Agra is my first weekend vacation destination after lockdown. After long months of home quarantine, it was such a relief to go out and breathe in fresh air. My foremost reason to choose Agra is undoubtedly to see the Taj Mahal. And other reasons are its distance from Delhi plus one can easily drive by own vehicle, amid taking precautions during COVID 19 scenario. Taj Mahal is one of the beautiful buildings in India and is one of the seven wonders of world, so it is a must to see in reality. Indeed it looks majestic in the photographs, but believe me you will be speechless when you will see it with your own eyes.
Here’s how I spent 2 days in Agra. I am sharing here with my Agra Travel Itinerary-
I started my journey early in the morning around 8 AM, reached the hotel around 12 PM. After relaxing and having lunch, I head to Mehtab Bagh. I have planned to watch sunset at the Mehtab gardens. These gardens are located just behind the Taj Mahal and offer a great view of the Taj. It has been said that the Mughal emperor, Shah Jahan wanted to build a black marble mausoleum here, but, unfortunately, he did not become successful as his own son caught him in prison.
You will surely enjoy watching sunset in the garden with all beautiful flowers and sceneries around. Click some good photographs from different angles and enjoy the nature. I had dinner at a restaurant nearby my hotel and returned back to the hotel.
Next Day, I started my journey for Agra Fort and Taj Mahal. I divided my day for visiting both the great monuments. I started first with Agra Fort. You need to park your car in the parking; they charge you 100 Rs. from there, the fort is at walking distance. I hired the services of a guide as I wanted to know all history and stories behind this stunning fort. The guides are available at the gate and they will ask you an amount of Rs. 500 but can easily be done in Rs. 200.
The Fort has palaces, mosques, halls, namely Diwan-E-Am, Diwan-E-Khass, Jahangir Mahal, Khas Mahal, Sheesh Mahal, although entry to Sheesh Mahal is prohibited for public. The Agra Fort is one of the UNESCO World Heritage sites. It is built up in red sandstone and some part in white marble, excellent illustration of Mughal Architecture.
The white marble part of the fort was the residence of Emperor Shah Jahan and his daughter, Jahanara. The marble walls of the emperor’s private palace, i.e. Khas Mahal were decorated with precious stones and gems, which are there today as well. It is said that the son of Shah Jahan, Aurangzeb imprisoned him in the Agra fort for 8 years until his death. Shah Jahan lived in the Fort and spent his days while gazing at the Taj Mahal.
Agra fort is a must to visit place, you will feel very happy in knowing the history of the Fort.
After having Lunch nearby, I went to Taj Mahal. You need to park your car in the parking and from there you can go to Taj Mahal by battery operated bus or auto rickshaw or horse cart. Battery operated bus charges Rs. 10 per person and leaves you on the spot, which is around 50 meters away from the gate. Here also, guides are available, one can hire as per the requirement. After passing through security checks, you will be inside the wonderful monument. Do not carry any prohibited items inside the monument. For tips, do check out my other blog – Amazing Tip to Agra with some useful tips.
I lost my heart and felt so happy after watching magnificent Taj Mahal in reality with my eyes. It was an amazing experience. I gazed at the Taj Mahal for a long time to feel its grandeur. It was very excited moment to enjoy the sunset at the white marble beauty. I clicked so many beautiful pictures with enchanting sky in the background. After enjoying the sunset at the super beautiful Taj Mahal, I shop for gift items and souvenirs for my loved ones from the little market near the monument. While walking to the spot to catch the battery operated bus, there are many shops with good variety of gift items. You can easily shop from there.
I end up my day by having gulab jamuns of famous Bhagat Halwai. Bhagat Halwai is very old and famous sweets shop of Agra. They have a large variety of snack items, sweet items and gift items. That’s all for the day 1, lets begin the next day.
Second Day, I check out from the hotel and left for Fatehpur Sikri. You must visit another beautiful UNESCO World Heritage Site, Fatehpur sikri. Its 40 kms drive from Agra city. I parked my car in the parking and from there traveler takes tourist to Fatehpur Sikri. They charge 30 Rs. Per person. I hired a guide here at the same price, 200 Rs, as I was very much keen to know the history of the monument. We entered inside after security and tickets checking.
The city was built by the Mughal Emperor Akbar. It was Akbar’s residence. Major attractions of the city are – Jodha Bai’s palace, Diwan-I-Aam, Diwan–I–Khas, Buland Darwaza, Panch Mahal, Jama Masjid, and Tomb of Salim Chisti.
The architectural style of the city is amazing. The buildings are made up of red sandstone. Akbar was a loyal and absolute ruler, which can be seen from the design and structure of the city, which integrates elements from Christian, Hindu and Muslim religions. Marvelous design and craftsmanship are the words which defines the arts and architecture of the Mughal era.
The guide told me all historical stories related to the complex. It was really a great experience and right decision to visit Fatehpur sikri. People generally skip this monument and went back by visiting only Taj Mahal. But, I would suggest, you must spend sometime here too, and feel the royalness of Mughal era. After leaving from there, I had my lunch at the nearby hotel and drive back to Delhi.
Check out my blog for detailed information about major attractions of Fatehpur Skiri.
Some more interesting places to visit in Agra-
- Tomb of Itimad-Ud-Daula
- Chini Ka Rauza
- Akbar’s Tomb – Sikandra
- Mariam-uz-Zamani Tomb
Thank you so much for reading! I hope you enjoy reading my 2 days trip to Agra. Do write in the comments for any questions or suggestions.