History of Taj Mahal
History of Taj Mahal is as great as its magnificent structure. In fact, poet Rabindra Nath Tagore has described the mausoleum as a “tear on the face of eternity.” Mughal Emperor Shah Jahan started the construction of Taj Mahal in the year 1631, in memory of his favourite wife Arjumand Banu Begum, popular as Mumtaz Mahal. Ustad Ahmad Lahauri was the principal designer of one of world's most marvellous building. Amanat Khan from Iran, was the chief calligrapher, while the main dome was designed by Ismail Afandi of Ottoman Empire. More than 20,000 labourers worked day and night for giving shape to the dream of Shah Jahan. After continuous work for 22 years, Taj Mahal was finally completed in the year 1653.
For constructing the mausoleum materials from all over India and other parts of Asia were used. Altogether, 28 types of precious and semi-precious stones were used to built the white marble monument. Above 1,000 elephants were used to transport construction materials. White marble (translucent) was brought from Rajasthan, while jasper was from Punjab. Jade and crystal were from China, the lapis lazuli came from Afghanistan, the turquoise was from Tiber, the sapphire from Sri Lanka and the carnelian brought from Saudi Arabia.
Very soon after the completion of Taj Mahal, emperor Shah Jahan was deposed by his son Aurangzeb. Shah Jahan was put under house arrest at Agra Fort till death and was buried next to his wife. By the late 19th century, some portions of Taj Mahal got damaged in absence of repair. During the time of 1857 Indian rebellion, British soldiers and officials, chiseled out precious stones and lapis lazuli from walls of Taj Mahal. However, at the end of 19th century, the British viceroy Lord Curzon ordered for the restoration of Taj Mahal and the work was completed in 1908. During the restoration, Lord Curzon commissioned the large lamp in the interior chamber and the garden was also remodeled like the British lawns.
In the year 1983, Taj Mahal was declared a World Heritage Site by UNSECO. Taj Mahal was cited as “the jewel of Muslim art in India and one of the universally admired masterpieces of the world's heritage." More than 350 years have passed, but even today Taj Mahal looks new and magnificently stand as a witness to eternal love between Shah Jahan and Mumtaz. Every year millions of people from all over the world visit the Taj Mahal and admire its unparalleled beauty.
Taj Mahal Tour
Duration :- SameDay
Destination :-Delhi - Agra - Delhi
DELHI AGRA (203 kms. 4 hrs. 30 min. approx.) Agra the zenith of art and an enshrined romance. It is a town that lives mainly in the past. Once the seat of the Mughal rulers. Their passion for building endowed it with some of the loveliest buildings in the world - the Taj Mahal a poem in white marble which took 22 years to build by 20,000 skilled artisans who inlaid the white marble edifice with precious and semi precious stones. The Agra Fort from where one can get the most moving view of the Taj from the little octagonal tower in the Agra Fort which lies across the river Jamuna.
0630 to 1245 hours
Drive to Agra through the Indian country side. Upon arrival proceed to the Taj Mahal to see the architectural modern day wonder of the world, the incomparable Taj Mahal. This monument is a fine example of the fusion of many architectural styles and is one of the wonders of the modern world. Built in 1652 by Emperor Shah Jahan.
1300 to 1400 hours
Proceed to Hotel Trident in Agra where a sumptuous buffet lunch awaits you.
1400 to 1500 hours
After lunch visit the Agra Fort built in red sandstone with its magnificent palaces, halls of public and private audience and the beautiful gardens. This is where Emperor Shah Jahan was kept under house arrest by his third son Aurangzeb and spent the last year of his life viewing the Taj Mahal from across the river Jamuna.
1500 to 1530 hours
Visit to a marble factory to see the beautiful inlay of precious and semi precious stones into the marble.
1600 to 1630 hours
Finally before driving back to Delhi, one can make a brief visit to Sikandra the tomb of the Mughal Emperor Akbar, a magnificent garden tomb. Return to Delhi around 2130 hours stopping midway for refreshments.