Agra is best known for the Taj Mahal. But one can enjoy several other places, innumerable things to do, and diverse things to explore in this alluring land. Be it a visit to the Bharatpur Bird Sanctuary or indulging in some retail therapy at Kinari Bazaar, or pampering your taste buds with the famous Mughlai cuisine, Agra promises a host of opportunities for tourists. With the easy availability of Delhi to Agra cabs, innumerable residents of Delhi head to Agra for a weekend escapade.
Needless to say, the Taj Mahal is the biggest attraction of Agra, which is in fact, a renowned monument all over the world for its breath taking splendor. Declared as World Heritage Site by UNESCO in 1983, it attracts about 2 million visitors annually. At a distance of 2.5 km from the Taj Mahal is the Agra Fort, a majestic monument sprawling over 94 acres. It manifests an interesting blend of Hindu and Mughal architectural styles, and is known for its impressive gates such as the Delhi Gate and the Lahore Gate. Simply book taxi to Agra and revel in the exquisite beauty of these places. Other must visit places in and around Agra include, Mehtab Bagh, Jama Masjid, Mariam’s Tomb, Khas Mahal, Panch Mahal, Anguri Bagh, Sur Sarovar Bird Sanctuary, Jahangir Mahal, and so on.
Fatehpur Sikri, at a distance of only 39 km from Agra, can be reached via state transport buses. Some of the must visit buildings within the complex include, the Buland Darwaza, tomb of Salim Chisti, the Diwan-i-Aam, the Ibaadat Khana, Birbal’s House, etc. Another thing you should not miss is the tomb of Akbar in Sikandra. One of the most notable master pieces of the Mughal era, the tomb sprawls over 119 acres. It is noted for its exceptional architecture, besides the geometric, floral, and calligraphic details. Cabs in Delhi regularly ply to Agra as it is one of the most polar weekend getaways.
If you are a shopaholic, Kinari Bazaar will surely not let you down! This wholesale retail market offers everything you need for daily use or for special occasions such as weddings. The bazaar specializes in traditional wedding dresses, and also boasts of a great variety of borders and embellishments. Besides, you can find wide choices of embroidery items like lace, thread work, stone work, and so on. The best part is, all the items are dirt cheap, and if you are good at bargaining you are sure to bag the most profitable deals! Another well known market in Agra is Sadar Bazaar, which is popular for handicraft items, shoes, and leather work. In fact, Agra is known for its exquisite marble products, which is why tourists make it a point to buy ornate marble souvenirs and gifts such as coasters, flower vases, and jewellery boxes. These are usually inlaid with semi precious stones. The marble in Agra is delicately engraved with pietre dura work and flora motifs. Agra is also a great place to buy leather, be it in the form of shoes, bags, jackets, and so on. Also, take a look at the attractive carpets and rugs available in Agra, which are exported to countries around the world.
When it comes to food, the mouthwatering Mughlai cuisine is bound to appeal to anyone! From delicious chicken tikka to succulent kebabs, Agra has a lot to offer. Having been the seat of the Mughals for a considerable period of time, Agra boasts of a number of restaurants where you can enjoy lip smacking Mughlai fare. Relish the best of boti kebab, seekh kabab, and tandoori chicken, and you will remember the experience for a long time to come.