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Agra Fort picture in Agra
rchphoto / Getty Images

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  • Castles/Palaces, Monuments and Memorials, Sightseeing Type
  • 2 hours to Half Day Time to Spend
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Just northwest of the Taj Mahal, this formidable fortress rests on the west bank of the Yamuna River on the edge of central Agra. About a century older than its more recognized neighbor, Agra Fort boasts impressive red sandstone architectural details throughout and is considered to be one of the best Mughal forts in India. Several rulers made their mark on this site while they lived behind its towering walls, including Shah Jahan, the same emperor who is responsible for the construction of the Taj Mahal. You can credit Jahan with the white marble features you'll find within the fort. It was he who was also responsible for eventually converting the structure into a palace. (Jahan's grandfather, Emperor Akbar originally built it as a fort some hundred years earlier). Travelers could easily spend hours touring and admiring the fort's many offerings, including mosques, verdant courtyards and towers, one of which acted as a prison for Jahan until his death. Today, the site still holds onto its defense roots, as some areas of the fort are used by the Indian military, and as such closed to the public. 

Recent visitors were impressed by the fort and suggested travelers visit here before heading to the Taj Mahal to learn about how the imperial family lived. Many called the fort an architectural must-see with great historical significance and said it even offers great views of the Taj Mahal, too. Travelers did point out that there isn't a whole lot of shade when walking around the attraction, so don't visit in the middle of the day when the sun is beating down on the fort. Visitors also recommended using a guide during your stay to better understand the vast history behind the fort (guides can be arranged on-site). 

Another UNESCO World Heritage site, Agra Fort is open from sunrise to sunset every day. Admission for foreign tourists costs 550 rupees (less than $9). For more information, consult the Agra Fort's official website

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Agra Fort picture in Agra
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#1 Taj Mahal Plain and simple: This is the reason you come to Agra. The Taj Mahal is a majestic tomb built in the Mughal style, which combines Indian, Islamic and Persian architectural ... Read more » Andras Foldesi/EyeEm / Getty Images

#2 Agra Fort Just northwest of the Taj Mahal, this formidable fortress rests on the west bank of the Yamuna River on the edge of central Agra. About a century older than its ... Read more » rchphoto / Getty Images

#3 Itmad-ud-Daulah's Tomb Located on the east bank of the Yamuna River (just a few miles from central Agra), Itmad-ud-Daulah's Tomb boasts a pretty picturesque setting. This tomb is the first mausoleum in ... Read more » Quinn Cowper / Flickr

#4 Fatehpur Sikri Believe it or not, this gorgeous city was built all thanks to one man's blessing. Emperor Akbar, the one also responsible for the Agra Fort, visited the Sikri village ... Read more » Peter Zelei Images / Getty Images

#5 Mehtab Bagh Interested in seeing the Taj Mahal from more than one angle? Then head over to Mehtab Bagh, or the Moonlight Gardens. Mehtab Bagh is situated opposite of the Taj Mahal ... Read more » We travel the world / Flickr

Taj Mahal picture in Agra
Agra Fort picture in Agra
Itmad-ud-Daulah's Tomb picture in Agra
Fatehpur Sikri  picture in Agra
Mehtab Bagh picture in Agra
Taj Mahal picture in Agra
Agra Fort picture in Agra
Itmad-ud-Daulah's Tomb picture in Agra
Fatehpur Sikri  picture in Agra
Mehtab Bagh picture in Agra

This classic view of the Taj Mahal is a photo op every world traveler dreams of. Andras Foldesi/EyeEm / Getty Images

Agra's star attraction after the Taj Mahal, the Agra Fort served as a fort for Emperor Akbar and then a palace for Shah Jahan (the one responsible for the Taj Mahal).  rchphoto / Getty Images

This Mughal mausoleum is thought to be a precursor of the Taj Mahal. Quinn Cowper / Flickr

The ancient city of Fatehpur Sikri was set to be the seat of power for the Mughal Empire, but was soon abandoned after construction due to its poor water system. Peter Zelei Images / Getty Images

If you're wanting another angle of the beautiful Taj Mahal, head up the gardens at the Mehtab Bagh We travel the world / Flickr

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