[Places To See Before You're Too Old]
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08 February 2009

Taj Mahal, Agra, India

Taj Mahal is regarded as one of the eight wonders of the world. The Taj is the most beautiful monument built by the Mughals, the Muslim rulers of India. Taj Mahal is built entirely of white marble. Its stunning architectural beauty is beyond adequate description, particularly at dawn and sunset. Taj Mahal was built by a Muslim, Emperor Shah Jahan (died 1666 C.E.) in the memory of his dear wife and queen Mumtaz Mahal at Agra, India. It is an "elegy in marble" or some say an expression of a "dream." Taj Mahal (meaning Crown Palace) is a Mausoleum that houses the grave of queen Mumtaz Mahal at the lower chamber. The grave of Shah Jahan was added to it later. The queen’s real name was Arjumand Banu. Shah Jahan's real name was Shahab-ud-din, and he was known as Prince Khurram before ascending to the throne in 1628. Taj Mahal was constructed over a period of twenty-two years, completed in 1648 C.E. at a cost of 32 Million Rupees. The construction documents show that its master architect was Ustad ‘Isa, the renowned Islamic architect of his time. The Taj stands on a raised, square platform (186 x 186 feet) with its four corners truncated, forming an unequal octagon. 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.Haji Zaini Mattar and Mohd Suhail, at the entranceMe, Mohd Suhail and Haji Zaini MattarThe beauty of it allMagnificient from any sidesOn the floors of Taj Mahal
(Haji Zaini Mattar, Habib Sabjan, Mohd Suhail and Me)
Just after the entrance (it was free, now you pay)

(Haji Zaini Mattar, Me, Mohd Suhail and Habib Sabjan)Mohd Suhail, Me and Habib SabjanOverlooking the entrance, from Taj MahalThe 2nd time around (Fatah, Mazeli, Michael Kumar, Me, Khairon, Haji Rani, Dr Mala and Dr Siti Aminah)Dr Mala, right after the entranceThe 2nd time around (Mazeli, Haji Yusof Zain, Khairon, Michael Kumar, Fatah, Me, Dr Siti Aminah, Dr Mala and Haji Rani)One of the most photographed monument in the worldAt the mouselleum in the Taj MahalOverlooking the lake

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