This morning’s destination is Agra Fort, the palatial walled city where Shah Jahan once lived, followed by lunch at the spectacular Oberoi Amarvilas. Check-in and enjoy a leisurely afternoon on the resort property, where every room offers stunning a view of the Taj Mahal. As the sun sets, you’ll have your first opportunity to visit India’s most awe-inspiring and iconic monument; this “elegy in marble,” commissioned by the broken-hearted Emperor Shah Jahan after his beloved wife died in childbirth, will literally take your breath away.
Travel by sampan to Bandel for a visit to the Hooghly Imambara, one of the most famous pilgrimage centers in West Bengal. The structure was designed to serve two functions—a mosque as well as an Imambara, a congregation hall for special religious ceremonies. Admire the site’s faded grandeur on a stroll around its vast courtyard, or ascend one of the tall twin towers for a marvelous view. Later, join an excursion to Chandannagar, which was a French colony for about 275 years and thus has a very different cultural heritage and character from the rest of India (most of which fell under British rule). Take a leisurely walk along the Strand, Chandannagar’s waterfront promenade, lined with lovely colonial-era buildings that have stood the test of time—including the former French governor’s residence and the Roman Catholic Sacred Heart Church. Chandannagar’s intriguing dual nature is evident elsewhere in the city, such as the schools that still teach both English and French, generations after the colonial rulers departed. Spend your last evening onboard enjoying a Farewell Dinner.