Besides the Taj Mahal, we also visited the Red Fort in Agra. We had previously visited the Red Fort in Delhi, which was built by the same Mughal Emperor, so we weren’t sure this one was going to be worth the visit, but we were glad we went here. It was quite a bit nicer than the one in Delhi
There is a permanent bridge now replacing the old wooden one which was used to cross the moats to the main gate of the old fort.There was a fort in this location as early as 1080, but much of the earlier structure was razed and replaced with the structure that exists today, by the same Mughal emperor who built the Taj Mahal. The fort, which is really a palace within a fortified walled city, was built for him, his wives, concubines and court to live in.
This is the main gate, where we entered.
Detail of the colored parts in the towers seen above. I think this is inlay work, but am not sure.
This gate was called the Elephant gate, because elephants used to enter through it. We walked up the ramp with a ridged pavement supposed to be easier for the animals to climb. The man in the tan vest was our guide. The ladies in saris just happened to enter ahead of us.
Another photo our guide took of us in front of the Jahangiri Mahal, one of the palaces inside the Red Fort.
Closer shot of the gate seen in the photo above. The emperor had 3 wives and over 200 concubines. His wives were one Hindu, one Christian and one Muslim. The palace has symbols of all three religions. The 6-pointed star with the lotus flower in the center is a Hindu symbol. The arches are Muslim. You also will notice no anthropomorphic designs out of respect for Islamic rules. And the crosses are a Christian symbol.
A detail of the carved stone panel next to the doorway.
A carved niche inside an arcaded passage.
A white marble court built for the wives.
The fountain room. There was a large water tank on the roof of an adjoining building. The water flowed down through an open channel and across to feed this fountain.
One of the walls in the marble palace.
Inlay detail. This is very similar to the work on the Taj Mahal.
This garden is called in Hindi, the grape garden. Here again you see symbols of Islam (the half moon), Christianity (the cross) and Hinduism (the swastika).
The hall of public audience housed a throne from which the Emperor would address his subjects.
A detail of the ceiling in the building above.
The hall of public audience again. I didn’t have a picture of it without us in it.
Much of the original red fort is currently used by the Indian Army and off-limits to visitors.
This information is what I remember from what our guide told us plus some more from Wikipedia, so don’t quote me. I’ve tried to keep it accurate, but it’s not a historical account.