Fatehpur Sikri is located only 40 km from Agra and should be on everyone’s What To Visit list. Very different from the nearby Taj Mahal, Fatehpur Sikri is considered to be one of the finest examples of Mughal architecture. One more time, I repeat myself; do not miss this fantastic, abandoned red sandstone town!Fatehpur Sikri was constructed by the order of Emperor Akbar in honor of the famous Sufi saint called Salim Chishti who predicted the birth of Akbar’s son Jahangir. The capital was moved from Agra to Fatehpur Sikri in 1571 and remained there for 14 years, until Akbar decided to move the capital to Lahore to be closer to Persian and Afghan armies.
There weren’t many tourists during our visit, which was nice for a change. We loved admiring public and private parts of the capital, the ornaments, pools, court yards etc. It felt like a phantom town: red, haunted and mysterious. But above all, exquisite in its beauty. We spent around 2.5 hours visiting the imperial complex, completing the tour at 11.30 am. Even this early, the heat was almost intolerable (this was in the end of March), so as a tip, think of bringing something for your head. A hat or a scarf can become handy, especially because women and men need to cover their head while visiting Jami Masjid mosque where the tomb of Sufi saint Chishti is.I would love to return to Fatehpur Sikri, and to me it is one of the most fascinating and beautiful sites to visit in India. I admit that I have a soft spot for the Mughal Empire period but I also think that Akbar was an extraordinary ruler whose presence can be felt in Fatehpur Sikri. Do make time to visit it if you are in Agra!
This is the fifth post about our trip in Delhi, Agra, Rajasthan and Bombay in March-April 2008. Previous posts are:
Part 1. Arrival in Delhi: first impressions
Part 2. Eight cities of Delhi
Part 3. Road from Delhi to Agra
Part 4. Visiting Agra and Taj Mahal
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