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Home » South India States » Pondicherry Travel
Pondicherry town is a surprise in India. This you'll realise as you pass through well-laid, wide streets carrying French names and kept unpolluted. Clean. A French past is still present.
Pondicherry cheers the heart of the romantic. With grand boulevards and quiet promenades. You'll be greeted with large bouquets of bougainvillea hanging over the ivory-coloured walls of colonial mansions. Pondicherry with its ashram charm, is sought out by the peace-seeker. And with its safe and secluded beaches, by the tan-seeker.
Pondicherry is richly cosmopolitan. A staggering number of 55 languages are spoken here. By an easy, relaxed set of people. Pondicherry is a favourite hunting ground for the shop-hopper. Where wonderful bargains are easy pickings. Pondicherry is a peaceful, easy feeling. That makes you want to put your feet up. And let your hair down.
The French Heritage
Pondicherry has a rich French cultural heritage, having been the capital of the French colonies in India since the 17th century. Pondicherry, Karaikal, Yanam and mahe were transferred to the Indian union in 1954. This French legacy is visible in the well-Planned town, neatly laid roads, wide and vibrant beaches, beautiful promenades, architecturally imposing churches and public buildings and the statues of joan of ark and joseph Francois colonies in India from 1742-54.
The town also has an alliance Francaise and the French institute. Among the notable French personalities who left their indelible mark on Pondicherry, four names stand out.
The Land of Yoga and Spirituality
If you are tired of the rat race that today's world has become and are in search of inner peace, harmony and spirituality, then Pondicherry is the place to come to. It has been seat of learning and Vedic culture since ancient times and was also the home of the great Hindu sage Agastya. Pondicherry mystic spirit found a great resurrection in the twentieth century with the establishment of Aurobindo Ashram.
Places to see
Sri Aurbindo Ashram
The Ashram has grown into a center for the practice of integral Yoga. In the main building is located the Marble Samadhi, where Aurbindo and the Mother have been laid to rest.
The 1.5 km long promenade running along the sea beach is the prime attraction of Pondicherry. On the sea front are several landmarks like the statue of Mahatma Gandhi, famous French Governor Dupleix, the elegant war memorial erected by the French, and the 27 m tall lighthouse.
The Pondicherry Museum
The museum displays a rich past of Pondicherry, since the pre-Christian era, down to the present day. It offers an insight into the art and social life of the region during the many dynasties which rules here.
How To Get There
The nearest major airport is at Chennai, 162 km away. Vayudoot Air service has regular flights from Chennai to Pondicherry.
Trains ply regularly from Chennai to Pondicherry.
State Government buses as well as private buses, and taxis ply regularly from Chennai to Pondicherry.
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