Fondly known as the ‘City of the Taj’, Agra is a must- visit city on any tour of India. Located 220 km from Delhi, the city provides avid glimpses of Mughal architecture. Formerly the capital of the Mughal Empire, the culture and heritage still exists in the bylanes of the city alluring tourists from far ends of the globe. The view of the Taj gives more than plenty reasons to pay a visit to Agra.
An Agra tour feels like an experience of India's Mughal period. The seat of the Mughal Empire for over 300 years, the town by the River Yamuna is one of the most historical and culturally-enriched places to visit in India. Besides, the omnipresent Mughal architecture and not to forget the heavenly Taj Mahal, Agra has a name for its fascinating tales, marble-carvings, delightful food- espcailly the mouth-watering pethas (sweets), colourful festivals, and so much more.
No matter how many times you look at the Taj Mahal you will never feel less than awe for the marvel. Built as a tribute by the Mughal Emperor Shah Jahan for his beloved Mumtaz Mahal, Taj Mahal is the testimony of eternal love. The view takes your breath away. In the early morning sunshine, the hours of the setting sun and under the full-moon light, the Taj looks a beauty beyond words. Furthermore, Agra's attractions include the Red Fort, built by Emperor Akbar on the banks of the River Yamuna. The red-sandstone fortress was the seat of governance of the Mughals. Listed among the UNESCO World heritage sites, the walled city in the fort has many interesting specimens of architecture. The Itmad-ud-Daulah, also known as ‘Baby Taj’ is a mausoleum built for Empress Noor Jahan's father is one of the impressive places to visit in Agra.
Moving further from the city but easily accessible are- Sikandra, the mausoleum of Emperor Akbar, and the Fatehpur Sikri, the abandoned Mughal City. The once glorious city of the Mughal Empire Fatehpur Sikri was abandoned for the scarcity of water. The ghost town has a very remarkable architecture and interesting stories. Starting from the world’s hugest gate, Buland Darwaza to the spectacular structures in the walled city, the UNESCO heritage site is one of the must-visit historical places to see in India and the most visited tourist city in North India. A point of the popular Golden Triangle circuit as well as one of the best short getaways from Delhi.
How To Get There
Agra is accessible by air owing to the domestic airport, 5 km from the city. Flights are available from Jaipur, Khajuraho and Varanasi.
Agra is very well connected by rail from New Delhi. The Gatimaan Express, Shatabdi Express, Taj Express, and Inter-city Express trains from Delhi take between 2 and 3 hours to reach Agra. There are also overnight trains connecting Agra with Varanasi, Bandhavgarh and Kanha. Additionally, Agra has been the favourite stop of many of the luxury trains in India.
Agra is well connected to Delhi by Yamuna Expressway. The 220 km distance can easily be covered in 3-4 hours. The Mughal city also shares well-connected roads to Jaipur to complete the most-popular tourist circuit known as the Golden Triangle.