Agra Fort was originally built in 1565 as a military establishment. Built of red
sandstone, this massive fort is 2.5 kms long and is considered as the predecessor
of the Red fort at Delhi.
The Mughal Emperor Akbar originally built the main part of the Agra Fort, to which
several additions were made by his successors. The Fort was partly converted into
a palace during Shah Jahan's time.
The entire fort is encompassed by a fetid moat, and the massive wall, which surrounds
it, is about 20ft high. The entry point to the fort is the Amar Singh Gate. The
buildings within the fort complex give a feeling of a city within the city. Most
of the structures within the fort complex are now closed for the public. There is
one marble pearl mosque (Moti Masjid), which is a prime attraction here.
Highlights in the Fort
Diwan-e-Khas - Diwan-e-Khas or the hall of private audience was added by
added by Shah Jahan. This hall is divided into two rooms connected by three arches.
The famous peacock throne of Shahjahan was kept here before being shifted to Delhi
by Aurangzeb, which was again took away by Nadir Shah (the Persian Ruler) to Iran
Diwan-e-Am - Diwan-e-Am or the hall of the public hearing was originally
made of wood but was later constructed in the present form by Shah Jahan. The throne
room inlaid carvings and panels of marble with floral motifs. This hall was the
place from where the Emperor heard the requests of the public and met the officials.
Diwan-e-Am leads to the Nagina Mosque and the Ladies Bazaar.
The Octagonal Tower - The uniquely carved Octagonal Tower is located to close
to the Diwan-e-Khas. This was the place where Emperor Shah Jahan spent last seven
years of his life after being imprisoned by his son Aurangzeb.
Jehangir Palace - Akbar built this palace for his most loved son Jehangir.
The interiors of the palace gives a clear picture of luxury and comfort Akbar provided
Moti Masjid (Pearl Mosque) - Just to the right of the Diwan-e-Am is the Moti
Masjid, a splendid place to see within the fort complex. The domes of the Moti Masjid
are most interestingly built amongst all the structures in the fort complex. Built
of white marble, the Masjid was built by Shahjahan for his family members and court
Sheesh Mahal - Sheesh Mahal or the Glass Palace is located just below the
Diwan-E- Khas hall. It is believed to have been the harem dressing room. The walls
of this palace are exquisitely decorated with inlaid mirrors, which is said to be
the best examples of glass mosaic work in India.