India - Agra Fort

After the Taj Mahal, our next stop was Agra Fort.  We ran the gauntlet of touts and rickshaws to buy our tickets and made our way through an impressive gate.
I spotted this little fellow making a hole in the wall his home.
On a creepier note, we found an ailing bat near the entrance to one of the sections of the fort.
The interior of the fort boasted impressive facades.
There were some ground level water features that were empty at the moment.
We looked out across the wall of the fort to the Taj in the hazy distance.
In the other direction, we looked onto a gleaming white section of the fort that was off-limits to tourists.
 
The interior passageways were ornately decorated.
The Agra Fort featured many shady spots to protect visitors from the sun.
 
We got an even better view of the Taj Mahal from the other side of the courtyard.
 
 
The usual scalloped doorways made an appearance, part of a small mosque on the property.
The mosque was capped with large white domes.
 We walked along the wall and admired the detailed accents.
We concluded our tour of the fort and made our way back to our driver.  Along the way, we encountered the most aggressive touts on our visit to India so far.  We were walking along toward the parking lot when at least 2 men approached my husband and tried to sell him a marble box. He wasn't assertive enough in telling them NO, he wasn't interested and before we knew it, he was holding the box.  He eventually managed to hand it back but the touts were encouraged enough to follow us all the way to the car.  They wedged themselves in the car door and continued to try and bargain for the sale.  I eventually got so fed up that I actually shouted at the touts saying that NO! we didn't want the item and to get out of the car.  I didn't like that India brought out this side of me but it was the only thing that made them understand we weren't interested.  We left the fort without purchasing anything.  In most places, we found the touts to a minor annoyance at most but in Agra they take it to a new level. Be very firm with them or you might end up in the same situation we were in or with some trinket that you don't really want for 10x what it's worth.

After this slightly harrowing experience at the fort, we had the driver take us to the ITC Mughal hotel for a quiet rest.  We had coffee and lunch and it was nice to get away from the chaos for a couple hours.
After our break, we took a moment to admire the flowers by the pool before heading back to our taxi and more sightseeing in Agra.

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Sidewalk Safari: India - Agra Fort
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