Sightseeing in Agra besides the Taj Mahal
Agra Fort -
Built by Emperor Akbar in 1565 A.D, this huge fort is made of red sandstone. It houses a Pearl mosque and many other noteworthy structures.
Sikandra - Sikandra, 10 km north-west of Agra, is the final resting place of Emperor Akbar. The Tomb of Akbar shows an interesting fusion of Hindu and Mughal architecture reflecting the spirit of the Mughal Emperor, Akbar. Akbar began the construction of his own garden mausoleum during his lifetime. His mausoleum is a red sandstone structure in a chahar-bagh (4-square formal garden).
Fatehpur Sikri - 37 km from Agra, the mini-city of Fatehpur Sikri's is made of red sandstone and combines influences from both Hindu and Mughal architecture. Mughal Emperor Akbar made this a capital once but deserted it later due to paucity of drinking water. This structure also houses Salim-Chishti's Dargah. This is a white marble canopy set in the courtyard of the royal mosque to honour a Sufi saint who reportedly blessed Akbar’s wife with a son.
Itmad-ul-Daulah's Tomb - This tomb was erected by Noor Jahan in memory of her father, Ghiasud-Din-Beg between 1622-1628 A.D. This white marble structure was built before the Taj Mahal, but is often considered equal if not better than the more-famed Taj.
Bharatpur Bird Sanctuary (57 kms) - Called Keoladeo Ghana National Park, it is one of the finest water bird sanctuaries in the world. Spread over a 40 sq. km. area of swampy, lightly wooded terrain, the sanctuary attracts many species of birds including the Siberian Crane in the winter months. Hence it is considered as the ornithologist's paradise. It lies 57 km from Agra on Delhi-Jaipur highway.
Mathura and Brindaban (60 kms) - Mathura, on the bank of river Yamuna, is the birthplace of Lord Krishna. The groves and ghats (bathing tanks) of nearby Brindaban, with its thousands of temples, still echo stories and songs that recount the exploits of this charming God. The Government Museum here is a superb repository of fine sculpture, terra-cotta images, coins and bronze objects that date from the 5th century B.C to the 12th century A.D.
In addition to the above other popular options are:
Bear Rescue Centre (37 kms)
Sur Sarovar Sanctuary (Picnic Spot and bird watching) - 20 kms
Bateshwar temples (Bah - 80 kms)
Sikandara (Heritage Monument and a picnic spot on City outskirts)
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