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Agra Forts and Palaces

Agra Fort

Agra is a medieval city situated on the banks of the river Yamuna. It is generally accepted that Sultan Sikandar Lodi, the Ruler of Delhi Sultanate founded it in the year 1506. After the sultan's death the city passed on to his son Sultan Ibrahim Lodi. He ruled his Sultanate from Agra till he fell fighting to abur in the First battle of Panipat fought in 1526. It achieved fame as the capital of the Mughal emperors from 1526 to 1658 and remains a major tourist destination because of its many splendid Mughal-era buildings, most notably the Taj Mahal, Agra Fort and Fatehpur Sikri, all three of which are UNESCO World Heritage Sites.

Agra Fort is a UNESCO World Heritage site located in Agra, India. The fort is also known as Lal Qila, Fort Rouge and Red Fort of Agra. It is about 2.5 km northwest of its much more famous sister monument, the Taj Mahal. The fort can be more accurately described as a walled palatial city. It is the most important fort in India. The great Mughals Babur, Humayun, Akbar, Jehangir, Shah Jehan and Aurangzeb lived here, and the country was governed from here. It contained the largest state treasury and mint. It was visited by foreign ambassadors, travellers and the highest dignitaries who participated in the making of history in India.

Sites and structures within Agra Fort

Anguri Bagh - 85 square, geometrically arranged gardens

Diwan-i-Am (Hall of Public Audience) - was used to speak to the people and listen to petitioners and once housed the Peacock Throne

Diwan-i-Khas (Hall of Private Audience) - was used to receive kings and dignitary, features black throne of Jehangir

Golden Pavilions - beautiful pavilions with roofs shaped like the roofs of Bengali huts

Jehangiri Mahal - built by Akbar for his son Jehangir

Khas Mahal - white marble palace, one of the best examples of painting on marble

Macchi Bhawan (Fish Enclosure) - grand enclosure for harem functions, once had pools and fountains

Mina Masjid (Heavenly Mosque)- a tiny mosque; closed to the public

Moti Masjid (Pearl Mosque) - a private mosque of Shah Jahan

Musamman Burj - a large, octagonal tower with a balcony facing the Taj Mahal

Nagina Masjid (Gem Mosque) - mosque designed for the ladies of the court, featuring the Zenana Mina Bazaar (Ladies Bazaar) right next to the balcony, where only female merchants sold wares

Naubat Khana (Drum House) - a place where the king's musicians played

Rang Mahal - where the king's wives and mistresses

Shah Jahani Mahal -It is situated between the white marble khas-mahal and the red stone Jahangiri mahal and is set, transitionally, in between these two major residential complexes of two different ages. It is the earliest attempt of the Mughal Emperor Shah Jehan to convert an existing redstone building in accordance with his taste. It is his earliest palace in Agra Fort and has a large hall and side rooms, and an octagonal tower on the river side. The skeletal construction of brick masonry and red stone was all white, stuccoed with a thick plaster and colourfully painted in floral designs. The whole palace once glistened white, like white marble.

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