Exploring Agra, the city of Taj Mahal, is a world-renowned destination and one of the most popular tourist destinations in India. It is a city that embodies the rich culture and history of India, and its monuments and attractions are a testament to its glorious past. In this article, we will explore the top things to do and see in Agra, including its famous monuments, cuisine, and culture.
No trip to Agra is complete without visiting the iconic Taj Mahal. It is a symbol of love and beauty, and its intricate architecture and stunning surroundings make it one of the most beautiful buildings in the world. The Taj Mahal was built by Emperor Shah Jahan in memory of his beloved wife Mumtaz Mahal. Tour Book
a. History of Taj Mahal:
The construction of the Taj Mahal started in 1631 and took over 22 years to complete. It is made of white marble and is adorned with intricate carvings and precious stones. The Taj Mahal is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and attracts millions of visitors every year.
b. Tips for visiting Taj Mahal:
To make the most of your visit to the Taj Mahal, it is best to visit early in the morning or late in the afternoon when the crowds are thinner, and the light is perfect for photography. Visitors are required to wear shoe covers, and there are strict rules about what can and cannot be taken inside the Taj Mahal complex. It is also a good idea to hire a guide to learn more about the history and significance of the monument.
c. Best time to visit Taj Mahal:
The best time to visit the Taj Mahal is between October and March when the weather is pleasant and comfortable.
2. Discover the Magnificent Agra Fort
Agra Fort is another must-visit destination in Agra. It is a magnificent red sandstone fort that was built by Emperor Akbar in the 16th century. The fort is located on the banks of the Yamuna River and is a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
a. History of Agra Fort:
The Agra Fort was originally built as a military structure, but it was later converted into a palace by Emperor Shah Jahan. The fort has several beautiful buildings and structures, including the Diwan-i-Aam, Diwan-i-Khas, and the Sheesh Mahal.
b. Highlights of Agra Fort:
Some of the highlights of the Agra Fort include the Jahangir Mahal, the Khas Mahal, and the Musamman Burj. The fort offers stunning views of the Taj Mahal and the city of Agra.
c. Tips for visiting Agra Fort:
To make the most of your visit to Agra Fort, it is best to hire a guide who can provide you with detailed information about the fort’s history and architecture. It is also a good idea to carry water and wear comfortable shoes.
3. Immerse Yourself in the Culture and Cuisine of Agra:
Agra is not just famous for its monuments but also for its rich culture and delicious cuisine. Here are some ways to experience the local culture and cuisine of Agra.
a. Try Local Street Food: Agra is known for its street food, and there are several local dishes that you must try, such as chaat, samosas, and jalebis.
b. Shop for Souvenirs at Local Markets: Agra has several local markets where you can shop for souvenirs such as handicrafts, leather goods, and marble artifacts.
c. Experience Mughlai Cuisine: Mughlai cuisine is a popular
4. Visit the Tomb of Itimad-ud-Daulah
The Tomb of Itimad-ud-Daulah is a hidden gem in Agra and is often referred to as the “Baby Taj.” It is a beautiful tomb that was built by Nur Jahan, the wife of Emperor Jahangir, for her father, Mirza Ghiyas Beg.
a. History of Tomb of Itimad-ud-Daulah:
The Tomb of Itimad-ud-Daulah was built in the 17th century and is one of the earliest Mughal structures made of white marble. It is known for its intricate carvings and beautiful inlay work.
b. Highlights of Tomb of Itimad-ud-Daulah:
The tomb is located on the banks of the Yamuna River and offers stunning views of the river and the city of Agra. Some of the highlights of the tomb include its beautiful gardens, the marble lattice screens, and the inlaid floral motifs.
c. Tips for visiting Tomb of Itimad-ud-Daulah:
To make the most of your visit to the Tomb of Itimad-ud-Daulah, it is best to visit early in the morning or late in the afternoon to avoid the crowds. The tomb is also known for its beautiful sunset views. Visitors are required to wear shoe covers, and there are strict rules about what can and cannot be taken inside the complex.
5. Take a Walk through Mehtab Bagh
Mehtab Bagh, also known as the Moonlit Garden, is a charming Mughal garden located in Agra, India. This historical garden is situated along the banks of the Yamuna River and offers breathtaking views of the Taj Mahal. A leisurely walk through Mehtab Bagh is a perfect way to spend a serene afternoon in Agra.
History of Mehtab Bagh Mehtab Bagh
History of Mehtab Bagh Mehtab Bagh was built by Emperor Babur’s son, Prince Kamran, in the 16th century. The garden was later restored by Emperor Shah Jahan, who built the Taj Mahal. The garden was originally designed as an integral part of the Taj Mahal complex, with the riverfront terrace providing a perfect view of the monument.
Overview of Mehtab Bagh
Mehtab Bagh is a large and well-maintained garden with a variety of trees, plants, and flowers. The garden is divided into four parts, each with its own unique features and attractions. Mehtab Bagh also has a large central pool and several fountains that enhance the beauty of the garden.
Best Time To Visit
Best time to visit Mehtab Bagh is during the early morning or late afternoon. A leisurely walk through the garden can take up to two hours, and visitors can explore the different sections of the garden at their own pace. The walk is an excellent opportunity to admire the architecture of the garden and the views of the Taj Mahal.
The Views from Mehtab Bagh
Mehtab Bagh offers some of the best views of the Taj Mahal. Visitors can admire the majestic monument from different vantage points in the garden. The view of the Taj Mahal from Mehtab Bagh is particularly beautiful during sunset, as the sun’s rays illuminate the monument and create a magical atmosphere.
The Flora and Fauna of Mehtab Bagh
Mehtab Bagh is home to a diverse range of flora and fauna, including several species of birds, butterflies, and insects. Visitors can enjoy the beauty of the garden’s vegetation and observe the different animals that inhabit the garden. Some of the most common plants in Mehtab Bagh include jasmine, frangipani, and marigold.
6. Explore Fatehpur Sikri – A City of Ghosts
Fatehpur Sikri is a city in the Agra district of Uttar Pradesh, India. It was founded by Mughal Emperor Akbar in the late 16th century and served as the capital of the Mughal Empire from 1571 to 1585. Fatehpur Sikri is an important tourist destination because of its rich history and its well-preserved architectural heritage. However, the city is also known for its reputation as a “city of ghosts,” as there are many legends and stories about the spirits and supernatural phenomena that are said to inhabit the city.
A. The History of Fatehpur Sikri
Fatehpur Sikri was established by Mughal Emperor Akbar in 1571 as a planned capital city. The city was designed to be a symbol of Akbar’s power and grandeur, with its stunning palaces, mosques, and other buildings. However, Fatehpur Sikri was abandoned only 14 years later due to water shortages and other logistical problems. Despite its relatively short existence, the city is considered one of the finest examples of Mughal architecture in India.
B. The Legends of Fatehpur Sikri
Over the years, Fatehpur Sikri has become associated with many legends and stories about ghosts and supernatural phenomena. Many people believe that the city is haunted by the spirits of the past. One popular legend tells the story of a sorcerer who was executed in the city and is said to have cursed Fatehpur Sikri before he died. Another legend tells of a beautiful queen who still wanders the abandoned palaces of the city, searching for her lost love.
C. Exploring Fatehpur Sikri
Visitors to Fatehpur Sikri can explore the many beautiful buildings and structures that still stand today. The city’s most famous landmarks include the Buland Darwaza, a massive gateway that stands 40 meters high, and the Diwan-i-Khas, a beautiful palace with intricate carvings and stunning architecture. Other highlights include the Jama Masjid, one of the largest mosques in India, and the Panch Mahal, a five-story palace with stunning views of the surrounding countryside.
D. Tips for Visiting Fatehpur Sikri
To make the most of your visit to Fatehpur Sikri, be sure to plan ahead. The city is located about 40 kilometers from Agra, so it is best to plan a full day trip. Wear comfortable shoes and clothing as you will be doing a lot of walking. It’s also a good idea to bring a hat, sunscreen, and plenty of water, as the sun can be intense in this part of India. Finally, be respectful of the city’s historical and cultural significance by not littering and by following local customs and traditions.
7. Exploring the Local Bazaars in Agra – A Shopper’s Delight
Agra, the city of the iconic Taj Mahal, is also home to some of the best local bazaars in India. These bazaars are not just shopping destinations, but also a reflection of the city’s rich cultural heritage. In this article, we will take you on a tour of some of the best local bazaars in Agra, where you can find everything from traditional handicrafts to mouth-watering street food.
- Sadar Bazaar
- Kinari Bazaar
- Shahganj Bazaar
- Taj Ganj Bazaar
1. Sadar Bazaar
Sadar Bazaar is one of the most popular local bazaars in Agra. Located near the Agra Cantonment railway station, this market is famous for its leather goods, especially shoes and bags. You can also find a wide range of handicrafts, including marble souvenirs, embroidered textiles, and brassware. The market is also known for its street food, especially the spicy chaat and jalebis.
2. Kinari Bazaar
Kinari Bazaar is located near the Jama Masjid in Agra and is famous for its wedding shopping. You can find a wide range of wedding-related items, such as jewelry, clothes, and decorations. The market is also known for its zari work and embroidery.
3. Shahganj Bazaar
Shahganj Bazaar is a wholesale market for handicrafts and textiles. You can find a wide range of products, including carpets, rugs, and textiles. The market is also famous for its leather shoes, bags, and jackets.
4. Taj Ganj Bazaar
Taj Ganj Bazaar is located near the Taj Mahal and is a popular shopping destination for tourists. You can find a wide range of souvenirs and handicrafts, such as miniature Taj Mahals, marble.
7. Take a Walk Along the Yamuna River
Agra, the city of love and the home of the Taj Mahal, is known for its rich cultural heritage, stunning architecture, and historical significance. While there are plenty of things to see and do in Agra, one of the most underrated activities is taking a walk along the Yamuna River. This scenic and peaceful walk offers stunning views of the Taj Mahal and the city’s skyline, as well as a chance to experience the city from a different perspective.
A. Getting There
To reach the Yamuna River, you can take a taxi or auto-rickshaw to the riverfront, which is easily accessible from most parts of the city. Alternatively, you can take a leisurely stroll along the city’s streets to reach the riverbank.
B. The Walk
The walk along the Yamuna River is a serene and calming experience that allows you to soak in the city’s beauty while escaping the chaos of its streets. The riverbank is lined with lush greenery and benches where you can sit and enjoy the view. The walkway is well-maintained and provides a smooth surface for walking or cycling.
As you walk along the river, you can catch a glimpse of the Taj Mahal in the distance, making for an unforgettable sight. The early morning hours are the best time to take this walk as the weather is pleasant and the river is calm.
C. Attractions Along the Way
While the walk along the Yamuna River is a peaceful experience in itself, there are several attractions along the way that are worth checking out. These include:
- Mehtab Bagh: As mentioned earlier, Mehtab Bagh is a stunning garden complex located opposite the Taj Mahal. The garden provides a perfect spot for a picnic or a leisurely stroll, offering breathtaking views of the Taj Mahal from across the river.
- Chini Ka Rauza: A lesser-known attraction in Agra, Chini Ka Rauza is a mausoleum that houses the tomb of the Persian scholar and poet, Allama Afzal Khan Mullah. The monument is famous for its intricate Persian-style glazed tilework and is a unique architectural marvel.
- Jama Masjid: Located in the heart of the city, Jama Masjid is one of the largest mosques in India and is famous for its stunning Mughal architecture. The mosque’s massive courtyard can accommodate up to 25,000 worshippers at a time and is a must-visit attraction in Agra.
D. Safety Precautions
While the walk along the Yamuna River is generally safe, it is recommended to take necessary precautions to ensure a pleasant experience. It is advisable to carry enough water, wear comfortable clothing and shoes, and use sunscreen to protect yourself from the sun’s rays. Avoid walking along the riverbank after dark and be cautious of your surroundings.
Agra is a city that is steeped in history, culture, and architectural wonders. From the iconic Taj Mahal to the ghost city of Fatehpur Sikri, Agra is a must-visit destination for any traveler. The city is bustling with activity and has something for everyone. Whether you are a history buff, a foodie, or just looking for a relaxing break, Agra will not disappoint.
During your trip to Agra, be sure to visit the Taj Mahal at sunrise, explore the Agra Fort, take a walk through Mehtab Bagh, and explore the local bazaars for unique souvenirs and experiences. If you have the time, also consider visiting the Tomb of Itimad-ud-Daulah and taking a walk along the Yamuna River. Plan To Visit Tajmahal
- What is the best time to visit Agra? Ans:- The best time to visit Agra is between October to March when the weather is pleasant, and you can enjoy the beauty of the city without being overwhelmed by the heat.
- How long should I plan to stay in Agra? Ans:- To truly experience everything Agra has to offer, we recommend staying for at least 2-3 days.
- Can I visit the Taj Mahal at night? Ans :- No, the Taj Mahal is not open for night visits except on five specific nights of the month, which are full moon nights and two nights before and after the full moon.
- What is the dress code for visiting the Taj Mahal? Ans :- Visitors are required to dress conservatively and cover their heads and shoulders while visiting the Taj Mahal.
- Are there any other attractions near Agra worth visiting? : – Yes, there are several other attractions near Agra worth visiting, including the Keoladeo National Park in Bharatpur, the ancient city of Mathura, and the temples in Vrindavan.