The Taj Mahal, a mausoleum made up of pure white marble, located in Agra, is the second best UNESCO world heritage site in the world, according to a new survey by a travel portal. Built by Mughal emperor Shah Jahan in the memory of his wife Mumtaz Mahal, the ‘monument of love’ is rated after Cambodia’s Angkor Vat. Other popular heritage sites on the survey include the Great Wall of China built by Xu Da of Northern Qi Dynasty in 1368 AD and South America’s Incan citadel Machu Picchu in Peru.
“You can find hundreds of tours and experiences to visit this mesmerizing site, from a private tour with guide and visit at sunset or sunrise, to a visit including a home-cooked meal at a local home in Agra,” the travel portal was quoted as saying by news agency.
The Taj Mahal was designated as a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1983. It is one of the Seven Wonders of the World which is considered as the most photogenic destinations of India. It is one of the most exquisite structures ever built by any emperor. It was constructed by the fifth Mughal emperor in the fond memory of his favorite wife Mumtaj Mahal. The Taj Mahal in terms of architecture, is one of the most symmetrical structures in the world, constructed using pure white marble and adorned with precious and semi precious stones. The construction started in 1631 and got completed in 1653 AD; 20,000 workers worked day and night together for 22 years.
Government statistics however show that every fourth foreign visitor to the country visits the Taj but there has been a decline in the number foreign tourists to the white marble mausoleum, widely considered one of the world’s seven wonders. The monument receives 8 million visitors per year.