Visit Agra, India
Most famous as the home of the Taj Mahal, Agra is set on a bend in the sacred Yamuna River and has held a strategic defensive position throughout its history. Both the Taj and the highly impressive city fort overlook the river, as do a number of significant tombs and mausoleums from the Mughal period. The Taj is the undoubted highlight, a magnificent structure that easily lives up to its exalted reputation. Modern Agra by comparison lacks the charm of the other great cities of India's north, however its exquisite monuments make it an unmissable stop on any first time tour of the country.
India specialist Hannah
Whilst the Taj Mahal is an obvious must-see in the chaotic city of Agra, the Tomb of Itmad-ud-Daulah, known as the ‘Baby Taj’ is a fascinating addition. It’s said to be the mini draft of the Taj itself.
Things to see and do in Agra
The Taj Mahal
One of the world's most famous buildings, the Taj Mahal, which means Crown Palace, is every bit as impressive in real life as it is in carefully-posed pictures. As you enter through an elaborate arched gateway you will see the monument for the first time, the wonderfully symmetrical landscaped gardens leading your eye to the intricately carved marble domes and towers. An extravagant memorial to Emperor Shah Jahan’s beloved third wife, it took thousands of artisans over 20 years to construct and its timeless beauty is a testament to their skill and vision. Sunrise and sunset are the best times to visit, when there are fewer visitors and the soft light bathes the building in a romantic glow.
The Red Fort
A magnificent 16th century fortress with 20 metre high walls, the Red Fort is a vast sandstone complex which was converted into a lavish palace by Shah Jahan. It remains one of the finest Mughal forts in India and a collection of impressive buildings can be seen inside. There are several mosques, including the exquisite Nagina Masjid, originally used by the ladies of the court. You will also pass through several public halls used for audiences with the public or visiting dignitaries, the elaborate Mirror Palace, and a white marble tower where Shah Jahan was imprisoned for eight years by his son.
The Baby Taj
The Itimad-ud-Daulah is a lavish 17th century tomb which houses the mausoleum of Mirza Ghiyas Beg and his family. Sometimes called the 'Baby Taj' by local guides, it is located in a very tranquil area and was the first building in the city to be clad entirely in marble. Although far smaller than the Taj Mahal, it is exquisite in its detail with extremely delicate carvings and elaborate architectural flourishes. Four corner minarets surround a rooftop pavilion, intricate inlay work completely covers the structure, and a superbly carved latticework wall screens the tombs from initial view.
Kachhpura village walk
Overlooking the Taj Mahal from the opposite bank of the Yamuna River, Kachhpura village is near a number of ancient Mughal monuments including the Gyarah Sidi and Humayun's Mosque. Walking tours here are run as part of a community development programme with local people trained as tour guides. Leading you around their own village, they offer authentic insights into life in this rural setting and will guide you around the main sights as well as introducing you to several members of the village. The walk ends at Mehtab Bagh, from where there are majestic views across the river to the Taj Mahal.
Suggested itineraries featuring Agra
Our itineraries will give you suggestions for what is possible when you travel in Agra, and they showcase routes we know work particularly well. Treat them as inspiration, because your trip will be created uniquely by one of our specialists.
India and Maldives
Map of Agra
Places & hotels on the map
Places near Agra
- Fatehpur Sikri 23 miles away
- Bharatpur and Keoladeo Ghana National Park 33 miles away
- Chambal Sanctuary 44 miles away
- Gwalior 67 miles away
- Ramathra 100 miles away
- Delhi 112 miles away
- Ranthambhore National Park 124 miles away
- Orchha 133 miles away
- Samode 135 miles away
- Jaipur 138 miles away
- Corbett Tiger Reserve 173 miles away
- Nainital 177 miles away
- Bundi 190 miles away
- Haridwar 193 miles away
- Almora 196 miles away
- Khajuraho 201 miles away
- Rishikesh 204 miles away
- Bhainsrogarh 217 miles away
- Panna National Park 218 miles away
- Pushkar 219 miles away
- Shahpura 220 miles away
- Barli 221 miles away
- Mussoorie 228 miles away
- Chhatra Sagar 258 miles away
- Nimaj 258 miles away
- Chittorgarh 263 miles away
- Nagaur 263 miles away
- Shimla 276 miles away
- Deogarh 279 miles away
- Bandhavgarh National Park 289 miles away
- Bikaner 294 miles away
Photos of Agra
Accommodation choices for Agra
We’ve selected a range of accommodation options for when you visit Agra. Our choices usually come recommended for their character, facilities and service or location. Our specialists always aim to suggest properties that match your preferences.
The Gateway Hotel Fatehabad is the best value option in Agra. It's run by the reliable Gateway chain and is within sight of the Taj Mahal.
Built in the Mughal style, the Trident is a modern, comfortable and friendly hotel.
Located only 600 metres from the Taj Mahal and with every bedroom facing the monument, this has to be one of the best situated hotels in the world.
Ideas for experiencing Agra
Our specialists seek out authentic ways to get to know the places that could feature in your trip. These activities reflect some of the experiences they've most enjoyed while visiting Agra, and which use the best local guides.
The principal reason for almost everyone's visit to Agra is to see the Taj Mahal, and its legendary beauty continues to attract more visitors than virtually anywhere in India.