Photos

Photographer's Note

There are many better photos of Taj Mahal on TE than anything I’m going to post. But I just wanted to use this image as an excuse to write a few words about my visit there. Truly wonderful morning with lots of photo opportunities for the lovers of any genre: people, landscape, architecture, wildlife… So brace yourselves, as I’m going to try to bore you to death with all of those…

But to start, let me recap a few facts from my previous posts, that I’m sure nobody picked on and put together to get a full picture:

1. Early in the morning I went for a walk by the East Gate, the nearest entrance to the Taj.
2. The East Gate was quite a distance from my hotel.
3. I then retuned to the hotel and only afterwards went back to see the Taj Mahal.
4. I didn’t return to the hotel to have breakfast (which hotel Raj – vide my note two uploads ago – didn’t serve anyway), because all I ate that day were bananas procured from the seller pictured in my last post.

Why did I go back to the hotel rather than go to see the Taj, which is open from early morning, straight away? It’s because I found the note you can admire in WS with the list of all the things that you are not allowed to bring into the Taj Mahal complex. Some of these are obvious, like guns, cigarettes or food (although I wonder why “toffees” are not considered already included in “eatables”) but I can only guess why some other items are prohibited: “colours” and tools (to prevent vandalism?), a helmet (so not to hide your face from the security cameras?), “mic & headphone” (anyone??), a torch (?), toys (really??).

But books? Why books? And that was the reason why I had to go back to the hotel. I was not prepared to give up my guidebook. At least not at the beginning of my trip. Consequently, I lost the opportunity to enter Taj Mahal really early. All was not lost however, as it wasn’t really swarming with visitors, maybe because of the weather. The buildings were shrouded in mist and I had been told it was not foreign tourists’ favourite season. Well, that’s two birds killed with one stone – I love mist and I can do without the crowds!

The security checks at the gate were quite severe indeed. They found a ball of something edible I had been given by a fellow passenger on the train (and then forgot about), tucked deep in one of my rucksack’s pockets and disposed of it. I was glad I decided to leave my Lonely Planet behind.

Another slightly awkward thing – in one of the section (and that section only) of Taj Mahal, visitors are required to put on the kind of overshoes (see WS) that you would be required to wear in a museum. Except here, most of that place was outdoors.

I know that half of my comments to this upload sound like I’m complaining so… in case you didn’t guess, reading the first paragraph of this note, I would like to say it again… it was fantastic to be there and I loved every moment of it. So, as I said, more to come…

I know I could have used levels or curves to enhance this image and bring the façade out to shine in the made-in-Photoshop sun that wasn’t there. But I wanted to show you exactly (well, almost; it was not black and white) what I saw that morning.

Photo Information
Viewed: 0
Points: 42
Discussions
  • None
Additional Photos by Kasia Nowak (kasianowak) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 1597 W: 9 N: 3247] (16832)
View More Pictures
explore TREKEARTH