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Taj Mahal at dawn – Agra (India)

View of Taj Mahal from north bank of Yamuna River

Of all the world’s major landmarks I have visited so far, Taj Mahal is easily amongst the few to have left me in awe.

We have all seen these places dozens of times on TV, or in movies or photos, so we think we know what to expect. Most of the time we are right, and we are definitely impressed when we see them first-hand, but rarely speechless. At least that’s how it goes for me.

It’s not that most of those places fail to impress me. It’s just that I often find I expected a little more.

I felt none of that when I visited Taj Mahal. From the moment I saw its elegant shape in the distance, looking almost engraved in the landscape, I was positively stunned by its beautiful lines. This impression was even more acute once I admired it from the site grounds. It didn’t matter to me that the place was overrun with visitors. As much as I’m always curious about people when I travel, the crowds could simply not compete with the immaculate, almost blinding ivory-white glow of this breathtaking monument.

The next day I went to Taj Mahal at the crack of dawn. We had been told that the views from the north bank of Yamuna River were well worth the effort of waking up before 4 AM. And they were.

Watching the sun go up and Taj Mahal materialize behind a delicate veil of haze was enough to persuade me: this has to be one of the most gorgeous sights on earth. It’s been three years, and I still think the same.

Have you ever been to Taj Mahal? What were your impressions? Tell me in the comments!

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