Saturday, October 29, 2011

Fatehpur Sikri and Our First Lessons on Indian Tourism

On the way to Agra a couple weeks ago we stopped at Fatehpur Sikri, an entire city built from sandstone in 1571, lived in for 14 years, then completely abandoned. Now, the free mosque area is populated by goats and the homeless while the actual palace/fort area is guarded by a ticket booth where the ticket agents will always try and short change you by a couple hundred rupees (they tried it on all 10 of us). The place was overwhelming both in scale but also in the number of people following us trying to push their wares or begging for money. Tourism in India is like nothing else anywhere in the world and takes patience and an uncanny talent for tuning out the rest of the world.

One of the hallways being kept spotlessly clean.

Myriam, me, and Leen wearing head coverings made of plastic mesh since we've entered into an Islamic holy place.

The protective walls and main entrance gate.

Climbing our way up to the entrance. Leen and Sandra.

These houses are right outside the sandstone city, quite a contrast.

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