Home to the grandiose Taj Mahal, Agra’s city echoes of its bygone Mughal era days. Located in Uttar Pradesh, tourists from across the world flock to Agra all year round. Boasting of three UNESCO World Heritage sites, the Agra Fort in the city,the white marble architectural wonder of the Taj Mahal and the nearby Fatehpur Sikri. Agra is also dotted with numerous tombs and buildings that have been left behind by the Mughal empire. Agra’s tourism can also be credited to its sweeping gardens of Soami Bagh, Ram Bagh and the most beautiful of them all, Mehtab Bagh. Agra city is also swarmed by a multitude of temples that add to Agra’s vibrant character. The Balkeshwar and Kailash temple on Yamuna’s banks worship Lord Shiva, while the Mankameshwar Temple is loved by the locals for it mellifluous aarti. And while you are in Agra, you should definitely incorporate Sikandra in your itinerary. Akbar’s tomb, or Sikandra lies north to the city, and takes about thirty minutes from Agra. Itmad-Ud-Daulah's Tomb, fondly referred to as the Baby Taj is another must visit.
Lucknow or the City of Nawabs sitting on the banks of the Gomti river, is regarded as North India’s cultural capital. Uttar Pradesh’s capital, Lucknow is replete with historical elements dating back to the colonial era that are known over the world for their Awadhi-style architecture. But Lucknow’s ethos lies in its delectable cuisine and its unique Chikankaari (shadow-work embroidery) garments that are must-buys if you are in the city. Lucknow is also known for its sweeping gardens and pure Kathak dance-forms that are showcased in numerous events held across the city. The city is also thriving with a lovely Urdu poetry scene. The ginormous tomb complex of Bara Imambara is home to a stunning labyrinth and neighboured by the equally popular mausoleum of Chhota Imambara, the Husainabad clock tower and a fantastic art gallery. And while in Lucknow, feast on its delightful assortment of Awadhi and Mughlai food that comprises of everything from kebabs to the makhan malai (a saffron-flavoured local ice-cream).
Considered to be one of the greenest cities in the country, Bhopal, is a place that one cannot afford to leave off their tourist trail. Adorned by many natural and as well as manmade lakes and water bodies, Bhopal is often referred to as the City of Lakes. The city is home to a number institutions and places that are of great national importance. The city houses ISROs Master Control Facility and the famous National Institute of Technical Training and Research (NITTTR), AIIMS and BHEL. The city has a number of attractions that lure many a tourist to tread along its roads. If one does plan a visit to this city, do not forget to pay a visit to the Bhimbetka Rock Caves, the superb artificial Upper Lake, try out the food at the historic Lazeez Hakeem Restaurant and visit the many mosques here. An unfortunate incident in December 1984 propelled Bhopal into the international arena. The case of the Union Carbide India Limited, a plant that manufactured pesticide, saw the leakage of a poisonous mixture of gases, especially methyl isocyanate that lead to the great disaster. Nevertheless, the city is clean now and promises one a great visit.
The melodious chorus of temple bells, the sweet fragrance of incense and the positive energy in Mathura city all come together to offer you an experience unlike another. The most popular temple in the birthplace of Shri Krishna is the Dwarkadesh Temple, which is home to a lovely shrine of Lord Krishna and Radha among other deities. And if you happen to visit the temple during the festivals of Janmashtami, Diwali and Holi, you'll be in for a huge surprise. The energy of the temple and the city will take you by storm and you will fall in love with the small energetic town. The culture of Mathura is perhaps what attracts people to this lovely town rather than its mythological importance, though one can't deny or undermine its mythological significance. Among other places to visit, you can head to Vishram Ghat, Rangji temple and Govind Deo temple. Sacred for both Jains and Buddhists, Mathura sees people from across the world. A meeting point for people from all cultures, there is much to learn and explore in this lovely city. Finding a place to to stay here is not a problem at all since there are a number of small dharamshalas as well as luxurious resorts.
This is a town in the Chhattarpur District of Madhya Pradesh. Mainly known for the ancient Khajuraho Temple Complex, this is the main attraction of this place apart from other small temples and old monuments. The temples in this complex are not just beautiful and grand, but each one of them are different from one another. The temples here represent royalty, culture, taste of the early kings and their devotion towards gods and goddesses. Most of the temples and monuments you will see here were built by the Chandela Dynasty rulers and their religious secularism is evident from the presence of Buddhist and Jain temples in which they had supported along with the famous Hindu Temples. The main temples of this temple complex are the Kandariya Mahadev Temple, Brahma Temple, Varaha Temple, Lakshmana Temple and others.
If history, art and architecture spell a perfect holiday for you, Gwalior in Madhya Pradesh is definitely a must visit! The city houses numerous historic monuments, including the very popular Gwalior Fort. Gwalior Fort, an imposing structure situated on a hill has received praise from rulers throughout history. Known for its architectural brilliance and intricate design, exploring the fort can take up an entire day. If you are not fond of historical tours, you can spend your time admiring the stunning views of the fort and from the fort. Do also visit Ghaus's Tomb, which is the tomb of Muhammad Ghawth, a notable Sufi and the guru of Tansen. The site is also home to the Samadhi of Tansen and perhaps this is why the wonderful Tansen music festival is celebrated here. There are numerous hotels here and you can choose one according to your budget, though for a more local experience, it is always best to pick a homestay.