Getting there is the easy part!
BY RAIL Agra is a major railway junction on routes to the south, east and west. Two of the best trains - Shatabdi Express (between Delhi and Bhopal) and Taj Express ( between Delhi and Gwalior)
BY ROAD Agra is 204km from Delhi
We hired a car and driver- the drive was about 4 hours. We left Delhi at 5am- so we missed the heavy traffic, We had an excellent driver and air-con car.This made the drive quite pleasurable. The scenery along the way is lovely- we passed fields of yellow mustard flowers, and forests of trees. Dhaba's (refreshment stops) are plentiful, and the toilets are mostly ok to use.
Returning to Delhi, however, was not so easy. We reached the outskirts, and the logjam of traffic was horrific. It took us 6 hours to drive back. and we arrived in Delhi at 9pm.
I think that the Shatabi Express is probably a wiser choice.
- Historical Travel
Bicycle Rickshaw or Motorrickshaw
At Agra you will find lots of bicycle rickshaws as the centre is protect of motor polution.
The first day we took a bicycle rickshaw and Ididn't liked at all the experience. We were two of us, and he hardly was able to go when there was a little climb. It was not nice to see that great exfort and you felt guilty. I didn't liked either cause he went very slowly in moments I didn't felt well going so slowly. In some parts of Agra we were looked as we where from Mars and it was not confortable going so slow.
He asked very little money for taking us around for long time and wait for us at the entrance of the monuments, and we paid him more ... but ... I will try not to get another bicycle rickshaw again.
The next day he was waiting for us at the door of the hotel, and after he asked us thousands of time to get his services again we did.
So again in bicycle rickshaw....
I must acept that is a good way to move around Agra, but I will prefer motorrickshaw next time.
He asked us for 50 R for nearly 4 hours he was with us.
We took a taxi and paid for it 200 R from Taj Mahal to Airport. Only special cars can go inside Agra's Airport. You can not take pics near the airport or at there. You will be stop at the door of the security check of the space where the airport is. After the check, the car is permit to get inside.
The airport is very basic, really nothing more than a post office and a little souvenirs shop. I wanted to cancel my fly tickets with Indian Airlines. I didn’t have find ever so unpleasant man and worse service than the one of the Indian Airlines there.
You can cancel your tickets without penalty even if you do it days after you have not take the fly with this company, so that is incredible good.
From Airport to Delhi we took a taxi for 2.900 R. ( there they a taxi official list of fares)
They are few cars that can goes in the centre of Agra cause they want to leave the centre free of contamination. The ones that goes in have special licence. There is a cyber near Taj Mahal that have internet but also taxi and travel agency, that can be very helpful. We try all those services and where ok.
Fares we get (I can imagine they are not very good ones, but I am not good with bargain)
Taxi train station – Taj Mahal : 50 R.
Taxi from Taj Mahal – Airport: 200 R.
Taxi from Agra’s Airport to Delhi: 2.900 R.
Agra -day trip or overnight ?
I am adding this tip because very often in the Travel Forum the question arises about how much time one needs to see the attractions in Agra.
As I stated before- we did it all in one day, albeit with a driver and car.
However- the Shatabi Express that leaves Delhi at 6am every morning gets you to Agra by 9.30am. That leaves a good few hours to see Taj & Red Fort. After seeing these- get a taxi to Fatehpur Sikri (a 20 min drive). Fatephur Sikri can be seen in 2 hours easily. Then back to Agra, where you can catch the last train back to Delhi at 6pm.
Of course- if you prefer to see the Taj Mahal at sunrise or at sunset, you can go and spend one night there. Its a personal choice, and depends on amount of time that you have to spare.
- Historical Travel
I took a train from Delhi to Agra, it took over 3 hours. I went at 2nd class with ac. It was very good. A man used to pass selling things for eat. The train station at Delhi was full of people and flies. It was hot and also there we where asked for money. You better ask for your train for get to the correct train. You can ask for help of information to the “coolies”, the ones with red jacket and metal plaque with a number.
For the train ticket you are asked for your name, sex, and age. You have to look for your name at the door of the wagon. They told us that they ask for the age cause in the past, when the English where in charge of the trains, as the Indian names where very difficult, they founded it easier having age also to know if the one that was going to have the seat was the one that had buy the ticket.
Agra station was a big chaos. All people came around us. We wanted to take a prepaid taxi at the office but there were no one there so, at last, we where taken by a man with a car that was not even a taxi.
It cost us 50 R. from Agra's train station to the hotel, that was at the door of Taj Mahal. Of course, as it is common, he wanted to take us to other hotel :)
Bhopal Shatabdi: New Delhi to Agra
Scheduled Departure Time: 6.00
Fare: 370 for A/C Chair Car
Morning tea with snacks and a meal. I had a non veg meal and it was omelette with a few french fries and breads.
This train departed on time and arrived about 10 minutes late when I took it.
NDLS Shatabdi: Agra to New Delhi
Departure: 8.18 pm
Fare: 395 for A/C Chair Car
I couldn't eat their meal, it was too spicy!!
This train departed 30 minutes late and arrived about 40 minutes late.
I bought these tickets from http://www.irctc.co.in
- Arts and Culture
Agra Cantt - New Delhi Junction
(last date took the train - Jan. 26, 2004)
Agra Cantt Station - New Delhi Junction Station (200 kms)
2nd Economy Class - Rs 69.00
Don't take 2nd Economy class! It was a terrible experience 'coz I was standing for almost 4 hours and this class was too narrow and full! Be ready for locals who are fighting for seats!!!
Train in India is always late and slow too!!! It took us 4 hours before we reached our destination!
Departure time: 8:45 am
Arrival time - 1:20 pm
- Budget Travel
If you don't mind the early wake up, Shatabdi Express is the best option to get to Agra. It leaves New Delhi Railway St. at 6:00 am and arrives at Agra 2,5 hours later.
The AC chair class was actually very good and the free breakfast served was also very nice.
The Shatabdi Express leaves Agra for Delhi at around 8:30 pm, if I remember correctly.
If you don't want to pay the around-60 rupie-commision to a travel agent, you can go and buy tickets yourself from the Railway Station, Tourist Information Area, at the first floor of the station. There is usually a long queue and I wouldn't be surprised if you had to wait for an hour or so.
To Agra one can go by BUS,TRAIN,CAR.
Train have to get down Agra Cantonment station.If going by train then local sighseeing can catch auto,or car.From Station Taj raod goes to main monumnet.
From Delhi by Bus
ordinary one costs one way Rs65(US$1.3),ac bus costs oneway
Going to Agra from Delhi you can catch morning Satabthi fast train too.
New Delhi Station it departure 6 A.M and reaching Agra( 8.30A.M).
It returns evening back.
for other train information visit http://www.indianrail.gov.in
Idgah bus stand is the main bus stand of Agra,can get bus to other places
- Arts and Culture
simply walk or take a rickshaw
Agra isn’t a very big city, but as well, isn’t so small to travel torugh it always walking.
The best way to visit the main sites (Mausoleum + Agra Fort) is with a rickshaw.
If you overnight in the Taj Mgnaj block, the Taj Mahal is 500/300 meters far, so a simply walk.
For any other reason, simply wait for a rickshaw wallet!
This is the easiest way to visit the city.
Delhi Agra highway
Delh i and Agra are well connected with local buses and trains.
The distance beetween those two cities is only 200Km, so the journey will be a vewry nice short and pleasant one, but..to be pleasant, all depends on which kind of transportaiton you did decide to take...avoid the train, you will spend more time in the trainstation then on a train! The easiest way is to take a bus or at least a privat car and in a couple of hours you will be here!
Train to Agra
It's an experience to take the train in india. To go to Agra from Delhi is a good option, it's fast and it's not expensive. It costed around 600 RS and it took like 3 hours, thought there are a lot of trains and there are some that are faster. About the class, it was 2 with A/C, and thanks because it was very hot those days.
From Agra to Jaipur
There are trains between Agra and Jaipur and I went to Agra Fort station to ask for the schedule. The train was leaving too early, around 6am. So instead I asked the man at my hotel which bus stand I should go to for the buses to Jaipur. He told me to go to the new bus terminal outside town as the luxury buses leaves from there. In the morning another man at the reception told me to go to Idgah Bus Stand instead. I thought that was the best too as it was closer and there would always be a regular bus from there. From Taj Ganj (East Gate) I paid Rs 50 (August 2010) for an auto rickshaw to Idgah Bus Stand.
When I arrived at Idgah Bus Stand it was 7.15am. The man in the first counter I went to sold tickets for the 7.30 bus, a luxury bus. The problem, for me, was that it was leaving from the new bus terminal more than 5km away. He said I could take a taxi there , but that was not a good option for me. I asked for the regular bus and it turned out it was leaving at 7.20, just in a few minutes. Of course I chose that one. It was Rs 159 and took less than 6 hours. Half along the way we stopped and some people ate at a food stall. I only walked around.
In Jaipur the bus stopped at the Main Bus Stand. From there it was not too far (about 1 km) to walk to my hotel, the Hotel Pearl Palace.
The next day I met a man who had been staying in the same hotel as me in Agra. He had gone to Jaipur on the same day as me, but he took the train and left earlier than me and arrived later than me. I’m glad I took the regular bus.
- Budget Travel
From Agra to Fatehpur Sikri
After breakfast I took an auto rickshaw from Taj Ganj (East Gate) to the Idgah Bus Stand in Agra for Rs 70 (August 2010). I asked for the bus to Fatehpur Sikri and was directed to the right bus, a big old bus. I sat down in the bus and didn’t have to wait long before we took off. The ticket was sold on the bus and was Rs 27. The bus ride to Fatehpur Sikri took around one hour and along the way the driver often pressed a very loud horn, it was torture for the ears. In Fatehpur Sikri the bus stopped near the clock tower and bazaar, not far from Jama Masjid.
Going back to Agra I walked out to the main road between Jaipur and Agra and I was lucky as a bus arrived just as I crossed the big road. This time I paid Rs 28 (one rupee more than in the morning). Coming back to Agra I didn’t go all the way to Idgah Bus Stand. I was going to Agra Fort Station and someone on the bus told me where to go off and helped me take a shared auto rickshaw to a place near the station.
- Budget Travel