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Quick Facts On Fatehpur Sikrino
Location: 40km west of Agra.
Main Attractions- Jama Masjid, Akbar Palace, Buland Darwaza
Getting There And Away – From Agra it takes one hours to reach Fatehpur Sikri, small buses are convenient as big buses goes to Bharatpur and you have to walk more than 1km to reach Agra Gate.
USP- UNESCO World Heritage Site
This abandoned ghost city located just 40 km west of Agra, was a short lived capital of Mughal Emperor Akbar between 1571 and 1585. Historical account says that Akbar once went to Sufi saint Shekh Salim Chisti for his blessing. Shekh Salim Chisti prophesied the birth of a son. After few months of his prediction, Akbar gained pride of a son. He named his son Salim after Sufi saint and changed its capital to Fatehpur Sikri. He built some of the best Indo Islamic architectural structure in that place. Although the city was a favorite place of Akbar but soon for some mysterious reasons he left the place and shifted to Agra. According to some Historian despite of several methods to repair the acute water shortage problem, it didn’t work and Akbar finally reluctantly left the city.
The well-preserved palace buildings, Buland Darwaza ( the main gateway to Fatehpur Sikri) and still used mosques are some of the brilliant relics of splendid architecture. Fatehpur Sikri is considered as Akbar’s architectural legacy. The palaces, halls and grand Masjid speaks loud about his aesthetic impulses and typical Mughal architecture. Akbar’s famous land revenue policy, Mughal coinage, military organization and provincial administration emerged during the Fatehpur years. It is here, that the famous Akbar’s Navaratnas or nine jewels were brooked.
Not To Miss In Fatehpur Sikri
· Diwan-I-Khas - Hall of private audience or famously known as “ The Jewel House” as the hall was fully decorated with imperial gems and jewels, and Akbar sat on his throne and scrutinized his precious treasures. The place was for his private official members and kings of other states. The structure looks two stories from outside but actually it’s a single chambered with high ceiling from inside.
· Buland Darwaza – This huge and magnificent 54 meter high Gateway was built in 1575 to celebrate Akbar’s successful Gujarat campaign. The triumphal gateway known as Buland Darwaza is a stupendous architectural wonder of Mughal. The huge structure is embellished with colored stone and marbles.
· Panch Mahal – The most disturbingly provocative structure on Fatehpur Sikri is a five storied pavilion of winds. First two floors are of equal size and following are stratified. The top floor is open pavilion, from here one can have a panoramic view of the city. Each floor is supported with pillar.
· Khwabgah: Chamber Of Dreams/Khilawatkada-I-Khas - This was exclusive chamber for Akbar’s wives and mistresses. On the first floor Akbar’s private room where ladies from the harem could easily visit him. The place also welcomed religious guests and court proceedings from behind the screens. There was a separate chamber for the Emperor where he slept at afternoon and relaxed at night. There was a another chamber in this beautiful palace where tattled casually with his noblemen like Birble,Abul Fazl, Nakib Khan and other philosphers and Sufis.
· Jama Masjid – Jama Masjid in Fatehpur Sikri is also known as Dargah mosque designed in Persian and Indian style. Inside the courtyard is the superb white marble tomb of Shaikh Salim Chisti completed in 1581. Inside the mausoleum are brightly colored flower murals and the canopy is decorated with mother-of-pearl shell. To the right of the tomb lie stone slabs marking the graves of royal family members and nearby is the entrance to an underground tunne taht goes all the way to Agra Fort.(Barred now by locked gates.)