The Taj Mahal excursions take you on a fascinating journey to the various tourist attractions near Agra. Agra used to be the Mughul capital in India till the shift of capital to Delhi under Shahjahan in the first half of the 17th century. The excursions from Agra are ideal after you have visited the Taj Mahal, Agra fort, Sikandara, and the other tourist attractions of Agra. The important tourist spots near Agra that are visited as part of the Taj Mahal excursions include Delhi, Mathura, Gwalior and Bharatpur.
Originally part of the kingdom of Rajputs, Delhi came under the control of the Turkish invaders in early 12th century AD. Since then this ancient city has seen countless shifts in power. It has remained the coveted prize in India, for he who ruled Delhi ruled India. Several dynasties that have ruled from Delhi have left their marks all over the city. Today it is the capital of India and a metropolis bustling with activity. There are numerous tourist attractions in Delhi. The Red Fort, Qutb Minar, Humayun’s tomb, and the old fort are among the well known historic monuments of Delhi. The India gate, Raj path, Rashtrapati Bhawan, and the parliament house are the other famous landmarks of the city. Besides, you will also have a chance to visit the museums, mosques, temples, and famous markets of the city on a tour to Delhi from Agra.
Mathura is the revered birthplace of lord Krishna, one of the most popular Indian deities. It is located on the west bank of Yamuna River about 62 kms North West of Agra. The chief attraction of this ancient city is the room inside the Sri Krishna Janmabhumi temple which is believed to be the exact birthplace of lord Krishna. The 25 ghats of Mathura are also among its chief attractions. These are the sites of the holy baths and the daily rituals of the Hindus. Besides being home to countless temples and Hindu religious spots, Mathura is also known for the magnificent Jami Masjid, and the church of the sacred heart, which is a roman catholic church. The government museum is a must watch spot in Mathura, housing artifacts belonging to the period between 5th century BC to 4th century AD. This place used to be a great center of Buddhism under the Kushanas. The famous headless statue of Kanishka is displayed in this museum.
Gwalior, located about 118 Kms from Agra is a famous tourist destination in central India. After a lot of shifts in power, Gwalior came under the Marathas and their feudatories. The British took control in the 19th century, but the royal family, the Scindias, were allowed to prevail. The magnificent Jai Vilas palace is still resided by the members of the erstwhile royalty. The Gwalior fort is one of the best examples of fort architecture in India and is the chief tourist attraction in the city. The Jain and Hindu temples and the Man Mandir palace within the fort are but a few of the attractions of this medieval fort. The tomb of Miyan Tansen, the famous singer in Akbar’s court and one of his ‘nine jewels,’ is also a noted attraction. The tomb of Mohammad Ghaus, a Mughul nobleman is noted for its intricate lattice work.
Bharatpur is famous for the Keoladev Ghana National Park, better known as the Bharatpur bird sanctuary. This protected forest is located about 56 kilometers from Agra. It is chiefly noted for the migratory bird species that arrive here during the winters. These include the Siberian crane, painted storks, grey herons, darters, and cormorants, besides a large number of resident bird species. The park also has a sizeable population of other animals like the nilgai, sambar, blackbuck, chital, fishing cat, otter and mongoose.