About Agra 

 

Perhaps no other historical monument has evoked as much awareness and admiration from tourists and travellers alike, as the magnificent Taj Mahal - fondly called by people as the ultimate requiem of love, from a great Mughal Emperor to his beloved.

 

So overwhelming is the exquisite beauty and presence of this marble mausoleum that centuries later today, even the very land where it has been located - Agra - has been immortalised as the City of the Taj. Yet, it doesn’t take much for the roving eye to discover that there's more to Agra than just the fabled Taj Mahal. The city is a virtual gateway to a world of discovery... a freeze-frame from a resplendant era that's long since gone by. In the great epic 'Mahabharat' the region of Agra is described as 'Agraban' (an integral part of the Brij Bhumi or the land of Lord Krishna). The latter part of Indian history outlines the origins of Agra to 1475 A.D., when the reign of Raja Badal Singh.

However, Agra came into limelight during the rule of Afghan King Sikandar Lodhi - who had made it the capital of his empire.Later in 1526 A.D., the Mughal Emperor Babar took upon himself the task for rendering Agra, a unique character and beauty of its own. The visionary that he was and a great patron of the arts, Emperor Babar brought in a change in the culture and life-style among the people of Agra, which then brought forth some of the finest craftsmen, artists, statesmen, warriors and nobility, this part of India had ever withnessed. The golden age of Agra's history, thus began to set in.

 

The next few hundred years of Agra witnessed the rise of the pomp and pageantry of three great Mughal monarchs - Emperor Akbar, Jehangir and ShahJahan - all of whom lavished on this fabled city, their love and riches immeasurable to transform the land into one of the great centers of art, culture, learning and commerce.

Much of the city's impressive past lives in evidence even today, in the hunting presence inside the monuments, the majesty of the buildings, the exquisite arts and crafts and not to forget, the lure of an exceptional cuisine... all, cherished as priceless legacies of a nostalgic past. The older city of Agra has impressively retained much of its resplendent history... captivating every visitor with fond memories to take back home. Today, luxury and modern convenience also exist adjacent to tradition - luxury hotels, shopping malls and plazas, wide avenues and a superb choice of venues for recreation, business, sports, pleasure, education and the arts.

Taj Mahal

Taj Mahal : A Glorious World Heritage Site 

Taj Mahal. Sheer poetry in marble. Majesty and magnificence, unrivalled. The Taj Mahal, the one and only one of its kind across the world. The monumental labour of love of a great ruler for his beloved queen. The ultimate realisation of Emperor Shahjahan's dream. One of the wonders of the world. From 1631 A.D., it took 22 years in the making. An estimated 20,000 people worked to complete the enchanting mausoleum, on the banks of the Yamuna. For a breathtaking beautiful view of the Taj Mahal, see it by moonlight.

Open : From Sunrise to 7:30 pm (Closed on Friday's)

Agra Fort

The Agra Fort World Heritage Site 

The great Mughal Emperor Akbar commissioned the construction of the Agra Fort in 1565, A.D. although additions were made till the time of his grandson Shahjahan.

The forbidding exteriors of this fort hide an inner paradise. There are a number of exquisite buildings i.e. Diwan-Am, Diwan-E-Khaas, Musamman Burj - where Shahjahan died in 1666 A.D. Jahangir's Palace; Khaas Mahal and Shish Mahal. 

Open : Sunrise to sunset.

Chini Ka Rauza

This was constructed by Afzal Khan - a high official in the court of Shahjahan. Decorated by glazed tiles on the façade, the structure clearly depicts the Persian influence in architecture. 

Open : Sunrise to sunset.

Fatehpur Sikri

Fatehpur Sikri World Heritage Site 

An epic in red sandstone. A city of yesteryears, today lost in the mists of time. Fatehpur Sikri was built by the Mughal Emperor Akbar during 1569-74 A.D. A sonless Akbar had gone to Sikri to seek blessings of a muslim saint Sheikh Salim Chishti. When his son was finally born, he in gratitude, constructed his capital city and named it Fatehpur Sikri. Later, due to shortage of water and unrest in north-west, Akbar had to abandon this city. The beautiful marble tomb of Sheikh Salim Chisti attracts thousands who seek blessings of the revered saint. Other renowned places are Diwan-I-Am, diwan-I-Khaas, Buland Darwaza, Panch Mahal, Jodha Bai's Palace and Birbal Bhavan. 

Open: Sunrise to sunset. 

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