If driving from Jaipur to Agra, I highly recommend a pit stop at Fatehpur Sikri. This walled city functioned briefly as the capital to Emperor Akbar’s empire before he shifted the capital to Lahore to fight some Afghan tribes. It was also home to Jahangir for just 3 months in 1619 and then remained abandoned till its archaeological exploration in 1892. Psshah these emperors, and their disposable, use and throw walled cities. I guess sustainability- recycle, reuse, re-purpose was not on their agenda. Why build such a stunning place and then abandon it?
Oh yes, you are welcome. This lesson in history was brought to you by our guide who also showed us how to take artsy pictures through latticed walls. If I remember right, the guide mentioned that the city was abandoned due to water scarcity.
When we were there, there was plenty of water. This boy, along with 3 others was cleaning the pond, scooping up flower petals with his palms. Looked like a fun job given it was a scorching warm day.
This pond called Anup Talao is where Tansen perfomed his ragaas. For those not from India, Tansen was a musician in Akbar’s court. He was believed to have had the power to conjure up fire with his music. There is a fable about him having a musical duel with another musician. Tansen lit fire while the other brought down rain.
Try…and you can visualise them sitting there, right there, at the centre of this pond singing up a medley of fire and rain. Goosebumps.
Salim Chisti’s tomb.
This used to be the stable with horses and elephants. Now home to this little dog. He looked hungry and thristy, all ribs with tongue hanging out. But he refused the water we gave him, so I guess he was doing just fine.