Weekend Getaway- Amazing Agra!

Tripoto
1st Nov 2014

The Monument of Love.

Photo of Weekend Getaway- Amazing Agra! by Alisha

Jumpstart your journey with the Monument of L

Photo of Weekend Getaway- Amazing Agra! by Alisha

Agra Fort is the best place to learn about th

Photo of Weekend Getaway- Amazing Agra! by Alisha

Feel proud of your Indian heritage.

Photo of Weekend Getaway- Amazing Agra! by Alisha

Salute to Shah Jahan!

Photo of Weekend Getaway- Amazing Agra! by Alisha

Mughal Architecture- best known for it's Arch

Photo of Weekend Getaway- Amazing Agra! by Alisha

My co-traveller and brilliant photographer- E

Photo of Weekend Getaway- Amazing Agra! by Alisha

I really needed a break from the crazy month that was October. So when my Couch surfer friend, Eric, decided to make a quick trip to Agra, before he went back to the US- I (Literally) jumped at the opportunity. We left on a Saturday (1.11.2014) at 4 p.m. and reached around 7:45 p.m. that day itself. We were travelling by the Mahakoshal Express from Nizamuddin to Agra Cantt that was on time. But please carry your own food and water, as there is no Pantry on the train. The only stop was Mathura, where I could get some water from the station. 
Once we reached there, we took a pre-paid auto to our hotel- The Pyranees Home Stay, it's in R.K.Puram, hardly 20 minutes from the station, and should cost you about Rs 200.(3.3 USD) Our room was comfortable ( Rs 1300/ 21.6 USD per night),There was a lovely, cozy, rooftop restaurant, with a varied menu including chicken and beer. 
We crashed early and made it to the Taj Mahal by 7 a.m. but there was still a small crowd. The entry for foreign tourists and women are different, so please don't get stuck in the men's line, unless you want to be leered at. I had to climb over railings to get to my ladies line. The entry ticket to the Taj Mahal is Rs 20 for Indians and Rs 750 ( 12.5 USD) for Foreigners.
Once inside, you can reflect on the beauty of the lovely monument, go crazy taking selfies, or pretend to be a 'serious'photographer and try and take pictures of the Taj from various angles- but whatever you do, please avoid the monkeys. My friend, Eric, decided to shoot them, and they were not very happy. 

We went back to the hotel by 10 a.m. when the real rush had started, but not before getting a lovely, intricately decorated marble lamp and some famous ''Agra ke pethe'.

In the evening, we made it to Agra Fort, where we gave the guided tour a miss, and explored the various Mahals and Durbars inside the Fort. My favourite was the Main Durbar that still has Birbal's seat with the commoners.There are also Sound and Light shows depicting Mughal History for Culture enthusiasts. These are at 6:15 in Hindi, and 7:15 in English and cost Rs 150.

We went to a local cafe called 'Sheroes Hangout', started by an NGO that works for Acid Attack Victims. It is hardly 10 minutes from Agra Fort, going in the direction of R.K.Puram. It is a lovely, arty place, with a lot of soul. The people are friendly and you can pay whatever you want- (Tip- Try the Pasta in Red Sauce) I made a lot of friends there, and we have kept in touch. When they came to Delhi, I showed them around my city. :)

Finally, after a restful holiday, I returned to Delhi on Monday morning at 10:30 a.m. on the Agra Intercity Express Mail that left Agra Cantt. at 6 a.m sharp. As I got ready for work, I remembered what my auto driver, Mr Ahmed told me, when I reached Agra, he looked at me and said in perfect English, "I never went to school, but my meetings with travelers has educated me, it has made me grow. And you are such a traveler. You are not a tourist, Miss. I hope you understand the difference.''

Lovely people, very helpful- they helped us get a train back to Delhi!
A lovely cafe run by Acid Attack Victims- You can pay as you wish for the food items!
6 Comment(s)
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Hi Alisha, your blog about Agra gave me an all new perspective about this place...thank you for sharing it so eloquently!
Sat 10 17 15, 11:12 · Reply · Report
A nice but incomplete travelogue. The Agra has so much in its treasures that u need ages....and still more to explore. Hope you will explore more and more in your next visits. ..
Mon 09 28 15, 10:53 · Reply · Report
Photo of Anurag Vats
Anurag Vats
Brilliant! :)
Thu 11 06 14, 11:09 · Reply · Edit · Delete ·
Photo of Anurag Vats
Anurag Vats
Brilliant! :)
Thu 11 06 14, 11:09 · Reply · Edit · Delete ·
Photo of Imamul Hassan
Imamul Hassan
nice trip, does this comes under the getaway or day trip category? I wish i too had so much talent and patience to collect everything and write convert them into an article :D
Thu 11 06 14, 08:49 · Reply · Edit · Delete ·
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