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Home Agra Travel Guide Excursions in Agra Sikandara Fort

Agra Travel Guide

Excursions in Agra

Sikandara Fort
Sikandra Fort, Agra Travel PackagesWelcome to Sikandra, a supurb of Agra, only 13 km. from the Agra Fort, the last resting place of the Mughal emperor Akbar. Akbar was the greatest of the Mughal emperors and one of the most secular minded royalties of his time. He was the heir to a long tradition of oriental refinement, a great patron of the arts, literature, philosophy and science.

A visit to Akbar's monument opens before one, the completeness of Akbar's personality as completely as the Taj Mahal does of Mumtaz Mahal's. Akbar's vast, beautifully carved, red-ochre sandstone tomb is set amidst a lush garden. Akbar himself planned his own tomb and selected a suitable site for it. To construct a tomb in one's lifetime was a Tartary custom which the Mughals followed religiously. Akbar's son Jahangir completed the construction of this pyramidal tomb in 1613.


APPROACH:
One can approach the monument from the Southern gate only. Ticket counter is located to the left of this gate.

THE GARDEN:
The tomb stands in the center of a vast garden, which is enclosed by high walls on all sides. In the middles of each enclosing wall is a monumental gateway. The whole garden is divided into four equal quarters on the conventional charbhag plan. Each quarter is separated by a high terrace or raised path with a narrow shallow water channel running at the center. Each terrace has in the center, a tank with fountains.

GATEWAY:
Although there is only one entrance in use today there exist four red sandstone gates which lead to the mausoleum complex. The decoration on the gateways is strikingly bold, with large mosaic patterns set into it. The gateway's four minarets rising from the corners are particularly striking. Built of red sandstone, the minarets are inlaid with white marble polygonal patterns; the pleasing Proportions & Profuse surface ornamentation makes the gateways very impressive. These gateways reflect a curious hybrid of different styles of architecture-Hindu, Muslim Christian and a patent mixture of Akbar's typical style.

MAUSOLEUM:
Taj Mahal, Agra Travel PackagesA broad paved causeway lead to the tomb, which has five storeys and is in the shape of a truncated pyramid. The main tomb has a unique square design which is unparalleled by all other Mughal buildings,

GROUND FLOOR
The ground floor has spacious cloisters on all four sides except in the middle of the southern side. The cloisters are divided into numerous bays by massive piers & arches. Each bay measures 22 feet square. The centre of the southern side is occupied by a vestibule, which has been ornamented very profusely with exquisite carvings, artistic paintings & inlay work in geometric and floral designs. An inclined and descending passage leads from this vestibule to the mortuary chamber. The tombstone of Akbar is placed in the centre of this room. Geometrical designs achieved by the mosaics of glazed tiles or of colored stones, predominate the tomb. The mosaic work is generally in the tass eleated style, that is, square or rectangular pieces of colored stones were assembled and arranged together to form patterns. Semi-precious stones were inlaid into a hollowed depression in the white marble slab by Emperor Jahangir later on . Akbar's daughters Shakrul Nisha Begum and Aram Bano are also entombed on this floor.


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