Agra is home to possibly the most famous and beautiful building in the world: the Taj Mahal, built in the 17th century by the Mughal emperor Shah Jahan as a tomb and memorial for his wife Mumtaz Mahal.

Along the river Yamuna is the impressive Red Fort from where there are fantastic views of the Taj. The Red Fort was the capital of the Moghul Empire and thus of India during the 16th and 17th centuries.

What to see

  1. Taj Mahal (4 Km): India’s most fascinating and beautiful monument, the Taj Mahal was completed in 1653 AD by the Mughal Emperor Shah Jahan as the final resting place for his favourite queen Mumtaz. This perfectly symmetrical monument took 22 years (1630-1652) of hard labour and 20,000 workers, masons and jewellers to build and set amidst landscaped gardens. ( Timings: 0600 hrs to 0800 hrs & 1730 hrs to 1900 hrs; Friday, 0600 hrs to 1900 hrs; Monday closed).

  2. Agra Fort (3 Km): Is an imposing fort on the banks of the river yamuna, designed and built by the Mughal Emperor, Akhbar. The fort is a masterpiece of design and construction. Within the fort are a number of exquisite buildings, including the Moti Masjid, Diwane-i-Arn, Diwane-i-Khas and Musamman Burj, where the Emperor Shah Jahan died in imprisonment, besides Jahangir’s Palace, Khaas Mahal and the Sheesh Mahal. (Timings; Sunrise to Sunset)

  3. Chini Ka Roza (9 Km): A memorial to Allama Afzel Khan Shukrulla of Shiraz, a welll known poet scholar of Emperor Jahangir’ region.

  4. Itmad-Ud-Daulad’s Tomb (6 Km): An impressive tomb in white marble built by Nur Jahan, wife of Emperor Jahangir in memory of her father, Ghias-ud-Din.

  5. Jama Masjid: Constructed in 1648 AD by Shahajahan’s daughter, Jahanara Begum in memory of the famous Sheikh Salim Chisti and his grandson Islam Khan.

  6. Mariyam’s Tomb (13 Km): Built in memory of Emperor Akhbar’s Goan wife, it is made of Red stone and lies in the centre of a well laid out garden.

  7. Radhasoami Samadhi (8 Km): Headquarters of the Radhsoami sect, the holy ashes of the founder of the faith have been preserved here. (Timings: 0800 hrs to 1700 hrs).

  8. Ram Bagh (8 Km): One of the earliest Mughal gardens, it was laid out by Emperor Barbar the founder of the Mughal dynasty in 1526 AD.

  9. Sikandra (10 Km): Better known today as the last resting place of the Mughal Emperor, Akhbar. The construction of this mausoleum was started by Akhbar himself and completed by his son Jahangir. This red stone monument in a ‘Char Bagh’ or four squar garden is a fusion of Hindu and Muslim art and architecture (Timing: Sunrise to Sunset).

Getting There

Air: Agra is connected by India Airlines with Delhi, Varanasi and Khajuraho.

Rail: Agra is well connected by rail with major cities in India.

Road: Motorable roads connect Agra with Bharatpur 56 Km, Calcutta 1287 Km, Delhi 204 Km, Gwalior 119 Km, Jaipur 232 Km, Khajuraho 395 Km, Lucknow 363 Km, Mathura 54 Km, Musoorie 417 Km, Mumbai 1204 Km, Nainital 376 Km, Varanasi 606 Km.

General information

Area: 62 Sq.
Altitude: 169 Metres Temperature: Summer - Max: 45.0 Deg.C Min. 21.9 Deg. C Winter - Max: 31.7 Deg.C. Min: 04.2 Deg.C Rainfall: 65 cm (June to September) Best Season: October to March. STD Code: 0562

Excursions

  1. Keetham Lake (23 km): A scenic lake, located within the Surdas reserve forest. A wide variety of fish and water birds add to the lake’s natural charm and beauty.

  2. Fatehpur Sikri (37 Km): Fatehpur Sikri was built by the Mughal Emperor Akhbar. The heir less Emperor’s desire for a son brought Akhbar to Sikri to seek te blessings of a Muslim saint Sheikh Salim Chisti. When a son was born, the grateful emperor named him after the saint and vowed to build a great city at Sikri. The new city was renamed Fatehpur Sikri after Akhbar’s victory of Gujarat and served as his capital for 16 years.

  3. Firozabad (44 Km): An important handicraft and industrial centre famous for glassware specially glass bangles and cut glass articles.

  4. Mathura (54 km): On the west bank of the river Yamuna, Mathura is associated with the life of Lord Krishna, one of the incarnations of Lord Vishnu. Close to Mathura are Vrindavan 15 Km, Gokul 16 Km, Goverdhan 26 Km, also associated with the early life of Lord Krishna.

  5. Keoladeo Ghana National Park (Bharatpur) 56 Km: Originally the duck shooting preserve of the maharaja of Jaipur, it is today one of the most breathtaking water bird sanctuaries in India. The sanctuary is home to more than 300 species of resident birds.

  6. Van Vihar Wild Life Sanctuary (60 Km): This picturesque forest spread over 52 sq. km, abounds in Tiger, Chital, Sambar, Nilgai and Sloth Bear.

  7. Aligarh (83 Km): It is a famous university town especially for Islamic studies.

  8. Sanskisa (141 Km): An important Buddhist pilgrim centre, written about by the Chinese Travellers, Fa-Hien and Hieun-Tsang in their travelogues. There is a temple dedicated to Bisari Devi which stands on a stupa. An Ashokan Elephant Pillar has been excavated here. Near the pillar, on a platform stands a temple with a statue of the Buddha.