Agra Culture Tour: Explore beyond the tourist sites on this Agra walking tour that will offer your insight into the real Indian way of life. Your tour will trace through history, from the Mughal era to British rule, and onwards to today and a rapidly changing modern India. Start your Agra city tour with a trip back to the 11th century and a lesson in India’s military history, as you visit the magnificent Agra Fort and learn about the early foundations of India. From there, gain a better understanding of India’s old caste systems — and its eradication — with a visit to Ambedkar Park, dedicated to the father of the Indian constitution, Dr. B. R. Ambedkar.
Fuelled by your history lesson, you’ll next experience the hustle of modern-day Agra with a visit to Agra Fort Railway Station. While the building is historical, featuring a mix of British, French, and Mughal architecture, today the station is a hectic hub that sees some 90,000 passengers pass through its doors every day. Next, get an introduction to both Islam and Hinduism with stops at an active mosque as well as one of Agra’s most famous temples, dedicated to Lord Shiva and attracting some 3,000 devotees daily. You’ll also hear the romantic love story of Lord Krishna and Radha, with a stop at the intricately sculptured Radha Krishna Mandir temple.
Take a break from all that exploring and sample some local delicacies at a 200-year-old sweets shop. You’ll also learn about the preparation of some of the dishes with a live demo of how to make poori (deep-fried bread… wait, did someone say deep-fried?!). Next, your Agra tour will take you down the city’s narrow, colourful bylanes where vendors sell little idols of gods and goddesses for Hindu home temples. Learn about the unique traditions surrounding these idols — like how they’re given a change of clothes every day. From there, take in one of the city’s most stunning sights at the beautifully sculptured Musician’s Balcony.
Finish your Agra city tour by boarding cycle rickshaws for an aromatic ride through the Rawatpara Spice Market, a busy marketplace constantly bustling with activity and frantic shoppers from the city. Then, head across the river Yamuna for the icing on your Agra experience: a view of the spectacular Taj Mahal at dusk.
Meeting/pick-up point: Pick-up from any centrally located city hotel.
Duration: Three hours.
Start/opening time: At 3.30pm.
End/closing time: At 6.30pm.
Others: As India is a modest country and the tour visits a mosque and temple, fully covered clothing is advisable. For comfort, sport shoes or closed-toe walking shoes are recommended.