The silhouette of Pondicherry comprises the famed French Town or White Town, spectacular churches, temples, and statues with an additional charm of the sea and that of the swaying palm and coconut trees. On the Southeast side of the Indian subcontinent Pondicherry or Pondy or Puducherry, whatever you like to call it, is a tourist destination for a calm and relaxed holiday any time of the year. Once the part of the neighbouring state of Tamil Nadu, Pondicherry displays a great influence of it in its cuisine, architecture as well as language. Hence, you can expect to relish potpourri of Tamil and French culture in this is beautiful union territory.
Pondicherry is indeed a synonym of Auroville. Of course, tourists know it for its French houses and cafes, but Auroville certainly has its own importance when it comes to must-see places in Pondicherry.
The much revered Matri Mandir and the concept of human unity in diversity are a big draw for people who spend days, weeks, and months here volunteering, meditating, and interning. Once, out of the spiritual realm of Auroville, tourists have the chance to relish the beach life of Pondicherry. The Promenade Beach that flanks the White Town area may not have a sandy area to stroll on but it does offer quite a scenic spot for visitors to spend hours at. The Paradise beach, on the other hand, has everything a beach lover is looking for - golden sand, azure water, water activities, and the coolest crowd.
Keep some time at hand to relish the French and Tamil culture and tradition meld where you have the opportunity to witness Pondicherry’s cuisine, rural life, cooking demo of old recipes, weaving workshops, sculpture art, musical trail, the local game "petanque", puppet shows along with an experience of handmade paper tours with workshop and much more. Another major attraction of Pondicherry that cannot be missed is Aurobindo Ashram. Yes, you may have to stand in a long queue for your turn to enter but the place is worth the wait. Pondicherry, when compared to other tourist destinations in India, may have a slower pace of life, but this attracts anyone looking for a quiet holiday time with an opportunity to cycle everywhere and relish cheaper booze, and delectable food coming from the Tamil and French kitchens.
Apart from this, Pondicherry also houses a number of must visit Hindu temples and Churches that have spectacular architecture to adore. The churches in Pondicherry mostly date back to 18th or 19th century, whereas the Hindu temples have a history going back to the 17th century. Amongst the popular temples in Pondicherry are Villianur Thirukameeswarar Temple and Arulmigu Manakula Vinayagar Devasthanam. Library, museums, war memorial, and statues are some other important places for sightseeing in Pondicherry and missing out any of these is not suggested.