Escape to Agra

We picked our friend Ingrid up from the airport and the four of us left for Agra and the Taj Mahal. After battling through the Delhi traffic we eventually got to Agra 4 hours later. As we got into the city we picked up our guide who seemed like a real wide boy when we first met him. We were dropped at our guesthouse and arranged with the driver and guide to be picked up at 5 to get to the Taj for sunset. In the mornings it is very foggy and not good visibility. Our guesthouse owner Max said we were leaving it a bit late to get in as the queues are long. We spoke to the guide Raj and he said no problem I will get you in really quickly. He did exactly that, he got us to the front and right in ahead of a hundred people queuing. He seemed to know everyone and lots of handshakes with small notes were going backwards and forwards. He was an excellent guide and was very informative. He knew all the places to stand for photos and got the security guards to let us stand and look where you weren’t supposed to. It was brilliant. I am so pleased to have eventually seen it and had the whole history expertly explained.

The next morning we were picked up early and taken to Agra Fort. We were the first people in, we felt like VIP’s. It lasted about 20 minutes. Again it was way more interesting having a guide to tell us the history of the place. It took us about 2 hours to go round and it was very beautiful. We saw only 20% of the whole site because a lot of it is red sandstone and was being worn away so is now out of bounds to try and preserve it.

We wanted to stop in Mathura which is half way from Agra to Delhi and is the birthplace of Lord Krishna. It celebrates Holi with a passion, lots of processions and special ceremonies in temples. We asked our driver if he would stop but he didn’t seem happy and said we needed to ring his office. They said no way. Cars get damaged and everyone gets trashed on alcohol and bhang and there are thousands of people. It can be quite dangerous. We went straight back to Delhi, a little disappointed, it would have been fun!!

Stopping at a service station on the way back to Delhi these guys were in the car park. Folk singers from Rajasthan the young boy was the musicians brother and he danced like a puppet. They were very good.

We had breakfast early and put on old clothes and went downstairs. The hotel staff daubed us with paint before leaving and then we went wandering. It was good fun. Everyone shouts happy holi and attacks you with more paint. People throw water balloons with or without colour from the rooftops. A lot of people were quite intoxicated and absolutely covered in paint and that was 10 in the morning, it was going to get messy!!

We showered and checked out of our hotel and moved to our new base for the afternoon and evening before we take the overnight train to the Himalayas. The hotel is gorgeous, colonial elegance in a nice part of town. The Wi-fi is excellent which is how I can post the last couple of trips. The good news is we are back in for a night before returning home. So excited about the walking. The adventure continues.

One thought on “Escape to Agra

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s