January 25, 2008

Fatehpur Sikri, Palace Complex

Following my Journey to Agra despite reaching there past midnight, I was up early next morning and checked out the place in and around the Mansingh Palace on my own. After breakfast, I hired a vehicle for the full day to discover what Agra and the places around it had to offer.

This was my second visit to Agra, however, it felt good to be going around it again. If not anything else, I wanted to explore again at least the Taj Mahal, the Agra Fort, and Fatehpur Sikri all three of which are UNESCO World Heritage Sites.

I started with a visit to the Fatehpur Sikri. A city by itself, approximtely 40 kms from the famous Taj Mahal, it was built during the second half of 16th century by the Emperor Akbar. This City of Victory (meaning of Fatehpur Sikri) was the capital of the Mughal Empire for a few years. Brilliant red sandstone available locally was used that gives Fatehpur Sikri much of its lustre.

Akbar planned this city as his capital but shortly after the work was completed, the pristine complex was abandoned. The reason may have been either shortage of water, or water being of poor quality, or, according to other historians, Akbar had to attend to the northwest areas of his empire and therefore moved his capital to Lahore in 1585. However, in 1599 Akbar shifted his capital back to Agra from where he reigned until his death.

Today Fatehpur Sikri is a phantom city but, thanks to the Archaelogical Survey of India, the inner citadel is immaculately preserved. It is now a World Heritage site.

The city is divided into two parts, namely the Palace Complex and the Mosque Complex.

In this post I am posting a few pictures of the Palace Complex, which houses fine specimens of Mughal architecture, that is considered by the experts to be a fusion of Persian (and/or Islamic) and Hindu architecture. This Complex, among others, includes the Panch Mahal and the Anup Talao.

Anup Talao

Panch Mahal

If you wish to view more photographs, they are here.

13 comments:

Suldog said...

The landscaping, the architecture - just magnificent. Thanks for sharing the beauty.

final_transit said...

I had only seen the pictures before. When I went to Agra, it was boiling hot (May) and I already felt feverish, so I skipped Fatehpur Sikri. Liked this e-tour with you.

imac said...

Some nice buildings there and great shots too.

indicaspecies said...

suldog:

Thank you for your visit and your kind words. Sharing this is my pleasure. :)

indicaspecies said...

Priyank,

My last trip to Agra was in the summer as well, and I quite understand how like a furnace Agra can be such times. I shall post pictures of the Mosque Complex shortly that should give you a better picture of the rest of the City. :)

indicaspecies said...

imac:

Thank you. :)

CHEWY said...

I'm stuck in the green water.

Stellent AlGhanim said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Yusuf Pachorawala said...

Wow ! Your experience and the wonderful pictures make me want to go there right away! What am I doing in Kuwait!

indicaspecies said...

Darlene,

I'm not stuck, nor are you..

The Anup Talao was a seat of honour that was given to the great musician, Tansen, during the reign of Akbar. History of the Mughal Era - I hope I have not got you bored with all this. :)

indicaspecies said...

Yusuf,

Let's go. :)

backpakker said...

seeing the pictures and reading the post only made me realize what I have missed out ..been to Delhi so many times, but have never been to this places

indicaspecies said...

Lakshmi,

Travel pictures stir the interest, I understand.

Hope you'll get a chance to go to Agra the next time you are in Delhi. :)