Monday, December 12, 2011

On the Road: Agra

Taj Mahal! Shah Jahan's beautiful tribute of love to his favorite wife Mumtaz, who died giving birth to the couple's 14th child. If that's not a crazy love story, what is? This site, as you can imagine, was one of the most highly anticipated visits of the entire semester.

(We'll upload real photos (of our students!) after our travel component is over. Apologies for that.)

Moghal architecture is beautiful and intricate. North India (and all of India, of course) has a very rich past filled with invaders, conquerors, kings and marauders. The Moghals here in the north are responsible for some of the most beautiful, and most easily recognizable, landmarks.

Holy men abound in this city, too. 

We visited the Agra Fort and Fatephur Sikri, both of which have tremendous histories themselves. The Agra Fort is where Aurangzeb, the son of Shah Jahan (builder of the Taj Mahal) imprisoned his father after overthrowing him. This way, his father could see the Taj he spent so many years building but never visit it. The whimsical city of Fatehpur Sikri was the site of Emperor Akbar's capital. The city took 15 years to build, but was only occupied for 14 years before it ran out of water. Poor planning, perhaps, but beautiful nonetheless.

Final stop, Delhi!

{images: 1, 2, 3}

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