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Tourist Places To Visit In Fatehpur Sikri
Fatehpur Sikri, a town which is a part of the Agra District in the state of Uttar Pradesh is a town brimming with some of the most beautiful monuments built by the Mughal Emperor Akbar. Fatehpur Sikri was once the Mughal capital, but later on it was shifted to Agra. This historical town was built by Akbar to pay respect to saint Salim Chisti, whose tomb can also be found in the Fatehpur Sikri complex. Today, the town is a prime example of Mughal architecture in India and has some excellent monuments that are worth visiting. If you aren’t keen on staying here, you can always do a day trip by taking a bus from Agra and taking another one back in the evening after you are done sightseeing. Not sure where to start? Have a look at our list of tourist places to visit in Fatehpur Sikri.
One of the most famous monuments in Fatehpur Sikri, the Buland Darwaza means magnificent gate in Urdu and truly lives by its name. Built in 1601 by Emperor Akbar, this beautiful structure sands at a height of 54 m. The Buland Darwaza was built to celebrate and commemorate Emperor Akbar’s victory over Gujarat. The gigantic gate is made of red sandstone with carvings done on granite and marble inlays, which is unique in its own way. On the main gate you can find inscriptions written in Persian which shows the extent of religious tolerance during that era.
Tomb of Sheikh Salim Chisti
Built between 1580 and 1581, the structure that houses the tomb of Sheikh Salim Chisti is one of the most important structures in Fatehpur Sikri. The structure is made of carved white marble and is a fine example of stone carving in ancient India. The architecture of this building is a combination of Mughal and Hindu architecture and is also surrounded by ‘Jaalis’ that are carved marble screens from all sides of the building. This mausoleum in Fatehpur Sikri served as a major center for the Sufi movement in India and is well revered due to that.
One of the most famous mosques in the vicinity, Jama Masjid also known as the central mosque was built by Akbar for which directions were given by Sheikh Salim Chisti. This structure is made of red sandstone and is rectangular in shape. The interiors of the structure exhibits carved stone altars and inlaid paintings, with five entrances to the main praying area. The structure has a huge courtyard and one can enter this area from Buland Darwaza in the south and Badshahi Darwaza in the east, which was used by Emperor Akbar to enter the mosque. This is an iconic mosque and is renowned all over the country.
The Panch Mahal was built by Emperor Akbar and was used as a recreational palace for queens and other women of the court. The structure is made of red sandstone and consists of five pavilions. Each of these pavilions is linked to the next floor by means of a staircase. 84 pillars on the ground floor support the entire structure and the number of pillars keeps decreasing as you go up the pavilions. The Panch Mahal was built for relaxing and was used as a summer retreat; the palace also has a pool in front of it known as Anoop Talao, which was used as a place where musical performances were held for entertainment.
Situated in the northeast corner of the Fatehpur Sikri royal complex, the Diwani-i-Khaas also known as the Hall of Private Audience was built for the emperor, so that he could meet his private guests. This structure is also made up of red sandstone and has a pillar in the center which is beautifully carved. On all four corners of the structure on top, kiosks are built that have a dome shaped structure on top. The monument also has four doors from all sides and all of these doors lead to one single hall, with a beautiful and high ceiling. In the olden days the king would sit on a seat which is attached to the pillar and all the other guests would sit on seats right by the gallery. This structure is a great work of art and is a must visit in Fatehpur Sikri.
The Jodhabai Palace is another great place to visit in the Fatehpur Sikri complex due to its architectural magnificence. After conquering Malwa, Emperor Akbar faced a lot of problems from the Rajputs and got into a marriage alliance with the Rajput King’s sister, Jodha Bai. Soon after, Jodha Bai became his favourite wife and the palace was constructed and dedicated to her, where she was even allowed to worship Hindu deities. The structure is a combination of Muslim and Hindu architecture and has many Hindu symbols on the inside of the palace like srivasta mark, elephants, parrots, swans, ghanta mala etc. The palace also has only one entrance that used to be protected by guards.
Located close to Caravanserai, the Hiran Minar was built by Emperor Akbar in memory of his favourite elephant whom he had names ‘Hiran’. The structure has a height of 21.34 m and is octagonal in shape on the ground level but circular throughout the rest of the tower. It is said that this tower was used by women as a private watch tower to watch sports or entertainment. The Hiran Minar is also built in red sandstone and is decorated with alternate row of hexagons and has 53 steps that lead to the top of the tower. Once you are on top of the Minar, you can get a panoramic view of the entire complex and city of Fatehpur Sikri.
Built with red sandstone, the Khwabgah complex is located in the southern side of the complex, near Anoop Talao. This structure is also known as the Dream Palace and is one of the most beautiful structures in the complex. The Daulat Khana has two rooms on the ground floor and a pavilion on the first floor which is very well ventilated. The rooms on the ground floor were used as a library or a dining hall. The bedroom on top is surrounded by a pillared verandah with a sloping roof. The room is beautifully decorated with murals and carved panels. Overall, the structure is a classic example of beautiful Mughal architecture and is definitely worth giving time to.