Mehtab Bagh, the moonlit garden, grew just across the northern waterfront of Yamuna when the Taj Mahal was built on its south bank in Uttar pradesh.
This place was once a heavenly garden with shaded pavilions, fountain jets, fragrant flowers and fantastic pools. But gradually the site became desolate. This site has now turned in to an epicenter for the project to establish protective green around the Taj Mahal.
The interest in Mehtab Bagh has developed again recently due to the increasing concern for the Taj Mahal. Its grounds are facing a great threat due to too many tourists.
Mehtab Bagh is a 25 acre garden, square in shape, measures about 300 x 300 m and is perfectly aligned with the Taj Mahal on the opposite bank. During the rainy season, the ground becomes partially flooded. The garden has fountains and pools along with several pavilions. Few of the gardens proportions were similar to that of the Taj Mahal. Mehtab Bagh came later in the possession of King of Amber, Raja Man Singh Kacchawa. Mehtab Bagh also joins two other gardens to the west. Originally, four sandstone towers marked the corners of Mehtab Bagh of which only one at the south east edge remains. The gardens also contain a large pond on its outer edges which reflects the image of the Taj. Apart from water channels that enhance the beauty of the park, there is also a small tank in the center of the garden.
The garden was ruined by frequent floods. Most of the damaged part was taken by villagers to use as building materials. The structures that remained within the garden are not maintained properly. ASI started some restoration in the 1990s. Recent excavations conducted by ASI revealed a huge octagonal tank equipped with 25 fountains on the southern periphery, a small central tank and a pavilion on the east. It is also known as the Moonlight garden as one can enjoy a spectacular night view of Taj Mahal on full moon day from here.