What is this tour is about: This is a 3-hour trip to Fatehpur Sikri, a UNESCO World Heritage site located an hour’s drive away from Agra (on the highway to Jaipur).
Fatehpur Sikri (the City of Victory) had only a brief glorious existence as the capital of the Mughal empire. In 1571, the Mughal Emperor Akbar the Great decided to build it at the site where the Sufi saint Salim Chishthi lived. The saint had successfully predicted the birth of Jahangir, Akbar’s much-longed for son and heir. The Great Mughal took personal interest in the design and construction of his new city; but abandoned it after a mere 10 years to focus on his war against the Afghans (he chose a new capital, Lahore, in present day Pakistan).
In 1585, the English traveller Ralph Fitch described Fatehpur Sikri as "considerably larger than London and more populous“. The City comprised a series of palaces, public buildings and mosques. There were living areas not only for the members of the Mughal court, but also for the army, tradesmen, merchants and ordinary folk. Only one small part of Fatehpur Sikri (where the large buildings and palaces are concentrated) has until now been studied, documented and relatively well preserved. The monuments are of red sandstone, built in a variety of eclectic styles freely borrowed from Hindu, Persian and Indo-Islamic traditions.
After Akbar’s death, the City of Victory was once again briefly the site of the Mughal court for 3 unhappy months in 1619, when Akbars son Jahangir sought refuge there from the plague that devastated Agra. After this, Fatehpur Sikri was abandoned once again, until its archaeological exploration in 1892.
Duration: 3 hours
When: Any day of the week
Start point: Your hotel
End point: Your hotel
Coverage: The major monuments within Fatehpur Sikri