Taj Mahal sets new time limit for visitors
India’s most popular tourist attraction, the Taj Mahal, has announced that visits will be capped at three hours.
As of Sunday, April 1, visitors will have to manage their time wisely while visiting the UNESCO World Heritage site, or risk having to pay extra for exceeding the time limit.
The measure is aimed at crowd control; the Archaeological Survey of India points out that the monument can receive up to 50,000 visitors a day during peak season.
Overall, it’s estimated that the white marble mausoleum attracts between seven to eight million people a year.
Though the Taj Mahal website mentions that there is no limit to how long tourists can visit the monument, that will change as of Sunday.
Officials with the ASI told The Times of India that tickets will be time-stamped and most likely be manually checked by staff.
Tickets to the Taj Mahal are currently Rs 1,000 ($15 or about P780) for foreign visitors, Rs 40 for Indians and Rs 530 for visitors from SAARC (the South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation) countries.
The Taj Mahal is the latest tourist destination to struggle with overcrowding and introduce new visitor policies.
Italy’s Cinque Terre implemented a new ticketing system recently, with the aim of regulating the number of visits, while residents in cities like Barcelona, Venice and Amsterdam have taken to the streets in anti-tourism protests. JB
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