Emperor Shah Jahan built this white marble mausoleum for his queen Arjumand Bano Begum or Mumtaz Mahal. The building aside, the Taj Mahalis one of the most glorious symbols of love. Great builder that he was, the Emperor commissioned a building that has lasted centuries to remain a thing of rare breathtaking beauty.
The building was commissioned in 1631 and decorated with the landmark technique of intricate marble inlay work. The site was honoured with the prestigious National Heriatge Award. The Taj Mahal regarded as one of the seven wonders of the world is situated on the banks of the River Yamuna and stands at the northern end of formal gardens.
The white marble came from Makrana in Rajasthan and the red sandstone from Fatehpur Sikri. Precious stones like jade, crystal, turquoise, lapis lazuli, sapphire, jade, coral and diamonds were brought from far-flung places in Tibet, China, Sri Lanka, Persia and Afghanistan. It is believed that a fleet of 1000 elephants was used to transport the material.
Open : Sunrise to sunset.
Best time to visit : The best time to visit Agra is in the winter months between November and March when the weather is ideal to go sightseeing.
Distance about: 5.5 Kms from Agra Cantt Railway Station.
Entry fee : Domestic Tourist : 40/- Foreign Tourist : 1000/-
The Mughal Emperor Akbar, known as Akbar the Great, ruled an empire that stretched across North India from 1556 to 1605. His reign is considered the pinnacle of Mughal rule in India.
Akbar's tomb is located in the serene ambience of Sikandra 3 km away from Agra. Akbar began building it during his lifetime and his son, the Mughal Emperor Jahangir, completed it. Some of its design features are similar to the design of the Taj Mahal built later in Agra. Akbar's tomb at Sikandra has a large arched entrance and green lawns, on which deer can be seen grazing, surrounding the tomb.
The entrance is decorated with marble inlay work around the arch, and the inner surface of the dome of the tomb is decorated with images of flowers, geometric designs and Islamic calligraphy.
The Agra Fort
The great Mughal Emperor Akbar commissioned the construction of the Agra Fort in 1565, A.D. although additions were made till the time of his grandson Shahjahan.
The forbidding exteriors of this fort hide an inner paradise. There are a number of exquisite buildings like Moti Masjid - a white marble mosque akin to a perfect pearl; Diwan-I-Am, Diwan-I-Khaas, Musamman Burj - where Shahjahan died in 1666 A.D. Jahangir's Palace; Khaas Mahal and Shish Mahal.
Open : Sunrise to sunset.
Distance about: 4.7 Kms from Agra Cantt Railway Station.
Entry fee : Domestic Tourist : 40/- Foreign Tourist : 550/-