Tamil, French, English
Best time to visit
October - March
Hot & humid
Pondicherry is a union teritory inside the state of Tamil Nadu.
It was Formerly a French settlement, something you can get a feel
of when you walk around the city. Colonial buildings as old as the
18th century line the streets and their is a touch of France in
The French established a settlement in Pondicherry in 1673. They
were the last European power to come to India for trade. The French
handed over their territories to India in November 1954.
Pondy (as the locals call it) is a perfect base to explore the
various destinations around it; Auroville, International City of
Unity, the Gingee Fort, the holy temple towns of Kanchipuram, Tiruvannamalai
and Chidambaram, the heritage sculptures and rock temples of Mamallapuram
(Mahabilapuram) and the cool hillstations of Kodaikanal.
How to get here
The international airport in Chennai is the closest.
There is a railstation in Pondesherry, but there are few and slow
trains. It is better to take a bus to Chennai and a train from there.
Pondicherry is connected by road from Chennai, Bangalore and Kerala.
The best way to get to Pondy from Chennai and Bangalore is by taxi
or bus. Buses leave from Chennai at the Tamil Nadu State Express
Bus Stand and takes about 4 hours to reach Pondy.
Places to visit
Sri Aurobindo Ashram - Promenade
- Auroville - The Botanical Garden -
Once known as "Pragiyotishpura" or
Light of the East, the most striking feature of Guwahati, is the
Brahmaputra, whose swollen sandy channel is so wide that the far
shore is often rendered invisible.
.: Sri Aurobindo Ashram
Was established by Sri Aurobindo, a revolutionary turned poet and
later developed by the Mother, a Paris-born painter and musician
who became Sri Aurobindo's disciple and close companio. The Ashram
has grown into a centre for the practice of Integral Yoga. In the
main building is the Marble Samadhi where Aurobindo and the Mother
have been laid to rest.
The long promenade running along the beach is the pride of Pondicherry.
On the sea front are several landmarks. Mahatma Gandhi, Jeanne d'Arc
and Dupleix, an elegant war memorial raised by the French, the heritage
building Mairie and the 27 m tall lighthouse which is the circular
shaped structures on either side of Gandhi.
Located about 10 km north of Pondicherry, Auroville is described
as "the City of Tomorrow". Auroville was envisioned as
a Universal Town, where people from different nationalities, faiths
and beliefs could live in peace and harmony. Here, an attempt is
being made to copy the experiment being carried out in Sri Aurobindo
Ashram for the evolution of a new society as envisioned by Sri Aurobindo
and the Mother. This society would be one where people "live
freely as citizens of the world, obeying one single authority -
that of the Supreme Truth ... a place of peace, concord, harmony".
The construction of Auroville was started in 1968, under the Mother's
direction. Several countries have set up pavilions here. For more
information see: www.auroville.org
.: The Botanical Garden
Created in 1826. Its' collection of 1500 species.
There are about 32 temples in Pondicherry. Of these, Manakula Vinayagar
temple, Sri Vedapureeswarar temple, Kamatchiammalle temple and Varadarajaperumal
temple are famous. The Gokilambal Thirukameswarar Temple is architecturally