is a moderately populated city located on the banks of River Yamuna in Uttar Pradesh, Northern India
. Agra city is renowned for hosting the majestic Taj Mahal, an iconic monument that was built for Mumtaz Mahal (The wife of Shah Jahan, who was the ruler of Mughal) when she died in 1631 during childbirth. The massive Taj Mahal was made from magnificent carves of white marble and precious stones and set strategically next to a reflective water pool.
Agra features another historical monument, the Agra Fort, built next to the Taj Mahal. Agra Fort features high brick walls, about twenty meters high, intricately done in red. Agra Fort dated back into the ancient times and was used as a palace and fortress for the Mughal leading class. Itimad-Ud-Daula, another grand mausoleum in Agra, was constructed shortly after the Taj Mahal. It is no wonder it is fondly referred to as "Baby Taj". Itimad-Ud-Daula is a magnificent sight to behold from across the Yamuna River.
The western part of Agra city features Fatehpur Sikri, a ghost town that has remained impressively well-preserved over the years. The buildings of the ghost town include the outstanding red sandstone royal apartments, architectural pavilions, and the harem quarters.
The period between May
is quite warm as it falls in the period just before the July
monsoon rains set in. From October
, Agra becomes moderately dry, but with cold and pleasant weather. This period is best to visit Agra. During February
, there is a traditional Taj Mahotsav festival, featuring the vibrant cultural practices, crowned with traditional dances, tasty regional cuisines, beautiful arts, and creative craft designs from all over India. Locals celebrate Ram Barat in September, a celebration that features royal weddings, huge processions, lots of dancing, and striking decorations. During the period between October and November
, the Diwali Festival, a common Hindu light festival, is celebrated. During the celebration, the streets remain colorfully lit, and fireworks are witnessed throughout Agra.