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Agra at A Glance

Taj Mahal - Agra
India
Location: north India in Uttar Pradesh
Famous For: The Taj Mahal the 7th wonder of the world.
Places of Interest: Agra Fort, Itmad-Ud-Daulah Tomb and Jama Masjid
Distance from Delhi: 204 km by road.
Temperature: Summer- Max.45, Min.21.9, Winter- Max.31.7, Min.4.2
Rainfall: 66 cm (June to September)
Ideal Time to Visit: October to March
Language: Urdu, Hindi and English

An Over All View Of Agra City
The charisma of Taj Mahal, and the architectural splendor of the city of Agra, combine together to make it a complete destination for tourists from all over the globe.
Situated at a distance of 204 km south of Delhi, Agra is the most prestigious tourist destination of India. The rich culture and the glorious heritage of the city is portrayed in the gratifying monuments of ancient India built by great Mughals Empire who ruled India for more than 300 years.

Historic Perspective
Perched on the banks of river Yamuna, the city is said to be founded in 1475 during the reign of Raja Badal Singh. However the Mughal period started in India with the arrival of Babur in 1526. Agra was at its summit during the reign of Akbar, Jehangir and Shah Jahan. Mughal regime transmuted the city into majestic monuments, royal buildings and prospering arts and crafts including leatherwork and pietra dura a marble-inlay work along with delicious Mughal cuisine.

Thoughtfully fostered by the sword-wielding hands of the Mughals, Agra is home to the time-honored epitome of love, the Taj Mahal. The city is festooned with the foremost edifice of Mughal architecture, magnetizing visitors from all across the globe. Within the reach of the city lies Fatehpur Sikri that reflects the entire doctrine and theory of an Emperor Akbar.

Charms Of The City
Taj Mahal
Taj Mahal a white marvel of splendor was built by Emperor Shah Jahan in memory of his beloved wife, Mumtaz Mahal, who died giving birth to their 14th child. The most prodigal monument contrived for love stands in pride on a raised marble platform on the shores of River Yamuna. The construction of the Taj took 22 years and about 20,000 people were engaged in the erection of this massive colossal.
Visiting Timings: 6:00AM- 7:30PM everyday, Taj is closed on Fridays.

Agra Fort
Agra FortAgra Fort was built by a great Emperor Akbar in 1565 AD and is a perfect example and a chef d'oeuvre of art and architecture. Built in red sand stone the fort houses of number of magnificent structures, including 4 gateways, palaces, courts, mosques, baths and gardens. Diwan - i - Am, Diwan - i - Khas, Khas Mahal, Palace of Mirrors, Pearl Mosque, Nagina Masjid, Garden of Grapes, and Fish Pavilion are some of the remarkable monuments in the fort complex.
Visiting Timings: open all days from 6:00AM- 5:30PM daily. From Sunrise to Sunset.

Itmad-Ud-Daulah Tomb
Itmad-ud-daulah is the tomb of Mirza Ghiyas Beg, Emperor Jehangir's father - in- law. This marvelous garden tomb is adhered to be the trailblazer of the majestic Taj Mahal, and was the first Mughal structure, that made use of pietra dura, the inlay marble work. The structure was built by Empress Noorjehan the wife of Jehangir in 1622, resembling to this mausoleum she actualized for her husband, near Lahore in Pakistan.

Jama Masjid
The masjid was built by Emperor Shah Jahan's daughter Jahanara Begum in 1648 AD The construction of the building is of due importance due to it's absorption of Iranian architecture.

Radhaswamy Samadhi, Dayalbagh
The exceptionally adorned memorial of the Radhaswamy sect has been in the construction process for several years and is still being worked upon. It is made entirely of marble, on which every art of decoration has been applied.

Some of the other places popular among the tourists are Dayal Bagh- 8 kms, Chini-Ka-Roza- 9 kms Mariyam's Tomb- 13 km, Sikandra- 10 kms, Motilal Nehru Park and Shah Jahan Gardens & Rosary.

Excursions from Agra
Fatehpur Sikri: 37km from Agra was enlisted as the capital of the Mughal Empire between 1570 and 1586. Legend has it that the Emperor Akbar was without an heir and later was blessed by a son with the sanctification of the Sufi saint Sheikh Salim Chisti. In order to honor the saint emperor named the prince Salim, and founded a new city naming as Fatepur Sikri. The finest monuments within this area are the Diwan - i - Am, Diwan - i - Khas, Panch Mahal, Jama Masjid, Panch Mahal, Buland Darwaza and the tomb of Saint Sheikh Salim Chisti.

Sikandra: 10km from Agra lies the monolith of Emperor Akbar. The tomb has three-story-minarets on its Four Corners. These minarets are built in red sandstone with stunning inlay work of marble. It is an idle blend of Hindu, Christian, Islamic, Buddhist, Jain architectural styles.

Rambagh 35km: is the imperial ruin of the Mughal city. When Babur came to India he laid the first Mughal gardens 500 m North of the Chini Ka Rauza.

Mathura: the birthplace of Lord Krishana is one of he religious Hindu Pilrimage, 58km from Agra. Thousand of devotees thronged the city all the year round to worship in the temple.

Bharatpur Bird Sentuary Bharatpur bird sanctuary: at a distance of 54 km lies the sanctuary covering an area of 29 km. It is famous for its magnificent migratory birds, Siberian Cranes. Khajuraho- 395 kms temples famous for their erotic scluptures.
Other important excursions from Agra are Delhi 204km the capital city of India, situated in Rajasthan Jaipur is another worth visiting destination from Agra 232 km from Jaipur.

Festivities in Agra
Eid-ul-Fitr, Eid-ul-Adha and Muharrum: Being dominated by Muslim population, these festivals are celebrated with ample vivacity and amusement supported by assemblage and prayers. During the festivity time city processions are taken out in form of Tazias and kaleidoscopic Id Melas are also organized in entire city.

Diwali, the main festival of Hindus is also popularly celebrated in the city with same enthusiasm and spirit.

Sheetla Fair, Kailash Fair from August-September, Bateshwar Fair November and Urs Fatehpur Sikri during Ramzan are some of other important festivals of Agra.

The Taj Mahotsav: Taj Mahotsav is a culturally resonant platform that combine together the excellent Indian crafts and cultural delicacy. The festival is organized in Shiipgram just a km from Taj. The main attraction of the festival is its cultural folk music, classical dance performances and poetry. Elephant and camel rides are other main source of attraction arranged in this fun and food festival. The Taj food festival is an occurrence to elegance with exotic cuisine and delicacies. The Craft Mela organized, manifest the ethereal crafts like marble inlays, woodcarvings, brass and metal ware, handmade carpets, the blue pottery, the Chikan works, Banares Silk etc.
Organized by: UP Tourism Department.
Duration: the festival is held between 18th and 27th of February for 10days.

Shopping in Agra A wonderful Experience
Agra is known for its craftsmen and handicrafts, marble and soft stone inlay work, carpet and leather goods. The city is also famous for its miniature replicas of the Taj. Main Shopping market is Taj Mahal complex, Kinari Bazaar, Raja Mandi and Sadar Bazaar.

Agra is also home to one of the foremost presentation of village crafts in the form of Shilpgram- a crafts village and open-air emporium is adorned with spacious crafts from all over the country.

Souvenir Shops: The city has a number of Souvenir Shops approved by U.P. Tourism, details of which can be had from the local Tourist Office.

Government Emporia: Gangotri, U.P. Govt. Handicrafts Emporium, Taj Mahal Complex, U.P. Handloom, Sanjay Place, Hari Parbat, M.G. Road.

Getting around
Air: Indian Airlines connect Agra with Delhi, Khajuraho and Varanasi. Convenient airports from Mumbai are Jaipur (174 km) and Delhi (182 km) since there are no direct flights to Agra from Mumbai.

Rail: Agra is between Delhi Mumbai broad-gauge railway line. Palace on Wheel a luxurious train also covers Agra.

Road: Agra is connected to Delhi, Rajasthan and other cities of Uttar Pradesh by an excellent bus service.
Within the city one can move around by the local transport that comprises of cycle rickshaws, tongas and Some of the important distances are: Delhi- 204 km, Jaipur-237 km, Khajuraho- 395 kms, Mathura- 54 kms, , Bharatpur 54 kms etc.


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