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Tourism of Uttar Pradesh

Uttar Pradesh has great tourism potential and tourism plays an important role in the state's economy. Uttar Pradesh attracts a multitude of domestic and international visitors every year. Not only the state's architectural wonders, but its great dances and music, colourful festivities and sumptuous cuisines contribute to its tourism.

Where sightseeing is concerned, there are many places to see in the state. However, there is no denying the fact that the highpoint of the tourism of Uttar Pradesh is the Taj Mahal. The city of Agra is home to the fabulous Taj Mahal, built by the Mughal emperor Shajahan to show his undying love for his wife, and also possibly to keep his name for the posterity. Agra also has a magnificent fort named Agra Fort, and many other tourist attractions. Just a jeep ride away from Agra awaits the Fathepur Sikri with its regal and massive Bulland Darwaza, attracting the tourists across the globe.

Allahabad city stands at the confluence of the rivers Ganga and Yamuna. A third river Saraswati is said to flow underground to meet Sangam, making it a confluence of three rivers, thus giving it the name Triveni. Sangam is believed to have great soul-cleansing powers among the Hindus. Allahabad is the place of many sacred fairs and festivals, and attracts thousands of pilgrims and tourists throughout the year. Most famous of these fairs is of course the Maha Kumbh Mela, which is being held only in Allahabad, after every 12 years. This ultimate of all religious fairs attracts a sea of crowd comprising both curious tourists and serious pilgrims, along with hordes of saints and soothsayers. During the Maha Kumbh Mela, all roads lead to Allahabad.

The city also has a massive fort built by the founder of the city- the great emperor Akbar- the river view of which is truly magnificent. Under the fort is the underground temple of Patlapuri with the said to be immortal banyan tree named Akshaya Vat inside. Also in Allahabad are the Ashoka Pillar and the Hanuman Temple, near Sangam. The Anand Bhawan, the ancestral home of the Nehru family, is now a museum. There are also quite a few places in and around Allahabad that are tourist worthy.

The city of Mathura in Uttar Pradesh is an important pilgrimage centre. On the Mathura-Vrindawan road is the Gita Mandir, a temple-shrine with an image of Lord Krishna in its sanctum with the whole of the Bhagwad Gita inscribed on its walls. Mathura also has an archaeological museum. When you visit Mathura, do make it a point to visit the neighbouring town of Vrindawan, another famous place of pilgrimage, whose sacred environment resonates with the myths and folklore about Lord Krishna.

Another sacred city of Uttar Pradesh is Varanasi, which is perhaps older than history. Without touring Varanasi, your Uttar Pradesh tours cannot be complete. It is famous for its Ganga ghats and numerous temples. Kashi Vishwanath Temple is the most famous of the temples of Varanasi. Sarnath is another place of interest for religious tourist, being one of the four sacred places of Buddhism in India. It is the place where Buddha delivered his first sermon after attaining enlightenment.

The city of Faizabad is host to some beautiful buildings like the Moti Mahal and the tomb of Bahu Begam, which is considered to be one of the finest buildings of its kind in the area.

Kanpur, on the banks of the Ganges, is the largest city of the state and its industrial capital. Kanpur has the Allen Forest Zoo, one of the best zoos in the country, the JK Temple, the Jain Glass Temple, the Phool Bagh and other such places of interest. Nearby, along the Kanpur-Lucknow highway is the Nawabganj Bird Sanctuary. Lucknow, the capital of the state is also an important historical city. It is famous for the architectural masterpiece of Bada Imambara, the Chhota Imambara, State Museum and the Residency. Yes it also famous for its delectable Mughlai cuisines and chikankari handicrafts, which do not fail to bowl over the multitude of tourists.

Last Updated On: 2011/07/16