Our final destination with our driver has been reached - Agra. We turned up mid afternoon right smack bang in the middle of some political rally, so getting through some of the town was slow. Our main objective here was literally to go see the Taj Mahal and get our train (on sunday) to Varansi. So day 1 was spent doing nothing much but surfing the internet. On sunday (day 2) we got up at 530am to go see the Taj Mahal. Upon approcahing the gate that leasd you to the main site of the Taj Mahal, you are greeted by the locals trying to sell you mini taj mahals in snow globes, or as keyrings, as expected i guess. The Taj Mahal itself is about 1km from the gate so after the brisk wlk you finally reach the main ticket office. Now, you rember how in all tourist spots the prices are more than the locals? well the Taj Mahal reigns supreme here. For a local to get in its 20 rupees (80 rupees to the pound just so u know) and for us tourists its 750 rupees.....250 entrance fee, 500 tax, hahaha. So you hand over your cash (seems we do that a lot here) and walk in. The Taj Mahal itself looks impressive and the surrounding landscape is very well looked after (should think so the money they charge to get in). As you approach the Taj Mahal you suddenyl; realise just how big this thing is, its massive!! Unfortunately though the amazement wears off as you find out that all you can do is walk into it, walk around in a circle then exit the place, you cant go up, down, left or right which annoyed me as I would have liked to have got on top of it and walked around the balcony areas, oh well. So there you have it, the famous taj mahal had been seen, worth the money? no but its something you got to see if you are in the area I guess.
That evening we were due to catch a train from Agra Fort to Varanasi. The train left ON TIME at 9:15pm, the journey took 13 hours, you are in a space shared with 8 people in total, some clever clogs decides to give me (Daniel) the top bunk which has about 3 feet worth of space from the bed to the ceiling, so as you can imagine, getting up and down from this bed of mine was interesting to say the least and with my backpack up on the bed too, I had about 5 feet worth of room to lay on, so yeah my legs were hanging way off the bed that night, hope people ducked when they walked past, ha ha.
D & S