A while back, I had the pleasure of visiting the most beautiful places in India. Yes, I am calling it the most beautiful because of the architecture, cleanliness, and hospitality reflected in the nature of people, and above all because of the history of the city. Taking the pride to take readers on a small tour of the union territory.
Dr Himanshu Talwar (Avid traveller, Author of several books, Writes travelogues)
Puducherry, also called Pondicherry, is one of the eight Union Territories of India which is bounded by the southern state of Tamil Nadu. This former French colony offers a perfect mix of traditional Indian sensibilities and fine French architecture. Puducherry is a dreamy escape that has a lot to offer to tourists from delectable French cuisine to fun activities by the shore. As simple as leisurely strolling around the town or going for bicycle rides, you can explore the charms of the beach town.
Here are some places a traveller must visit in Puducherry:
- Paradise Beach, also known as Plage Paradiso, which is situated in Chunnambar is an infamous tourist spot. A golden-hued sandy beach location where you can spend some leisure time and view some mesmerising scenes, especially the sunset or the sunrise is a wonderful treat to the eyes. Visitors need to take a ferry across the backwaters to reach Paradise beach, which takes around 20-30 minutes from the main town. The backwater beach is set on a backdrop of the lush green mangrove forest. You can enjoy camel rides, cart rides and other shooting activities here. A beautiful destination for some adventurous times as well as to enjoy nature’s beauty.
- One of the 21 Basilicas in India and the only one in Puducherry, the Church of Sacred Heart of Jesus set up by the French missionaries in 1908 is considered to be one of the most sacred and religious places of Puducherry, which is situated on the south boulevard of the town. The Church of Sacred Heart of Jesus beautifully showcases Gothic architecture with an interior of moss green, milky white and scarlet with 24 columns holding the entire infrastructure together.
- Auroville Beach in Puducherry is a part of the Auroville Township. It is one of the most popular beaches in Puducherry, which is situated about 12 kilometres away from the main town. It attracts a lot of tourists and locals with its shallow, crystal-clear water and sun-kissed shores. The beach is perfect for swimming and surfing, you may spot a lot of surfers here. On the other hand, you may seek spirituality in the Ashram which is known to be an epitome of tranquillity and a perfect getaway for those in search of peace.
- The Lighthouse is another one of the remarkable landmarks in Puducherry. The French Riviera of the East, Puducherry has two lighthouses. One of which serves as the spot for giving its visitors the most amazing bird’s eye view of the city.
- Known as the French Colony of Puducherry, White Town flaunts an old-world charm and the fine architecture of ancient French Quarters. The streets are dotted with charming mustard-yellow colonial structures with bougainvillaea-laden walls. The well-paved clean pathways are lined with cosy cafes, authentic French bakeries, chic boutiques, art galleries etc. Other well-known attractions around the area include Arulmigu Manakula Vinayagar Temple, Sri Aurobindo Ashram and Eglise de Notre Dame des Anges.
Besides activities by the beach, Puducherry packed with enchanting marine life also offers an exciting experience of scuba diving off the country’s East Coast. The town offers you the best of everything in terms of fine architecture, delectable food, a calm and serene atmosphere etc. Puducherry is a beautiful destination for tourists to feel rejuvenated as well as explore their adventurous selves.