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Agra, Building Sustainable Livelihoods with Heritage Walks

Project Description

Two Heritage Walks have been developed in Agra to create sustainable livelihoods for the poor of Agra . Structured as community business enterprises, the Walks showcase the lesser known monuments and cultural heritage of Mughal Agra. The first, the Mughal Heritage Walk is a 1 km walking loop linking the ancient village of Kucchpura across the Tajmahal, to the first observatory built by Shahjhan, the Humayan Mosque that predates the Taj and the Mehtab Bagh or the Black Taj site. The Walk is part of a longer heritage trail that combines the well preserved Itamt-ud-Daulah, the Chini ka Rauza and the Ram Bagh with agricultural dykes, fields and the riverbank.

The second, the Taj Culture Walk takes the tourist into the city’s core – Tajganj, to see the arts and crafts of Mughal Indua – marble inlay work, zardozi embroidery, pottery making, the kite and pigeon flying contests. It also showcases the private heritage of some of the builders of Tajmahal – the House with Nine Pillars or the Baksh Museum, the Tazia courtyard and private artifact collections.

These paid walks have been facilitated by the community youth trained to facilitate these since 2006. Livelihoods are also generated through linked businesses on the walk route – souvenir making, tea terraces, etc. The community enterprise has a banked corpus from ticket sales that is used for community development.

Project Details

  • Date August 1, 2006
  • Tags Environment, Livelihoods
  • Project Location

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