When in Agra see the Taj. But if that is already off your bucket-list or you have more days to explore the city then we suggest these ten unique experiences for a truly memorable trip.
1. Taj Nature Walk
Want uninterrupted views of the Taj Mahal while walking on quiet and serene paths? Then the Taj Nature Walk is just the thing for you. A short distance from the Taj and yet eons away from touristy noises, there is a lush forest with a walking path and an array of flora and fauna to keep you company. You can sit atop the various hillocks and enjoy the sound of tranquility while gazing at this gorgeous monument of love.
2. Mughal Heritage Walk
Interact with the locals and experience the life of people in a village with this walk. This 1.5 km walk will take you through narrow alleys and lively streets of the Kachchpura Village where you can witness the villagers’ life and marvel at the architectural wonders along the way.
3. Kalakriti Dance Drama Show
You will get to see a multi-lingual stage show narrating the story of the Taj Mahal every evening at the Kalakriti Cultural and Convention Centre. This 80-minute show also features a gigantic replica of the Taj with various hues of lights recreating the views from dawn to dusk.
4. Taj Mahotsav
Held in different months every year, the Taj Mahotsav is an elaborate fair organized by the UP-Tourism department. It features cultural shows, performances, shopping and food stalls displaying delightful works of art.
5. Mehtab Bagh
Spread over the floodplains of the Yamuna, on the opposite side of the Taj, the Mehtab Bagh is a sprawling garden complex with stunning views of the Taj. Mehtab means moon, and the garden was probably designed so that people could enjoy the glory of the Taj on moon-lit nights.
6. Chambal River Safari
The safari makes for an excellent day trip for nature lovers. It takes you on the River Chamba where you can spot gharials and crocodiles in their natural habitat. The banks of the river are also an excellent place to watch migratory birds.
7. Wildlife SOS
The Wildlife SOS is situated a short distance from Agra and is a rescue facility for bears and elephants. They rescue these animals that have been subject to cruelty and give them holistic care. You can drop in here to spend time and learn more about these majestic creatures.
8. Itimad Ud Daulah Tomb
Did you know there is also a baby Taj in Agra? Built by Nur Jahan, this historic monument is a fraction of the size of Taj Mahal but is made of marble and has intricate inlays and ornate decorations which make it a must-see on your next visit.
9. Jodha Bai Mahal
The stunning Jodha Bai Mahal is an iconic structure that was home to Akbar’s Rajput queen, Jodha Bai. The grandeur of the building is unparalleled and the inspiration is drawn by integrating architectural elements from Gujarat and Mandu with Islamic style.
10. Light and Sound Show
Come evening and the regal Red Fort becomes the backdrop for an interesting light and sound show depicting the history of the Mughals from Humayun to Akbar. It is a must watch for the informative historical narrative as well as the visual treat.
So the next time you are in Agra, use this guide to tread the less touristy path and get closer to the real vibe of the city.