Agra-vating! But it all worked out in the end!!
Jaipur Travel Blog› entry 35 of 35 › view all entries
So we ended up staying another 3 nights in Jaipur and virtually lived in Pizza Hut (they sold pasta and tomato soup, pretty much my diet for a week!) as the hotels western food was crap (my breakfast involved a toasted banana sandwich which they insisted on seasoning with salt and pepper!!) and thought we could rely on the good old hut!
We then got a train to Agra as the situation in Delhi was still the same. We arrived late and booked into a decent hotel (a bit grubby though) and grabbed a bit of food before heading to bed. The alarm woke us up at 5am and we crawled out of bed and got ready for our early morning visit to the Taj Mahal. Conveniently the hotel is pretty much on it's doorstep (despite having to travel 1km down the road to purchase the tickets!)! The Taj was as magnificent as you'd imagine! We took the generic photos before approaching the building, viewing it's incredible detail and proceding inside. Within the grounds we saw some interesting wildlife including bright green birds, little stripy backed squirrels and colourful butterflies. It was a lovely visit with the cool morning air and only a few hundred other visitors, and by 7am we were heading back to the hotel (for more sleep) where we went back to bed until a reasonable hour! On the evening we dined in style at a rooftop restaurant watching the sun set (well, disappear amongst the haze of pollution) and the fabulous view of the Taj!
While in Agra we decided to check out Kinari Bazaar which supposedly is good for shopping. However, that wasn't our experience! We arrived to find hundreds of stalls selling a load of rubbish in the pouring rain! Finally we found a couple of good buys, but called it quits relatively early as we were soaked to the bone (but us the classic Brits we are, sure showed them Indians how to shop in the rain!).
After a few nights in Agra we decided theres not much point sticking around any longer. We got up at the crack of dawn ( :( 4am!) and went to get an autorickshaw to the train station. We found a huddle of drivers fussing over something on the floor, which to our astonishment turned out to be a wild Cobra!! We speedily got in the rickshaw and headed off to the station (away from the bloomin poisonous snake!) where we boarded our train and made the 4 hour journey back to Delhi. For those of us that weren't fast asleep (couldn't help it!) the view from the carriage was both interesting and disturbing. I saw plenty of straw huts and houses made from dried poo, and what seemed to be the entire population of India squatting along the train tracks for their morning dump!