Delhi - Place To See Around| February 18, 2013
Taj Mahal in Agra
Taj Mahal, one of the most fabulous monuments in the world, history and time. Thronged by visitors year round, Taj Mahal is 200 km from Delhi. It was built by the fifth Mughal emperor Shahjahan, in memory of his beloved wife Mumtaz. The monument is a perfect piece of architecture. It took 22 years, 41 million rupees, 50 kilos of gold and around 20,000 workers to complete this marvel of marble.
Situated by the river Yamuna, Taj Mahal sits on a high red sandstone terrace, topped by marble terrace. It is flanked by four minarets. The jewel in-laid cenotaph of the empress lies within the dome. The entire mausoleum is decorated with inlaid design of flowers and calligraphy with semi precious stones like jasper and agate. One can take a train, either the Shatabdi or Taj Express.
Situated on the west bank of the Yamuna River and two km from Taj Mahal, the Agra fort was started by the Mughal emperor Akbar in 1565. The impressive red sandstone fort extends for about 2.5 km and is surrounded by a deep moat which was once filled with water of Yamuna. Though Akbar built it mainly as a military centre, it was under Shahjahan's rule that the fort became more of a mini city.
Of the many gates, the only one open to public is the Amar Singh gate, which leads into the fort. Immediately on the right is the Jahangiri Mahal. The other impressive monuments within the fort are the Diwan-i-Khas, where the emperor met the dignitaries, the Diwan-i-Aam, Nagina Masjid (built by Shahjahan for his harem) and the Moti Masjid. Towards the northeast of the fort is the Musamman Burj, where Shahjahan was imprisoned by his son Aurangzeb.
Mathura (146 km southeast of Delhi)
Mathura is the birthplace of the world's popular deity, Lord Krishna. With a history that traces itself to the beginnings of world trade, Mathura is one of the most ancient cities of India. It is situated on the banks of the Yamuna, in Uttar Pradesh, and is one of the most important pilgrimage centers in India.
Fatehpur Sikri was built by the Mughal emperor Akbar in 1571 in honour of the Sufi saint, Sheikh Salim Chisti. It was the Mughal capital for 14 years after which it was abandoned, probably due to the lack of water. The capital is amazingly beautiful with its palaces and it reflects the architectural style Akbar patronised.
Keoladeo Ghana National Park (120 km from Delhi), Corbett National Park (300 km from Delhi), Ajmer city, Damdam Lake are some of the places that tourist doesn’t want to miss.