India’s iconic ivory-white marble mausoleum the Taj Mahal located on the bank of the Yamuna river in the Indian city of Agra is the second-best UNESCO world heritage site in the world, according to a new survey.
With over 8 million visitors per year, the monument of love was commissioned in 1632 by the Mughal emperor, Shah Jahan in the memory of his beloved wife Mumtaz Mahal.
The Taj Mahal became a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1983. It is described as “the jewel of Muslim art in India and one of the universally admired masterpieces of the world’s heritage”.
The survey was conducted by online travel portal TripAdvisor, where it listed the UNESCO Cultural and Natural heritage sites best rated by travellers around the globe.
“You can find hundreds of tours and experiences to visit this mesmerising 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 said.
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.
Angkor Wat of Cambodia came out on top of the list of the best UNESCO world heritage sites followed by Taj Mahal in Agra, India then the Great Wall, China; Machu Picchu, Peru; Iguazu Falls, Argentina/Brazil; Sassi of Materia, Italy; Auschwitz, Poland; Old City of Jerusalem, Israel; Historic areas of Istanbul, Turkey; and Historic Krakow, Poland.