Nobody would doubt that Shah Jahan built some of the finest monuments in India, from the Taj Mahal to Jama Masjid. However, history will record that Akbar too, was no less a grand builder of massive structures. The enormous Jahangir Mahal is a testimony to this fact. While there are several spectacular buildings in Agra Fort, this one stands apart from the rest by virtue of its simplicity and integrity.
Jahangir Mahal, which is counted amongst the most popular tourist attractions in Agra was built by Akbar for his son, Jahangir, to serve as his private residence. However, the Rajput wives of Akbar used it as their principal zenana (a palace for women belonging to the royal household). It also served as the main residence of Nur Jahan, wife of Jahangir. It is also one of the first buildings to greet your eyes when you enter Agra Fort from Amar Singh Gate. Although built by Akbar, he desisted from taking any credit for it, as is clearly mentioned by Jahangir in his memories.
Jahangir Mahal, one of the many attractions inside the Agra Fort, was built using a combination of Rajput and Islamic architectural styles. Constructed from white marble and red sandstone, it’s exteriors are adorned with incredible motifs which are common to both Hindu and Islamic structures. The surface ornamentation which includes marble inlay and curious geometric patterns are immensely eye pleasing.
A prominent attraction of the Mahal is its enormous facade, whose lotus parapet, carved panels, projecting balconies, brackets and marble lined niches make it greatly aesthetically pleasing. Another notable characteristic is the interior elevations, which are predominantly Hindu but also incorporate Islamic aspects. The exterior elevations, on the other hand, are dominantly Islamic, with the presence of a few Hindu elements. According to some sources, the Jahangir Mahal was inspired by the Man Mandir in Gwalior which was built 75 years before. This is evident by the presence of flat ceilings and narrow screened galleries.
The palace, which is double storeyed, also commands respect by its sheer size, it measures about 63 m when measured north-south and 78 m approx. when measured east-west. An example of ingenious engineering is reflected in the rooms where the level of privacy increases as you move away from the light, or as the distance increases from the rooms to the courtyard. Under Jahangir, the palace went through several modifications, during of which the Hauz-i-Jahangiri was added. It is a large circular bowl which was carved as a single piece of stone and used for storing fragrant rose water.
Jahangir Mahal is a part of Agra Fort, therefore, you do not need to pay any extra entry fee to visit it. For visiting the Agra Fort, however, you will have to pay an entry fee, which is different for both domestic and international tourists. Domestic tourists will have to pay an entry fee of 40 INR while international tourists are required to pay an entry fee of 550 INR. Children below 15 years of age are not required to pay any entry fee.
Jahangir Mahal is a part of Agra Fort, which is located in the city of Agra, Uttar Pradesh. This place is known for its scorching summers, when the temperatures averages 42°C. Despite that, tourists do visit Agra during this time, and if you are comfortable with the heat, then you can also do so. However, winters is when Agra is visited by a lot of tourists, both domestic and international. The amicable weather makes sightseeing and exploration an enjoyable affair.
After visiting the Jahangir Mahal, one of the most famous tourist attractions in Uttar Pradesh, you can also visit other equally popular tourist places in Agra.