has more to offer. Less than 2 kilometers from the
Taj Mahal, on the same river bank, you'll find the impressive Agra Fort.
Construction of the fort started in 1156 and was finished in 1605.
Shah Jahan, who built the Taj Mahal, erected most of the buildings inside
the fortress. The fort is built alongside the Yamuna river and stretches
almost 2.5 km. It consists of a wall built in red sandstone and several
buildings inside. The wall has 2 gates, the Delhi Gate and the Amar
Singh Gate. You can only enter the fort via the Amar Singh Gate. Part
of the fort is still in use by the Indian Army and are not accessible
to the public, but there's still enough left to get an insight on the
way the Mughals lived in the 16th century.
A palace inside Agra Fort: After going
through the Amar Singh Gate you walk over a ramp and enter the Great
Courtyard. On the right hand sight, there's the many pillared Diwan-i-Am
(Hall of Public Audience). It was built by Shah Janan in 1628. Furthermore
you find the Royal Pavilions. It contains beautiful mosques (Nagina
Masjid & Mina Masjid), palaces (Macchi Bhavan, Khas Mahal, Shish Mahal,
Shah Jahani Mahal) and the Zenana Mina Bazaar. Several of the buildings
are made of pure marble with beautiful carvings. To cool off the rooms
in the marble pavilions, the walls were hollow and filled with running
water. From the balconies in the pavilions, you have a nice view on
the Yamuna river and the Taj Mahal.
Yes, you can really put the Taj Mahal between two hands (in a picture).
However in reality this structure is 250 plus feet tall. Unless you
pay attention, you can not feel the wonder of this monument. Look at
how tall the people look who are standing close to the Taj Mahal. This
will show you how enormous this all-marble monument is and aren't you
surprised that it was built almost 350 years ago when there were no
machines to cut, move or polish!
The Taj Mahal is probably the most famous building in the world.
Its picture has covered many magazines and travel brochures, and everyone
has probably seen a picture of it, but nothing really compares like
the real thing - the Taj Mahal looks a lot better in reality than on
a picture. Even those who come to see the Taj with high expectations
never fail to be overwhelmed by its beauty. The Taj Mahal was built
by Shah Jahan to enshrine the body of his wife, Arjumand Bann Begum
(Mumtaz Mahal) after she died in 1630 at Burhanpur in South India. The
construction started in 1632 and was completed in 1653. The workforce
of some 20,000 included craftsmen from Italy, Persia and Turkey. It
is built by the bank of the Yamuna river not very far from the Agra
Its central dome is fifty-eight feet in diameter and rises to a height
of 213 feet. It is flanked by four subsidiary domed chambers. The four
graceful, slender minarets are 162.5 feet each. The entire mausoleum
(inside as well as outside) is decorated with inlaid design of flowers
and calligraphy using precious gems such as agate and jasper. The main
archways, chiseled with passages from the Holy Qur'an and the bold scroll
work of flowery pattern, give a captivating charm to its beauty. The
central domed chamber and four adjoining chambers include many walls
and panels of Islamic decoration.
now some pictures of Jaipur- the city of pink, palaces, temples and
forts. Very nice, beautify city.
With an old canon in City Palace, Jaipur.
This City Palace of Jaipur has four such beautiful colored doors.
The Jaigarh fort was built to bolster
up the defense of Amer, so one should not be amazed to find that the
fort unlike most palaces and forts of Jaipur is quite plain and simple.
It has moats and all the features you would expect of a full-fledged
citadel. The highlight of the tour of Jaigarh Fort is definitely the
Jaivana, which is the world's largest cannon on wheels. It was built
in Jaigarh's foundry in the year 1720. Many say that the cannon was
only used once and the ball fell some 35kms away on a village. But that's
quite doubtful, since a closer inspection of the cannon actually revealed
that it has been fired at least a couple of times. The Fort has a lot
of wide water channels, which were a part of a rainwater harvesting
system. There are 3 underground tanks at the fort, the largest one of
which could store 60,00,000 gallons of water. An interesting story about
this tank is that, many believed it contained hidden treasure but unfortunately
Indian Government searched for it and did not find anything at all.
About Amber Palace About 11 km from Jaipur, Amber is the former
capital of the Kachhwaha Rajputs. Raja Man Singh I, the army commander
of the Mughal army during the reign of Akbar commenced the construction
of the Amber Palace in 1592. Later Raja Jai Singh and Sawai Jai Singh
completed the construction work of the fort and palace. Built in red
sandstone and white marble, the Maber Palace is a wonderful combination
of Hindu and Mughal Architecture. Amber fort and palace are the must-visit
travel attractions for the travelers to Jaipur in Rajasthan. The palace
or the royal apartments lies inside the massive Amber fort complex with
gateways, gardens, halls, stairways, pillared pavilions, temples and
palaces. Some of the monuments inside the fort that are worth visiting
are Sheesh Mahal (shown in picture above), Jai Mandir, Diwan-e-Aam,
Kali Temple, Diwan-e-Khas and Diwan-e-Aam.
And a joy ride in Jaipur on an elephant.
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type photographs, in color, front view and with a plain/light background.
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requirements for India Visa, click here. The Visa application will
need to be sent to Travisa irrespective of which Consulate of India
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