Top 10 places to see near Pondicherry

When you think of Pondicherry, what crosses your mind - Auroville? Matrimandir? Promenade Beach? Booze? There's a lot more on Pondicherry than that! There's a lesser known Puducherry and here's more about it! Here are 10 lesser known places that I explored on a road trip in and around Pondi! 
1. Sivaranthagam Banyan Tree: This is a huuuuuge banyan tree. Taken care of by an old lady and her family that comes over on weekends, this tree has been her home since she was a young mother! She has helped this tree spread its roots and made it grow wide and far. And it got all famous when some scenes of the Academy Award winning movie Life of Pi were shot here.
2. Pichavaram Mangrove: World's second largest mangrove it is. A salt water marsh land, this is an eco-system that protected the nearby villages from getting affected by Tsunami.
3. Thiruchopuram Beach: Its the best beach I've seen in my life so far. Its the most serene, peaceful, silent, secluded beach ever! Its such a well kept secret that I did think a couple times if I should really write about it or keep it a secret.
4. Chunnambar Beach: A ferry ride from main land to an smaller piece of land separated by backwaters. So peaceful and serene, with hardly few people and a few huts that serve as shelters to tourists and one little shop! 
5. Kottakuppam Serenity Beach: A proper fishermen village it is. However the rocky check dam that extends much into the sea makes all the difference. Sitting here and watching the sunset is one of the best things to do!
6. Fort St David - Capper Hills: A British construction where many people who struggled for our Independence were imprisoned. Today filled with bushes and outgrowths, its just a sad state of affairs and cannot be accessed at all! Anyways, you can't miss it, can you?
7. Arikamedu excavations: Pondicherry has been a port since centuries and the Roman civilization used this as a port till the British in 19th C. What's left is a British building, a submerged land where Roman coins and pottery shreds were excavated, and a submerged port!
8. Villianur Thirukkameeswarar Temple: An ancient temple which was under renovation when I visited. But 1 gopuram is filled with such gorgeous sculptures that you need quite some time to see it all. And if you know some level of Hindu mythology, figuring out the sculptures would be fabulous. 
9. Thiruvakkarai Fossilwood park: Trees of stone age becomes stone over time! If submerged deep deep deep inside the soil, they may become diamonds! However when not so deep, it becomes just fossilized! Somehow this area, in and around Pondicherry, has several such fossilized trees and these were collected and kept in this park.
10. Le Cafe Lasagna! Last but not the least - food!!! Lasagna at Le Cafe is one of the best I've ever had. Located on the Promenade beach, its a simple cafe with sea-view seating arrangement within the building as well as in the garden. The service is impeccably slow! That said, the food is yummy! Go there with an idea to relax, not when you're very hungry...
If you're interested in the Top 25, head over to Cleartrip's list of Things to do in Pondicherry

Bhushavali N

An ardent traveler by passion. I am a wanderlust.. Read more about me here.

12 comments:

  1. I have never heard of Pondicherry so thankyou for sharing. All the places sounds great I love the beach, but Fossilwood park sounds like it would be a good place to see.

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  2. These 'lesser' things make any town or destination more interesting. Puducherry definitely has a lot to offer, all which add to its appeal. From your list Fort St. David & the Arikamedu excavations are my top places to see.

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  3. I would love to see the mangroves and the beach. It's always comforting to see the view of the sea and nature.

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  4. These are very beautiful places you are sharing with us. This is again another place that I would probably never see myself. Thank you so much.

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  5. Pondicherry is in India but has a different charm. I have heard about its beaches from my parents.

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  6. I didn't know that they have a lot of beaches for you to explore! These are all amazing and it would be nice to go here with the family.

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  7. This is new to me... I never know where is pondicherry.. But it's amazing place

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  8. The Sivaranthagam Banyan Tree is a wonderful sight. It`s truly great that there`s someone looking after such a beautiful part of nature.

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  9. Wow thanks for showing me around here. I have not been to PONDICHERRY yet but would love to visit there when I have chance.

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  10. I am not familiar of Pondicherry but sure it is quite interesting because of your top 10! And among the places you have listed, I have my 3 places I assume I'd love to see in person if given the chance. It is Sivaranthagam Banyan Tree, Pichavaram Mangrove, and Fort St David - Capper Hills. The second is quite interesting since it is hailed as the second largest mangrove!

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  11. going there next month... love to explore these places...

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