Agra is known as the city of the Taj. Agra is famous for having one of the Seven Wonders of the World – the Taj Mahal. Strewn with historical monuments, architectural grandeur and the beauty of marble structures, Agra is among the most popular tourist attraction in India. The city was chosen by Mughal emperor Akbar as his capital and today, it successfully represents the Mughal culture and traditions. Agra has always been a tourist stronghold, with local and international tourists streaming in to catch a glimpse of the famed monument – the Taj Mahal.
History of AGRA: Agra is the city on the banks of the river Yamuna in the northern state of Uttar Pradesh. Agra has found its mention in the famous Hindu epic Mahabharat as the forest of Agraban close to Mathura. Badal Singh founded the city in 1475. Sikandar Lodhi made Agra his capital city. Agra was first made the capital of India in 1501 by the Lodi dynasty. In 1526, Barbur defeated the Lodis, to capture the city situated on the banks of River Yamuna and thus, the long association of the Mughals with Agra started. It is said that it was Akbar who laid the foundation of the modern city that we see now in 1558 and was known as Akbarabad. Agra was the capital of many dynasties including Lodhi and Mughals.
Culture of AGRA: Agra has a unique culture of its own. Centuries of Mughal rule and the presence of various monuments and subsequent tourist influence have a direct bearing on the culture of the Agra city. People of Agra are amiable and hospitable and believes in offering tourists and guests best of the services during their stay in the city that is truly at par with the Indian notion of 'Atithi Devo Bhav'meaning guest is god.
Climate: Agra has maximum temperature in summer month (April-June) touching 47 degrees Celsius and minimum temperature in winter months (December- mid-January) reaching 5 degree Celsius.
Famous for: Agra is famous for “TAJ MAHAL”. Taj Mahal is one of the seven wonders of the world. Taj Mahal is “Symbol of love”, “the epitome of Love”, “a monument of immeasurable beauty”. The beauty of this magnificent monument is such that it is beyond the scope of words. Mughal Emperor Shah Jahan was constructed this monument in the memory of his beloved wife Mumtaz Mahal, with whom he fell in love at the first sight. The very first sight of the Taj Mahal, the epitome of love and romance, also leaves visitors mesmerized and perpetually enthralled.
Another Attraction of Agra
Agra Fort: Agra Fort is also known as “Red Fort”. The Agra Fort was begun by Akbar between 1565 and 1573. It is situated on the west bank of the Jumna River, about 2km upstream from the Taj Mahal. Akbar built the fort of sandstone; his grandson Shah Jahan. Shah Jahan was imprisoned in Agra Fort following the coup of his son, Aurangzeb, and died here.
Sikandra: Sikandra is the mausoleum of Akbar. Akbar himself started construction of this beautiful monument. This structure has a perfect blending of Hindu, Christian, Islamic, Buddhist, Jain themes. Sikandra is named after Sikandar Lodi, the Delhi ruler who was in power from 1488 to 1517.Sikandra the last resting place of the Mughal emperor Akbar. This is a must visit place for all those who want to experience an environment of ultimate serenity and peace.
DayalBagh: Dayalbagh temple, located at Dayalbagh in Agra, is a true example of architectural magnificence. Founded by Shiv Dayal Singh, who was also the founder of Radhasoami Satsang movement, the temple includes the Radhasoami memorial that is 110-feet high. It is an example of great artistic work that features impressive pillars and is made of pure white marble. Dayalbagh temple remains open for public viewing seven days a week.
Itmad-Ud-Daullah’s Tomb: Itmad-ud-daula has a special place in the chronicles of both history as well as architecture. Itmad-ud-Daulah was built by his daughter Nur Jahan after her marriage to Mughal emperor Jahangir. This is precisely because Itmad ud Daula is the very first tomb in India that is entirely made out of Marble. Itmad-ud-Daulah , The first tomb to be built in white marble instead of red sandstone. It marks the departure from the red sandstone buildings of Mughal architecture.
Fatehpur Sikri: Fatehpur Sikri was a fascinating ghost city built in the 16th century; 37 km from Agra Akbar the Great, who at 26 years did not have an heir, founded this historic site. Fatehpur Sikri was planned as a great town by Akbar with great care and planning in the honor of Sheikh Salim Chisti. There have been records that Babur renamed the village 'Sikri' as 'Shukri', meaning 'thanks to the god'. It was also the famous dwelling place and khanqah of Shiekh Salim Chishti, the famous Sufi saint whom Akbar revered for blessing him with a child.
Shopping: The city is famous for its marble stone inlay and a rare collection of handicraft items. Sadar Bazaar, Kinari Bazaar, Raja-ki-Mandi, Sanjay Place and the Taj Mahal Complex are the markets where you can find the intricately crafted showpieces, wall hangings, gift items, handicrafts, leather goods, marbles miniatures and a wide range of sandalwood and rosewood items at the best available prices. Exquisite jewelries and embroidery works can also be found here. Agra Brassware and carpets are renowned world over. Tourists will also like to shop for valuable leather items like shoes, belts and bags.
Food Corner: Taj Kheema, Dasa Prakash, Olive Garden Multicuisine Restaurant: Enjoy the Mughlai Feasting at restaurants in Agra to savor the specialty of the city at its best, ranging from kebabs, chicken curries to demote and pet has.
How to reach Agra:
By Air: Kheria Airport is the nearest domestic Airport, just 6 km away. Regular flights connect the city to the major metropolitan hubs like Delhi and Mumbai.
By Rail: The ‘Palace on wheels’ is a luxurious option available to visit Agra. Shatabdi and Rajdhani are the super fast trains connecting Delhi to Agra. Agra Cantt is the main station of the city.
By Road: Agra is connected to Delhi by National Highway 2 ensuring a safe and speedy drive. Idgah Bus Terminal provides all the buses to main centers in and around Agra like Mathura and Fatehpur Sikri. It is famous for its marble stone and handicraft items.
The Wonderful City - Agra