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Agra

TraveLibro India Agra Featured City
Home to one of the alluring seven wonders and an awe-inspiring monument of love—the Taj Mahal, Agra needs no further introduction. Catching the Taj Mahal at both dawn and dusk is an experience that will touch your heart and create an unforgettable memory. Though, in addition to this Agra also has two more UNESCO World Heritage Sites, the Agra Fort and Fatehpur Sikri nearby. Agra was the capital of the Mughal Empire and the entire city still holds that soul in architecture and culture. With the glorious and holy Yamuna River flowing by, this is a city worth more than a day’s trip. Take the Mughal Heritage Walk that gives you an insight into the lifestyle and culture of the people and other historical structures of the Mughal era. Attend the 10-day Taj Mahotsav Festival, where 400 artisans come under one roof to showcase their exquisite work. Certainly go for the Kalakriti Dance Drama Show and watch the famous celebration love between Shah Jahan and Mumtaz Mahal. Stay here, eat the delicious food, overdose on the death-sweet ‘pethas’ and go for a trip back in time to the decadence of the Mughals.
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TraveLibro India Agra Featured City Taj Mahal

Taj Mahal

A symbol of an eternal love story etched out in the world’s most marvellous structures in the world, the Taj Mahal epitomises one of the greatest romances in the history of mankind. Designated as a UNESCO World Heritage Site and one of the Seven Wonders of the World, this ‘tear-drop on the cheek of time’, as Rabindranath Tagore described it, is regarded as the best example of Mughal architecture and the country’s rich history. Marvel at the great marble monument ornamented with 28 types of precious and semi-precious stones for the inlay work. With its four minarets and the red sandstone mosque, this fascinating monument is a sight to behold.

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TraveLibro India Agra Featured City Taj Mahal on a Full Moon Night

Taj Mahal on a Full Moon Night

Witnessing a wondrous glow on this white monument on a full moon night is a sight to behold. As the night gets darker and the moon shines brighter, soak in the beauty of a gleaming Taj Mahal glittering like a diamond under a moonlit sky. Admire a silvery velvet glow effusing elegance and grace on this night. Buy a ticket for night viewing of the Taj Mahal one day prior to the scheduled visit. Timings for night viewing are 8.30 pm to 12.30 am wherein a maximum of 50 people at a time are given 30 minutes to marvel at this spectacular sight.

Image Courtesy: www.tajmahaltripindia.com
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TraveLibro India Agra Featured City Agra Fort

Agra Fort

Glorifying the power of the Royals, strength and valour of the brave, the mighty Agra Fort is more aptly described as the ‘walled city’. It is located about 2.5 km from the Taj Mahal. Dig into the rich history of this grand structure built by the Mughals, which has seen many battles and rulers including the fierce attacks from the Marathas, British, Hindu Kings and the Mughals. Book a guided tour to learn about the history, architecture and interesting legends attached to this walled city, with red sandstone walls and the Yamuna River flowing by.

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TraveLibro India Agra Featured City Excursion to Fatehpur Sikri

Excursion to Fatehpur Sikri

A visit to Fatehpur Sikri, located about 37 km from Agra is a delightful experience for history buffs. An architectural wonder, it is one of the finest examples of Mughal design. Marvel at the Persian style of architecture at Diwan-i-Khas, a royal chamber housing exquisite sculptures and precious stones. Admire the Mosque, whose design is based on the one at Mecca and has Persian and Hindu architecture. Climb the top of Panch Mahal that offers a beautiful view of the city. Also visit the Tomb of Salim Chisti and the Buland Darwaza flaunting the highest gateway in the world.

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TraveLibro India Agra Featured City Itmad-Ud-Daulah Tomb

Itmad-Ud-Daulah Tomb

Experience the tranquillity surrounding the Itimad-Ud-Daulah Tomb, also known as the ’jewel box’, set in a lovely garden and overlooking the Yamuna River. Admire the fusion of Indo-Islamic architecture of the mausoleum made from pure white marble with an elaborately carved tomb. This is also the first tomb to be built in white marble instead of the traditional red sandstone. While you spend time exploring the beauty of this place, also learn about the inspirational story of Itimad-ud-Daulah and his journey from being a poor merchant to becoming the Chief Minister of Jahangir, a famous Mughal Emperor.

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TraveLibro India Agra Featured City Mughal Heritage Walk

Mughal Heritage Walk

While most of us know about Taj Mahal, the Mughal Heritage Walk brings on the platter other worthwhile sights the city has to offer. Designed under the expertise of historians and academicians, this 1 km walk informs one about the culture and lifestyle of the locals and highlights historical events that played an important part in the evolution of this city, as well as viewing stunning structures from the Mughal era. Begin your journey from the bustling Kachhpura Village and stop by at three key attractions namely Gyarah Sidi—an astronomical observatory, the Humayun Mosque housing sandstone graves and the architectural beauty of the Mehtab Bagh (Moonlight Garden).

Image Courtesy: blog.lib.umn.edu
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TraveLibro India Agra Featured City Mehtab Bagh

Mehtab Bagh

Mehtab Bagh, also known as Moonlight Gardens, was the last of the 11 parks built along the east bank of Yamuna River. It is interesting to note that Emporer Shah Jahan had identified this very place to enjoy a breathtaking view of the Taj Mahal. And so it was; it is built in perfect alignment with Taj Mahal and thus gives beautiful angles of the mausoleum. Wander along the less travelled park filled with greenery and fountains and be rewarded by a splendid view of the Taj Mahal.

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TraveLibro India Agra Featured City Taj Mahotsav Festival

Taj Mahotsav Festival

The 10 days Taj Mahotsav features India's art, craft, culture, and cuisine in all its glory. Marvel at the exquisite works of art creatively and painstakingly worked upon by about 400 legendary artisans from across the country. Buy some authentic Indian art and craft items at honest prices. Watch the lively and colourful folk performances by world renowned artists. Entice your taste buds with a plethora of tasteful dishes including the mouth-watering cuisine from the state of Uttar Pradesh such as the Lucknowi Kebab, Chole Bhature, Indian Samosa, and many more.

Image Courtesy: mugdhasays.blogspot.in
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TraveLibro India Agra Featured City Wildlife SOS

Wildlife SOS

Take an enlightening and inspiring trip to either of the two Wildlife SOS centres in Agra or Mathura and spend a memorable day with the protected animals. Appreciate the work done by these people towards animals that are abused by human beings. Meet the bears at the Agra Bear Rescue Facility or the elephants at Elephant Conservation and Care Centre in Mathura; interact with the caretakers and gain insights into the life of these gentle giants. Those empathetic towards animals must consider volunteering at the Wildlife SOS Rescue Facilities and feel gratified contributing towards this kind act.

Image Courtesy: Digitaura via Wikimedia Commons
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TraveLibro India Agra Featured City Shopping

Shopping

Indulge in some retail therapy in Agra known for its exquisite leather and marble products. Head to Sadar Bazaar, the most popular shopping centre located in close proximity to Taj Mahal and Agra Fort. Visit the famous Taj Leather World and invest in a nice pair of leather shoes or other products. Kinari Bazaar, about 3 km from Sadar Bazaar features an impressive variety of exotic handicrafts as well as innumerable variety of rugs, marble, etc. For the ladies it’s a paradise offering a range of trendy garments, jewellery, footwear and accessories. And yes, feel free to bargain.

Image Courtesy: Justin Morgan via Flickr
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TraveLibro India Agra Featured City The Oberoi Amarvilas

The Oberoi Amarvilas

Located just 600 m from the majestic Taj Mahal, a stay in the luxurious The Oberoi Amarvilas is truly an experience in itself. The rooms are elegantly designed with a touch of Mughal opulence. Enjoy unhindered views of the great mausoleum from any of its rooms. Arrange a candle light dinner with a view of the resort's Mughal era–inspired terraced gardens, water bodies and the incomparable Taj Mahal in the backdrop. During the day, take the hotel’s golf buggies to visit the Taj Mahal. Pamper yourself to a treatment at the Oberoi Spa, swim in the outdoor pool and soak in the royal services here.

Image Courtesy: www.luxoindia.com
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TraveLibro India Agra Featured City Kalakriti Dance Drama Show

Kalakriti Dance Drama Show

Pre-book your seats online from anywhere in the world to watch the epic love story of Shah Jahan and his Queen Mumtaz Mahal in 'Mohabbat The Taj', a cultural show. Featured at the Kalakriti Dance Drama Show boasting of state-of-the-art light and sound technology, a splendid surround sound system and seats with multilingual options, makes for an unforgettable experience. While watching the show, soak in the glorious past of the rich Mughal era and see the rise and fall of the empire in its various shades and moods.

Image Courtesy: www.agratoday.in
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TraveLibro India Agra Featured City Agra Petha

Agra Petha

Your trip to Agra is incomplete without savouring the famous Petha, a sweet delicacy. Bite into this white pumpkin dipped in sugar syrup that will leave you smacking your lips. Take your pick from the rectangular or cylindrical pieces and pack some for your friends and families back home. Although there are numerous sweet shops selling Pethas, we recommend the Panchhi Petha Store. Watch out for shops with similar names, make sure to shop at the authentic Panchhi Petha offering a very wide variety of Pethas such as Kesar Angoori Petha, Dry Cherry Petha, Coconut Petha, Pan Petha, Chocolate Petha, and many more.

Image Courtesy: Laura via Flickr
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