Tourists and locals visit the Taj Mahal in Agra, India by the tens of thousands each day. (Getty Images)

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Tickets to the Taj Mahal are Going up 400% for Indian Visitors

The price hike is an attempt to lessen traffic and damage to the historical site.

In the latest attempt to quell enormous visitor numbers to the fragile and ancient Taj Mahal, ticket prices for Indian residents has shot up by 400%.

Indians make up the majority of ticket buyers, The Guardian reported, and account for 10,000 to 15,000 of the Taj’s daily visitors. Nearly 6.5 million people made the journey to the famed marble building in 2016 alone.

All-inclusive tickets to the Unesco World Heritage site rose from 50 rupees ($0.69) to 250 rupees ($3.46), effective Monday. International tourists will now pay $19 instead of $16.

“We want people to pay more to limit the footfall,” a spokesperson from the Archaeological Survey of India, the government body responsible for upkeep, said. “This will cut down the number of visitors to the mausoleum by at least 15-20% and generate revenue for its conservation.”

The price jump comes just a few months after the Indian government restricted the number of visitors to 40,000 a day to bring down the whopping 70,000-person total the Wonder was attracting.

Experts say the huge flow of people is causing irreversible damage to the marble floor, walls and foundations, The Guardian reported.

Read the full story at The Guardian