78 °F / 26 °C
Agra (aka "City of Taj") is a port city located on the banks of Yamuna River in northern Uttar Pradesh, India. The city has population of around 1,7 million, ranking it one of the state's largest and the country's 19th most populous.
- Agra is located approx 378 km (235 ml) west of Lucknow (the state capital), 206 km (128 ml) south of the national capital New Delhi and 125 km (78 ml) north of Gwalior.
- The city is a major tourist travel destination due to its many Mughal-era buildings, and most notably Tāj Mahal, Fatehpūr Sikri and Agra Fort. All three are UNESCO World Heritage Sites. The city of Agra is on the Golden Triangle tourist circuit, together with Jaipur and Delhi. Agra falls within Braj cultural region.
- The city was first mentioned in Mahabharata, where it's called Agrevaṇa (translated "border of the forest"). The first to move the capital from Delhi to Agra was Sultan Sikandar Lodi (1488–1517) in 1506. From here he governed the country and Agra assumed importance of the 2nd capital. After his death, his son, Ibrāhim Lodi, remained in power there for 9 more years and a mosque, several palaces and wells were built in the fort during that period (finally being defeated in 1526 at the Battle of Panipat). Between 1540-1556, Afghans, starting with Sher Shah Suri ruled the region. It achieved fame as capital of Mughal Empire (1556-1658).
- The Taj Mahal is one of the world's most famous buildings, mausoleum of Shah Jahan's favourite wife - Mumtaz Mahal. It is among the New Seven Wonders of the world, as well as one of Agra's three World Heritage Sites.
- Agra Fort (aka "The Red Fort") was commissioned in 1565 by the conquering Mughal Emperor Akbar the Great, and is a World Heritage Site. The stone tablet at fort's gate states that it had been built prior to 1000 but later renovated by Akbar.